Why not just level with a jack? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-03-2015, 03:33 PM   #15
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Not that I endorse jacking from the axle but in fairness its a safety warning Byron. It does not indicate that damage to the axle may occur by doing so.

Having said that, I think best practice is to jack from the frame for stability reasons if nothing else.

I really like the Anderson leveling system. A bit pricey at around $40 but they are compact, easy to use and it works extremely well.
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Old 06-03-2015, 04:23 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Randy P. View Post
Not that I endorse jacking from the axle but in fairness its a safety warning Byron. It does not indicate that damage to the axle may occur by doing so.

Having said that, I think best practice is to jack from the frame for stability reasons if nothing else.

I really like the Anderson leveling system. A bit pricey at around $40 but they are compact, easy to use and it works extremely well.

I'll quote the warning just for you.
"DO NOT LIFT OR SUPPORT THE TRAILER ON ANY PART OF THE AXLE OR SUSPENSION SYSTEM."

Yes it goes on to say don't crawl under unless it's properly supported with jacks or jack stands. The first statement is the DO NOT LIFT OR SUPPORT ON ANY PART OF THE AXLE. So how hard is it to understand "DO NOT"?

This is not time I've seen this warning, I believe it was also in my Scamp user's manual, it's on Scamp's web site videos. At one time I saw in a Dexter thick manual.

My guess is that if you checked with Casita they'd say the same thing.
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Old 06-03-2015, 04:36 PM   #17
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I think that those who disagree should just go ahead and do it.
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Old 06-03-2015, 04:45 PM   #18
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Byron you specifically highlighted Timberwolf's comment in regard to potential axle damage then providing a link that supposedly buttressed your position. It doesn't.

But, I do not agree with jacking on the axle damaging anything. The axle is a tube set up as a diamond shape and it seems HIGHLY unlikely it could be damaged by jacking anywhere near the ends

Of course Dexter doesn't want you to do something that is unsafe but it doesn't imply or state that damage is the reason for the warning. Again, it's a safety issue and should be respected as such. I don't disagree that it's a bad idea but there's no need for you to be insulting, jeesh.
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Old 06-03-2015, 05:04 PM   #19
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Smile Levelers

Apparently the BAL is the Cadillac of levelers, but at a corresponding price.

I have an Anderson, and although it does require the movement of the trailer, it is only once, not guessing like with blocks or Legos.

3604 - Camper Leveler

I agree. DO NOT JACK ON THE AXLE.

From Dexter:

MISCELLANEOUS - Is it okay to jack up my trailer?
Dexter recommends that you do not jack up the trailer on the suspension components because there is always the potential for damage. Bent hangers, leaf springs, or axle tubes can cause bad axle alignment with bad tire wear resulting. Also, many trailer builders do not use Dexter hangers and we have no idea how strong these hangers may or may not be. Therefore, we take the conservative approach and recommend jacking up only on the trailer frame.


Maybe one of the reasons:

AXLES - Why are some axles bent in the middle?
The upward bend in the axle is called "camber". Camber is the angular relationship of the wheel to the road surface in the vertical plane. Axles are typically built with a pre-determined bend in the tube that compensates for the expected deflection under load.

Dexter Axle - Trailer Axles and Running Gear Components - FAQ'S


The "axle" is not a solid piece, only a tube with apparently somewhat of a thin wall.
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Old 06-03-2015, 05:40 PM   #20
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[QUOTE=Byron Kinnaman;526925][QUOTE=Timber Wolf;526917]
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Originally Posted by tractors1 View Post
Two major ways to learn stuff, the easy way by reading or other forms of information intake, or by the school of hard knocks. Here's a link to a pdf file on the Dexter Axle web site. Most Scamps use one of two brands of rubber torsion axles. Here's the link.
I do not see anything on that link that is helpful to the discussion. Generic warnings from liability concerned suppliers may, or may not have merit. I do just happen to personally have considerable long-term experience (hard knocks if you will) with steel tube such as MY Scamp's axle is made of. I have no worries about lifting it with a suitable jack near the end.
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Old 06-03-2015, 06:07 PM   #21
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Slightly off topic newby question. If my site if fairly level could I slide the Bal leveler around the tire and thus negate the need to carry a wheel chock? Or at least to only carry one chock.
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Old 06-03-2015, 06:39 PM   #22
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Slightly off topic newby question. If my site if fairly level could I slide the Bal leveler around the tire and thus negate the need to carry a wheel chock? Or at least to only carry one chock.
Yes, the BAL will chock both sides (forward & backward) of the trailer tire it is slid around.
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Old 06-03-2015, 06:55 PM   #23
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Looks like we have a new addition for the hot topic list.
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Old 06-03-2015, 07:33 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Borrego Dave View Post
Looks like we have a new addition for the hot topic list.
Wow, no kidding.

I'm cheap. I'd rather follow the advice of a manufacturer or experienced owners here, than hope what I think "seems HIGHLY unlikely" is really not my hope or opinion. But then again, I mentioned I'm cheap. Axles really aren't. I think putting any lifting device on the ends of the axle could be very bad practice. That's where the rubber torsion resides. Smoosh the axle, even a little bit, may prevent the rubber from working as it's designed.

My last comment on lifting on the axle: Just because you can, doesn't mean you should.
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Old 06-03-2015, 08:42 PM   #25
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Why not just level with a jack?

Not just cheap, I'm lazy, too. To get a jack on the axle, you'd have to get down on your hands and knees and reach all the way around behind the wheel. It's what I have to do when I put the trailer up on jack stands for storage (except they go on the frame next to the axle, not the axle itself). All the other leveling options (blocks, BAL, Anderson) work from the front of the wheel. No crawling required.
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Old 06-03-2015, 09:34 PM   #26
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[QUOTE=Timber Wolf;526917][QUOTE=tractors1;526896]The bottle jack will bleed down -
Quote:

I had not thought of that, I may test your theory. My first thought was actually a scissor jack, but then I remembered I have the little bottle jack. I also agree with Byron’s comment on stability, a constant worry to be sure. But, I do not agree with jacking on the axle damaging anything. The axle is a tube set up as a diamond shape and it seems HIGHLY unlikely it could be damaged by jacking anywhere near the ends. I think a nice scissor jack with a “V” (angle iron) welded on top to catch the axle would be the (cheap) ticket. There would not even be any crawling underneath with the longish, folding handle these jacks use. Just poke it under there and get to cranking. Junkyards must be full of scissor jacks. Oh wait, there is one under the back seat of my F-150 already!
My Scamp 19 Owner's Manual said to not place a jack under the axle.
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Old 06-03-2015, 09:36 PM   #27
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Lego blocks and a good eye. That's the best way we have found.
Your eye gets better with a little practice until you are right nearly every time!
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Old 06-03-2015, 10:03 PM   #28
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Tim, this is what I did on our 13' Scamp and now with our Lil Snoozy, I went to Harbor Freight and bought scissor jacks, and mounted them to the frame just behind the axle. I use my cordless electric drill to quickly level the trailer or to actually lift the tire off the ground to rotate tires, pack wheel bearings, etc.
Dave & Paula
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