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Old 10-14-2008, 06:52 AM   #57
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Andy said safety, safety, safety.

Out of respect for Andy, I should swallow my pride and admit that I am not 100% sure of what the axle mounting plate looks like. Is there any chance of someone posting a picture of it ( or direct me to a post with a picture )
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Old 10-14-2008, 07:18 AM   #58
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After reading the many post I decided to use the open door test and it worked. I lifted the trailer at frame where additional metal patches were and door did not open. I then lifted at Axel mounting plate and door opened, I placed jack stands next to jack and lowered trailer.
I may have misunderstood but during a factory tour the guide stated that you never lift at Axel mounting plate as it will cause misalignment.
Don Ambose, the factory tour guide, knows that lifting an Airstream or Argosy trailer by placing a jack on an "axle", can and will cause misalignment.

He also knows that lifting the trailer using the "axle mounting plate" is safe, secure, and cannot cause misalignment, PERIOD.

Perhaps you misunderstood what he said.

Andy
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Old 10-14-2008, 07:26 AM   #59
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Out of respect for Andy, I should swallow my pride and admit that I am not 100% sure of what the axle mounting plate looks like. Is there any chance of someone posting a picture of it ( or direct me to a post with a picture )
Airstreams have been built since 1961, using axle mounting plates.

It's a steel plate, welded to the outside of the frame (chassis), and is vertical. It protrudes downward from the frame about 3 inches, and on a tandem axle trailer, it's about 5 feet long.

The axles in turn, are bolted to that mounting plate, and fit into a notch that is in that plate.

Also starting somewhere around 1967, the shock absorbers are mounted from the torsion arm of the axle, to a stud that is welded into the axle mounting plate.

Andy
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Old 10-14-2008, 07:51 AM   #60
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I am and have been as confused as everyone on this issue. I concur with mandolinedave. Show me the axle mounting plate...just because I am dumb. Can I assume (we all know what that means...) that if I place a jack between the tandem wheels, the steel frame there constitutes the axle mounting plate. It looks secure enough for me.
I always carry a trailer aide for changing a tire, but need to systematically remove them all the change valve stems and don't want to do it one at a time.
Thanks.
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Old 10-14-2008, 12:54 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In View Post
Don Ambose, the factory tour guide, knows that lifting an Airstream or Argosy trailer by placing a jack on an "axle", can and will cause misalignment.

He also knows that lifting the trailer using the "axle mounting plate" is safe, secure, and cannot cause misalignment, PERIOD.

Perhaps you misunderstood what he said.

Andy
Thanks Andy! I feel much better now lifting at Axel mounting plate.
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:49 AM   #62
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Is leveling at campsite from frame possible?

Experts,

I am doing some "Market Research" in the "Off Topic Forum" where some owners asked for an "auto leveling" sysem for their trailers. We would provide the control package that would sense level, run pump(s), control valves. We did NOT want to get into the "mechanical side" as this is not our expertise. There was some discussion on lifting, but nothing to this extent. It would be a poor product decision to build the controls if there is no "common way" to reliably level a trailer? This actually amazes me. From the airstream service pictures it appears those whom wish to create such a "system" that it is possible to do. Am I missing someting here? Is the issue that some trailer lift OK, other models don't? Is it that age of the trailer has some impact? Does anyone have the email address of the "airstream individual" whom could provide the corporate answer? Any guidance in this area would be appreciated, as we are in the research and prototype state and could easily kill the concept.

Reagrds,
Don
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:57 AM   #63
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Here is a picture of an axle mounting plate. It is the piece with the notch cut out, axle mounting bolt holes, and shock absorber:
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Old 12-02-2008, 08:04 AM   #64
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Thumbs up Plates

The "Banana" is in bed now.

Iv'e always used the axle plates for jacking. Much easier when camped or for a roadside emergency.
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Old 12-02-2008, 08:08 AM   #65
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Again a picture is worth more than a thousand words. Most have never crawled under their Airstream like U and I and really dont know what it looks like under there.
Whow another great pic BOB, yours answers the questions about jackin it up for the off season.
I dont have mine done yet Wifes truck is in the barn for repair and using the jackstands.
Thanks for the pic
Roger
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Old 12-02-2008, 09:32 AM   #66
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Levelling Systems

All sorts of ways to do it...

