What am I looking at (suspension questions) - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-13-2019, 07:55 AM   #1
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Name: Danny
Trailer: Amerigo
Texas
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What am I looking at (suspension questions)

I crawled under my '72 trailer to look at the axle.
I was expecting to see leaf springs.
I was surprised to see brake wires.

Can I add leaf springs?
Can I do anything to improve clearance?

Thank you in advance,
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Old 10-13-2019, 10:17 AM   #2
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Name: Mac
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That's a Dexter Torflex rubber suspension. They tend to last 10-15 years. You can improve clearance by re-mounting the axle at a different angle, if it's not worn out. Someone with more expertise will likely chime in about wear, and what constitutes "worn out."
You may be able to replace this axle with leaf springs; it might be better to replace the axle with another of this type.
The wires you see are for electric brakes. Not sure what your Amerigo weighs, but it's always better to have those brakes than not. Dexter has a number of videos and info sheets about electric brakes and how to maintain them.
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Old 10-13-2019, 11:09 AM   #3
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Another option is this Timbren axle-less system. https://timbren.com/axle-less/
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Old 10-13-2019, 11:26 AM   #4
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Torflex axle

At that age I would change the axle, brakes, and tires. Yours, (unlike some Scamps) looks bolt on and would be easy to change. You can order the correct weight capacity along with the angle of the arm to set the height of your RV. The picture is that of the inside of a typical small rubber suspension trailer axle.
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Old 10-13-2019, 12:51 PM   #5
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
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Originally Posted by Spongelander View Post
That's a Dexter Torflex rubber suspension. ...
I dont know how you can assume its a Dexter. They are not the only maker of torsion axles. Unless you see something in the photo that I do not. Not that it makes much difference if its a Dexter, Lippert, etc.

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Originally Posted by AC0GV View Post
At that age I would change the axle, brakes, and tires. ...
Again, how can you assume the age? Sure, the trailer is a 1972, but I doubt the axle is, esp since its bolted on and the brackets are likely not original. And no way the tires are original. Its best to figure out what needs to be replaced before spending money. Still, judging only by the amount of rust.. it does look like it might be time for a big overhaul.

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Originally Posted by HippoHunter View Post
..
Can I do anything to improve clearance?
...
If the axle is in fact worn out then a new one with same specs will help some and will restore the original clearance, which is not that much too start with. You can also do a lift kit, which basically adds spacers where the axle bolts on. I think you could also choose a different drop angle, but that requires more knowledge than I have.

Torsion Axle - everything you want to know - Boler.ca
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Old 10-13-2019, 01:04 PM   #6
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Name: Danny
Trailer: Amerigo
Texas
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I bought it and drove it home (mostly flat) a while ago. Just about jarred my fillings out in my TV.
Budget has been up n down.
I have been looking at the Timbren Axle less for years. But I am afraid I will need to weld something in that spot to bolt them onto. (Welding isnt until next Fall semester.)
I was hoping a less expensive option would get me going until I am done with school (Fall 2020)
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Old 10-13-2019, 02:27 PM   #7
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What am I looking at (suspension questions)

Just out of curiosity, why are you considering the Timbren? Itís usually used for off-road applications. A Trillium will need quite a bit of reinforcement, or perhaps a whole new frame, before itís ready for that.

For highway and light back road use, a regular fixed-arm torsion axle will do the job well. Specifying a lower arm angle for more clearance is a straightforward change.

If you need a new axle, that is. Your description of ďbone jarringĒ does suggest the possibility. Try jacking one side on the frame and check how much the wheel drops as the frame rises. Little or no movement means an aged-out axle in which the rubber cords have become hardened.

That would certain explain the harsh ride, but itís not the only possibility. Another is an axle that is over-rated for the actual weight of the trailer. In your case an empty trailer will bounce a lot anyway. If the axle is in good condition and properly sized, the ride will calm down a lot when you load it up.
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Old 10-13-2019, 03:29 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
Just out of curiosity, why are you considering the Timbren? Itís usually used for off-road applications. A Trillium will need quite a bit of reinforcement, or perhaps a whole new frame, before itís ready for that.

For highway and light back road use, a regular fixed-arm torsion axle will do the job well.
I have to make it up my "driveway" to get to my ponds. The driveway tends to wash out some or rut. I have always been able to make it up there in an Argosy or Starcraft tent camper.

Just a little more clearance would help.

(Thanks everyone for the help so far!)
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Old 10-13-2019, 04:06 PM   #9
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Follow Jon in AZ instructions and the buy a new axle. They come in different angles and you want at least 15 degrees of down angle. You can also buy a lift from Perfect Casitia. Portable Generator Security, Casita Upgrades The Perfect Casita by Orbital Machine Works
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Old 10-13-2019, 05:16 PM   #10
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What am I looking at (suspension questions)

No need for Timbrens to get the additional clearance. Looking at your photo, Iím going to speculate the axle (when new) was either 0* or 10* up angle. A Trillium owner might know what the OEM axle was.

A replacement with either 10* or 22* down angle should give you the clearance you desire. The advantage over a spacer block is the axle tube remains high against the frame, giving more center clearance on rutted roads.

On the other hand, if the axle tests good, you can add a spacer and avoid the cost of a new axle.
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