OK viewers... it's time to play "Guess That Axle" - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-04-2007, 07:56 AM   #1
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'78 Trill. 4500. Really, really well used. May or may not be OEM. Are there generally some markings somewhere to identify what I have? 2000#/3000# etc.
Thanks,
K
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:04 AM   #2
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Don't know about Trillium's Kevin, but my old Scamp had a identification plate riveted right in the middle of the axle that gave me the brand name, serial number, etc. (It was an Al-Ko) It was thoroughly coated in road gunk and with a quick peek it would not have been noticeable. Have you crawled under and really looked?
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Old 07-04-2007, 03:41 PM   #3
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Also, some Dexter axles had all the info painted on them.

Actually, it doesn't matter all that much who made the old one as it does to take the right measurements for a new one...
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Old 07-05-2007, 12:30 PM   #4
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My Boler B1700RGH has its original axle, from Standen's. They used a foil information sticker which was still partially intact, and complete enough that they could supply the rest of the information from their records when I sent them what I could read.
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Old 07-05-2007, 02:59 PM   #5
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Standens Ltd is the name on the axle of the Bigfoot I just bought. Must be Canadian, eh? I like Pete's comment.
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Old 07-05-2007, 06:33 PM   #6
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Standen's is indeed Canadian; it is the business - based in Calgary, Alberta - which supplied axles to Vanguard Trailers when they were building Bolers (including mine) in Winfield, B.C. Bigfoot's factory is a few towns up the highway from Winfield.

Standen's uses Dexter components, so their usual complete axle assemblies look a lot like the ones in the Dexter catalog; it would presumably be cheaper for Standen's to import Dexter components and build them up with their own structural components than to import a complete Dexter axle.
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Old 07-06-2007, 03:07 PM   #7
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Reportedly, axles manufactured in Canada don't squeak, they just grunt 'eh' when flexing under load...
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Old 07-06-2007, 06:21 PM   #8
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'78 Trill. 4500. Really, really well used. May or may not be OEM. Are there generally some markings somewhere to identify what I have? 2000#/3000# etc.
Thanks,
K
This is a picture of the tag that is welded to the right hand rearside of the axle on my '78 trillium 4500. I plan on replacing the axle just because of it's age and will go with a 2500lb. rated axle. I haven't decided on the replacement axle brand
yet but I don't think it will be a problem to replace. I have the trailer off the frame for some other work that is required. I have had the axle mounting plates reinforced as well as some areas on the frame. Still lots to do!
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Old 07-06-2007, 06:37 PM   #9
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This is a picture of the tag that is welded to the right hand rearside of the axle on my '78 trillium 4500. I plan on replacing the axle just because of it's age and will go with a 2500lb. rated axle. I haven't decided on the replacement axle brand
yet but I don't think it will be a problem to replace. I have the trailer off the frame for some other work that is required. I have had the axle mounting plates reinforced as well as some areas on the frame. Still lots to do!
I just had the right wheel off investigating, and checking the brakes. No sign of a tag, but now I know where I should look. As far the brakes... can't imagine how those two wires hanging there by the hub could cause the non-existant brake to operate!
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Old 07-06-2007, 06:55 PM   #10
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Excellent, Wally!

I had heard of the Rub-R-Ride brand, and even that it was from Ingersoll, but never had more detail. With the plate's reference to "MFD. UNDER NEIDART PAT", some patent searching led me to US Patent 2,712,742, which might be the original rubber torsion axle patent... from 1955!

Of course, this particular discovery doesn't really help Kevin...
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Old 07-06-2007, 07:02 PM   #11
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I just had the right wheel off investigating, and checking the brakes.
... As far the brakes... can't imagine how those two wires hanging there by the hub could cause the non-existant brake to operate!
If I'm following this... the trailer must have had brakes at some point, or no one would have bothered installing the wires. It doesn't have brakes now. It seems like it's not entirely the original axle, right? It might not matter what it is, since it might not be the right thing anyway.

With a GVWR likely to be over 2000 lb due to it's size, I would expect a Trillium 4500 to have brakes as stock equipment, but I don't know. Did they just squeeze under?

If there are flanges for brake backing plates, they could possibly be added now, and perhaps were there before someone replaced the hubs with non-brake hubs (and tossed the backing plates).
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Old 07-06-2007, 09:12 PM   #12
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If I'm following this... the trailer must have had brakes at some point, or no one would have bothered installing the wires. It doesn't have brakes now. It seems like it's not entirely the original axle, right? It might not matter what it is, since it might not be the right thing anyway.

With a GVWR likely to be over 2000 lb due to it's size, I would expect a Trillium 4500 to have brakes as stock equipment, but I don't know. Did they just squeeze under?

If there are flanges for brake backing plates, they could possibly be added now, and perhaps were there before someone replaced the hubs with non-brake hubs (and tossed the backing plates).
The wiring looks original to me. I may be wrong but I thought I read that the 4500 came with brakes. I did go so far as to remove the axle nut and the exterior part of the hub. (Would have been a great time to take some pics... duh!) There certainly were no brakes in there, just a thick coat of rust. I wouldn't know if these were hubs for brakes or not as I wouldn't know what to look for on them.
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Old 07-07-2007, 09:49 PM   #13
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With almost every trailer axle, the brake drum is the same cast hunk of metal as the hub. A no-brake (or "idler") hub is just the part containing the bearing and a flange big enough to hold the studs; a brake drum/hub is the same thing extended to a drum 7" or more in diameter with an inner surface machined for the brake shoes.

The other half of the brakes is the backing plate (a round stamped steel piece which closes off the open back of the drum and holds the brake parts, bolted to the axle, usually with four bolts). It would be strange to have a backing plate with no drum (but someone could do it if they needed a new hub and didn't bother keeping or properly removing the brakes); it would be even stranger to have a drum and no backing plate (since you can't get the backing plate off without removing the hub/drum).

The Dexter catalogs have nice illustrations of all of their components; here are 5-on-4.5" Dexter idler (left) and drum (right) hubs:


Name:   no_brakeHub.jpg
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...and the backing plate with hardware (Dexter calls it a "complete brake assembly") in the view you would get if you removed the drum to expose the internals:


Name:   10x2.25brake.jpg
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If someone put no-brake hubs on an axle which originally had brakes, you'd have the plain little hub, no backing plate, and just a place on the axle with four holes waiting for a backing plate to be installed. You get the same thing if someone factory-orders an axle without brakes, but prepared to accept them later; I have heard Trillium did this on the 1300 model.
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Old 07-07-2007, 10:10 PM   #14
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As far the brakes... can't imagine how those two wires hanging there by the hub could cause the non-existant brake to operate!
It's actually quite simple; the brake controller in the tow vehicle puts out a certain amount of current (determined by various conditions sensed by the controller) on the two wires, which activates the electromagnets on the brake plate. These then grab (based on the current) the inside, rotating, vertical flat surface of the drum, which causes the levers on the brake plate to move the shoes outward to rub on the inner surface of the drum and slow the wheel.
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