Putting your trailer on jacks for the winter - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-01-2010, 10:16 PM   #1
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Putting your trailer on jacks for the winter

People on the Scamp Forum seemed to be obsessed about putting their campers on jacks for the winter. We had many seasonal campers in the campground where we lived this summer and they did not have jacks under them at all. They would be on these sites just as long as they would be moth balled for the winter some place else.
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Old 11-01-2010, 11:38 PM   #2
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I suppose it would be to take weight off the tires and/or torsion axle (for trailers that have one). I'm not sure how valid that is.

OTOH the people who owned my Boler for 18 years did it every winter and the axle seemed pretty happy when I towed it home. But again that is not proof.

I have heard that radial trailer tires do best when not sitting on the same patch of tire for a long time.

Does anyone know?

Raya
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Old 11-02-2010, 12:57 AM   #3
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We use ours in the winter, Quartzsite in Jan, rodeo in Tucson in Feb,etc.
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Old 11-02-2010, 03:23 PM   #4
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The only good way to jack it is at the axle, not at the corners. Here is a picture, not my Boler (mine is stored inside and jacked the same way) but same idea.


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Old 11-02-2010, 04:53 PM   #5
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If that axle is welded to the frame like it looks to be.....it doesnt matter where you jack it up at along the frame really........or support it
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Old 11-02-2010, 05:21 PM   #6
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Actually it does matter. A lot of these small trailers have a light frame that will bend or twist if you put the jacks too far from the axle. Lifting it the way Michael Bouchard shows, is the proper way. Putting jacks under the ends of the frame at a campsite is only used to stabilize the trailer not to lift it.
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Old 11-02-2010, 05:39 PM   #7
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I didnt realize they were that flimsy but okay,makes sense. I guess the frame on a uhaul leaves one spoiled....its really rugged. Bruce
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Old 11-02-2010, 06:17 PM   #8
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Hi Bruce,

I used to have a U-haul. And I agree that the frame is nice looking, and it has outer tubular "extra" supports. That said, I would not have jacked the trailer up and stored it with jacks on "the ends" regardless. I don't think they are designed to take all the weight there (and then plus have the weight of the axle and wheels suspended from them).

It's not so much a matter of "flimsy," in my opinion, as it is where the design is meant to take strain, and where it is not.

Raya
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Old 11-02-2010, 06:57 PM   #9
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I think it's a ridiculous idea to jack a trailer off the ground to save a little bit of money on tires. The frame, and axle, are far more expensive.
Just my opinion. Your mileage may vary.
Sherry
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Old 11-02-2010, 07:04 PM   #10
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Cyndi I suspect they jacking up the Scamps as the manual actually says to jack it up. Under Winterizing mine reads "Jack up the axle and block it up to take the weight off the suspension. Leaving the weight of the trailer on the suspension for extended periods while stored is extremely hard on the torsion axle. The rubber tends to compress and not relax as fully as before. Relive tire pressure to 10-15 pounds while stored. This extends tire life."

As far as how to and where to jack the Scamp my manual reads:" On the trailer there are two min beams made out of 3 inch by 1 inch tubing, one on each side. Either of these can be used as a point to jack up the trailer. Jack should be placed close to the axle or toward the rear of the trailer, so that the whole weight of the trailer is not on one point."

Have not done it in past years but was thinking of doing it this year as the wheel bearings need repacked and the brake pads need checking and possible replaced. Its in the garage so those are good winter projects.
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Old 11-02-2010, 08:07 PM   #11
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But not ON the Axle!
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Old 11-02-2010, 08:15 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SherryNPaul View Post
I think it's a ridiculous idea to jack a trailer off the ground to save a little bit of money on tires. The frame, and axle, are far more expensive.
Just my opinion. Your mileage may vary.
Sherry
That's a strong statement. And while I agree each person is entitled to their opinion, I will address what I see as some misconceptions:

It's my understanding, for example, that radial tires do not do well with weight on the same bit of tire over a long period of time. Blocking the trailer up will eliminate that. It may only be a "little bit" of money, but there is also the hassle/time factor to replace the tires, or the potential hazard if you don't.

The frame is expensive, yes, but blocked properly, there will be no damage to the frame, so the price of the frame isn't relevant. As for the price of the axle, it's better for the torsion axle to "relax," so if there is money to be saved it will be by blocking the weight off it. I can't see how it could cause damage to the axle, done properly.

To clarify: I don't have any dog in the fight over whether you do or do not block your trailer up; you should do as you prefer. I just wanted to clear up some possible misconceptions in your post (so that others could form their own opinion).

Raya
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Old 11-02-2010, 08:58 PM   #13
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For what its worth I think it is a waste of time.
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Old 11-02-2010, 09:17 PM   #14
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I'm with Ches on this one. If you feel the need to do something for the trailer over the winter, cover it. You'll be glad you did in the spring when you don't have to spend hours cleaning off the winter gunk. Done properly the outside finish, whatever that may be, will last years longer too.

YMMV
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