Casita axle dilemma... - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV



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Old 04-11-2019, 05:41 AM   #29
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Name: Babs
Trailer: Casita
Tennessee
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Just wow!

Glad you got help and made your decision. Decades of use and millions of miles of travel seem to indicate that the Casita frame is adequate for its intended purpose. I know of only one case, although there may be others, of a bent 3500# axle by an owner who admittedly traveled “heavy.” He replaced his 3500 with a 6000 and added leaf springs.
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Old 04-11-2019, 05:43 AM   #30
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Name: Jamie
Trailer: Casita
Texas
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I really don’t understand why some folks are putting on anything larger than a 3.5k lb axle on a fiberglass RV. What are you packing in it that will get it close to 4.2k or higher?

Suspension that is rated too high I would think is worse.

Think of a pogo stick that is rated for a 100lb kid, when 30lb little kid gets on springs do nothing.

As far as my situation I’ll give an update...

Talked with Dexter and there are no returns (I assumed that) however they are doing me a solid and said “man, we made money on you already so we will sell you a 3.5k axle at cost” and that is an American company I will continue to support. However I am not 100% convinced I need it.

I will be able to weigh the trailer Saturday and then I will have the information I need to make a decision. I will report back then. Cheers y’all
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Old 04-11-2019, 07:01 AM   #31
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Saucesquatch, you are right, of course, about matching the axle to the actual gross weight of the trailer, with some reasonable margin to allow for normal variations. You don't want something simple like filling the fresh water tank to put you over your axle rating, even if you don't normally tow with a full tank.

Let us know what the weighing reveals. I hope you will post in the “Trailer Weights in the Real World” thread in the General Chat section. There aren’t many Casita 16’s in the database. If you can, get the axle weight (hitched, trailer only on scale) and the total trailer weight (unhitched, tongue on scale). If you can only get one weighing, there are ways to get the tongue weight at home using a bathroom scale. Will you be weighing fully loaded for camping?

Frame failures are perhaps not as common as suggested, but they do occur. Age, climate, storage, and use all factor in frame life expectancy. Before the shop installs the new axle, do ask them to make a close inspection of the frame.
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Old 04-11-2019, 07:30 AM   #32
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Trailer: Scamp 16 Modified (BIGLY)
Florida
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You seem to lack understanding of the difference in towing at 100 mph and air of 100 mph.
The issue of towing at any speed and stability are related to the harmonics and mechanical interaction of the masses involved and the airflow has relatively little to do with the issue.
Currently at 65 mph passing speed the combined speeds are 130 mph and actually cause relatively few problems.
There have been many tow rigs that have been clocked over 100 mph as all it takes is making sure that the combined rig has a stability at that frequency and is properly damped.
If you are interested in stability of trailer google the research from the 1970's published by the government. You will find enough math to keep you busy for a while.
I do agree about the need for reinforcing the frames at the stress points as these trailers last long enough for these points to fail while there is still life left in them.

Evidently you do not have a lot of experience with towing and proper balance and setup or your post about the going ballistic with the relative wind from passing trucks.

Every time we go out we are probably exposed to 130 mph wind blast from passing trucks.
The videos you see are usually pictures of various idiots doing stupid things with poorly set up trailers.
All of that not withstanding side winds that can blow over tractor trailer rigs can cause havoc with anyone, but are not usually related to towing speed.

An example is a video of a small European car towing a caravan losing control as an example of the car incapable of safely towing, but easily missed is the impact of the rear of the trailer with the truck that set off the wreck.

The new requirements of SAE J2807 cover most of the points made in those 1970's studies on stability.
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Old 04-11-2019, 07:36 AM   #33
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Name: JD
Trailer: Scamp 16 Modified (BIGLY)
Florida
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As to axle ratings an axle has several key points to consider.
One is the ability of the system to hold up the weight of the trailer under real world loads.
The other is the suspension and how it carried that weight.
Too high of a rating and the ride will be unduly harsh and beat the trailer and it's content to pieces, too soft and the trailer will wallow all over.
I chose a 3500 lb rated Flexiride for my target weight of 28-2900 lbs. However I specified a 3000 rubber spring in that larger frame of a softer ride.
Most of the manufacturers of these rubber torsion bar type of axles can fabricate whar you specify with no extra cost.
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Old 04-11-2019, 09:13 AM   #34
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Trailer: Casita 16 ft
Texas
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I replaced the axle on my '95 Casita about 4 years ago.
Pasadena Trailer & Truck Accessories ordered it for me using the part # I found on the axle. Cost was around $450. They offered to install it for $165. I'm sure higher now.

