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Old 02-03-2016, 12:25 PM   #1
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Name: David
Trailer: 2014 13' Scamp -standard w/ front bunk
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Outsmarted myself on bearings

I wanted a spare set of wheel bearings for the Scamp, both to have on hand when it comes time to change them and in the event of a failure while traveling. Although they are somewhat more expensive to order from Dexter I convinced myself that it was worth it to have the peace of mind of "Genuine Dexter Replacement Parts" rather than the Chinese knockoffs available at the local auto parts emporium. Just received my order and they are clearly stamped "made in China".

I'm sure they'll be fine but it did make me smile.

Maybe I'm now rationalizing, but one modest benefit of Dexter is that you can purchase a kit with with the bearings plus matching seals, races, tang washer and cotter pin.
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Old 02-03-2016, 04:32 PM   #2
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Trailer: 2018, 21ft escapeó 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie
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NAPA sells bearings seals made in the USA . I find they are better quality than the Chinese seals but that may be opinion more than
fact.
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Old 02-03-2016, 05:10 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WDavidG View Post
..
Maybe I'm now rationalizing, but one modest benefit of Dexter is that you can purchase a kit with with the bearings plus matching seals, races, tang washer and cotter pin.
Definitely rationalization, since you can get the same kit with all those parts elsewhere.
The kit is $12 at etrailer (plus shipping). Thats where I got the spares I carry with me.
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Old 02-03-2016, 05:10 PM   #4
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Send a message via Yahoo to Darwin Maring
Tractor supply and Northern Tools sells kits.
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Old 02-03-2016, 06:42 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
NAPA sells bearings seals made in the USA . I find they are better quality than the Chinese seals but that may be opinion more than
fact.
You will find made in china stamped on many of the better bearing manufactures these days - including Timken and SKF.

Nothing wrong with them having been manufactured in China as long as they were made by a better known company that does rigid quality control.

Edit to add: The last set of SKF's I purchased actually had made in Mexico stamped on them.
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Old 02-03-2016, 06:46 PM   #6
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Definitely rationalization, since you can get the same kit with all those parts elsewhere.
The kit is $12 at etrailer (plus shipping). Thats where I got the spares I carry with me.
I got one of those cheap spare kits from E-trailer and actually ended up using it - I ended having to pulling it off and replacing with a better quality bearing after only a couple of short trips as it was clearly running hot. When I took it off you could see it clearly had issues!!

As the saying goes you get what you pay for. To me its not worth having a trip go sideways due to an attempt to save $10 on wheel bearings.
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Old 02-03-2016, 07:48 PM   #7
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Name: Steve
Trailer: 2018, 21ft escapeó 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie
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When I ran maintenance for a large printing plant ,I avoided buying
low cost bearings . We would buy bearings in lots of 3000 to 10,000. When new buyers took over they looked for ways to cut costs ,so we bought bearings on price only. After a year we discovered that what ever we saved by buying the cheaper bearings was eaten up in down time and damage to equipment.
We had major problems with one size of sealed bearings .
After opening up a large number of used and new bearings looking for the cause of the failure , we found the interior of the bearings were full of rust ,metal shavings, and were never properly greased at the factory ( bearings were almost dry) . The quality of the cheap bearings was not consistent. There is a reason that you can buy a set of trailer bearings for $12 . I would rather spend the money on good bearings
than buying a new axle. IMHO
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:24 AM   #8
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My first Bigfoot trailer came from the manufacturer with Chinese wheel bearings. My second one did also. I service my own bearings. It is a nasty job but I know it is done right. In spite of regular service every year or 3,000 miles one of them failed and ruined the hub and axle. When a wheel bearing fails it heats up REAL quick. Within a mile or two it will destroy an axle. The replacement axle from Dexter had Chinese or Romanian bearings in it. I don't remember which. Since then, a couple of different times, I have gone to a bearing supply house and ordered complete sets Timkin bearings because they did not have them in stock. They were marked "made in France". Now I understand that even Timkin is importing them from China.
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Old 02-04-2016, 04:27 AM   #9
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The original bearings on the axle of my trailer were Dexter bearings that were made in China. When I ordered new Dexter brake drums they came with new bearings also made in China. So far no issues. I did order some after market seals that proved to be of poor quality. I've also run into the same thing with tires made in China. The off brand American Trail tires on my previous trailer didn't last long. The Carlisle replacements were of good quality. I agree with Carol, it depends on the quality control. Raz
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Old 02-04-2016, 08:48 AM   #10
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Name: JD
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Quality Control is a big issue for Chinese made goods.
Some companies have their own QC measures in place and their quality is probably as good as anywhere else.
Others it is purely a crapshoot.
We use bearings made all over the world at work and the quality manufacturers are just that quality.
If you get the numbers off the bearings you can go to any bearing house and buy SKF, FAG, Timkin, or any other quality bearing.
It would be nice if someone posted the bearing numbers and seal numbers so that we can buy some known good quality bearings!
I bought some bearings (SKF) from Grainger that I had to sign an agreement for Homeland Security to not export and the boxes were marked " Made in Bulgaria". What a joke!
Good bearings though.
With little government control there are a lot of counterfeit parts manufactured in China and the result is some fallout for legitimate manufacturers.
The Federal Aviation Administration has has problems with counterfeit parts and recently aircraft grade bolts and hardware. They have required traceability and certification an most critical parts and pieces. You pay more for the paperwork of course. Sometimes the cost of the paper is higher than the part.
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Old 02-04-2016, 09:41 AM   #11
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Name: Steve
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Lost my Bearings years ago

