Wheel bearing let go on highway! - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 08-19-2013, 05:34 AM   #1
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Wheel bearing let go on highway!

Was heading north out of kelowna today when suddenly I saw a wheel rolling behind me. Pulled over but was a bad spot. Put out the cones, got the family out and off the road, Retrieved the wheel (luckily it didn't cause an accident behind me) and then had to creep along at 20 kph before finding a safe place to pull off 5 km down the highway. Bloody scary that was I tell you since the highway only had a 3 ft shoulder and a concrete barrier on the outside! Anyway, we are safely camping on a side road but fortunately in kelowna almost everywhere is a nice view of the lake.

Anyway, just curious if anyone knows the axle rating for my 311BHDS? Princess Auto has 6000 lb axles with brakes for $700 and am thinking of grabbing one and trying to repair myself in the morning (I brought tools with me). Otherwise, maybe I'll just let a mobile repair guy come do it. What do you guys think?

Thanks, JC
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Old 08-19-2013, 05:46 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by thejean View Post
Was heading north out of kelowna today when suddenly I saw a wheel rolling behind me. Pulled over but was a bad spot. Put out the cones, got the family out and off the road, Retrieved the wheel (luckily it didn't cause an accident behind me) and then had to creep along at 20 kph before finding a safe place to pull off 5 km down the highway. Bloody scary that was I tell you since the highway only had a 3 ft shoulder and a concrete barrier on the outside! Anyway, we are safely camping on a side road but fortunately in kelowna almost everywhere is a nice view of the lake.

Anyway, just curious if anyone knows the axle rating for my 311BHDS? Princess Auto has 6000 lb axles with brakes for $700 and am thinking of grabbing one and trying to repair myself in the morning (I brought tools with me). Otherwise, maybe I'll just let a mobile repair guy come do it. What do you guys think?

Thanks, JC
When you say a wheel went rolling by, are we talking the wheel, brake drum and hub?

If that is the case then you may want to check if there has been a recall on the axels on your rig.

There have been a few recalls over the last several years.
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Old 08-19-2013, 06:43 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by hddecker View Post
When you say a wheel went rolling by, are we talking the wheel, brake drum and hub?

If that is the case then you may want to check if there has been a recall on the axels on your rig.

There have been a few recalls over the last several years.
I haven't checked but will in the morning.

It was just the wheel and outer hub. Bearings were nowhere to be found. Brake pads remained attached to the inner hub but the forward pad was destroyed. The back one looks ok but much of the pad attachment gear is damaged.

I am not sure if I should chance replacing the one bearing. Thinking it might be best to buy a brand new shiny complete axle assembly. Will decide in the morning once I can check around and see what the local dealers have in stock and also what the mobile repair guy is going to charge.

Also, I just checked and the LCI axles on my rig are 5200 lbs so not sure if I should put in 6000's unless I were to do both axles....?
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Old 08-19-2013, 07:04 AM   #4
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Here are the specs for the leaf spring axles at Princess Auto. I'm going to have to check in the morning (measure) to see if they will work.

Product Reference - Trailer Axle Assembly
Type - Brake
Max. Load Capacity - 6,000 lb
Bolt Pattern - 6-bolt on 5-1/2 in.
Hub Face - 85 in.
Spring Centre - 69 in.
Tube Diameter - 3 in.
Material - Steel
Finish - Powder coat
Brand - Rockwell American
Overview - 6-bolt 12 in. brake drum
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Old 08-20-2013, 12:17 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by thejean View Post
Here are the specs for the leaf spring axles at Princess Auto. I'm going to have to check in the morning (measure) to see if they will work.

Product Reference - Trailer Axle Assembly
Type - Brake
Max. Load Capacity - 6,000 lb
Bolt Pattern - 6-bolt on 5-1/2 in.
Hub Face - 85 in.
Spring Centre - 69 in.
Tube Diameter - 3 in.
Material - Steel
Finish - Powder coat
Brand - Rockwell American
Overview - 6-bolt 12 in. brake drum
I am I reading correctly that this axle includes the springs.

It that is the case my opinion would be to replace both axles. If it was just the axle I don't see that as a problem, but running two different spring pacs could through the balance off.

Good luck.
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Old 08-20-2013, 08:16 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by hddecker View Post
I am I reading correctly that this axle includes the springs.

It that is the case my opinion would be to replace both axles. If it was just the axle I don't see that as a problem, but running two different spring pacs could through the balance off.

Good luck.
These did not include the springs. I just reused the springs on the camper. Could only do the one axle because they only had one in stock. I will buy the second one when I get home and put in some evening this week.

For the most part the install was relatively straightforward. Took about 2 hrs. The Lippert axles are 68.75" spring centres and the Rockwell American axle from Princess Auto is exactly 69". So that means that I had to force the fit ever so slightly but anyway it went in and seems to work fine. Drove 200 Kms tonight and all is well so far.

On a side note, I am not impressed with the Lippert axles. They seem to have too much negative camber and the insides of the tires are wearing. Maybe I have too much cargo in the camper but I doubt it. They are 5200 lb axles but a guy at one of the local axle shops says that the Lippert axles tend to be at the bottom of the stack in terms of strength. The Rockwell axle I just put in is around the middle of the pack in his opinion. Plus it's 6000 lbs capacity as well!

Anyway, for both axles it will cost me $1500 amd i will have two brand new axles, complete with fresh brakes and bearings. Pretty sure if I had taken it to the dealer and gotten new axle rod, bearings and brakes all around, it would have cost me at least $2500 and probably closer to $3000. And now at least I have some spare parts and can continue camping next weekend (dealer couldn't get me in for even an assessment until aug 28 and he is 7 hrs from me so it pretty much would have ended my season).

JC
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Old 08-20-2013, 12:05 PM   #7
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Good work! It's always better to do it yourself if you can. You know how it was done and you also learned a lot (I bet) about the whole spring and axle system.
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Old 08-20-2013, 04:06 PM   #8
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Glad everything worked out for you.
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