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Spring shackle problem

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  • Spring shackle problem

    While driving I-294 outside Chicago I saw in my mirror the trailer dog walking behind me. I safely pulled into the Ohare Oasis and called for a tow. It's now sitting at Erhardt Trailer Sales and Service to be looked at tmrw. Wrecker driver noticed no spring bolt on top of none of the 4 sets. I don't know what this means but will know more in the morning. Any idea what I can expect here?

  • #2
    It looks like the u-bolts may have loosened or fallen off on that one spring. The axle shifted and the spring is ruined. As a minimum, a new spring pack should be installed and the u-bolts replaced. The axle and tire should be checked before finishing up. Looking at the other springs, they appear to be okay in the photos. But I'd check the torque on all the U-bolts while the mechanic is under there.

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

    Jim and Ginnie
    2017 Reflection 297RSTS

    Comment


    • #3
      TNFSolitude DOn't know what year the camper is, but it looks like all the U-bolts are a bit short with no threads sticking out the top.

      It's hard to tell by the picture, but are the nuts on the u-bolts on that one axle missing? I think auto correct got you on the post. "Wrecker driver noticed no spring bolt on top of none of the 4 sets."

      If the unit is still under Dexter Warranty start a claim with them. Those U-bolts were installed at the Dexter Factory when the axle was assembled.

      After they replace that spring, I'd go through that (and all the other) set of hub bearings. Side pulling on the bearings could have caused heat or wear.
      Joseph
      Tow
      Vehicle: 2018 GMC K2500 Denali Diesel
      Coach: 303RLS Delivered March 5, 2021
      South of Houston Texas

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by TNFSolitude View Post
        While driving I-294 outside Chicago I saw in my mirror the trailer dog walking behind me. I safely pulled into the Ohare Oasis and called for a tow. It's now sitting at Erhardt Trailer Sales and Service to be looked at tmrw. Wrecker driver noticed no spring bolt on top of none of the 4 sets. I don't know what this means but will know more in the morning. Any idea what I can expect here?
        TNF,

        It looks like your U bolts are loose and you sheared a spring center bolt. A pick of the entire failed spring would help to see whats going on. I see two springs on the opposite side with U bolt threads flush with the nuts and a spring on the failed side that look to be ok.

        Jim
        2017 Imagine 2600RB
        2015 GMC Sierra 4x4

        Comment


        • #5
          These are the "after" pics. The camper pulls straight and true again. The center pins on all 4 are properly in place. New issue though was the install of 4 new Argus Advanta 3200's load range G Radial ST's. I wanted Saliun or Goodyear, he said Advanta is the Goodyear G's. I now know that's not true. Also, during our trip the weights on the back 2 tires came off. They are no longer balanced.
          i have a call into Ehrhardt for an explanation and hopeful partial refund. I'm grateful they jockeyed the schedule to get me in and out. But don't lie to me.
          My question now is: Is it truly necessary for trailer tires to be balanced?

          Comment


          • #6
            Necessary? Most shops will tell you no. IMO, it's mandatory. Road speed vibration will prematurely wear stuff out.
            2018 Dodge 3500 6.7 Cummins w Aisin and 9 cup holders
            2021 Reflection 303RLS

            Comment


            • #7
              TNFSolitude
              Hi Tom,

              I am just catching up to this discussion . . . somehow, I missed the first round.

              The new spring pack looks to be considerably shorter than the original three. Assuming that this new spring is the correct strength, this height difference at one location only, could upset your alignment enough to cause uneven tire wear. It is also possible that this new spring is a softer spec, which could make things worse. Given this repair shop's record with the truth, anything is possible. I am thinking that maybe you had the springs replaced during your earlier suspension adventure and they reused the U bolts? There should definitely be more U bolt sticking through the nut than what is shown in your pictures. U bolt torque is important, but yours are so heavily rusted that trying to torque them would be meaningless. U bolts aren't that expensive . . . I would suggest replacing them all. Done one at a time, you would not even need to jack up the trailer.

              Balancing any tire is a good thing. But, trailer tires are often not balanced. Your OE tires were not balanced from the factory. Do you recall how much weight disappeared? If it is a small amount, I would not worry about it. If they were large weights (also more likely to fly off) it would be worth having the tires re-balanced ant take note of how much weight is where, for future reference.

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

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Cate&Rob View Post
                TNFSolitude
                Hi Tom,

                I am just catching up to this discussion . . . somehow, I missed the first round.

                The new spring pack looks to be considerably shorter than the original three. Assuming that this new spring is the correct strength, this height difference at one location only, could upset your alignment enough to cause uneven tire wear. It is also possible that this new spring is a softer spec, which could make things worse. Given this repair shop's record with the truth, anything is possible. I am thinking that maybe you had the springs replaced during your earlier suspension adventure and they reused the U bolts? There should definitely be more U bolt sticking through the nut than what is shown in your pictures. U bolt torque is important, but yours are so heavily rusted that trying to torque them would be meaningless. U bolts aren't that expensive . . . I would suggest replacing them all. Done one at a time, you would not even need to jack up the trailer.

