Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 09-03-2006, 06:33 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
Dryden , Michigan
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6

I am still looking to become an airstream owner and need some advise, I looked at a 67 tradewind 22' that had tandum axles, then a week later looked at a 68 safari 22' that had a single axle, which is better for towing? I thought all 22' trailers were tandum axle. Thanks in advance for any advise you may be able to offer. Gene
gmp5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 07:07 PM   #2
Rivet Master
fastrob's Avatar
1976 25' Tradewind
. , AZ to Maine
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 575
1 or 2, 2 or 4

Originally Posted by gmp5
I am still looking to become an airstream owner and need some advise,..... which is better for towing? ...... Gene
I like twin axles. If you get a flat you can limp off the highway. The stability of 4 tires vs 2 is greater. 4 brakes vs 2 brakes means greater stopping power.
On the other hand at toll plazas you get an extra charge. There is additional drag with 4 wheels. Twice as much expense to buy axles and tires for replacement.
At 22' you can go either way. Nice size unit. Good luck.

fastrob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 07:26 PM   #3
Rivet Master
overlander63's Avatar

1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 21,239
Go with the tandem axles, they make a big difference in towing. Tandem axles will usually sway less, ride smoother, and back into spaces more easily.
Of course, the down side is if you have to replace them, it costs twice as much, and you have to buy twice as many tires.
overlander63 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 07:29 PM   #4
3 Rivet Member
GO Bob's Avatar
1982 34' Limited
1975 31' Sovereign
Grovetown , Georgia
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 107
3 are even better. Bigger trailer = more toys. Drives same as dual axels.
GO Bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 07:44 PM   #5
4 Rivet Member
DPeakMD's Avatar
1975 23' Safari
1978 31' Excella 500
Franklin , Indiana
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 472
Images: 2
Send a message via Yahoo to DPeakMD
Most people would agree that tandem axles have advantages over a single axle. I'll propose the contraian argument though; there is half the cost of replacement tires, wheels and axles. There is less "scrubbing" of the tires when you make sharp turns. Those are the main ones I can think of. There are many satisfied owners pulling single axle Airstreams which are 22' or longer. Good luck with your decision!
Dallas Peak, MD 'That 70's Guy!'
VAC 1VP President
AIR #9
.-- ----. -.-. -.. -.-.
DPeakMD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 08:39 PM   #6
uwe's Avatar
2007 25' Safari FB SE
1958 22' Flying Cloud
1974 29' Ambassador
Yucca Valley , California
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: 1963 26' Overlander
Posts: 4,773
Images: 41
Send a message via Skype™ to uwe
Tandems do tow smoother, have double the amount of brake surface, and track better than single axles. They outlive tire blowouts easier as well. You can drive them with 3 tires for a little while, until you get to safety. The do not eat potholes as badly as single axle trailers.
Downside is that they are heavier, and have much larger wheel wells taking up interior space.
uwe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 09:39 PM   #7
Rivet Master
1960 24' Tradewind
santa barbara , California
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,352
I love our single axle 60 trdwnd ,but if it had the world traveler package and
tandems ,I would love it more .Only a handful of 60 trdwnds had tandems ,
only one person I know of (i don't personally) has a tandem early tradewind .
I use the term handful loosely as Im not certain of how many.That being said
our single tows great ,no problems ,I worry some about the fact that I only have two tires on it ,and We had a blowout when I purchased it ,old tires
but looked good ,split rims ,no im kinda gun shy now ,but no problems in 5000 or so miles or more.

Scott of scottanlily
scottanlily is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 09:50 PM   #8
Rivet Master
1960 24' Tradewind
santa barbara , California
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,352
Hello gmp5,

I think the tandem is better as others have said,but also the trailer condition
overall is important .I would not ,not get the single axle if it was much better
in overall condition ,skin ,dents floor etc, We have a 60 trdwnd single axle
as the tandems are rare ,I really enjoy this year airstream ,so single axle
is my only choice.

Scott of scottanlily
scottanlily is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 10:21 PM   #9
Rivet Master
2006 25' Safari FB SE
Huntington Beach , California
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,293
Images: 2

my vote is for tandem for the reasons stated earlier plus they look cool....a triple looks even better.

