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Old 05-12-2013, 10:27 PM   #1
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1969 27' Overlander
St. Louis , Missouri
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Emergency!! Need more clearance please help

I just purchased a 1969 overlander. Because of the rake of my driveway I do not have the ground clearance to get the airstream in my driveway. Is there an way to archive a 3-4 inch lift without replacing the axels. Any info would be greatly appreciated, please help!
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Old 05-12-2013, 10:48 PM   #2
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Long Beach , California
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Hello Noco:

I know I don't fully understand your problem. When I attempted to back up a driveway slope from the street, I found it necessary to lay wood planks in the gutter. This raised the trailer enough for me to continue backing until the wheels were on the driveway slope. Then it was easy to continue backing into the driveway. I have since poured concrete where I had placed the wood planks.

I hope this may give you an idea of how to solve your problem.

Don
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Old 05-12-2013, 10:54 PM   #3
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You could get a long drop bar with a 2 5/16ths ball and use it instead of your WD hitch solely for backing into your driveway.

Mike
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Old 05-13-2013, 06:22 AM   #4
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1969 27' Overlander
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Thanks for the suggestions guys. I am hoping for more permanent solution. I know if I had leaf springs I could achieve a lift fairly easy, but I do not believe a lift can be achieved easily with the air shock suspension this model has?
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:08 AM   #5
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Well, unless your trailer has had the axles replaced, they probably need it by now, and that will give you some increased ride height. And you can specify axles with "more than usual" lift. But 3-4 inches is quite a bit. Part of what makes 'em tow so well is the low center of gravity ...

So I'd explore the temporary ramp or temporary tow ball answers before doing anything else.
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:33 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Noco View Post
Thanks for the suggestions guys. I am hoping for more permanent solution. I know if I had leaf springs I could achieve a lift fairly easy, but I do not believe a lift can be achieved easily with the air shock suspension this model has?
Please don't get tunnel-vision and keep gnawing at one possible complicated solution (lift kits) when there are other, simpler, solutions that will work. As an engineer, I learned that lesson early in my career. The easiest fix for a problem is usually the best fix.

As I understand it, the slope of your driveway is such that the rear bumper of the trailer drags the pavement of the driveway before the trailer wheels leave the street. So, the problem at hand is, how to raise the rear of the trailer?

You seem to want to do it by raising the whole trailer, all the time. That will also require a new hitch for your tow vehicle, along with whatever lift kit you devise, so that the trailer can still be towed level. It may require modifications to your tongue jack, or the full-time use of leveler blocks under the jack. It may also require full-time use of leveler blocks under your stabilizer jacks, or replacement of the stabilizer jacks with ones that are longer. It may require modifications to your entry steps as well to account for the increased height of the trailer floor.

These modifications will also directly reduce the resale value of your trailer, in proportion to the amount of money it would take the next owner to undo all the changes you make.

The solution that n2916s suggested, a drop hitch just for getting into and out of the driveway, is a much more elegant solution. It doesn't adversely affect the resale value of the trailer, because the trailer itself remains unmodified. And it won't permanently affect the towing characteristics of the trailer, either. And it won't affect the way you park it and level it at a campground, either.

You don't need load-leveling, weight-distribution, or sway control to tow a trailer into and out of a driveway at a snail's pace. All you need is a hitch ball and drop hitch, both relatively cheap, and easy to obtain today by a trip to the auto parts store.

And if you try it and it doesn't work as we expect, you're not out much money, either, and don't have much work to undo, before trying something else.
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:38 AM   #7
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Well new axels might solve most of his problem by getting the ride height back where it should be and then the rest can be achieved with a drop hitch. They do make simple lift plates to raise the axel and they are removable if you want to sell it.

Perry
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:54 AM   #8
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Well new axels might solve most of his problem by getting the ride height back where it should be and then the rest can be achieved with a drop hitch. They do make simple lift plates to raise the axel and they are removable if you want to sell it.

Perry
I didn't consider that because the OP specifically said "without replacing the axles." My turn to have tunnel vision…
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Old 05-13-2013, 09:20 AM   #9
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The axels are probably riding on the stops because the rubber is shot and that is why the trailer is dragging the ground. That is my theory anyway. Didn't they start using the rubber spring axels in the early 60's?

Perry
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Old 05-13-2013, 09:33 AM   #10
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New axles on my '66 Trade Wind raised ours 3" - 4". Your Overlander is shorter than our TW so......

Neil
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Old 05-13-2013, 10:01 AM   #11
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Thanks for the suggestions guys. I am hoping for more permanent solution. I know if I had leaf springs I could achieve a lift fairly easy, but I do not believe a lift can be achieved easily with the air shock suspension this model has?
The best permanent solution, at least for another 25 years or so, is to replace the axles, as the rubber rods are now history.

If you do not replace them, then it would also be best to not put the trailer on the road.

When the rubber rods are gone, the trailer gets a very rough ride, and as a result, many damages will occur, such as fatigue cracking of the frame and shell, missing rivets, water leaks, AC troubles, rear end separation, copper tubing problems, and the list goes on and on.

Ask those that ignored the replacement warning signs.

Andy
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