The new axle was 1" wider and about 2" higher. My welder did a good job without burning down the trailer. The additional width and height worked out ok for installing 15" wheels/tires. They helped with the ride and ground clearance.

All was well until Hurricane Harvey which totalled the trailer from flooding.
So if you see it for sale on CoPart, it has a new axle.
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Old 04-12-2019, 04:54 PM   #35
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Trailer: 2003 Casita 17' SD Deluxe, Towed by '09 Honda Ridgeline.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
And Casita should engineer to a boondocking/aircraft standard because...?

I’m glad they don’t, actually. I can’t afford an airplane, and I can’t afford an expedition-grade RV, both of which can easily run six figures.

Many manufacturers, including Scamp and Casita, have made numerous upgrades to their chassis over the years based on the real-world use and performance of their products. Not every improvement clears the cost-benefit hurdle.

You want more. I get it. There are some things I would pay a little more for, too, like better 12V wiring. But I accept the limitations of an engineered-to-cost product.
Well written Jon.
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Old 04-12-2019, 05:12 PM   #36
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Don't forget that the axle only has to support the "axle weight".
It does not carry the tongue weight - in fact it does'nt even carry the weight of the wheels/tires/spindles.....
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Old 04-13-2019, 12:01 PM   #37
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Trailer: Scamp 16 Modified (BIGLY)
Florida
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The big problem is that the frame has to carry the repetitive stresses including the bending stresses that amplify the problems at those pesky, unsupported bends.
Reinforcement there would go a long way and probably cost $20.00 at manufacture.
But then who thought these things would last as long as they have?
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Old 04-16-2019, 09:29 AM   #38
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Name: Jamie
Trailer: Casita
Texas
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Well, I got the trailer weighed and it came in at...

1740lbs

Note, that is with the water tank removed (no water or cooking in the camper), but there is a fridge in there. I still need to put the AC unit in and mount the new 15" spare tire but with that I should be a little over 1800lbs. So I'm feeling good, I'm going to run the 2k axle and we will just plan on only packing light stuff like clothes + whatnot in the camper while traveling, everything else will go in our car.



And yes, I unhooked the camper, it's completely on it's own, hard to see in the picture, also hard to see is the digital read-out, you can only see the 17__, it was hard to photograph because of the digital display refresh rate.
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Old 04-16-2019, 09:54 AM   #39
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Name: Jamie
Trailer: Casita
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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
...I hope you will post in the “Trailer Weights in the Real World” thread in the General Chat section. There aren’t many Casita 16’s in the database. If you can, get the axle weight (hitched, trailer only on scale) and the total trailer weight (unhitched, tongue on scale). If you can only get one weighing, there are ways to get the tongue weight at home using a bathroom scale. Will you be weighing fully loaded for camping?
I will look that up and post up in that thread when I have a moment, it was loaded up but not with everything. I am still building a drawer, need to add an AC unit and the new spare 15" wheel is quite heavy.
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Old 04-16-2019, 05:41 PM   #40
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Escape 5.0 TA
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A 16’

So....you have a 16 without a bathroom, no black tank, and maybe no grey tank and it weighs 1740. Now take off the 200 or so pounds on the hitch and that’s what the axle has to deal with.
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Old 04-16-2019, 08:10 PM   #41
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I speced out my #9 Dexter to 2000 lbs if my memory serves me correctly for our 1971 Boler that weighs dry at 1440 lbs, allowing for water in tanks, clothes, food, gear and ourselves (3 people) which a Dexter engineer to me to include in my figures for weight loading which makes sense as your body weight is on the torsion when inside, even using stabilizers according to the engineer. Now for my 1985 Casita 16 I will definitely be going with the #10
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Old 04-16-2019, 08:39 PM   #42
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Trailer: Casita SD17 2006
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Originally Posted by saucesquatch View Post
I will look that up and post up in that thread when I have a moment, it was loaded up but not with everything. I am still building a drawer, need to add an AC unit and the new spare 15" wheel is quite heavy.
I don't know Jamie....think I'd go with a 22-2500# axle for a couple reasons. It's going to get weaker as time goes by and you will be adding items that you haven't even thought about yet, like "sure would be nice to have solar on the roof" ect. A few extra #s in the axle now will save a lot of $ later. There's my 2 cents worth, carry on .
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