Wheel bearings. - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-17-2003, 09:35 PM   #1
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Wheel bearings.

I have just finished a complete wheel bearing packing on my.
tandem axle Bigfoot . I did it slowly and carefully and cleaned up the brakes and checked the drums etc. Due to bad weather and working between storms, and the fact I am getting old, the job took almost a week.

I cleaned all my tools, put the jack and axle-stands away and torqued the wheel nuts. Then I found that I had not been using the special bearing grease.. I had used a tub of thick heavy navy blue colured grease that I have had for years and can not remember the origin of. I think it must have been an Esso chassis grease from the '70s. The paper label had long since become unreadable.

I estimate we will tow the trailer for about 5000km this season .

My question is ... shall I do the job over again, this time using the correct grease, ( probably the best option for my peace of mind)or should I tow as is and check a bearing later in the season ?. I did notice that the new bearing grease I bought today seems to be both for bearings and chassis.



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Old 02-17-2003, 09:48 PM   #2
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Hi Collin
I would do it again if your not sure.Peace of mind will be better.:) I have to look at it this way.EG Would you use old medicine in cupboard if not sure what it is used for.
Wecome to Forum.:wave



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Old 02-17-2003, 10:10 PM   #3
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I think you are right Ches.
I do not think it is quite as bad as an unknown medicine, after all grease is for lubrication and a medicine could be for anything.
I suspect that many lubricants are general purpose. For example the new grease I bought today is sold as wheel bearing grease but it can also be used for almost anything else.
I think that I will sleep better if I do the job again.



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Old 02-18-2003, 08:52 AM   #4
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Colin

Hang around: someone will pop in that knows the difference and really be able to help.

The thing that I would be concerned about (with my limited knowledge) is what would happen to it at high temps (rolling down the highway)? Since you do not know what the heat rating is (or what ever they call it) I would be concerned that it would not hold up to the friction created while driving. I could see where bearing grease would be okay for a chassis, but don't think I would be comfortable using chassis grease for bearings. However, I am the first to admit that it could be my lack of knowledge that is causing this concern.



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Old 02-18-2003, 09:27 AM   #5
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Colin ... most travel trailer manufacturers today require that you use a lithium complex based grease for the bearings.

However, before I knew better, I used to use just your standard boat trailer grease.

I'm not going to tell you grease is grease. It isn't. Grease has different properties, additives and viscosity.

Since you can't read the label, as you said, for your peace of mind, you should probably repack them (now that you've had practice, it should go quicker!).

To be honest, I think you'd probably be ok in the short haul with your old grease ... but in the long haul ....



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Old 02-18-2003, 10:23 AM   #6
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Colin

Welcome to the forum - we need more Bigfoot Owners. I almost landed a 19 footer last year - they are a bit hard to find. Post some pics for us if you can.

Re: Bearings - It's funny I was thinking yesterday that I should get mine checked. I also need to replace the white spoked wheels as they are a bit rusty. KAL Tire - here I come - this week hopefully.

:)



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Old 02-18-2003, 12:22 PM   #7
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Wheel bearings

<img src=http://www.fiberglassrv.com/board/uploads/3e52794f6ef6eBigfoot at Green Lake.jpg/>

This is the Bigfoot ( before the wrong grease was packed into the wheel bearings) The trailer celebrates its 17th Birthday next week. The picture was taken at the Provincial "Arrowhead" campsite at Green Lake.



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Old 02-18-2003, 12:26 PM   #8
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picture

Nice picture Colin......thanks for the posting.



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Old 02-18-2003, 01:59 PM   #9
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Colin

Very nice looking trailer. Looks to be in exceptional condition.

Nice camping spot also!



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Old 02-18-2003, 03:39 PM   #10
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is that Green Lake near 70/100 Mile House? If it is - it's a great spot - been there quite a few times.



