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Old 11-25-2002, 11:34 AM   #1
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Unhappy A tale of woe - how I saved a buck on tires and destroyed my sewer connection

I took my 1991 34' Excella to the deer camp Friday. I was only going 100 miles on the Natchez Trace (U.S. Park Service road from Nashville, Tenn to Natchez, Miss.) where the speed limit is only 50 MPH.

The rear tire on the street side blew out, shredded, and took out half of the box containing the sewer outlet and the dump valve handles. The grey water dump valve handle was broken off inside the valve. Also did minor damage to the wheel well trim, and major damage to bottom of belly pan.

Has this happened to anyone else? How much to get this fixed?

Moral of the story: I saved a buck by not buying new tires, and now I have a repair bill that will probably cost more then 6 new tires.
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Old 11-25-2002, 11:46 AM   #2
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You not only saved a buck on the tires, you probably saved a buck since you had to stop and deal with the damage instead of going deer hunting. Good luck with the repairs as well with the hunting. I just got back from our opening season here in Tennessee. Good time in the Airstream and the three of us got three bucks.
Dan
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Old 11-25-2002, 12:12 PM   #3
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I like that, "saved a buck".

This happened the day before opening of gun season. Later on in the day, I went back home to get my 4 wheeler on a utility trailer. It was after dark and a nice buck made a run for me trying to commit suicide. I sped up and it hit the side of the trailer denting the fender. Last year, I hit one head-on and it cost $3,000.00 to fix the front of the truck.

The deer bounced off and ran away into the woods.
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Old 11-25-2002, 12:57 PM   #4
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Damage

I had similar damage on my previous SOB trailer, a TrailManor, when a tire blew near Akron, CO. The steel cord took off almost the entire sewer outlet. Th twisting of the sewer outlet put a hump in the floor and jarred my commode loose from the flange. The foam sandwich floor was permanently distorted and the commode never mounted properly after that.

It also buckled the seams of the square metal wheel well and by the time I limped home to Texas, the cabinets around the wheel well were full of black road dust. I never did get all the black dust cleaned up; it even permanently stained my plastic food containers that were in the bottom of the cabinets.

I now carry a roll of duct tape to seal off any damage that would possibly let in road dust.
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Old 11-25-2002, 02:04 PM   #5
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It appears that a PO had a similar incident with Maxwell. We noticed the inside of the street side, fiberglass (?) wheel well was pretty mangled under our side gaucho...fortunately, no damage was done to any of the plumbing or other systems as most of them are located on the other side of the trailer.

There is a small section that was repaired on the outside around the wheel well. We were such novices when we got Maxwell that we didn't even notice at first; not that it would have made a difference. We do however, intend on doing a better repair job when we polish.

We have some WBCCI friends who just completed a restoration of their '63 GlobeTrotter. They were on their way to the Santa Maria Rally and had a blow out which did major damage to their plumbing, gas lines, cabinetry & exterior skin. I haven't seen the trailer, just pictures but it was a major warning to us to get new tires ASAP. Our tires have plenty of tread left, but are not new...they could have unseen rot...and the way you usually find out is with a blow-out!

The rule of thumb we've been told is to replace the tires at least every 5 years, tread left or not! Cheap insurance....

Shari

P.S. Here's a photo of the streetside of Maxwell...if you look close you will see an extra line of rivets above the wheel, between the access door & the water heater cover.
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Old 11-25-2002, 02:09 PM   #6
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Just out of curiosity....

How old was the tire that blew? Any cracks in the sidewalls of the remaining tires? Radial or Bias Ply?

I am thinking about replacing mine, though they "seem" to be OK. The Goodyear website says they should be replace after 7 years, some folks say 5. They also say lack of use is the worse thing you can "not" do to them. Like Wally said "Better to wear out, than rust out!" Guess I'll hook her up and take her for a spin this week.
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Old 11-25-2002, 02:29 PM   #7
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Did you hear the tire blow and immediately try to get it off the road, and it was shredded by the time you did?

