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Old 08-25-2009, 08:21 AM   #1
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I need to buy new axles

I need to buy new axles for my 72 Argosy! Anyone that can direct me to someone that would be great
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Old 08-25-2009, 08:37 AM   #2
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Check with Colin Hyde. He was with GSM vehicles. He has is own shop now and his email is [email addy removed by moderator]. Colin has years of Airstream restoration experience. He will tell you exactly how to measure and then handle the order and shipping for a very reasonable price.
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Old 08-25-2009, 08:47 AM   #3
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I agree with the recommendation to contact Colin Hyde (I'm a big fan of The Vap thevap.com). You might hear that there is only one place (in CA) to get the Airstream preferred Henschen axles, but there are other sources. Some people like Dexter axles. This blog has some great info and photos on the Dexters:
Restoration of 1964 Airstream GlobeTrotter: Dexter Torsion Axle change-out/install
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Old 08-25-2009, 08:48 AM   #4
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Inland RV has them. And they fit perfect..
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Old 08-25-2009, 09:10 AM   #5
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Inland RV has them. And they fit perfect..
Jason had Inland inland install his in no time. I installed my InlandRV tandem axles in a 'little' more time. Either method is well worth the expense. This would be a great time to check and if need be replace aged brake wiring.
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Old 08-25-2009, 09:26 AM   #6
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Whenever I see a thread about axles it reminds me of religious debate. Whichever you choose will probably be just fine. The only inputs I will add is that I was SHOCKED to learn that Dexter significantly raised their prices this year. I had a Dexter installed on my old '64 Safari (now Viking's) for about the part the cost of a complete Henschen. Now it seems that the latest Dexter pricing is on par with that of Henschen axles from Inland. Either way, a big cost hit will be shipping, so be sure to factor that into the decision. Also, don't be afraid of changing it out yourself - it can be quite rewarding. I replaced the axle on my '67 Globetrotter with a Henschen from Inland RV. What I thought was to be a straight forward bolt-in was a little more complicated. I had to jack the axle inplace, drill three new holes (per side) and weld on the shock mounts. Two trips on the books and it works like a champ - what a difference a new axle can make! I do want to give a shout out of appreciation to Andy and his crew at Inland for the helpful phone support during my install.
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Old 08-25-2009, 09:41 AM   #7
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I do want to give a shout out of appreciation to Andy and his crew at Inland for the helpful phone support during my install.
DITTO!
Neil
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Old 08-25-2009, 11:39 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by 68 TWind View Post
Check with Colin Hyde. He was with GSM vehicles. He has is own shop now and his email is colinhydeairstream@gmail.com. Colin has years of Airstream restoration experience. He will tell you exactly how to measure and then handle the order and shipping for a very reasonable price.
I recently bought my Axis axle from Colin and I highly recommend him. Colin was in the middle of setting up his new company when I ordered from him and he spent nearly an hour on the phone with me going over options to consider and making sure I was considering everything I needed to. I know he was busy, but still made plenty of time for me. In my case, it was a pretty big change, going from my original sprung axle to the new torsion axle. Install went just fine, no issues, and I know I've got exactly the right axle setup for me.

cheers,
steve
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Old 08-26-2009, 04:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toddster View Post
Whenever I see a thread about axles it reminds me of religious debate. Whichever you choose will probably be just fine. The only inputs I will add is that I was SHOCKED to learn that Dexter significantly raised their prices this year. I had a Dexter installed on my old '64 Safari (now Viking's) for about the part the cost of a complete Henschen. Now it seems that the latest Dexter pricing is on par with that of Henschen axles from Inland. Either way, a big cost hit will be shipping, so be sure to factor that into the decision. Also, don't be afraid of changing it out yourself - it can be quite rewarding. I replaced the axle on my '67 Globetrotter with a Henschen from Inland RV. What I thought was to be a straight forward bolt-in was a little more complicated. I had to jack the axle inplace, drill three new holes (per side) and weld on the shock mounts. Two trips on the books and it works like a champ - what a difference a new axle can make! I do want to give a shout out of appreciation to Andy and his crew at Inland for the helpful phone support during my install.
Just called the Dexter dealer that is closest to me and the price for a #10 3000 lb complete including electric drum brakes is $399.95 ea. I thought this price was pretty reasonable especially when compared to Henschens and because I would not have to pay freight, even beat the price on Axis by a pretty substantial amount. So Dexter was much less than $399.95? If so, sure wish I had been ready to order sooner!
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Old 08-26-2009, 04:21 PM   #10
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We had new Dexter axle put on our 6.7metre Argosy Minuet this past June. The cost was in the $600 range for axle, install, re-lube. After we picked her up, we went on a short week camp trip and the difference was delightful. We even went over a bit of rough gravel washboard road coming home and all was tidy inside when we got home.
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Old 08-26-2009, 04:44 PM   #11
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Wow.... maybe my local guy just didn't want to deal with Dexter & my Airstream. He had to order the axle twice from Dexter to get it right for the Safari & then griped that installation on the Airstream was a pain in the a*#!

I guess he just didn't want the hassle again. Wish I would have shopped around more before taking the plunge this time, as it might have influenced my decision.... He had quoted me $750 for a #11 4500lbs electric drum brake axle (part cost only).

