Wheel Bearing question - Page 5 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-26-2016, 07:58 AM   #57
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Name: bob
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I'm wondering if Bill's one hub was machined a little oversize where the dust cap sets, resulting in the bearing buddy falling off. The old prick punch trick might be necessary. Dust caps are available in different sizes. For another idea on greasing, I actually read this on another forum, the posting person said they just occasionally pop off the dust cap and pack some grease in it.
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Old 05-26-2016, 08:08 AM   #58
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I spent 26 years working for bearing manufacturers. Trailer bearings are so lightly loaded and run so slow FOR THEIR CAPACITY they would last forever if properly adjusted and kept properly lubricated and clean.

Modern automobile wheel hub units utilize expensive seals running on perfectly concentric ground and hardened lands. They are not "adjustable", the running clearance is determined by precision machining with tolerances of a few .0001".

Trailers use seals that cost about 50 cents to make, run on machined soft lands and the bearings are adjusted by hand.

Apples and oranges indeed.


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Old 05-26-2016, 08:42 AM   #59
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For another idea on greasing, I actually read this on another forum, the posting person said they just occasionally pop off the dust cap and pack some grease in it.
OMG REALLY?
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Old 05-26-2016, 08:45 AM   #60
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However, I have my doubts that they'll stay in place as well. Remember that I've already lost two Bearing Buddies for no obvious reason. The conventional cap would have the advantage of weighing less and therefore might stay in place longer because they're shorter and have less force pulling on them when you hit a bump or whatever is causing the Bearing Buddy to fall off. Can't drive around with my parts exposed.
You need to use a piece of wood and a rubber hammer to tap them on. If they do not require some effort to put on then you have the wrong sized caps & they will indeed fall off.

I learned the hard way that the caps I could buy here in Canada which were metric where to loose on my US built Scamp, although they looked to be the same size they were out a smudge and would not stay in place. Had to pick up spare replacement caps for it while in the US.
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Old 05-26-2016, 08:49 AM   #61
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Trailer bearings are so lightly loaded and run so slow FOR THEIR CAPACITY they would last forever
No disrespect intended here Denny, but when talking about trailers in general there is a very wide gamut...for example where a small Egg trailer's bearing might last forever vs. a 4 horse slant load goose neck with living quarters fully loaded being gunned from one rodeo/horse show to another might not so...don't want readers to think all trailer bearing will last forever...
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Old 05-26-2016, 08:49 AM   #62
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[B][I]Quote:

Anything that can be done to possible avoid getting into that situation, is a good thing in my books.
The place we take our trailer to for service offers a Spring Camping Season special. For our little Scamp, it cost $145 for them to service the bearings, refill our propane, test our battery, inspect all of the propane lines and electrical lines (and repair if necessary), (they would inspect and service trailer brakes, too, but we don't have them), flush out the pink stuff, check tires and fill to proper inflation, and insure the tail/running lights are working properly. This is a service 100% worth it to me, to avoid or prevent being in a situation where we would have a break down or need a tow. It gives us peace of mind to know that the bearings are replaced, repacked, resealed, what have you. Ready to go for the new camping season.
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Old 05-26-2016, 10:41 AM   #63
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Originally Posted by MCDenny View Post
I spent 26 years working for bearing manufacturers. Trailer bearings are so lightly loaded and run so slow FOR THEIR CAPACITY they would last forever if properly adjusted and kept properly lubricated and clean.

Modern automobile wheel hub units utilize expensive seals running on perfectly concentric ground and hardened lands. They are not "adjustable", the running clearance is determined by precision machining with tolerances of a few .0001".

Trailers use seals that cost about 50 cents to make, run on machined soft lands and the bearings are adjusted by hand.

Apples and oranges indeed.


