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Old 11-27-2007, 02:10 PM   #21
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Trailer: Bigfoot 25 ft / Dodge 3500HD 4X4 Jake Brake
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I'm a little uncertain about the arm angles... the quoted specs are for a 22.5 degree down angle stock (which is about as far down as available), with a 10 degree down angle proposed, and the nice illustration shows both setups with down angles, (...clipped)
Axles are available at more down degrees. http://www.championtrailers.com/TORSION%20AXLE.htm

My 2
45 down gives the best reaction to bumps and pot holes. The more up angle the less suspension available. If it was straight up it would have zero suspension. As you move forward and hit an obsruction the axle needs to give way. Being able to swing back and up gives that motion. The front end on old VWs were designed this way and gave a great ride.
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Old 11-27-2007, 03:46 PM   #22
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The early trailers may, in fact, have been at a 0* or 10* down angle, and they did ride lower.

I put a 22.5* down angle under my Burro and it brought it up to current height standards without affecting the towability at all. I noticed a total of about 5" gain in frame height, and that included changing from 13" wheels and tires to 14". I wouldn't get too excited about this whole issue. You'll gain about 2" by welding the new axle bracket to the underside of the frame instead of up in the notch where it currently resides. Going from an 11" to a nominal 18" hitch height is a good thing. and puts it at a height where most hitches are today in light trailers. While you've got it in the welding shop, I'd have the 1 7/8ths inch coupler cut off and have a 2" installed as well. They're about $25 at most RV stores, and it's so much more convenient to use a 2" ball like pretty much everything else does today.

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Old 11-27-2007, 04:13 PM   #23
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From all my measurements I think I will go with the 10 degree down arm. This will give me 7 1/2" clearance from the top of the tire to the top of the wheel well. Should be more than enough room for the arm to travel. The 22 1/2 degree arm down would give me 9" clearance from the top of the tire to the top of the wheel well.I will be doing all the work myself. I have a buzz box welder and a wire feed welder. This will have to be a spring project.
. Thanks everyone I'am a

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Old 11-27-2007, 04:45 PM   #24
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Roger H
From all my measurements I think I will go with the 10 degree down arm. This will give me 7 1/2" clearance from the top of the tire to the top of the wheel well. Should be more than enough room for the arm to travel. The 22 1/2 degree arm down would give me 9" clearance from the top of the tire to the top of the wheel well.

Yep... more than enough room... "bump" room from the top of the tire to the fenderwell should generally be about enough to stick your fist into, or about 3" minimum. The question is what will your hitch height be?

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Old 11-27-2007, 06:17 PM   #25
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Hitch height should come in at 16"----------Factory height should be 18"-------I don't mind if it's 2" lower, thats why I picked the 10 degree down arm axle over the 22 1/2 degree arm axle. Might have to adjust the hitch on my truck to make the trailer pull level.
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Old 11-27-2007, 06:32 PM   #26
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One last note when it comes time to take out the old axle. I think , I will just cut off the axle on both sides of the bracket and just leave the bracket in place .
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New axle is going in a new location so this should not be a problem.
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Old 11-27-2007, 07:25 PM   #27
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...So you think it might have been at a zero degree angle when new or maybe 10 degrees down angle ?
Close... I think it may have even had an up starting angle... but I have not seen enough to really know. I would guess someone at Scamp would know how they built them, but maybe that trivia is lost to time.


I think some people have pretty high expectations of the travel available in these suspensions.

If you start at 45 degrees down, the arm will never even reach horizontal; the hub centre would still be 2.3" below the pivot point resting at full load. (Following the Dexter #9 standard specs, the pivot point is 1.22" below the top of the bracket, and the spindle/hub centre is 3.52" below the top of frame at full load). I agree that swinging back as it goes up is probably good for ride, so you want to operate with the hub a little below the horizontal rather than a little above.

The best travel comes with the arm roughly horizontal in use, or maybe 10 degree down start angle: in that case with a Dexter #9 the hub centre would be 2.26" below the bracket top (1.04" below the pivot) when hanging, 0.08" above the bracket top (1.3" above the pivot) at full 2200 lb load, and 1.08" above it at full bump, for a maximum travel of 3.34". If the trailer doesn't weigh the whole 2200 lb (the axle capacity), it won't be compressed to the "full load" position at rest.

So maybe the best is a compromise between best travel (e.g. 10 degree down start angle) and the "moving back" action of start angles further down (if trailing).

Yes, the Dexter manual says to allow 3" bump clearance from full load... but I don't see how the wheel could ever move up even that far, let alone 7".
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Old 11-27-2007, 07:39 PM   #28
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Actually, Scamp's pricing is not bad, but shipping is high (You're really paying for the axle to be shipped twice, perhaps). Where an axle gets expensive is when a shop orders it from their wholesaler and you are paying two middle-man fees. OTOH, if the shop orders the axle based on their own measurements and screws it up, they have to pay for it -- If you order the wrong axle, you eat it.

There was a guy on Yahoo Scampers in eastern Kansas who routinely does axle replacements in his shop; he may still be doing them.
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