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Old 05-10-2009, 07:39 AM   #1
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My wheels were bent?

This is our first tandem axle camper, so I was surprised to discover that I had an issue with bent rims.

The weird part is that only the rims on the rear axle were bent and they were only bent "a little bit", according to the only guy in town I take tires & rims to for balancing.

They were bent in the center where the rim is bolted to the axle.

The rims on the front axle did not have this problem. All four rims are the originals.

I had purchased 2 new rims right after we had the blowout on our first trip with the 2499. The rim on the tire that blew was visibly dented, probably from a curb impact that started the failure. The rim right behind it had some places where tire pieces had smacked it and I wanted to err on the side of caution so I bought the 2 rims.

The new rims went on the front axle when we got the new tires. I took the spare tire, the other front rim and had new rubber installed on them. These two went on the rear axle. The rims from the rear axle are going to be my spares.

The technician said they aren't bent enough to not use, especially as spares. But it got me to wondering...

Why are they bent like that and the front ones aren't? Could it be stresses from repeated tight cornering a heavy trailer like the 2499?
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Dave & Cindy
'99 Chevrolet 2500 ext. cab (2WD)
5.3 liter V8, 3.73LS, Prodigy, Hensley Arrow
2004 Sunline Solaris SE T-2499 #5527
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Old 05-10-2009, 08:22 PM   #2
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Re: My wheels were bent?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dkasten39828
But it got me to wondering...

Why are they bent like that and the front ones aren't? Could it be stresses from repeated tight cornering a heavy trailer like the 2499?
Hi Dave

I do not know for sure how your rims became bent. A side impact, yes I can see this or they where made wrong from day 1.

To your point about repeated tight cornering with a heavy TT like the T2499, This I can comment on and maybe dispel some of that. Donít know if you saw my post or not but I put 2 new axles in this spring. In doing all that investigation I learned a few things about tandem axle suspension used on TT's.

This refers to leaf spring suspension specifically but may apply to torsion axles as well. Which is yours?

First, the front axle takes more abuse in tight turning then the rear. The turning radius is shorter on the inside of the turn. The back axle sort of drags along for the ride.

Second I would make an estimate that the actual thin spring hangers used are the weak link in turn as opposed to the rim. How I know this is mine are bent. Today Iím out there beafíing that area up. I never made it to that part when I did the new axles. In my case I have 9,200# of TT on the same thickness of hangers that are on my T2499 that only fully wet weighed in at 6800#. And on the T310SR they hang down 5Ē as opposed to the T2499 that are only like 2 ĹĒ.

I believe mine have become bent turning hard in my own yard. And this is not many turns, maybe only 6 to 8 or so as when the lawn is hard enough, I use the lawn as a back on it and turn verses doing a hard 180 on the concrete. The amazing part is it took very little force on a 24Ē pipe wrench to put them back perfectly level. Which confirmed my point about them being weak. If I can bend them back that easy, my F350 pulling it around the hanger is going to loose. I ahve to find a 4 x 8 sheet of someting slippery to turn on. Tried plywood but that is not much better. This M & G in June Iím going to ask one of the Sunline 5er guys if I can look at there suspension. There axle weights are a lot more then mine and Iíll see what they have. A 5er can turn tighter then the TT

So in all this, I do not think doing turns bent your rims. Your hangers would bend first if you have leaf springs. Only thing I can think of is a side impact or bent from day one. While Sunline was a high quality TT builder, they bought the TT frames. And the frames are made like 90% of all other brands. And in my case I was lucky enough to acquire 2 axles made wrong from day 1. Lucky me. It is not like theses frame and suspension go thru a high quality control final check out before shipped into Sunline. As if they did then they would of caught my issues.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 05-11-2009, 03:13 PM   #3
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It does help, John. This is all new to me. The popup was fairly simple and straightforward. The Sunline is more complicated. I still have things to learn.

At least I know that now I have:
  • - Four unbent rims
    - Four new tires
    - It's all balanced (none of the four were balanced before)
My coach has the rubber ride torsion axles.

Well, on to my next project... removing the Hensley, cleaning it and the A-frame up, painting it all and re-installing the Hensley with all the replacement parts I got when I purchased the LIFETIME WARRANTY.

I am also going to swap out the 2-inch drop hitchbar I got with the rig for their 4-inch drop model. I don't like the angle the hitchbox sits at when I'm towing. The back of my truck sits high because of the extra springs and since I can get a new hitchbar for free (because I have the WARRANTY!!), I'm going to send off for that.

Need to get this all done by July 15th.
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'99 Chevrolet 2500 ext. cab (2WD)
5.3 liter V8, 3.73LS, Prodigy, Hensley Arrow
2004 Sunline Solaris SE T-2499 #5527
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