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Old 02-18-2003, 03:49 PM   #11
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Yes Rick, it is the Provincial campground on the West side of the lake. A very tiny park, only has about ten sites and all are waterfront. It is called Arrowhead Park, which turned out to be a very apt name , as I found a perfect arrowhead in the ditch opposite the park gate. The lake water is very cold, as I found out when I managed to capsize a canoe in April !!!.



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Old 02-18-2003, 04:20 PM   #12
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I'm pretty sure the campground we stay in is Green Lake Provincial. We were last up there in August. It wasn't that warm but definately not too cold either. Cold to me means clean so it doesn't bother me. :)


P.S. what is the dry weight of your Bigfoot 19 ?



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Old 02-18-2003, 05:38 PM   #13
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We need to fill that little lakeside campground with fiberglass trailers when Pam and I make our BC sweep Summer 2004!

Do they take reservations?



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Old 02-18-2003, 06:31 PM   #14
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Wheel bearings.

Rick :
In the factory brochure for the trailer, they give the approximate dry weight as 2,600lbs I have always been suspicious of this figure. I have added a lot of extras since we bought the trailer. Inside the coach the Gross vehicle weight rating is posted at 3240 lbs. I should get it weighed one day.
I tow with an Astro van and and use the same hitch that I towed a previous 31' trailer with , ( a Reese adjustable equalising hitch with a twin cam sway control and heavy spring bars ) I like to keep the hitch tight. The Van and trailer handling and performance is excellent.I think that my weight on the ball is about 425 lbs and it seems to suit the twin cam perfectly.

I do not think that they take reservations at Arrowhead campground Charles, it is too small. Probably the the main campground across the lake does need reservations in the summer. We only ever visit that area in the spring or fall and sometimes in mid week, we have had the place to ourselves



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Old 02-18-2003, 11:34 PM   #15
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Thanks for the info Colin. :)

Charles - my member profile has a link to provincial camping in BC.
You definately want a reservation for Green Lake, which is about 5 hours from the border.


Not open for the season yet, but THE site to make reservations for our provincial parks: http://wlapwww.gov.bc.ca/bcparks/explore/p...pgs/greenlk.htm

<img src=http://www.fiberglassrv.com/board/uploads/3e531881787afs_100mile.jpg/>



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Old 02-19-2003, 04:05 PM   #16
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Bearing Buddies

Hi all.....Does anybody have any opinion on Bearing Buddies? Will they properly lube bearings on a permanent basis? Can you add them to a set of hubs and pack them that way without taking the bearings apart right off the get go? Has anyone ever tried this? I might try this on our Bolar. Can't wait for your opinions. Talk to you all soon. Rick & Karen



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Old 02-19-2003, 05:12 PM   #17
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Hi Rick and Karen.

If you do not have trailerbrakes and are careful not to put too much grease into the bearing you probably will be OK. You must take care not to push grease out of the rear bearing seal. Bearing Buddy is essentially a greasing device for boat trailer bearings and othe applications where hubs may become submerged. A friend of mine useses Bearing Buddy on his Trillium trailer with good success.
Good Luck.



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Old 02-19-2003, 05:49 PM   #18
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Bearing Buddy

I've had Bearing Buddys on my utility trailer since I bought it new in 1988. I recently started to remove and replace the bearings for the first time. The bearings and cups were actually in very good shape, but the inner seal was well worn which allowed grease to escape.

The Bearing Buddys worked great, but grease will eventually seap out. It did not blow the seal out. It's a trade-off, I guess. I can live with the seaping knowing that the bearings are well greased. I did/will re-install the Buddys.

Bearing Buddy also makes a rather unique seal system with a stainless steel seal sleeve, but unfortunately, they don't make one for my axle.

Here's the inside of the wheel after 15 years of occasional use.

<img src=http://www.fiberglassrv.com/board/uploads/3e5632c688c3aWheel.JPG/>



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Old 02-19-2003, 06:12 PM   #19
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Jim :

I think the trouble starts when the grease can get in brake drums.



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Old 02-19-2003, 06:15 PM   #20
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Agreed. I would not install them on my Casita or any trailer with brakes.



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