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I totally agree. I just wanted to let you know that I miss reading your blog entries.
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Old 05-26-2016, 05:12 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by Johnny M View Post
No disrespect intended here Denny, but when talking about trailers in general there is a very wide gamut...for example where a small Egg trailer's bearing might last forever vs. a 4 horse slant load goose neck with living quarters fully loaded being gunned from one rodeo/horse show to another might not so...don't want readers to think all trailer bearing will last forever...
My point wasn't that trailer bearings last forever - hardly! But they don't last forever because people (me included) don't keep them clean and properly adjusted. They usually have such a poor seal that dirt and water inevitably get in. Even replacing the old poor seal with a similar new one isn't 100% effective because the old gritty seal lip wears the steel surface it runs on.
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Old 05-26-2016, 05:16 PM   #65
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I totally agree. I just wanted to let you know that I miss reading your blog entries.
Hi. I miss camping too. We haven't used the Snoozy for more than a year. Life keeps getting complicated but we have our Michigan house for sale and once that's gone hopefully we will have some time to go camping.

A couple came over last week because they wanted to see a Snoozy before driving all the way to SC. Talking about camping with them really got me wanting to hit the road again.
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Old 05-26-2016, 07:18 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by MCDenny View Post
I spent 26 years working for bearing manufacturers. Trailer bearings are so lightly loaded and run so slow FOR THEIR CAPACITY they would last forever if properly adjusted and kept properly lubricated and clean.

Modern automobile wheel hub units utilize expensive seals running on perfectly concentric ground and hardened lands. They are not "adjustable", the running clearance is determined by precision machining with tolerances of a few .0001".

Trailers use seals that cost about 50 cents to make, run on machined soft lands and the bearings are adjusted by hand.

Apples and oranges indeed.


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Still, while "hub units" are more common today... stepped or tapered spindles still exist on the front axles of many modern rear drive vehicles which are in common service today. They are essentially the same design as those found on a typical 3500 pound trailer axle. The quality of the components is a matter of OEM spec rather than engineering design which if it isn't quite "oranges and oranges" it certainly rhymes with orange.

While I agree that... Trailer bearings would last forever if properly adjusted and kept properly lubricated and clean and they should be, they certainly are not as fragile as some may think.

Here is an example on a Scamp13 which has a straight shaft (not tapered or stepped).(BTW they do have races) It was run for years on Kentucky back roads (gravel and dirt) without an inner seal or a dust cover. I then bought it and towed it 600 miles at the speed limit to bring it home.
I decided to replace all four bearings, and install seals and dust caps but the fact is they all survived and cleaned up smooth with no rust or spalling...
NOTICE...The former owner actually had the tire BALANCED and apparently NITROGEN FILLED!
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Old 05-27-2016, 08:57 PM   #67
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Buying the right dust cap or even Bearing Buddies may require knowing which hub you have .
Early 13s commonly came with a 1" straight spindle with a matching hub and bearings. Later models came with 1-1/16" straight spindle with matching hub and spindle. The dust caps likely won't interchange any better than the other parts, in which case it would be important to specify which you have when buying a dust cap.
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Old 06-04-2016, 07:04 AM   #68
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A squeak

Heard a squeak squeak from my 5th wheel trailer wheel. Noticed film of grease flung onto the tire rim. Just replaced our trailer tires at our reputable tire shop. Would my tire wizard have noticed symptoms of wheel bearing issues when the trailer was jacked up and he spun the tire as were discussing wheel bearings? My husband grease buddied the wheels before we took off. We are an hour from home with a wheel squeak. Should I be big worried or little worried?
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Old 06-04-2016, 07:36 AM   #69
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I would say "little worried", possibly over greased and some got on the brakes
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Old 06-04-2016, 08:23 AM   #70
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Originally Posted by Kathy-Ann Becker View Post
Heard a squeak squeak from my 5th wheel trailer wheel. Noticed film of grease flung onto the tire rim. Just replaced our trailer tires at our reputable tire shop. Would my tire wizard have noticed symptoms of wheel bearing issues when the trailer was jacked up and he spun the tire as were discussing wheel bearings? My husband grease buddied the wheels before we took off. We are an hour from home with a wheel squeak. Should I be big worried or little worried?
Over greasing is just as bad as under greasing. Especially when you have brakes.
Get rid of the bearing buddies and just do a proper hand packing once a year.
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