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Old 11-17-2018, 02:57 PM   #1
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Vibration at 45 mph - finally solved

We purchased a used 2014 Flying Cloud 27FB Twin from the Airstream Dealer in Atlanta in July of this year. We had noticed a vibration between 45 mph and 55 mph. We had also purchased a new 2018 Ford Expedition as our TV.

I had tried balancing the tires twice. Once while on the road to NC and once by the Ford Dealer in Roswell, GA. We had the AS dealer check it out and they told us it was the TV, not the AS. They said when the hocked it up to one of their trucks, they couldn't;t feel it. I even had them take me for a ride when hooked to a Dodge 1500 and couldn't really feel it, but I wasn't behind the wheel, just a passenger. Convinced that it really was my TV, my next stop was to Ford. FYI - the Expedition drives smooth as can be without the AS. I also had all four tires balanced at Ford

Ford was very accommodating and spend almost 5 hours with me and our AS. They were able to connect a computer to our vehicle that my guess is can access sensors on the drive line etc to tell where the vibration was coming from. We determined that it had to be coming from the Airstream. They even let me tow our AS with one of the F!%) trucks that service had a loaners. When I towed with an F150, it was hard to fell the vibration, but it was there. This time I was driving. The Ford dealer even "Road Forced" Balanced our tires and said three of them were showing high road force, but were balanced.

While at Ford and taking the tires off to balance them, I spun each hub by hand and tried to see of one was catching. My drivers side rear hub when spun would move up and down, it seemed to be solid on the spindle, but was definitely not spinning symmetrical.

After calling Airstream tech support, they told me the axles were made by Dexter and even gave me serial numbers of the axles. I called Dexter and they referred me to a Dexter parts distributor and service center called "Atlanta Safety Brake" in Mableton, GA. Took it there this week and they verified that the Hub was manufactured and machined off center. Dexter said since it was out of the 2 year warranty, they couldn't cover. The tech also found that the shock that was on the out of round hub was also worn out, probably from all the vibration. All of the other Hubs were leaking grease from the Nev-R-Lube bearings.

Replaced all 4 Hubs, new Brakes, new shocks and new Good Year Endurance tires and picked it up yesterday. What a difference!!!! No vibration and towed super smooth.

What a relief to finally get to the bottom and have it fixed. My thanks to the Ford Dealer in Roswell for spending half a day to diagnose and they didn't even charge me. They didn't even charge me for the "Road Force" balancing of all four tires. Atlanta Safety Brake did a great job on all the Hub, Brake, Shocks and Tires.

I have added a pic of the hub so you can see how it was machined off center.
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File Type: pdf Dexter Hub Off Center.pdf (6.06 MB, 66 views)
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Old 11-17-2018, 03:08 PM   #2
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I’d be all over Dexter to make them cover that!
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Old 11-17-2018, 04:04 PM   #3
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That is great that you got it fixed. Lots of work and effort but worth it in the end.
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Old 11-17-2018, 07:13 PM   #4
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I called Dexter and asked them if they would help me out and they told me the warranty was only two years and the AS is five years old. They also said it would apply to the original owner only.
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Old 11-17-2018, 07:30 PM   #5
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Unusual that nobody thought to inspect the hub runout after the repeated balance attempts.

I guess things have changed at Dexter...they replaced a set of brake shoes that failed with 3kmi and three Seasons on them. All I needed was a receipt and an RA#. No questions about the self install, which surprised me. 👍

Bob
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Old 11-17-2018, 08:28 PM   #6
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Contact "Trailer Life" Magazine,they have a "way" of getting things such as this resolved. Good Sam also has such a department.

This is NOT "Lemon Law"
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Old 11-17-2018, 08:30 PM   #7
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Your Ford dealer is awesome. Glad it’s sorted out.
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Old 11-18-2018, 03:08 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Airtandem View Post
Contact "Trailer Life" Magazine,they have a "way" of getting things such as this resolved. mike

+1. That was my first thought too.
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Old 11-18-2018, 07:00 AM   #9
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Another idea, get the name of the previous owner and ask if they had noticed the vibration, Also ask why they had traded.
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Old 11-18-2018, 11:25 AM   #10
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wheel run out

I actually had the same situation on a truck with a rear brake drum. There was a wheel runout, so very small with the wheel on. So i decided to spin the wheel ,without the brake drum, wheel on the axle directly. Sure enough no runout. Put the brake drum back on ,the runout returned. I then noticed the brake drum center is plate metal, while the drum is cast iron. The plate ended up being installed crooked on the casting , when the two were combined. Installed a new drum and everything was fine.
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Old 11-18-2018, 02:22 PM   #11
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Utterly disappointing that Dexter would not cover this as it was clearly an issue in the manufacture of the hub. I would understand if it was something that just prematurely wore out and the warranty period was up, but this is quite different.
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Old 11-18-2018, 03:16 PM   #12
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Based on everyones feedback, I am going to take another run at seeing if Dexter will cover. Keep you posted.
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Old 11-18-2018, 06:06 PM   #13
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You would think dexter would make it right as this is their baby, they machined it, it didn’t wear this way...it darn sure didn’t get this way from sitting in one spot,LOL...maybe even as a good Will gesture...keep after them
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Old 11-21-2018, 09:41 AM   #14
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Talked to Dexter warranty department and they are sending me a claim form to fill out and hopefully they will cover. They did say that the warranty does not transfer to 2nd owners, but they said to get them all the info and they will take to upper management. Keeping my fingers crossed. Also talked to their engineering department and they confirmed is was machined wrong from day one from the pics I sent
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