I've heard of people getting a flat with an Airstream and because of the axles, towed for 20 miles or more not knowing a tire was down (and beating the trailer to pieces).
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Old 11-25-2002, 02:38 PM   #8
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Age of blown tires

All the tires that I have had blow on trailers in the past 20 years (6 on 4 different trailers) have been relatively new tires, loaded very near the published limit, but not overloaded.

I'm convinced that there trailer tires shouldn't be loaded more than maybe 80% of the published rating. I have never blown a tire that had plenty of safety factor. Tire ratings may be as fudged as tow ratings.

I always heard the tires blow.
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Old 11-25-2002, 02:38 PM   #9
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Re: Just out of curiosity....

Quote:
Originally posted by Pick
How old was the tire that blew? Any cracks in the sidewalls of the remaining tires? Radial or Bias Ply?

I don't know how old the tire was, or if it was even the same age as the rest of the tires. I bought the trailer used in July. This was its first major trip. The trailer is a 1991, so it may have been original.

Yes, there appears to be very small cracks on the rest of the tires.

It was a Goodyear radial.
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Old 11-25-2002, 02:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by RoadKingMoe
Did you hear the tire blow and immediately try to get it off the road, and it was shredded by the time you did?

I've heard of people getting a flat with an Airstream and because of the axles, towed for 20 miles or more not knowing a tire was down (and beating the trailer to pieces).
I didn't hear or feel anything. I looked in my mirror and it looked like smoke comming from the tire area. My first thought was that I had a bad bearing or a brake malfunctioning.

It was really my grey water tank emptying out in the wind. When the plastic shroud broke off, it yanked the grey water tank valve open. If it were not for this, I don't know how long I would have driven. (a scarry thought)

The tire was totally shredded with a big hunk of tread flapping and beating the heck out of everything back there. There was no damage to the inside of the wheel well though.
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Old 11-25-2002, 02:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by dmreilly10000


I didn't hear or feel anything. I looked in my mirror and it looked like smoke comming from the tire area. My first thought was that I had a bad bearing or a brake malfunctioning.

P.S. - I am only 46 years old and see and hear very well. I was being very cautious and aware since this is only the 3rd time I have towed this trailer or any trailer this big and heavy for that matter. The first two times I towed it were less than 15 miles each.

If I had the window open, I could have heard the tire flapping against the trailer. It was cold that morning, and I had it closed.
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Old 11-25-2002, 07:04 PM   #12
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Tire date codes

Tire date code

The DOT number appears on the sidewall of all tires intended for sales in the U.S., and designates the location of manufacture, the week and year of production, and the specific tire. DOT codes prior to year 2000 were a 10 digit code: (Example - AD70449248) digits 1 & 2 indicated plant of manufacture code. Digits 3 & 4 were the tire size code. Digits 5, 6 & 7 were optional tire type codes. Digits 8, 9 & 10 were the production serial week code. (The example would have been produced in Mayfield (DOT plant code AD), the size code would be "70," the optional design code would be "449," and the serial week would be "118.") In the year 2000, the serial number went to an 11-digit number allowing for a four digit serial week code to identify new decade.
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Old 11-26-2002, 09:39 PM   #13
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Join the club! I purchased my trailer from a gent in AZ. and upon towing back to TN. had a curbside rear tire blow. I was a radial car tire and did it ever beat the daylights out of the trailing outrigger in the wheelwell and at least 1 1/2 ft. of aluminum panel behind the wheelwell. I beat the outrigger down, it was pointed directly at the tire and level with the ground, so that I could remove the tire. I then towed 45 miles to Amarillo, TX. where I purchased 4 new radial ST Carlisle tires. I had to beat the outrigger farther down in order to get the newly mounted tire to fit. The only indication I had a problem was shuddering from the trailer and the bits of tire and insulation bouncing on the highway behind me as I looked through my drivers side mirror. I never had a chance to look at the passenger side mirror. After returning to TN., I purchased a sheet of aluminum and Corning pink insulation from Lowe's Lumber and did the work myself. I can't remember how much it cost but felt I got out lucky. It seems you had considerably more damage than I did.
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Old 11-27-2002, 11:44 PM   #14
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Question Speed factor

