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Old 12-04-2010, 11:12 PM   #1
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1974 31' Excella 500
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Dexter Toroflex

I'm liking the product literature on these.
Anybody know or hear anything about these axles?

A lot of people use Dexters I gather. We have a Dexter place here in Charleston, SC which seems like a big plus as well.

Second question. My Excella has a GWR or whatever of 7100 lbs. My new chassis is going to have straight C5x6.7 C channel with no holes to reduce weight. The interior will be a minimalist type interior, which will be less weight from "furnishings" and what-not.

Should I be looking at 4000-6000 lb axles?
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Old 12-05-2010, 10:58 AM   #2
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I installed 4500lb Henschen axles on my 77 and trailer rides great. It weighs 7500lbs loaded and Inland RV suggested going a little higher on the axle rating.
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Old 12-07-2010, 06:12 PM   #3
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I called down to the Dexter place today.
For the Dexter Torflex (torsion axles-don't use shocks) 3500 lb:
Axle, hub, and brakes $405 each.

The sizes that they have are 3500, 5200, and 6000.
I wonder if the 5200s are too much and the 3500s too little...?
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Old 12-07-2010, 06:16 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielB View Post
I called down to the Dexter place today.
For the Dexter Torflex (torsion axles-don't use shocks) 3500 lb:
Axle, hub, and brakes $405 each.

The sizes that they have are 3500, 5200, and 6000.
I wonder if the 5200s are too much and the 3500s too little...?
Not a pound over 4500 #, as per Airstream.

Andy
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Old 12-07-2010, 06:31 PM   #5
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Well.. that probably eliminates that option.
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Old 12-07-2010, 06:36 PM   #6
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Dexter torsion axles

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielB View Post
I called down to the Dexter place today.
For the Dexter Torflex (torsion axles-don't use shocks) 3500 lb:
Axle, hub, and brakes $405 each.

The sizes that they have are 3500, 5200, and 6000.
I wonder if the 5200s are too much and the 3500s too little...?
I am in the same boat with my 72/31', my 38 year old axles are ready for replacement. So, I also need to know which wt. rated axles should I buy. Trex
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Old 12-07-2010, 08:38 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by DanielB View Post
Well.. that probably eliminates that option.
Excella's used a different rating than the standard 31 foot international models.

Andy
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Old 12-21-2010, 08:11 PM   #8
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More info.. the
GVWR is 7100 lbs
GAWR for each axle is 3200 lbs
so 3500 lb axles should be fine.
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Old 12-21-2010, 10:11 PM   #9
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More info.. the
GVWR is 7100 lbs
GAWR for each axle is 3200 lbs
so 3500 lb axles should be fine.
The original axle rating for Excella's is 4000 pounds.

Andy
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Old 12-22-2010, 05:51 AM   #10
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DanielB,
Check the tag on the axle for the rating otherwise you could take the GVWR, subtract 10% and then divide by two and round up to get your axle minimal rating. As Andy has stated before you can generally upgrade the axle rating approximately 10% from the stock rating. So a stock 3200 would be ok at 3500. I believe the largest you can get the #10 axle is 3500 but it comes with 10" brakes. If you go to the #11 axle then you can get 12" brakes but a minimal rating of 3600 lbs. The #11 axle also comes with a larger spindle and bearings.
You can custom order the #11 Dexter axle in the 4000 lb rating if this is what you need.
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Old 12-22-2010, 07:37 AM   #11
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Axle rating

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielB View Post
I called down to the Dexter place today.
For the Dexter Torflex (torsion axles-don't use shocks) 3500 lb:
Axle, hub, and brakes $405 each.

The sizes that they have are 3500, 5200, and 6000.
I wonder if the 5200s are too much and the 3500s too little...?

They can down grade your # 11 axle to any rating you want,also they say 22.5 and 45 deg.axles only.One of our members said you can talk to them and they will do the 35 deg.axle.
I found out a 5/8 hole saw works a lot better at drilling the holes than a drill bit,no hanging up like a bit. Dave
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Old 12-22-2010, 07:51 AM   #12
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After calling both dexter and Inland RV I installed Henschen axle on my 65 Safari. It did cost more money but was the right size, right angle and had the larger heavy duty 12' brakes. Only had to drill a few holes and a drill bit (a good one) worked fine for me. Only wished I had a torch to remove the old bolts. I was also able to save shipping costs as we made a road trip to tour AS factory and then picked up the axle in the same town.
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Old 12-22-2010, 10:34 AM   #13
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I have been talking with Dexter for several weeks now including customer service, engineering, Airstream account rep, and sales V.P. The latest is that Dexter will NOT make a #11 axle downrated to 3,000. There was some concern about axle stability when using shortened rubber rods but I have not heard an official reason. Dexter "management" is considering getting into the vintage Airstream axle business but they have not decided. It's a volume issue I am sure, and if they think there will be enough to warrant their effort.

