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Old 06-21-2010, 11:10 PM   #1
lyn
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Dexter axles for 27' Overlander

hello-want to put new dexter axles under my overlander,think the old ones are maybe allright yet but want to get the coach higher off the ground. after haveing examined the dexter web site i have determined that a 45 degree angle and the nhigh profile side hanger is what i want. question is which axle groupe to get the 2300-3500 pound or the 4000-6000 pound? went to a dealer and he wants to put in the heavy ones but am thinking to stiff is not good. would really like to get in touch with a dealer or individual that has ordered dexter axles and could give me some part numbers perhaps. i called the factory and they really were not much help,thanks Lyn
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Old 06-22-2010, 07:57 AM   #2
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Been There

Done that, and wish I would have gone with.......

#11 Axles at 3200# each.
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Old 06-22-2010, 02:31 PM   #3
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starting angles

A 45 degree starting angle, "is not" recommended by Airstream.

Andy
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Old 06-23-2010, 07:46 AM   #4
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Correction

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Originally Posted by Dumpster View Post
Done that, and wish I would have gone with.......

#11 Axles at 3200# each.
I now have it on good authority that the minimum weight rating on a #11 axle from Dex is 3,500 lbs., not 3,200. Sorry for the misinformation.
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Old 06-23-2010, 08:18 AM   #5
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I recently custom ordered axles for an Airstream. They were #9 axle (same tube size as the original and the spindle from a #10 axle so I could get the 10" brakes just like the originals. The original axles were 1850 lbs and I ordered 2000 lb axles with a 32 degree down angle. I spoke with Dexter engineering department before I ordered from the local dealer.
Here is what I would do: Call Dexter engineering and get the part numbers for the axle you want to order. I would custom order the Dexter with a 32 degree angle which will help with the height. You should also be able to order the #10 axle (2300 - 3500) in 100 lb increments and should also be the same tube size as the original. You can specify the spindle for the #11 axle for the 12" brakes. They will throw in the shock mounts with the 32 degree down angle and you will have to custom fit these. Not hard to do if you use the originals as a guide. (The shock mounts come installed on the 22.5 down angle axle.)
There should be a tag on the axle with the weight rating.
You could also order axles from Inland RV which will be an easy phone call but the price will be slightly higher.
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Old 06-23-2010, 08:46 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crispyboy View Post
Here is what I would do: Call Dexter engineering and get the part numbers for the axle you want to order. I would custom order the Dexter with a 32 degree angle which will help with the height. You should also be able to order the #10 axle (2300 - 3500) in 100 lb increments and should also be the same tube size as the original. You can specify the spindle for the #11 axle for the 12" brakes. They will throw in the shock mounts with the 32 degree down angle and you will have to custom fit these. Not hard to do if you use the originals as a guide. (The shock mounts come installed on the 22.5 down angle axle.)
There should be a tag on the axle with the weight rating.
You could also order axles from Inland RV which will be an easy phone call but the price will be slightly higher.
I called Dexter regarding my 73 Sovereign, and they wanted the axle model or serial from a tag on it. I haven't been able to locate it yet. When you say "They will throw in the shock mounts with the 32 degree down angle and you will have to custom fit" above, did it require welding?

Thanks
Mike
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Old 06-23-2010, 09:41 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m99k99 View Post
I called Dexter regarding my 73 Sovereign, and they wanted the axle model or serial from a tag on it.
They are on the axle - you have to crawl underneath the trailer to read them -
take a wire brush with you when you submerge beneath the belly of the beast.

Here's a closeup of one of the original tags off of the '78 Sovereign.
The tags were located on the frontal tube face about a foot inboard from the driver's side main frame.




Quote:
Originally Posted by m99k99 View Post
When you say "They will throw in the shock mounts with the 32 degree down angle and you will have to custom fit" above, did it require welding?
The shock mounts will require welding - but it is an EASY job - anyone with a cracker box or a simple wire feed welder could do it. Place the mount about a 1/2" closer to the front of the trailer than the original equivalent to allow for the extra rotation required by the additional start angle. I used a 45 degree start angle, but a 32 to 35 degree start angle would give you almost the same amount of lift. The angle and lift amounts are well covered in the Dexter catalogues and literature available on their website.

