Originally Posted by N and J in VT
Well I can certainly purchase brakes with the new axle even if they are just for use at a later date. What manufactures should I be looking at and what specs do I need to provide them?
You might want to check out this thread I started to get feedback on replacing my scamp
Scamp Axle - Leading vs Trailing
There is at least one post there with links to other axle replacement posts. Pictures of different approaches etc.
Dexter Axle, and Al-Ko axle are two major choices. Both Dexter and Al-Ko have documents on their site that describe the measurements.
Your Scamp if stock is probably a "leading arm" axle, that is to say the axle is behind the tires
and has arms with the wheels on them that are in front of or "lead" the axle. Most axles today are trailing arm where the axle is in front of the tires
and the arm "trails" the axle.
I think Dexter will still take orders for leading arm axles, have heard that Al-Ko does not (unconfirmed). The only real structural difference is brakes have a left and right brake unit, order a trailing arm, then switch brake assmeblies to the other side and turn axle AND the brackets are typically designed long enough to be behind the wheel center (where the load is greatest) and sometimes shorter in the other direction.
Scamp in effect wrapped the axle around the floor to give the trailer a lower profile, welding the axle bracket to both the frame and to the metal structure of the dropped floor. This won't match a stock axle bracket as it is very short going toward the wheel center.
I'll try to sum up the options (as I understand them)
- Work directly with Axle company to order custom bracket that will be a match for the measurements of yours. Don't forget if you order a trailing arm and turn it around the bracket "long side" will turn around also.
- Custom cut stock bracket after order to fit Scamp location. Making sure stock bracket dimensions provide material to accomplish this.
Both of the above options will make bolt on bracket kit pretty much a waste of money. Those brackets are great to replace damaged or worn axle next time, makes it a bolt on rather than welding job. But you won't match up with the "stock" bracket kit bolt holes if you custom cut or order the axle bracket.
- Use what Dexter calls a "Side Mount" bracket kit. This is a bracket welded to frame allowing axle bracket to be attached to it alongside of the frame. It changes the distance required between brackets that are welded on the axle, they will need to be a little further apart than your stock scamp axle.
Doing this allows you to switch to a trailing arm axle and use bolt on mounting kit. But does involve "re-engineering" a bit.
As a starting point for browsing the axle company sites check out a Dexter #9 rated at 2300 lbs as a good choice. Down angles typically 0, 10, or 22.5 degrees down. Each adds about 1 inch of lift from the one before (approx 1 inch per 10 degree)
So if you are at 22 degree up currently then going to 0 gives you 2 inches of lift, 10 degree down adds 3 inches and 22.5 would add 4 inches. Check your step into the trailer (how high is an awkward step) and measure up from ground to wheel well cut out (how much tire is exposed) as an aid to determining what amount of lift works for you.
My order was for a 22.5 down angle 2300 lbs with brakes, no bracket kits. Bracket is going to be made to fit in original scamp location with original axle measurements used to build axle.
I would use the diagram on the axle company sites, measure my axle at those points and give them a call. Both have a reputation for working with customers.