Wheel Size - Fiberglass RV
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Old 03-20-2021, 06:44 PM   #1
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: SurfSide
British Columbia
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Wheel Size

Hi all, new to the forum. Got a 75 Surf Side three years back. A couple of years back I replaced the tires. A previous owner had made a number of changes, one was the tires. It had 14 inch tires (car tires) on it. My local tire dealer replaced them with trailer tires. The outside profile was slightly bigger in diameter than the car tires and I was worrying if they were rubbing at times. They have worn bad and I read somewhere trailer tires arenít currently made as well as other tires. I have bee thinking of dropping down to 13 inch to make sure I have good clearance. The trailer still had the manufacturer spec sheet with it and the only information on tires was ďminimum 13 inchĒ. Any one know what size should be on this trailer.
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Old 03-20-2021, 06:55 PM   #2
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
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Darn I wish I knew more about Surfsides..I dont, but I still had to reply since your name is so cool!
I might add that IMHO there are many inferior tire brands. And for camping trailers I am confident that Maxxis, Carlisle and perhaps Goodyear produce good tires. In any case.. car tires are not what you want. I have no idea what size will be safe for you to use (clearance considered). Excessive wear is a concern and can have many causes from misaligned axle to worn bearings to inflation errors to.. etc.. the wear pattern can help to narrow down the cause. GOOD photos of the wear on the tires might help (or might not).
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Old 03-20-2021, 07:12 PM   #3
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Agree. You don't want car tires (P radials) because the sidewalls are too soft, and the trailer can tend to wander and not track straight. Some people use LT (light truck) tires, which have stiffer sidewalls for load bearing, but you should be fine with a good quality ST radial.

If the tire size is the problem and it is rubbing, you should be able to see black marks in the wheel well. In the absence of that, I'd look for other causes of unusual tire wear. Underinflation, an out-of-balance wheel, or a bent/worn out/misaligned axle are all possibilities. The pattern of wear provides clues.
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Old 03-20-2021, 07:21 PM   #4
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: SurfSide
British Columbia
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Yes, I donít want car tires, thatís the reason I changed what the previous owner had put on it. I donít see any rub marks I the shell well, but they definitely donít leave too much clearance in my mind. Canít remember what brand they are, but pretty sure not Carlisle or Goodyear. I have Carlisle on my utility trailer and they have been great.

Thanks guys for input, will keep looking
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Old 03-20-2021, 07:55 PM   #5
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Trailer: 2004 13 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe
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Trailer wheels are nearly all ZERO offset.
If you have car wheels on the trailer any offset can cause a problem.
Also Small travel trailer wheels are seldom more than 5" or 5.5" wide (often less.
Older smaller trailers often came with smaller tires which are no longer available (sometimes 155s) Not sure about yours,but...
It is possible that your trailer started life with 155/80-13s with ZERO offset 4"wide wheels.

Probably plenty of clearance for185/80s and 5" wide ZERO offset wheels.
Not sure about your particular trailer, but oversized wheels or tires are not needed and often have limited ability to fit.


A few minutes with a tape measure and a little research can solve your concerns.


Also an older trailer can often have settled a bit even with a good suspension, which could exacerbate any fit issues.
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Old 03-20-2021, 08:07 PM   #6
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what sort of size car tires are you talking about here?

I imagine a 1975 Surfside is a fairly small and light trailer ?
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Old 03-20-2021, 08:24 PM   #7
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Name: bill
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Given it is a 1975 trailer, without additional information I would say your axle is shot. These torsion axles were originally designed to last 15 years. at the 46 year point, its time.

Many of us with Trilliums (look very similar to Surfsides) have been using 14 inch Ford Ranger wheels to replace our stock 13 inch wheels.
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Old 03-21-2021, 09:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
Given it is a 1975 trailer, without additional information I would say your axle is shot. These torsion axles were originally designed to last 15 years. at the 46 year point, its time.

Many of us with Trilliums (look very similar to Surfsides) have been using 14 inch Ford Ranger wheels to replace our stock 13 inch wheels.

Not sure where that "15 year" thing came from.... 46 years ...Probably!
Of course the Trillium has no problem with negative offset since the wheelwell is open.



Just as a point of information, early Rangers did have 14" wheels with a 6MM negative offset. The aluminum wheels were 5.5"- 6" wide.
Steel wheels were 5" or 5.5" as I recall (been a while)
Good choice for some small fiberglass trailers but certainly not all.
The early 4X4s and newer 4X2s usually had 15" wheels, many were 20MM offset, so be careful when searching around for old Ranger wheels for your fiberglass trailer.
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Old 05-26-2022, 02:32 PM   #9
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Name: Clayton
Trailer: 1979 Trillium 4500
Manitoba
Posts: 18
Would these aluminum wheels with ST175/80R13 be good with my Trillium 4500?


https://www.princessauto.com/en/st17...t/PA0008724999


It currently has passenger car tires on it. The axle is attached via leaf springs so not original or original style for what it is worth.


The passenger tires have a 35psi recommended and so far it seems to tow fine with what it has. The ones at that above link have 50psi recommended pressure. Would that get me better mileage without being too bouncy?



These
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Old 05-26-2022, 03:24 PM   #10
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Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1976, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
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Trillium installed 13" wheels at the factory. Those would work fine. However, many of us have changed to 14" wheels. I use old, (1997) 14" Ford Ranger rims. They are close to a zero offset and work well as trailer rims. There are a couple of styles that I am aware of.


Name:   1997 Ranger Rims-Deer Hoof.JPG
Views: 17
Size:  16.9 KB
Deer Hoof, (not the offical name)


Name:   1997 Ranger Rims-Holes.JPG
Views: 17
Size:  13.3 KB
Holes, (also not offical)

Typically I find them on kijiji for less than $25.

The fact that I drive a 1997 Ranger might have something to do with my choice.
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