For what it's worth, the #11 Dexter tube body is more substantial than either the original Henschen or the #10 Dexter - well worth the extra bucks to me. I went with the #11's with the rubber cut down to a 3600 lb rating when I replaced mine a couple of years ago - with 20/20 hindsight I would do pretty much thing again if I had to do it over.

I WOULD order 16" rims for the wheels, though, I have determined (my own personal thoughts and obversations only - your results may vary) that ALL of the 15" special trailer (ST) tires are crap, and have gone to LT tires for the trailer - the last blow out on the Sovereign caused enough cosmetic damage to keep me busy for a couple of weeks.

Do a search on Forum Member "PizzaChop" for a good tutorial on a DIY axle replacement.
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Old 06-23-2010, 09:33 PM   #8
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ok,so the 45 degree is a nogo,any other sugestions as to how to get it to sit higher??? and what size were the original brakes on a 27ft international? what do you measure when you mesure the brakes for size? thanks
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Old 06-23-2010, 09:57 PM   #9
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If you were just replacing the brakes, this would be the replacement....

Trailer Parts Superstore - 12" x 2" Electric Brake Assembly - Right Hand / 5.2k #K23-106-00 <a name="5331010"></a>
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Old 06-23-2010, 10:17 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by lyn View Post
ok,so the 45 degree is a nogo,any other sugestions as to how to get it to sit higher??? and what size were the original brakes on a 27ft international? what do you measure when you mesure the brakes for size? thanks
Several folks have gone with the 45 degree and been very pleased...do some 'searchin' on the threads for 87MH's stuff.

"A 45 degree starting angle, "is not" recommended by Airstream."

Does this mean that Airstream is on record recommending that a 45 degree angle is not to be used? nah... ("Airstream recommends that a 45 degree angle is not to be used") OR is there a lack of recommendation that any particular angle is to be used..? besides the generic "use the OEM..."

You probably have 12" brakes and newer-non-OEM axles will probably have 10" brakes...The 10" Brake size scare tactics are arguable...8,000lbs of braking on a 4,500 trailer is a case of too much is not good...Peterbuilt brakes on a Prius won't give you an extra margin of safety, they simply lock up and loose control way too quick.

weed thru the threads, listen to the advice---then make up you own mind and proceed!
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Old 06-23-2010, 11:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lyn View Post
ok,so the 45 degree is a nogo,any other sugestions as to how to get it to sit higher??? and what size were the original brakes on a 27ft international? what do you measure when you mesure the brakes for size? thanks
Your trailers original brakes were 12 inch.

There are a number of opinions that may differ.

But staying with the original Airstream specs, is not too shabby.

Andy

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Old 06-23-2010, 11:18 PM   #12
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Before welding new shock mounts, I would ask Dexter about it. I installed a new set of Dexters last September, and I was told that any modifications to the axles (like welding of any kind, including the brackets) would void the warranty.

I not saying don't do it, I'm just mentioning it as an FYI, and that it may be worth asking about first.

-Eric
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Old 06-24-2010, 09:16 AM   #13
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Quote:
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Before welding new shock mounts, I would ask Dexter about it. I installed a new set of Dexters last September, and I was told that any modifications to the axles (like welding of any kind, including the brackets) would void the warranty.

I not saying don't do it, I'm just mentioning it as an FYI, and that it may be worth asking about first.

-Eric
Different manufacturers have different thoughts about welding the shock brackets.

Dexter says that will void the warranty.

Henschen says that it will not void their warranty, as it's not a problem, since they have done it for many years in production.

Andy
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Old 02-04-2019, 05:13 PM   #14
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How do you know if you need a new axel? Bought a redone 75 Overlander and seems to tow well and the stance looks right.
ďAinít broke donít fix itĒ?
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Old 02-04-2019, 07:26 PM   #15
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Dexter axles for 27' Overlander

Measure the distance from a convenient spot on the wheel center to the top of the wheel well edge.

Jack up that side of the Airstream so the tire goes down but totally clears clears the ground. Measure again the same way. Tire should have dropped down 2-3 inches.

