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Old 01-17-2011, 10:22 AM   #1
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Couple of mixed questions Brakes & balancing

We have out 92 Excella at The Trailer Store in Blackwell, Arkansas (very busy stock/utility trailer store) having the brakes fixed and axle bearings repacked. They jacked up the AS before we got there this morning - even though we asked them to to call us before doing anything to the AS. The axles appear to be fine, they are at about 22 degrees according to the service manager. The questions are: 1) They jacked up the AS at the jack points and put jack stands under the frame just aft of the rear stabilizer jacks, is that a problem? 2) They suggested we replace the brake backing plates as it would be cheaper than repairing the brakes piecemeal, is there any problem taking that approach? The brakes are 12 inch drums. The backing plate comes with the shoes, magnets, springs, etc. 3) They didn't mark the tires and drums so they could be oriented correctly on reassembly. They say you no longer need to worry about balancing the tires and drums as a unit, just the tires nowadays. Is this correct or will we need to have the tires and drums balanced as a unit when we replace the tires? Does any tire store still balance tires and drums as a unit?

I appreciate your assistance in these inquiries.
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Old 01-17-2011, 10:40 AM   #2
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It is cheaper and easier to replace the brakes as an assembly so that is fine.

Regarding the balancing, the drums may or may not be in balance so it is better to balance the whole works if you can. Not sure if you can even find some one to do it anymore.

Dexter has told me they do not balance their drums, and it is obvious as they will usually rotate back to the same spot. Don't know about others..

You also have the option of putting Dynabeads in the tires or buying centramatic balancers,

In the case of my present trailer I only balance the tires themselves and have no problems but that is not always the case
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Old 01-17-2011, 11:04 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by REBurt View Post
We have out 92 Excella at The Trailer Store in Blackwell, Arkansas (very busy stock/utility trailer store) having the brakes fixed and axle bearings repacked. They jacked up the AS before we got there this morning - even though we asked them to to call us before doing anything to the AS. The axles appear to be fine, they are at about 22 degrees according to the service manager. The questions are: 1) They jacked up the AS at the jack points and put jack stands under the frame just aft of the rear stabilizer jacks, is that a problem? 2) They suggested we replace the brake backing plates as it would be cheaper than repairing the brakes piecemeal, is there any problem taking that approach? The brakes are 12 inch drums. The backing plate comes with the shoes, magnets, springs, etc. 3) They didn't mark the tires and drums so they could be oriented correctly on reassembly. They say you no longer need to worry about balancing the tires and drums as a unit, just the tires nowadays. Is this correct or will we need to have the tires and drums balanced as a unit when we replace the tires? Does any tire store still balance tires and drums as a unit?

I appreciate your assistance in these inquiries.
Having balanced running gear is very important to any Airstream.

Airstreams flex from bumps and vibrations.

Andy
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Old 04-16-2011, 10:51 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In

Having balanced running gear is very important to any Airstream.

Airstreams flex from bumps and vibrations.

Andy
So how do we get balanced running gear?
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Old 04-16-2011, 11:33 PM   #5
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Go to Andy's Web page Inland RV Center and look at the centramatic balancing he has. I am planning on ordering some from him. There are manufactured south of Fort Worth. I went by there place Friday and there was a Argosy in their shop getting its new centramatic balance discs. I had been looking into them even before I knew Inland RV was a source.
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Old 04-16-2011, 11:49 PM   #6
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Hi, your drums are not balanced; They don't have any weights welded on them, no drill or grind marks on them, and they are not fully machined inside and out. So just balancing the wheels will not complete the job. I have my wheels balanced and installed Centramatics. Some people use Dyna-beads; Same basic idea, different way of doing the same thing.
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Old 04-17-2011, 11:36 AM   #7
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Hi, your drums are not balanced; They don't have any weights welded on them, no drill or grind marks on them, and they are not fully machined inside and out. So just balancing the wheels will not complete the job. I have my wheels balanced and installed Centramatics. Some people use Dyna-beads; Same basic idea, different way of doing the same thing.
Hate to tell you, but the shock in the left hand photo, is upside down. Not good.

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Old 04-17-2011, 08:58 PM   #8
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The local brake shop can turn the drums for me but cannot machine the drum's flat surface for the magnets. Is this necessary and do i need a machine shop or just a different brake shop?
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Old 04-17-2011, 10:59 PM   #9
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Hate to tell you, but the shock in the left hand photo, is upside down. Not good.

Andy
Hi, Andy. This is the only picture like this that I have; And as I told you once before the problem has been fixed. For those who want to know the whole story about my up-side-down shocks, check out my blog. Click on my Blog Entries, under my Avatar.
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Old 04-17-2011, 11:06 PM   #10
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Hi, Andy. This is the only picture like this that I have; And as I told you once before the problem has been fixed. For those who want to know the whole story about my up-side-down shocks, check out my blog. Click on my Blog Entries, under my Avatar.
Yup.. I remember that story.
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Old 04-17-2011, 11:08 PM   #11
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The local brake shop can turn the drums for me but cannot machine the drum's flat surface for the magnets. Is this necessary and do i need a machine shop or just a different brake shop?
Hi, I had a friend of mine turn my drums at his shop, but we were unable to machine the magnet part. I was referred to an auto parts store that could do them. They had to modify the bit/blade holder on their machine to do it. They would not let me see their machine. [top secret] Now they have closed up shop, so I don't know where I will get them done next time. Most places just want to sell you new drums.
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Old 04-18-2011, 12:57 PM   #12
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The local brake shop can turn the drums for me but cannot machine the drum's flat surface for the magnets. Is this necessary and do i need a machine shop or just a different brake shop?
Are they scored or just showing a little corrosion? If there's just some rust you can clean it up with a nylon pad on a die grinder. Otherwise you might be better off replacing the drums.
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Old 04-18-2011, 01:06 PM   #13
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I would suggest, also, that if you just have shallow grooves (.030 or less) you can just put new magnets on an they will seat in fine. You wil probably have to set the apply settings a little higher until they mate, but it won't take too many miles.
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Old 04-18-2011, 01:10 PM   #14
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Regarding the balancing, the drums may or may not be in balance so it is better to balance the whole works if you can. Not sure if you can even find some one to do it anymore.
There is a place by me that does it. I'll be visiting them in a few weeks. Either older brake and alignment shops, or speed shops, are the best places to call.

I have read through all the many threads on balancing that we have here. Several themes emerge:

1) Few shops have the equipment Inland RV uses to static balance hubs and drums. This equipment is no longer made and there is no equivalent product presently being sold to the automotive repair trade, because the received wisdom in the industry is that modern hubs, rotors, and drums are made to sufficiently close tolerances that balancing in the field isn't necessary

2) Few shops have the equipment to perform on-vehicle balancing because of the safety hazards inherent in the process.

3) The few people (2-3) who have actually had on-axle balancing performed have said that there was a significant amount of weight required to bring the entire assembly into balance, compared to the weight present from balancing the wheel and tire only.

4) There are several reports that the current production hubs and drums from Dexter and others, while not perfect, are not as badly out of balance as was typically the case in the 60s and 70s.

5) People with Centramatics seem to like them.
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