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Bulldogger 10-30-2008 10:46 PM

Axle Lifts ????
After dragging bottom and needing repairs on my 76 31' Sov. is there anybody that makes a lift kit for airstreams for added clearance??

Goin camping 10-30-2008 10:52 PM

I don't know of an axle lift system but the problem may be that your axles are worn out.

Is the arm that goes from the axle to the wheel level or pointing up at the wheel end? If so it's time for new ones.

If thats the problem they are easy to get and really easy to install.

Bulldogger 10-30-2008 11:01 PM

The axels are in good shape and the clearance is normal. What I would like to do is lift it more like a lot of the new toy hauler type trailers for rougher terrain.

Goin camping 10-30-2008 11:07 PM

I looked into the same thing as we tend to camp way out in the desert and improved ground clearance would make all those dirt roads easier.

The only thing I found was new axles with a higher angle arm.

I am curious though if 'blocks' could be placed beween the axle and the frame. Anybody out there have any thoughts?

Bulldogger 10-30-2008 11:15 PM

thanks, If you used a higher angle arm it would need to be longer. Is it possible do something without relocating the axel mounts??

azflycaster 10-30-2008 11:22 PM

The axle mounts and arms would be the same. The new axles would have an increased downward angle.

centennialman 10-31-2008 06:41 AM

Bulldogger.....can you post a couple of pics with a side angle view of your trailer so that the wheel wells/tires can be seen? You will definitely get confirmation then as to the status of your axles.

SteveH 10-31-2008 07:20 AM

I forgot the brand, (but Dexter comes to mind), anyway they build tortion axles that would easily replace the axles on Airstreams, and their axles are adjustable. The axle "arm" is on a spline, and all you have to do is remove a large bolt, take the "arm" of the spline, rotate it, and reinstall.

I bought one a while back for a trailer that I built from Southwest Wheel in Lubbock, Tx and it was built to my specs of weight, width, etc.

The adjustability would give you some ground clearance.

cameront120 10-31-2008 07:47 AM

If the trailer is 'jacked' up, what would that do to the towability of the unit? What with the higher centre of gravity and all.

overlander63 10-31-2008 08:31 AM

Airstreams are pretty much what they are. You can get a couple of extra inches clearance with new axles with a 35 degree angle (factory was 22.5), but much more than that will result in the axle trying to shove straight up instead of rotating, and a much rougher ride.
Likewise, you can extend the frame mounts downward slightly, to add a couple more inches ground clearance, but that modification would have to be carefully thought out and implemented. There are no "kits" to do this, such as a nitrous kit to make a car go faster.

purman 10-31-2008 08:38 AM

What about changing to a leaf spring axel.... Then you could flip it and get more clearance... this would mean modifying the frame mounts! but it might be possible...
May not be as smooth a ride!

Tin Diesel 10-31-2008 08:46 AM

How much lift from new axels
check out this post ( where I took pics of my new vs old axles. You can see the extra angle on the photo.
Note that we went to larger rims (16") AND installed new axles. We picked up 2 1/4 inches of clearance between the two.

That doesn't sound like much. However, we found it amazing how much higher the trailer seemed to be. Plus, several areas where we had clearance problems suddenly went away.

Inland RV Center, In 10-31-2008 10:28 AM


Originally Posted by Bulldogger (Post 633242)
thanks, If you used a higher angle arm it would need to be longer. Is it possible do something without relocating the axel mounts??

A greater starting angle does not change the size of the torsion arm.

It has been determined that 35 degrees is about maximum.

A starting angle greater than that creates excessive bouncing when hitting bumps.

We have, for special applications, raised Airstream trailers as much as 12 inches. Keep in mind, that the higher the ground clearance, the higher the center of gravity.

Please check the position of the torsion arms on your Airstream, to make certain that they are ok.


Wabbiteer 10-31-2008 10:36 AM

Bulldogger; Bent bumper is now cataloged in the anxiety locker, thank you very much. OUCH!

I expect a couple of inches from my new axles - I increased the load ratings #500; but shouldn't we be looking at the tow vehicle's receiver & ball height?

Being able to drop the ball two inches "should" raise the tail, If you've got a 2-inch drop now, having an emergency 6-inch ball-mount drop just to get extricated might've been a sanity saver... Or having the adjustable shank style to have a "get out of National Forest free card".

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