Much less than that the rubber torsion rods in the axle have taken a set from hardening and are doing you no good.

If thatís the case, time to replace. They are NOT rebuildable at all.
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Old 05-10-2019, 10:49 AM   #16
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Same deal Here

Hello,

I'm basically in the same "yacht" with needing to replace the axles on a 1975 27'. I received a quote from Inland RV as:

Quote:
Our Complete Axles are priced at 845$ each and Include: Shipping Not Included

Dexter Torsion Axle
Electric Self Adjusting Brakes
Integrated Hub/Drum Assembly
Inner Bearings
Outer Bearing
Grease Seals
Grease Caps
Lug Nuts
Brake Hardware
Shock Mounts
I just seen the comment on the shock mounts/welding - voided warranty. I'm actually going to find out from Inland RV if that's why they don't put them on.

You can find the Warranty here under "Exclusions", #4.


There is also a 3 to 4 week turn around time - which is an issue based on the I 1) just learned I need to replace and 2) I need them before the 20th of this month! Anyone know of a faster turn around in the Minneapolis MN area?

Not sure if it helps the conversation.
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Old 08-05-2019, 01:24 PM   #17
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i need a check of the alignment on my 27 ft Airstream, right front tire wore excessively on outside of tire. short of going to Jackson Center, where is a good option?
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Old 08-05-2019, 07:59 PM   #18
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Check with your local Dexter axle dealer, or your local Airstream dealer.

The alignment process involves the measurement equipment and then the know how on how to "bend" the axle tube to get the right camber and toe in.

The Dexter "Torque Flex" website may give additional information.

David
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Old 12-04-2019, 11:12 AM   #19
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Hope your axle dilemma is solved! I just finished mine yesterday in about 5 hours. Impact gun and breaker bar and floor jacks are definitely required. Also, the bolts are 15/16. Not a common size for impact sockets but 24MM worked just fine.

I was positive my axles were shot when the tire dealer could not get the tires back on the trailer as the axles did not drop at all. But I was rushed for time and spent 4 months on the road and the trailer worked fine. Ordered the axles from Inland RV while on the road and picked them up in Frederick CO. Welded the shock mounts before installation.

The frame will need to be cut about a 1/4 inch or so in order for the new axles to slide up into position. I used a step bit on my drill to make room for the new bolts as the hole did not line up perfectly. Install the shock on the axle first and then put the shock on the frame mount before you start the axle up and it helps keep the axle from rotating. Small sledge hammer helped coax it into position. 50 year old trailer sometimes needs a little hammering!

When I finished with the front axle and pulled it off the ramp to start on the rear axle the rear tires were not even touching the ground as the old axles were shot and had no flex left. Made me laugh a little to see how bad the original axles actually were!

I have a 1970 27 Foot Overlander in original vintage condition and these axles keep the appearance and height correct. I could not imagine needing the lift kit for these trailers as it makes the trailer look a bit high centered.

All in all it was back breaking work and lots of utterances of displeasure but I am glad to be done. If you need any help or have questions feel free to ask. Now to winterize and get ready for next summer!
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Old 12-04-2019, 08:03 PM   #20
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Hi: We are just "up the road" from you here in Conifer. I've got a couple of questions if I may.

Did you order axles with 12" drums? I think the industry code is 10" drums on axles rated 3500 pounds or less. Large drums may be a special order. You mentioned you had to enlarge the axle tube notch to get the axles up. Maybe your new axles are 3" tubes instead of the 2 1/2" tube size.

What was the total length of the mounting bracket on your new axles. The standard is 10". I don't know if Dexter makes a longer one.

Good idea on using the shock as a "anti rotation" device. These axles are so unbalanced, especially with the drum assembled to them.

Did you order the standard 22.5 start angle for your new axles?

I installed new axles on my 75 Overlander last year. I did order the approximately 1" higher mounting bracket. And I did get a significant increase in ride height. My new axles are the 22.5 degree starting angle. It will be okay here in Colorado as even my driveway is pretty steep and I was dragging my rear skids going down it and transitioning to the road.

David
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