Here are a couple of pics of my solution....

2" X 2" x 1/4" square tubing welded across the bottom of the Axle Hangers.





Another 2" X 2" x 1/4" piece of square tubing welded to the first to form a strongback, then a positioning plate between the wheels to insure the hydraulic jack does not come out from under the frame.



I have tried electric jacks in place of the hydraulics, and the hydraulics are actually easier to use.

The axle hangers are what connects the axles to the frame, so all weight is transferred around the axles via the hangers. No problems in 2 years and 6,000 miles.

I always take the weight off of the axles and tires if the trailer is going to be parked for more than a week or so.
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Old 12-02-2008, 10:49 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C5Don View Post
Experts,

I am doing some "Market Research" in the "Off Topic Forum" where some owners asked for an "auto leveling" sysem for their trailers. We would provide the control package that would sense level, run pump(s), control valves. We did NOT want to get into the "mechanical side" as this is not our expertise. There was some discussion on lifting, but nothing to this extent. It would be a poor product decision to build the controls if there is no "common way" to reliably level a trailer? This actually amazes me. From the airstream service pictures it appears those whom wish to create such a "system" that it is possible to do. Am I missing someting here? Is the issue that some trailer lift OK, other models don't? Is it that age of the trailer has some impact? Does anyone have the email address of the "airstream individual" whom could provide the corporate answer? Any guidance in this area would be appreciated, as we are in the research and prototype state and could easily kill the concept.

Reagrds,
Don
Regarding leveling the Airstream you have hitch jack which controls the front to rear level. From side to side you depend on putting something under the tires. The stabilizer jacks that come on the Airstream trailer are only there to provide stabilization. They are not configured or supported to lift the trailer. Normally the only RV's I am aware of having leveling capabilities are the class A motor homes.

Unless someone knows differently, I really haven't ever seen a leveling system on any manufacturers travel trailers (although 5th wheels might be a different animal).
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Old 12-15-2008, 08:27 PM   #68
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Unfortunately, I am going to have the leave the trailer in covered storage for a couple of years. Based on this thread, I think I know what I need to do for the "relieving the axle" part...

1. Use the hydraulic jack, placed at the axle mounting plate, to raise the trailer
2. Place the jack stands, using a wood block atop, at each labeled jack point sticker

But... How do you determine the lift distance? Just enough to see the tire sidewall start to "un-bulge" as it comes off the contact patch?

And what about the tongue jack? Should I use a jack stand there too? Where to place it?

Thank you, and I really appreciate all the great insights in this thread.
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Old 12-16-2008, 07:27 AM   #69
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If the tires are used and older than 2 years now they will be toast when you are done in storage. If you wish take them off and use the tires for some other trailer while your Stream is in storage.

My thoughts are lift the trailer until the axle(s) are totally unloaded. Use the tongue jack as an addition point of stabilizitaion. Not support. I do not believe the jack was designed to support lots of weight for long periods of time. I maybe off on this however that is what I have done.

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Old 12-16-2008, 11:19 AM   #70
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Unfortunately, I am going to have the leave the trailer in covered storage for a couple of years. Based on this thread, I think I know what I need to do for the "relieving the axle" part...

1. Use the hydraulic jack, placed at the axle mounting plate, to raise the trailer
2. Place the jack stands, using a wood block atop, at each labeled jack point sticker

But... How do you determine the lift distance? Just enough to see the tire sidewall start to "un-bulge" as it comes off the contact patch?

And what about the tongue jack? Should I use a jack stand there too? Where to place it?

Thank you, and I really appreciate all the great insights in this thread.

I too would recommend raising the elec. tongue jack and using a jackstand, especially if you aren't able to check on it's operation periodically.

The tires, Plus/minus. How confident are you in where it's being stored? Is there a chance it would need to be moved? I do remove tires for winter storage, but that's more a weather thing, plus it's on the pad right outside.Covered storage, not indoors, cold weather I would be inclined to take them off and store inside.
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