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axle movement

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  • axle movement

    On our way home today we suddenly had a noise out of the rear of the trailer. First thought was a failed bearing.
    After getting off the road my wife noticed one of the wheel was close to the side. After jacking and removing the wheel you could see that the axle had moved on the springs. Not having enough tools we waited 4 hours for a mobile mechanic from a call to Goodsam Roadside assistance (another discussion on the services).
    Turns out the bolt or pin was gone in the spring bundle allowing the axle to move. After installing a new bolt we were good to go (wallet is lighter).
    What type of maintenance does everyone do on the U bolts and assembly, re torque evey so often, double nut, etc?
    Has anyone had a similar experience?

    Thanks

  • #2
    Jamieline. Welcome to the technical forum. We're glad you joined us.

    For us to give you a detailed answer, we're going to need a little more information:

    What year, make and model is your RV?
    Do you know who manufacuted your axles? E.g. Dexter or Lippert?

    Once we have that info, we can provide the torque specifications and frequency along with some advice about how to keep those nuts from ever coming off.

    Jim
    The moderators for this site are not GDRV employees, but we do own GDRV products.

    Jim and Ginnie
    2017 Reflection 297RSTS

    Comment


    • #3
      jamieline
      Welcome to our owners technical forum!

      The situation that you have encountered is usually caused by the U bolt nuts losing torque and the spring/axle interface “working” at that positioning pin interface. The U bolt nuts have a specified torque included in your service/maintenance manual and checking this torque should be part of regular maintenance. I know this doesn’t help at this point, but you obviously handled the situation and can chalk this up to a lesson learned . . . and, I can assure you that posting your experience here will have more than a few owners under their RVs with a torque wrench in the very near future.

      Thanks!
      Rob
      Cate & Rob
      (with Border Collies Molly & Angel and their kitty Gracie)
      2015 Reflection 303RLS
      2014 Ecoboost F150 with Heavy Duty Payload Package
      Whitby, Ontario, Canada

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      • #4
        2016 Reflection 337RLS
        I believe they are Lippert Raining out now so I will verify.
        Should you be able to see a pin or bolt in the center of the top plate to verify it is pinned?

        That is what's great about this forum is sharing experiences to prevent others from the same issues. Case in point I start my plumbing redo this week.

        Jim
        Last edited by jamieline; 06-29-2020, 06:48 PM.

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        • #5
          I remember this problem from a couple years back. It did sound like the U-bolts weren't tight and let the spring pack shift and shear off the bolt.
          Gene and Kim
          2015 Grand Design Reflection 317RST
          2017 RAM 3500 CC, LB, 4x2, 6.7L CTD

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by jamieline View Post
            On our way home today we suddenly had a noise out of the rear of the trailer. First thought was a failed bearing.
            After getting off the road my wife noticed one of the wheel was close to the side. After jacking and removing the wheel you could see that the axle had moved on the springs. Not having enough tools we waited 4 hours for a mobile mechanic from a call to Goodsam Roadside assistance (another discussion on the services).
            Turns out the bolt or pin was gone in the spring bundle allowing the axle to move. After installing a new bolt we were good to go (wallet is lighter).
            What type of maintenance does everyone do on the U bolts and assembly, re torque evey so often, double nut, etc?
            Has anyone had a similar experience?

            Thanks
            I've seen this many time years ago on heavy trucks. The bolt that sheared off is called a center bolt. They primarily shear off due to the U bolts being loose. You will want to torque all your remaining U bolts and recheck them a couple times each year or before each trip. We discussed this years ago where on the trailers, the lightly torqued U bolts would need tightened to the specification a few times and after some time settled in and did not require additional torque. The U bolt spec is in your axle manual whether that's Lippert or Dexter.

            Jim
            2017 Imagine 2600RB
            2015 GMC Sierra 4x4

            Comment


            • #7
              Doing some research on my issue yesterday and read where others have had similar issues. After they looked deeper they ended up replacing springs.
              Just wondering if others have replaced springs and with original rated springs? My understanding is bigger is not always better.
              Maybe upgrades folks have done.

              Thanks
              Jim

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              • #8
                I just spent 3k for a whole new suspension. I recently had an axle fail. Also noticed the springs are flat. Even though the axle should still be under warranty, I don't want it replaced with the same LCI junk. After talking to a company that does a lot of trailer repairs, they said they replace a lot of LCI axles. The guy said LCI uses a soft metal. I'm going with Dexter 7000lb heavy wall axles, 2900lb springs, morryde heavy duty shackles and wet bolts, morryde CRE3000 equalizers. Also bought new 16" wheels and Goodyear tires to replace the 15" stock wheels. Disc brakes will have to wait a little longer.
                2018 Reflection 315RLTS
                2013 F350 Lariat 6.7L/CC/LB/FX4

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                • #9
                  Tucson Jim, I found some torque specs on the Lippert web site. Are these the one's you referenced getting?
                  What advice can you provide to keep these from being a problem?

                  Thanks
                  Jim

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jamieline View Post
                    Tucson Jim, I found some torque specs on the Lippert web site. Are these the one's you referenced getting?
                    What advice can you provide to keep these from being a problem?

                    Thanks
                    Jim
                    Forum use hints: use the QUOTE function (like I just did) so your intended audience gets a notification (like you just did). It also makes it easier to follow a conversation.

                    An alternative method is using a "Tag". That's the @ symbol followed by their username, like this: TucsonJim

                    Howard

                    P.S. Jim will see that tag and will along shortly!
                    Forum moderators are not GD employees--we are volunteers and owners presumably just like yourself. Unless specifically mentioned otherwise, we have nothing to gain should you choose to purchase a product or engage a service we discuss on this forum.

                    Howard, 2017 Ford F-350 DRW, '19 315RLTSPlus

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Do not know what model year trailer the OP has but if its older such as my 2017 and has 3500 lb Lippert axles with 9/16 U bolts the torque value is 60 lb-ft. This is not listed in the Lippert manual.

                      Looking back I see this is a 2016 Reflection 337RLS. So the torque values for these axles will be listed.

                      Jim
                      Attached Files
                      Last edited by MidwestCamper; Yesterday, 08:13 AM.
                      2017 Imagine 2600RB
                      2015 GMC Sierra 4x4

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