Did those of you who installed new Dexters have shock mounts added?
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Old 08-29-2009, 04:51 PM   #12
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Our shocks were just re-welded to the new axle. I'm still not 100% sure why shocks are needed w/the Dexter axle. But thats what our guy did.
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Old 08-29-2009, 06:28 PM   #13
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People that sell the shocks will argue that they are necessary. People that have tried with and without, have found that they are really not doing much if anything.
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Old 10-15-2009, 12:50 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverHoot View Post
Just called the Dexter dealer that is closest to me and the price for a #10 3000 lb complete including electric drum brakes is $399.95 ea. I thought this price was pretty reasonable especially when compared to Henschens and because I would not have to pay freight, even beat the price on Axis by a pretty substantial amount. So Dexter was much less than $399.95? If so, sure wish I had been ready to order sooner!
Bought 2 Dexter 3500# axles in summer of 08. With shock mounts, they were approx $415.00 a piece. Shipping was quite reasonable at $140.00. It's best if you can have them shipped to a comercial address.
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Old 10-15-2009, 04:14 PM   #15
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shermantic,

I just installed a pair of Dexters 2 weeks ago on our '75 Trade Wind (25').

I will share my experince below, which may be helpful if a self install is a possiblity. I installed mine myself, which turned out to be more work than I had hoped, but I would do it again.

I ordered Part# 1616631
This is an Airstream specific axle replacement part # that is not advertised anywhere and only available if you talk to a minimum of 8 different people at Dexter, from no less than 3 separate locations!

What the above part# gets you is:
-#10 TorFlex axle
-3000lb capacity
-hub face to hub face = 80.375" (exactly matched my measurements)
-outside of bracket to outside of bracket = 61.375 (exactly matched my measurements)
-10" hubs with self adjusting electric brakes
-22.5 degree down angle
-High profile reverse mount brackets (holes will not match, drilling required)
-Shock mount (drawing diagram reference# E-1501)
-6 x 5.5" bolt pattern (matches original wheel bolt patttern)
-Never lube hub (supposably a 5-8 year maitenance free hub design, no repacking bearings!)

I also added the following option in additon to the specs above:
33" wire leads (probably not needed, but it never hurts to have a little extra wire)

No shipping required as I ordered and picked it up from a local Redneck Trailer Supply location (Carlise, PA) who were very good to deal with.

Final price (before tax) came in at $1,065.04 ($532.52 per axle), plus ~$20 for new mounting hardware not included (bolts, flat washers, lock washers, etc)

Notes-
1) Dexter does offer a 35 degree down angle, however it is not advertised anywhere and it only exisits if you ask for it, but they will not weld a shock mount to it unfortunatly.
2) Dexter voids all warranties if you weld anything (shock mount) to one of their axles.
3) I've seen other forum threads that mention the Dexter high profile bracket gets you an additional 1" ride height (which would in theory match the ride height of a Henschen with 35 degree down angle, however this was not my experience. I would recommend getting the high profile bracket (which comes with the above part# automatically), however I wouldn't expect additional ride height when doing so, based on my experience.
4) Make sure you measure your hub face to hub face distance, and your outside of bracket to outside of bracket distance, before ordering to make sure those distances match your application. This measuring is not required if ordering Henshens, in which case you just give Andy at Inland RV a call and tell him your AS's serial#.
5) If you're interested in Dexter axles, send me a PM and I can send you the contact info for a person at Dexter who specializes in Airstream applications and who was very helpful and able to get me the info I needed.
6) Check your axle placement for curb side versus street side as it relates to the distance from the tongue. Early to mid 70's AS trailers (I don't know if it effects Argosy or not) had the axle mounting plates on the curb side shifted forward 1/16", 1/8", or 3/16" to apparently compensate for the crown of the road. This idea did not work so well, so it is recommended that this issue be resolved, especially prior to installing new axles. My '75 had this problem, so I had to grind 1/8" off of my axle mounting plate notches rearward on the curb side, prior to installing my new axles.

Good luck with your axles. You could spend countless hours reading about this subject on the forums, I know I did!

-Eric
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Old 10-16-2009, 07:27 AM   #16
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Actually, the Dexter is a 32 degree angle instead of the 35 offered by Henschen. Just got two of them for $690.00 total.
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Old 10-16-2009, 10:08 AM   #17
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Was that with shipping HOOT???
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:26 AM   #18
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MikeTheFixit, Shipping to the Dexter dealer was included in that price.
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:30 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emerson77 View Post
shermantic,
6) Check your axle placement for curb side versus street side as it relates to the distance from the tongue. Early to mid 70's AS trailers (I don't know if it effects Argosy or not) had the axle mounting plates on the curb side shifted forward 1/16", 1/8", or 3/16" to apparently compensate for the crown of the road. This idea did not work so well, so it is recommended that this issue be resolved, especially prior to installing new axles. My '75 had this problem, so I had to grind 1/8" off of my axle mounting plate notches rearward on the curb side, prior to installing my new axles.

-Eric
This is the second time I have heard about the uneven axle placement on these trailers. That would explain the fact that I can see the street side of the trailer in my mirrors, but not the curb side.
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Old 10-16-2009, 12:42 PM   #20
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This is the second time I have heard about the uneven axle placement on these trailers. That would explain the fact that I can see the street side of the trailer in my mirrors, but not the curb side.
Richard.

Unfortunately, there are no records that would tell what years, the uneven axle mounting plate location, were installed.

To the best of my memory, it started in 1970 and went thru 1975.

However all models were not included, so each one must be checked.

I shall anxiously await a challenge to that authenticity from an authoritative supreme being.

Andy
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