TIMEMACHINE is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2006, 11:14 PM   #10
Rivet Master
Fyrzowt's Avatar
Currently Looking...
West of Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,698
Images: 8
This month I just switched from a 25' 2-axle safari to a 21' single axle Globetrotter. (A truck totalled my Safari)
I must say that I didn't notice any difference in the way they handled, though the Globetrotter is lighter. This was towing a distance of about 300 miles. Both tracked straight and smooth.
There have been some good points made considering costs, redundancy, safety, etc. One other difference that I have noticed is that it seems that the single axle is located closer to the rear, which changes the backing angles a little. I'll have to get used to it.
Fyrzowt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2006, 05:53 AM   #11
Rivet Master
Jim Clark's Avatar
2012 28' International
Currently Looking...
New Orleans , Louisiana
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,077
Images: 6
Originally Posted by gmp5
I am looking to buy an AS in the near future and would like opinions of others on wether a single axle is better for towing or a tandum axle in a 22' trailer.

Thanks, Gene
I have had both and currently have a tandum. Tandum is a bit safer. The extra cost is really not that great as how often do you replace tires and such.

I had a single on my 68 Globetrotter and it towed great and was fine. I am currently looking for another Vintage Unit to restore and I am sure it will be single axle. No matter which you buy be sure to do a good insptection of the running gear before you tow as if it fails it won't matter if you are pulling a single or a tandum.

Good Luck Jim
Jim N5TJZ Air# 174
2012 International Serenity 28
2005 Safari 25 SS Traded
1968 Globetrotter Sold
2011 F150 Ecoboost
Jim Clark is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2006, 09:05 AM   #12
Round on both ends
SafeHarbor's Avatar
1979 31' Excella 500
1975 28' Argosy 28
Rutledge , Georgia
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 783
Images: 39
Hi, gmp5,

To add to what Fastrob said, with tandem axles you can travel slowly and cautiously with one wheel completely removed. This came in handy for me recently.

1975 Argosy 28 "Argosy"
1979 Excella 500 31 "Betsy"
1992 Lincoln Mk 7 LSC
2003 Dodge 2500 Cummins "TowHog"
"Lucy Loosehair" the cat - Airstream mascot
Klaatu barada nikto
SafeHarbor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2006, 12:28 PM   #13
Rivet Master
Airstream Dealer
Inland RV Center, In's Avatar
Corona , California
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 16,497
Images: 1
Single vs tandem axles

Since 1961 Airstream has used torsion axles.

The advantage is that each wheel is independent of the others.

With a single axle, if you have a flat or other failure, such as a bearing that went out, or a bent wheel, you are "done", unless you have a spare or other repair parts with you.

Also with the older Bambi and Caravel models, there is a very large "failure" rate, because of the smaller spindles that were used. If you have a spindle failure, again you are done until you can replace the axle.

Tandems offer safer towing conditions than a single axle could ever offer. Likewise a tri-axle trailer offers more safety than a tandem axle.

Additionally, with a tandem, if you had a failure such as outlined above, simply stop, remove that tire and/or wheel assembly, and continue on with your towing. However, slow down to a safer speed until you can get the problem corrected.

You can also actually remove one tire from each side of a tandem trailer, as well as from a different axle, and still be able to tow. Again, slowing down is the key to that safety.

Additionally, pound for pound, a tandem axle braking provides much more stopping power than a single axle.

Also, with todays newer style electric barkes, they offer much more stopping power than electric brakes that were used years ago. The newer styles use oval magnets instead of round magnets. Instead of repairing older round magnet brakes, thought should be given to replacing the entire backing plate assembly, which will increase the stopping power from the old 4000 pounds to the new 5200 pounds per axle.

Accordingly, with todays new style electric brakes, a properly wired, adjusted and working properly, single axle has 5200 pounds of stopping power, a tandem 10,400 pounds and a tri-axle, 15,600 pounds. These weights ratings are for 12 inch brakes. 10" inch brakes have far less stopping power than the 12" brakes

A disc brake equipped trailer with the same axle setup, offers even greater stopping power, requires less maintenance, and does not need any adjusting, so that as the pads wear, the braking power stays the same.

In the case of electric brakes, as the shoes wear, they must be adjusted to compensate for that wear, usually every 3 to 4000 miles.

Obviously, disc brakes, at least with some brands of trailers, will be the "in" thing, of the future.

A few companies, such as Airstream, offer disc brakes on at least some of their larger models.

Inland RV Center, In is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Safari owners Jerry Sulkin 1969 - 1973 Safari 30 02-20-2006 07:07 PM
Safari VS. Classic Questions kkrogh Our Community 24 12-20-2005 11:10 AM
Electrical problem--99 safari Andrew Carey Electrical - Systems, Generators, Batteries & Solar 2 11-16-2002 02:04 PM
Axles on a Avion 68 Suburban Axles 0 10-06-2002 12:10 AM
Motor Home Tag Axles - winner General Motorhome Topics 0 05-25-2002 04:56 AM

Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:09 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.