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Old 04-17-2006, 10:50 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottanlily
Hello evryone,

Im sorry about putting some worry out there. It is just that there have been problems with some caravels axles and its better to get the most info you can now ,rather than later after somthing happens .The info that is on the link InsideOut posted is worth looking at .I really havent heard of any other airstream axle failures involving structural failures of this type.that link talks of 2or3 caravels icluding the one in the link having this trouble.To melody Ranch, This is as first hand as I can provide ,maybe you can track down the author of that link InsideOut posted here on this thread.As far as airstream is concerned ,that reply of B.S. tells me that they have never seen one break.Really ,how many caravels do they work on truthfully?You can talk to inland andy at Inland RV .Has been and is involved in vintage airstreams for 20,25 years or more .You may also find that todays airstream dealers are not as knowledgable about vintage airstreams.So dont take their word for it,look at the link ,speaks for itself .

Good luck,

Scott of scottanlily
Scott,

The author of that link is RJ Dial the owner of the VintageAirstream.com site and former webmaster for the Vintage Airstream Club. He is very knowledgable on Airstream trailers. He had a spindle break on one of his trailers and a member of our unit had one break in 2002 on the way home from the Santa Maria VAC rally. I don't recall which model they have but it either a Globetrotter or Caravel.

BTW, did you receive the newsletter copy?

Bill
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Old 04-18-2006, 12:08 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melody Ranch
BOTH replied that it was B....S...! Expect some failures but it is not a major problem as promoted here and VAC.
All I know is that of the failures I've heard of, all are on '65 Caravels which have the smaller 10" drums and lighter spindles. The folks we know are VERY good with their trailer maintenance and they didn't see it coming...it just sheared off. It may be BS, but I would question why it hasn't happen with the heavier rated axles used on the larger trailers if it was just a quality control issue...why haven't some of the bigger axles with 12" drums and larger spindles broken too?

Shari
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Old 04-18-2006, 01:26 AM   #17
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Hey wkerfoot,

I did receive it ,thankyou ,It appears that it is only the small axle with the 10" drums and 5 lug wheels .Agree also its not lack of proper care as is stated by Insideout,The way I read R J Dials article is that the machined spindle sheered off right at the attaching point where the spindle is welded to the square end of the axle ,not the spindle forging itself . he refers to the forging as the failure and talks more about later mild steel spindles and so on.The fact,of the matter is ,the forged steel spindles are extemely strong .Doesnot matter if its a trailer or automobile or truck .no spindle period is made other than by the forging process ,that I know of ,because catastophic failure will happen.The attachment point is another story because the spindle is not one piece with the main axle ,which is not a forged part. It is welded on to the end of the axle .nevertheless these caravel axles do fail .I dont want to drag on about metallurgy and cast steel etc.But that axle as designed is weak in general as we know ,bambis as I recall used a 4 lug wheel from early ford falcons ,so how stout could their axles be? Havent heard of any spindles sheering off.

scott
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Old 04-18-2006, 01:08 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottanlily
But that axle as designed is weak in general as we know ,bambis as I recall used a 4 lug wheel from early ford falcons ,so how stout could their axles be? Havent heard of any spindles sheering off.

scott
There are no automotive applications on any Airstreams built from the 60's on up.

A 14inch wheel from Ford Motor Company (Be it a Falcon to a pre '65 full size Ford or Mercury) was not supplied to Airstream nor is it acceptable for a trailer application. It may fit. And just cause it fits does not mean it's acceptable.

Single axle loads on a Bambi should be far less than the loads for a Caravel.

However there is a point to be made for dual axles. I bet the load on my dual axle Overlander is less per axle than the load on those single axle Caravels.

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Old 04-18-2006, 02:30 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottanlily
Hey wkerfoot,
. . . bambis as I recall used a 4 lug wheel from early ford falcons ,so how stout could their axles be? Havent heard of any spindles sheering off.
scott
Those would have been 13 inch wheels, right? Not 14 inch 5 holes.
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Old 04-18-2006, 03:23 PM   #20
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I stand corrected. Falcon had 13" wheels for most of it's existance. With 4 bolt holes. A Falcon wheel would be a poor replacement for an Airstream.

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Old 04-18-2006, 09:38 PM   #21
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Hey everyone

I read that those 13" falcon wheels were used on bambi,s.I was mistaken about the 14".I dont believe that those wheels would be any problem on a early bambi especially when they were brand new wheels back then.That trailer isnt very heavy.It doesnt seem likely that there would have been a special trailer wheel in a 4 lug pattern way back then . Now I dont know To say noeverything ,so if someone has more correct info to offer thats fine.To reply to Action , you are right about not using automotive wheels ,full size car or not.As we all know the 15" split rim with the 700-15 truck tire,there was no special trailer tire back then, and they were not car tires obviousely,was the tire and wheel for airstreams and we all dont want those on our airstreams. I would not deny as yet that those falcon 13" wheels were not used on said bambis .It was not a split rim as far as I know . Hey Inland Andy do you remember what wheels were used?

Scott
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Old 04-18-2006, 10:07 PM   #22
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The way I see it...as of now

Well, The way I see it as of today, after reading all I could on this, Hunters' and VAC...........there have been 2 (two) instances of axel failure on the Caravel. Both of those were on 65's and one of those was a second hand witness report. All the axel changes I see talked about here seem to be the result of actual aged out rubber, self induced desires to upgrade or the reaction to reports of widespread failures in the 60's fleet. If you have the time and money its probably a good idea...........So, after I do the electrical, appliances and polish I will probably do the axel & probably use Dexter or Southwest at that. (Take a look at this if you plan that axel swap for whatever reason.)http://www.southwestwheel.com/sidebar/promo3.htm

Please don't jump my case on this subject....Its just the way I see it now.
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Old 04-18-2006, 10:40 PM   #23
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Hey MelodyRanch,

No ones trying to slam you or your decision .I believe ,yes alot of people just change the axles cause they feel better about it. most change them due to the aging an worn out torsion rubber rods ,angle of the swing arm on the axle is in the negative meaning,worn out .I would myself look over my own coach carefully and make my decision .My 60 trdwnd has the original hadco 5200lb axle,new brakes and brand new leaf springs because it needed those items replaced .it does not need a new axle .We as a group here newbies or long time streamers,want to provide whatever help or info we can to help you enjoy your airstream .The only reason .

good luck

Scott
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Old 04-19-2006, 11:47 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melody Ranch
Well, The way I see it as of today, <snip> there have been 2 (two) instances of axel failure on the Caravel. Both of those were on 65's and one of those was a second hand witness report.
The "second hand report" as you stated is not really second hand. I don't own the particular trailer but I know it (and it's owners) almost as well as my own. I witnessed it first hand, and the "second hand" information on RJ's website is FIRST HAND to me, I saw it happen. Just because the owner doesn't have a personal website or blog like RJ, doesn't mean it didn't happen or it's hearsay. The spindle plain & simple sheared off due to either a flaw in the metal or fatigue on the light weight spindle. '65 Caravel Coincidence? Maybe, but if I had a one, I would want to know of the potential problem, however the sharing of that information takes place.

You obviously are going to do with your trailer what you want...good luck with that. Being that your Caravel is a '66 with a different heavier axle, you probably will be fine...

Shari
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