Question, 2014 17' Casita with the bearing buddies? 10000 miles
I refilled each until the new grease is now pumping out. Was easy. Used Red & Tacky #2.
When do I need to actually take the bearings out and hand repack?
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Old 02-04-2016, 09:55 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by oldsteve View Post
Question, 2014 17' Casita with the bearing buddies? 10000 miles
I refilled each until the new grease is now pumping out. Was easy. Used Red & Tacky #2.
When do I need to actually take the bearings out and hand repack?
Casita uses Dexter eze lube axles . I have my bearings / brakes inspected / repacked once a year. Probably not necessary but the last time I had my bearings serviced at LHC they found flakes of metal in the bearing grease . I would rather have problems fixed near home than on the road .
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Old 02-04-2016, 10:32 AM   #13
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Do you guys buy extra bearings for your tow vehicle as well and change/repack them every year? People use the excuse "Dexter" is the manufacturer and should know what they're talking about. They do NOT manufacture the bearings. They've (Dexter) all but admitted to me that they do this so people cant call in SHOULD they have problems and blame it on them! I dunno how many mechanics I've talked to about this and they just shake their head.

Boat trailers going into water all the time??? Different story!! That's why Dexter designed the "EZ-Lube" system to begin with. You can pump the grease in (not as with the non-efficient bearing buddies!) and it will go to the rear bearing, back up through and out the front pushing water with it.
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:22 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by oldsteve View Post
Question, 2014 17' Casita with the bearing buddies? 10000 miles
I refilled each until the new grease is now pumping out. Was easy. Used Red & Tacky #2.
When do I need to actually take the bearings out and hand repack?
I should have said ez lube which I do have and not the bearing buddies which was mental slip.

If I am reading the dexter manual correctly,that being the ez lube grease does go through the entire bearing. After doing the job the old grease that actually came out had good color no indications of metal shavings. While on the road I check the hub temp and it seems to be in the 85 to 105 area depending on conditions.

Not sure if its necessary to replace or repack as soon as everyone is talking about.
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Old 02-04-2016, 01:08 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Darral T. View Post
Do you guys buy extra bearings for your tow vehicle as well and change/repack them every year? People use the excuse "Dexter" is the manufacturer and should know what they're talking about. They do NOT manufacture the bearings. They've (Dexter) all but admitted to me that they do this so people cant call in SHOULD they have problems and blame it on them! I dunno how many mechanics I've talked to about this and they just shake their head.

.
There is a big difference between how a newer model auto wheel bearing is sealed vs how a trailer wheel bearing is sealed. A trailer bearing is at a far higher risk of moisture & dirt contamination than that of an autos. A bearings longitivtiy is also greatly impacted by the load it carries.

I do not know why the auto mechanics you have talked to would shake their heads as I would think most would know that many/most newer model cars with ABS systems have very well sealed bearings - in fact so well sealed replacing them involves replacing the hub - at a cost of a couple of hundred dollars or more a hub. They are made and designed to go a long time between replacement - many about 100-150,000 miles.

Have had two different friends in the past year or so get stuck in the small towns for 2 days while they wait for FedEx to deliver a much needed trailer wheel bearing and seal to the only repair shop for miles.

When was the last time you heard of someone getting stuck in a small town for days due to an auto wheel bearing failure?

Having had a new wheel bearing failure, carrying an extra set of bearings and seals for the trailer is cheap insurance that I don't end up wasting a couple of days vacation waiting for parts!!

YMMV
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Old 02-04-2016, 02:00 PM   #16
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Name: JD
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I think that the EZ Lube setup will do a perfectly adequate job lubricating the wheel bearings on the dry trailer. It flushes out the old grease and you can inspect what comes out.
Follow directions and Jack up the wheel and slowly rotate it while pumping in the new grease also slowly.
Pump too fast and you might be able to blow past the inner seal and contaminate the brakes.
Eventually you should pull the wheel and drum and inspect the brakes etc.
If you don't spin the wheel you might over fill the bearings.
Warm grease and hubs would help.
Perhaps a short drive before greasing and keeping the grease gun in a warm spot as well.


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