Of course, standard Dexter axles are available, my problem is only the down-grade-to-3,000 lb. for the #11 axle.

The good news is that you can order directly from Axis Products. They are making axles ('beams') for me now, 3,000 lb., complete with spindle for 12" disc brakes and with the horizontal shock mount welded on, and 35 deg down-angle. I am reusing the original Kelsey Hayes 12" disc brakes.

If I understood them correctly, they have the Airstream drawings to fabricate from. The only tough part of this process was for Axis to determine the correct axle. Apparently Airstream used 4 different axles for the 78 Tradewind. Ask for Shannon in customer service. She handled my order and was very helpful. And the price was very good.

John H
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Old 12-22-2010, 01:07 PM   #14
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Daniel,

Your deeper frame is stiffer and heavier, so it will transmit less inertia to the shell and AS contents. You can feel quite comfortable with uprated axles, compared against someone with a 3" frame, who needs to be a lot more careful.

Personally, I would get the Dexter #11 axle with 12" drums and the 3500 lb rating.

People have all kinds of opinions on this subject. What feels right to you?
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Old 12-22-2010, 01:52 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielB View Post
Second question. My Excella has a GWR or whatever of 7100 lbs. My new chassis is going to have straight C5x6.7 C channel with no holes to reduce weight. The interior will be a minimalist type interior, which will be less weight from "furnishings" and what-not.

Should I be looking at 4000-6000 lb axles?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Park View Post
Personally, I would get the Dexter #11 axle with 12" drums and the 3500 lb rating.

People have all kinds of opinions on this subject. What feels right to you?
Dave,

Daniel told us that his trailer has a rated GWR of 7,100 lbs, plus he has replaced his frame with something heavier than stock.

Do you feel that the ratings for axles are that conservative that he can get away with buying lower-rated axles than what he surely has in weight in his trailer? I know it's only a few hundred lbs over, so it seems as if it might be possible, but I really have no idea.
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Old 12-22-2010, 02:21 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielB View Post
I called down to the Dexter place today.
For the Dexter Torflex (torsion axles-don't use shocks) 3500 lb:
Axle, hub, and brakes $405 each.

The sizes that they have are 3500, 5200, and 6000.
I wonder if the 5200s are too much and the 3500s too little...?

Daniel

Please be advised that your Excella originally had 4000 pound axles on it.

To replace axles with a smaller rating is asking for big trouble.

You can increase the rating up to 4500 pounds, but no more than that.

And if you don't use the shocks, you are asking for even more trouble.

A previous owner could have change out the axles, and simply installed the wrong rating.

I have all the original axle specs, so this is not a guess, BUT FACTS.

Andy
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Old 12-22-2010, 03:56 PM   #17
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I picked up from previous posts that the outgoing axles were 3,200 lbs. In that case, 3,500 lbs would seem reasonable to me.

However, as Andy says (and I absolutely trust his knowledge) this trailer originally had 4,000 lb axles, and I certainly wouldn't downrate axles after having added about 250 lbs of weight to the frame.

Given the trailer was originally specified for 4,000 lb axles, I would say replace them with the same axles, since 8,000 lbs is in the range for your 7,100 lbs gross weight.
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Old 12-22-2010, 05:55 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In View Post
The original axle rating for Excella's is 4000 pounds.
Andy
Not to belabor this but "GAWR for each axle is 3200 lbs" came from the plate on the front of the trailer. Is this consistent with the original axle rating being 4000 lbs?

Thanks
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Old 12-22-2010, 07:53 PM   #19
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Quote:
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Not to belabor this but "GAWR for each axle is 3200 lbs" came from the plate on the front of the trailer. Is this consistent with the original axle rating being 4000 lbs?

Thanks
Daniel.

You are assuming that the axles on the trailer are "original".

I am telling you that they "ARE NOT".

All Excella's had 4000 pound axles.

The regular 31 trailers had 3200 pound axles.

But as always, the choice is yours, as to what to do.

If you use 3200 pound axles, you will ruin them in short order.

Andy
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Old 12-22-2010, 08:36 PM   #20
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This is so confusing. The numbers didn't come from the axles, they came from the plate riveted to the front of the shell.

id number on the plate: E31A4S1941 - 31' 1974 Excella center bath twin?
On same plate: GAWR Left 3200
GAWR Right 3200
GVWR 7100

Does this sound right?

3500 or 4000 lb axles are surely the way to go, like you are saying. I am curious though if I have some sort of weird trailer..
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