Not that I think anyone was 'speeding but, in all of the post I've read so far from such a learned group..nothing was mention abt the speed factor(except that dmreilly10000 was traveling at a speed of 50 mph or less?)
..The best of your recollection, "just how fast were you traveling when this happened? ".

Load factors "alone" don't account for blowouts.
I.improper air pressure
2.seized wheel bearings
3.overloaded tires(load factor)
4.wrong type of tires(example:cars)
5.road hazzards
6.worned,aged tires
7.improper balancing
8.worn/damaged axle(s)
9.wrong sizes tire
10.wheel itself bent or damaged
11.combine all or any one of the above together with the speed factor.
12.lack of use.(as someone said previously)
13.Defective manufactured tire
14.mixing different brand tires (thanks Andy, for these two items)
15.mixing different size tires
16.worn/defective shocks
These are but, just a few, that come to mind. Anyone care to add something else that they're aware of??
ciao
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Old 12-02-2002, 04:11 AM   #15
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After reading this thread, I guess I was just lucky when my rear road side tire blew while traveling on I 49. I was doing about 55 or so and I heard and felt it when she blew. I was able to immediately pull over and did not have any structural or cosmetic damage(except for the tire which was beginning to come apart). The tire was a GoodYear Marathon load range C and was about 6 years old. My theory is that it had broken belts caused by sever stress while making sharp turns. I have noticed that these tires actually slide sideways while backing into a tight place. My dealer said tires should be changed every 4-5 years(especiallly if they sit idle for long periods). I am replacing them with load range D tires. Two have been replaced and the other two will be replaced when they get to the 5 year age.
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Old 12-02-2002, 06:47 AM   #16
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Steel-steel tires

I was looking at the Goodyear website yesterday and noticed that they have "steel-steel" tires in addition to the Marathons which are "steel-fabric tires". The steel-steel tires are premium for heavy loads and long-distance towing.

I wonder whether a steel-steel tire would stay together better and not do the usual damage to the trailer if it blows. If so, add that to the reduced probability of sidewall failure and they would really be a winner.

The site did say that they ride harder. Might last longer, also, with no fabric to rot.
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Old 12-02-2002, 09:19 AM   #17
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53FlyingCloud.
You can add to the list, mixing different brand tires and different size tires, both of which cause uneven loads per tire.

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Old 06-23-2004, 02:28 PM   #18
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The tires were of 1994 vintage, or 8 years old at the time. All of the tires were garbage and I am lucky more of them didn't blow out. 2 of them had buldges (tire seperation).
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Old 06-23-2004, 03:01 PM   #19
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Mine has had a blowout at some point.
The wheel well on the curbside shows evidence of repair using flashing riveted to the damaged wheelwell.
When towing on wet pavement, I was getting water inside. So, I did an undercoat of the wheelwell. to seal everything up. All dry now when towing on wet pavement.
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Old 06-23-2004, 08:18 PM   #20
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Thumbs down Don't buy NANKANG 's

I was most fortunate to find a HUMONGOUS tread separation on one of my Nankang 225-75 R15 ST trailer tires (D range) before the disastrous moment. I had just returned from a 650 mile trip and could not believe I did not notice it the day before while towing. The tires were less than 4 years old and lots of tread- only minor sidewall checking. The bulge was about 2" and the rip on the inside was at least 9'. The dealer basically shined me with an offer of a $10 adjustment!! LIKE I WOULD BE STUPID ENOUGH TO PUT ANOTHER NANKANG ON!!!?? No way!
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