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Trucks, Trailers and Hauling for Shows

Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned


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  #1  
Old 10-07-2019, 01:45:26 PM
jimybuddiesel jimybuddiesel is offline
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Default Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

The photograph shows when I have a straight edge on one tire, the other tire is not aligned . It is about one inch different.

The photograph shows where there is a gap of on inch on the shown tire. The straight edge is toughing, and square on the other tire.

On the other side of the trailer the one inch difference is there as well, but the tire sticks out an inch.

What are my possible issues with this?

I have owned it twenty years and never had any problems.
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Old 10-07-2019, 01:48:05 PM
dalmatiangirl61 dalmatiangirl61 is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

Same offset wheels on both axles?
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  #3  
Old 10-07-2019, 02:07:47 PM
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

Likely the spring mount bushings are worn. Hook it up and drive around a corner then stop and measure it. Then do it in the other direction and measure it. You might have that aha moment.
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Old 10-07-2019, 03:14:25 PM
jimybuddiesel jimybuddiesel is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

Hooked up my forklift perpendicular to the trailer and moved it back and forth.

It is definitely not the u-bolts moving. It appears the spring assemblies are moving as mentioned.

I am thinking it is the design of the assembly. In the photographs below, there is a gap between the spring and the mounting base. This gap switches sides when I move it one way or the other.

And, there are only two bushings on each side of the trailer, instead of four. I think the photographs will show that.

I strongly believe even if I replaced the bushings, that it would still have the same movement. Again, there is only one bushing per spring, the other side is designed to move up and down based on the weight load of the trailer. And, there is room for side movement as well, at least a quarter of an inch.

I am still open to advice, and it will not hurt my feelings if I am disagreed with.
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Old 10-07-2019, 03:26:06 PM
LCJudge LCJudge is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

Measure from your hub to the U bolts holding the springs on the front and back axle. An axle could have slipped slightly unless you have welded plates on each axle that the springs attach to.
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Old 10-07-2019, 03:39:17 PM
jimybuddiesel jimybuddiesel is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

I will measure and provide feedback.

Is there any issues with operability with the one inch offset?
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Old 10-07-2019, 04:10:11 PM
jimybuddiesel jimybuddiesel is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

One of the four sets of u-bolts is off a bit, maybe a quarter of an inch.

The bushing are definitely worn.

When I replace the bushing, would it be recommended that I also add washers to each side of the spring, where it meets the bushing area. At this point there is an 1/8 inch gap on each side of the springs. (please see attached photograph).
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Old 10-07-2019, 05:23:44 PM
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

Depending on the ID of the bushings maybe you can put a piece of tubing in there as a spacer so the shackles can be tightened against it.

But once you replace the bushings I'd say eff it, drive it.
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Old 10-07-2019, 08:25:38 PM
Glenn Ayers Glenn Ayers is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimybuddiesel View Post
One of the four sets of u-bolts is off a bit, maybe a quarter of an inch.

The bushing are definitely worn.

When I replace the bushing, would it be recommended that I also add washers to each side of the spring, where it meets the bushing area. At this point there is an 1/8 inch gap on each side of the springs. (please see attached photograph).
Close that 1/8" gap when you retighten the bushing bolt.

.
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Old 10-07-2019, 09:38:32 PM
slip knot slip knot is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

If its not wearing out tires or pulling odd, I would leave well enough alone.
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Old 10-07-2019, 09:42:28 PM
LCJudge LCJudge is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

As long as the axles are parallel to one another the 1 inch offset won't matter. If they are not parallel you'll be able to see it as you'll have uneven tire wear. The tires will be wearing considerably worse on the inside or the outside, depending on how they are misaligned.
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Old 10-08-2019, 08:16:33 AM
Peter Holmander Peter Holmander is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

Your axle tubes could be bent a little bit also. When I was doing house & building moving, we had a homemade 3 axle trailer we used for moving garages and small sheds. Those tube axles bend easy if overloaded a little bit. Very easy to straighten with a small hydraulic bottle jack set between the top of the axle and the trailer floor, provided the floor is strong enough. You can short chain the ends of the axle to the trailer frame if the suspension flexes too much when trying to straighten them. It might sound complicated, but it's really easy to do. If a tube is bent, just take your time and bend it back a little at a time so you don't bend it too far. I see many of those tube axles are made with a crown to them too. Easy enough to run a string on them from one end to the other and measure to see if the crown is the same in the center on each axle tube. If the trailer has ramps, sometimes if you are loading a really heavy item, all the weight goes on the rear axle first, and that axle is often the one bent a little bit. As the load gets further on the trailer bed, the weight is more evenly distributed on both axles. Not sure if it's the issue with your trailer, but another easy thing to check.

Last edited by Peter Holmander; 10-08-2019 at 08:22:22 AM. Reason: additional info
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Old 10-08-2019, 11:15:20 AM
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Toesmack Toesmack is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

I would not bother putting shims in the mix. One more turn on the spring bolt (nut) will squeeze the hanger quite a bit. I always measure the center to center distance at the outer spindle, and with weight on the axles. If that is the same on both sides, tire wear should be fine. To check total axle alignment measure from the center of the hitch coupler to outer spindle. If it tows straight, and does not scrub tires, your offset is cosmetic. Kind of annoying when you see it in the mirror, but not a huge problem.

As to a possible different wheel offset, that is easy to check with a tape and a straight edge.
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:23:46 AM
Peter Holmander Peter Holmander is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

After posting yesterday, in my young age of 71, my memory sometimes fails me lol. I incorrectly said you could straighten axle tubes by setting a jack between the top of the axle and the floor of the trailer. That would bend it the wrong way. I now remember we used to take a heavy chain and hook it to the outer ends hanging down under the tube. Then place a small hydrauilc jack between the chain and the BOTTOM of the axle. Jacking slowly will straighten a bent tube very easily. Sorry for the confusion if I caused any.
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Old 10-09-2019, 04:24:10 PM
jimybuddiesel jimybuddiesel is offline
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Default Re: Dual Axle Trailer, front and rear axle are not aligned

Thank you for the clarification. The axles are a bit bent, but I think it was due to running over something.

Prior to my ownership 20 years ago, it spend its life hauling a lightweight crash simulator for the state police. The deck of the trailer was a 1/8 metal skin over 1 x 1 tubing.

A quick update to my progress: I spent about seven hours yesterday rebuilding the one of the equalizers and fabricating the bushings. The 3/4 ID tubing was wore out on the equalizer, so I cut it out and rewelded a new piece of tube in its place.

I also replaced the hanger/spring bushings, the old ones were wore out (they were plastic). I used cooper tubing. and made them very tight (I am assuming they will loosen up with time and wear).

I hooked up the electric brakes and they work great. It was very odd, using the brakes for the first time. I have used this trailer for at least 20 years, and had never had the brakes hooked up. Now I realize the value of trailer brakes. I wish I could have figured that out when I was a young man, versus an old one.

My only expense was a 10 dollar specialized bolt for the equalizer. I had 7/8 inch bolts in stock, but this pin had a square component and grease zerk, so I splurged and purchased it.

Thank you for all of the advice.
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