just bought a '73 Boler - Fiberglass RV

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Old 05-01-2008, 07:43 PM   #1
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Trailer: Bonair
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Just bought a '73 13ft Boler and am thinking about changing the axle. Should I consider getting electric brakes? Springs?
I haven't yet checked the bearings on it and they may be OK as is but I plan to use it quite a bit and will likely change the axle anyway.
Sure is a neat little rig. We have downsized from a 30ft camper to a 23 footer and now this. Any smaller and we will be sleeping in my wifes Honda Civic!

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Old 05-02-2008, 04:06 PM   #2
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Trailer: 1975 13 ft Trillium
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IMHO, any time one changes an exle BE SURE to try to get it WITH brakes. Most of the time a new axle will come with bearings installed, so you might kill 2 birds with one stone!

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Old 05-02-2008, 04:51 PM   #3
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Name: Donna D
Trailer: Escape 5.0 TA, 2014
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Hi Kenny, you're getting plenty of views, but no responders. It's because Axles, Brakes, Waxes and Sealants are the four most discussed topics on this forum. We have a powerful search engine, and if you type any four-character word in the "search by keyword" box, you'll get lots of topics pop up.

Here's one on axles you may want to read, click: Trailer height and the Axle Connection, Which will lower the trailer but provide axle clearance? Give it a whirl, we're always open to more questions too.
Donna D.
Ten Forward - 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Double Yolk - 1988 16' Scamp Deluxe
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Old 05-02-2008, 05:22 PM   #4
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Thanks DonnaD, kenny
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Old 05-03-2008, 01:19 PM   #5
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Name: Roy
Trailer: 1972 boler American and 1979 Trillium 4500
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Just bought a '73 13ft Boler and am thinking about changing the axle. Should I consider getting electric brakes? Springs?
I haven't yet checked the bearings on it and they may be OK as is but I plan to use it quite a bit and will likely change the axle anyway.
As Donna said, there is a lot of information here on axles. With the 13' - the axle differs from year to year, plant to plant or mod to mod. Some have a leading edge Dexter Torflex or equvalent, some have a trailing, some have been converted to different kinds of springs. To better answer your question, we need to know what you have. You don't need springs/shocks with the Torflex because of the design.

As Doug says, brakes are always a good idea. Even if you don't install brakes, get the axle with a brake flange so the next owner can add brakes if they want. You might want to consider getting the "EZ-lube or Never-lube" spindles (or equivalent) too.

OH yeah, concensus is that the early trailers were all understated for weights - so you might want to get your trailer weighed before choosing an axle. Some people suggest uprgading the weight to get the larger brake shoes. If memory serves me right for Dexter @ 2200 lbs you get a 7" x 1" (and change e.g. 1-1/4") shoe, while @ 2300 lbs, you get a 10" by 2" (and change [2-1/2"]) shoe big difference in braking potential and wear for a 100 LB difference in specs. Some shoes are a little more difficult to source. Be cognizant of bolt patterns too, an axle swap might mean a rim/tire swap. Early Bolers came with a 4 bolt pattern, the heavier axles only come with a 5 bolt pattern of varying sizes. Plus for a few $ more, get the mounting brackets if available so the next axle swap will be bolt on.

FWIW. I'm replacing my axle this summer. Switching from leading edge to trailing which requires a welding some more steel to the frame. I'm getting the brackets, E brakes, Ez lube fittings and considering the parking brake too. I'm not sure yet what size axle I'm going with till I get the trailer weighed and factor in the other mod's I'm planning. That might just include new rims as stated above.

Happy searching, happy reading and happy camping.

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Old 05-03-2008, 05:32 PM   #6
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Boler 13' would take a Dexter #9, with a top weight of 2,200 lbs. Likely the original was a #9 rubbered for 1,200 or 1,600 lbs, as were the older Scamps.

Whatever you do, get the brake flange -- It's only about $3 extra and without it brakes can't be added at later date. However, get the new axle priced with and without brakes and also get a price for brake drums and plate with shoes, magnets and hardware. You will quickly see that getting the axle with the brakes is less expensive.

Nev-R-Lube oil filled cartridge bearings are not an option in these small axle. One has to be in #11 with 6-lug 16" wheels/hubs to even consider it at present.

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