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Old 10-20-2010, 10:43 PM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 18
SUN #418
The Bumper done come off!

Anybody every had this happen:

We were coming across Oklahoma on our way back to Atlanta from a most excellent vacation in the Black Hills when a trucker comes by and starts honking up a storm and pointing at the trailer.

We pulled off and found that one side of the bumper had broken its welds and was dragging along the ground. The other side was just holding on by a piece of one remaining bolt. Another few minutes and the whole thing would have dropped off.

We hadn't heard or seen a thing. (Truckers are great by the way!)

In the picture above I've already taken the spare tire off, then managed to get the remains of the bumper disconnected. We put it on the roof of the Explorer and found a welding shop.

The guy at the welding shop said that only the top edge of the bumper bracket had been welded to the bumper. As the spare tire bounced up and down it flexed that weld and eventually broke it.

He rewelded it around ALL FOUR SIDES of both brackets so it can't move while we're traveling.

I'd check your bumper welds regularly for cracks. Also, if your's is only welded on one side - take it to a welding shop.

If this had dropped off on the expressway and damaged another vehicle . . .

Buddy and Jamie Ray
Decatur, GA

2004 Solaris 1950
2004 Ford Explorer V8
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Old 10-21-2010, 05:09 AM   #2
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Location: Michigan
Posts: 6,087
SUN #123
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Wow Buddy! That sure seems like a scary experience.

We had it almost happen about ten years ago, but fortunately we were coming back from camping and some friends were following us, so we knew about it and they watched it. We made it home with a weak bumper, but not broken yet. My dad has a welding outfit so he was able to weld it back up.

I've heard many stories about this potentially being a problem, but the solution I was always told was to put the spare tire to one side. Indeed the bounce of that tire hanging out there does have a major effect on it, but the torque placed on that bumper by the tire is huge when it's in the center. It's unusual that you still had the problem and your tire carrier was off to the side. Had it been centered at some point?

It seems to me that they made these bumpers cheap and weak on purpose to avoid people putting large racks and stuff on the back that can change the weight characteristics of the trailer and possibly cause it to sway more. But when a spare tire is roughly half of the max weight allowed on the bumper and it still breaks, that's pretty sad.


2007 T-286SR Cherry/Granola, #6236, original owner, current mileage: 9467.8 (as of 5/26/19)
1997 T-2653 Blue Denim, #5471
1979 12 1/2' MC, Beige & Avocado, #4639
Past Sunlines: '97 T-2653 #5089, '94 T-2251, '86 T-1550, '94 T-2363, '98 T-270SR
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Old 10-21-2010, 08:42 AM   #3
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Posts: 18
SUN #418
I'm the second owner of the Coach but the first owner only had it for a few months. But I doubt this tire was in the center because in a 1950 you have a large storage door in the middle and you can't get in it easily unless the tire is off to the side.

I think it was just a poorly done weld. If a weld is only on the top of a square bracket, it allows that bracket to move almost like the weld is a hinge. Even two sides would have stopped the motion of the bracket that ultimately broke the weld.

The other bracket was welded on three sides. I just think somebody at the factory welded the top - got distracted and never finished that bracket.
Buddy and Jamie Ray
Decatur, GA

2004 Solaris 1950
2004 Ford Explorer V8
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Old 10-21-2010, 11:39 AM   #4
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 21
SUN #967
I had mine tac welded because is started bending down some. But when I first bought our 2753 in 99 I took the spare tire off bought some long galvanized bolts and hung the spare tire under the rear of the trailer. Using large washers and drilling down through the floor. I never had a blow out but the spares off the bumper out of the way. We been traveling all summer every summer since 99 we traveled probally 80,000 miles all over America. I have bikes on the rear bumper but yes over time it did shows sign of getting loose and weak. The trailer has been garage kept since new and is truley in perfect condition inside and out still. I went with the fiberglass finish and its still shines as it were brand new.
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:40 PM   #5
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Location: Michigan
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WOW..thanks for the heads up to check for welds

Joan & Miss Emme Lu Who
Full Timing in T-1950 2005 Anniversary Model
1997 6.5L Chevy Turbo Diesel Truck
"Pure Michigan"
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Old 11-23-2010, 05:45 PM   #6
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Location: Michigan
Posts: 854
SUN #115
We took our spare tire holder off as soon as we got back from our shake down run. Couldnt stand to feel it wobbling around back there.

I'd much rather have the spares in the bed of the truck we're they're covered.

Thank goodness the trucker waving you down!

2007 Sunline T-2499 4" Lift
Rigged Boondocking & Dry Camping

Pat & Cindy Bonish
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