                Balancing any tire is a good thing. But, trailer tires are often not balanced. Your OE tires were not balanced from the factory. Do you recall how much weight disappeared? If it is a small amount, I would not worry about it. If they were large weights (also more likely to fly off) it would be worth having the tires re-balanced ant take note of how much weight is where, for future reference.

                Rob
                Rob,

                I caught the spring pack height as well. Is the new spring pack 6 leafs and the old 7? Something else I do not like is the standard nuts where U bolt nuts are much taller when comparing the new to the old.

                Jim
                2017 Imagine 2600RB
                2015 GMC Sierra 4x4

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by MidwestCamper View Post

                  Rob,

                  I caught the spring pack height as well. Is the new spring pack 6 leafs and the old 7? Something else I do not like is the standard nuts where U bolt nuts are much taller when comparing the new to the old.

                  Jim
                  Jim your correct - New is 6 leaf and old 7 leaf. Does not look like a correct match up or install. Also on edit, should spring packs not be replaced in pairs. I remember that being sound practice.
                  2018 Reflection 150 Series 220RK 5th wheel. Reese R20 Titan hitch, Steadyfast system, 2004 F350 King Ranch dually

                  Comment


                  • #10


                    Originally posted by Yoda View Post

                    Jim your correct - New is 6 leaf and old 7 leaf. Does not look like a correct match up or install. Also on edit, should spring packs not be replaced in pairs. I remember that being sound practice.
                    Looks to me like the original was six leaf on one axle and seven on the other (first pics). And I agree, replace in pairs.
                    2018 Dodge 3500 6.7 Cummins w Aisin and 9 cup holders
                    2021 Reflection 303RLS

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I see the spring pack is different also. I also see that the new ubolt is coarse thread instead of fine thread.

                      Brian
                      Brian & Michelle
                      2018 Reflection 29RS Oct.2017 build date, EMS-HW50C , Lippert Remote
                      2015 Chevy 3500HD CC LB Duramax , Reese Elite 18K

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        It looks like in the first pictures there is only one of the four spring packs is a 7 leaf. Seems like that would transfer more weight to the other axle. Can't be good. Lippert install failure?
                        Jim (& Sharon)
                        2015 GD Momentum 385TH w/ Joy Rider shocks, Sailun 637s & 3" Garage extension, LifeBlue Lithium.
                        2015 Ford F-350 DRW 4x4 Lariat w/ AirLift bags, Titan 65 gal. OEM replacement fuel tank.
                        The toys:
                        2017 RZR XP 1000 EPS SE
                        2018 Fiat Abarth Cabrio

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          TNFSolitude Tom has been through a couple of different "suspension adventures" . . . so, we will have to wait for him to explain how his suspension got to where it is. Springs with the same load rating can come with different numbers of leaves and different thicknesses of the leaves, bu they should match on the same side of the trailer because of how they interact with each other through the center equalizer.

                          Some will say that side-to-side on the same axle should match and some will recall the litany of discussion that I had with LCI about this. My contention is that the springs should match the load carried on that side of the trailer . . . which is why I run stronger springs on the left side of my 303RLS than on the right side. There is an 800 - 1000 lb weight difference side-to-side on a 303RLS.

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

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Hey guys,

                            Does anyone know what the torque rating should be on these u-bolts and at what interval should they should be checked / re/torqued.??
                            I've sprayed Rust Reformer all over the the I-beam chassis and suspension/axles so they're not rusted in place.
                            I HATE a rusty belly lol

                            Also, would a shot of WD-40 help keep the threads and nuts more easily tightened, if need be ??

                            Thanks

                            Michael
                            F-250 7.3 PSD Lariat LB 25 row aux transmission cooler, A&E Air Intake system, TS-6 Performance chip, Air Ride airbags, Bilstein shocks, 152 K

                            2017 307 MKS 9,875 UVW 12,995 GVWR 1,605 Pin wt.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Da Breeze View Post
                              Hey guys,

                              Does anyone know what the torque rating should be on these u-bolts and at what interval should they should be checked / re/torqued.??
                              I've sprayed Rust Reformer all over the the I-beam chassis and suspension/axles so they're not rusted in place.
                              I HATE a rusty belly lol

                              Also, would a shot of WD-40 help keep the threads and nuts more easily tightened, if need be ??

                              Thanks

                              Michael
                              Michael
                              There was a thread way back on this to check the U-bolts and it had the correct torque specifications for the different size nuts. Perhaps use the search feature. I want to say it was in 2019 sometime . I found mine were not to specification. Depending on you axle manufacturer you can probably find the information on thier site.

                              As for lube I use PB-Blaster. I find it better than WD-40 to penetrate

                              Hope this helps
                              2018 Reflection 150 Series 220RK 5th wheel. Reese R20 Titan hitch, Steadyfast system, 2004 F350 King Ranch dually

                              Comment

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