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Old 11-14-2010, 09:12 PM   #1
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Broken Spring

I inadvertently posted this on another forum in response to a post about a broken spring. I have cut and pasted here as some of you may have these issues.

"We had the same thing happen about a year ago. I suggest you check all your springs for possible cracks. Be sure to get the EXACT correct size spring. When we had ours replaced they were too long by 3/4" each. We had further problems about 6 months later and only about 5,000 miles. We had just been at PI to have the floors replaced in our two slides. We asked them to inspect our springs and shackles and paid for that service. On our way to Canada within about 1,000 miles I saw smoke from the wheels. This time a bolt had broken in the rear spring shackle. We had a bolt replaced and continued to Canada. Upon arriving we checked all shackles and center hanger to discover there was scuffing on the center hanger where the shackles/spring eyes were hitting it. At that point we did not know what was causing it. We took the trailer to a Dexter authorized dealer and left it. About an hour later we got a call from them giving us the reason for the scuffing/banging on the center hanger....the springs were too long...26" and should be 25 1/4". We had them install all new springs as well as the Dexter EZ-Flex system with wetbolts and are hoping that our suspension problems are solved.
I am not pleased by the fact that I paid for PI to inspect our suspension when we were there, and they saw nothing wrong,.....the scuffing was obvious when we checked it after the bolt broke. I think they should have someone certified or truly knowledgeable about the suspensions they are putting on our trailers and when asked to check them, they do it properly. I had described our issue with the broken spring as well as our concern and the fact that our wheels seemed to be closer together. It should have been obvious to any skilled mechanic, that something was wrong.

Our lives are riding on it!"

Sidney
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Old 11-15-2010, 07:34 PM   #2
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Sorry Sid to hear about your problem......seems like the first time you put your Roto-Choks (or similiar) inbetween your tires you'd see the difference right off the bat. Seem like you'd have some unusual tire wear also. Seems pretty obvious you had a problem at that point. Just my thoughts. rockin'
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Old 11-15-2010, 08:38 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rockintom View Post
Sorry Sid to hear about your problem......seems like the first time you put your Roto-Choks (or similiar) inbetween your tires you'd see the difference right off the bat. Seem like you'd have some unusual tire wear also. Seems pretty obvious you had a problem at that point. Just my thoughts. rockin'
About a year ago a spring broke on I-95. We spent 10 hours on the hiway waiting for an appropriate tow vehicle after 3 unsuccessful attempts by ERS to try and save $$$. We were finally towed to a Dexter dealer in Savannah GA where all the springs were replaced with the wrong size as we later learned. At the time I commented about the wheels being close together and was told it was because the springs were new and would change as the springs settled.
We traveled about 500 miles or so back to Orlando where we spent most of the Winter. In April we went to Smith Center to have our slide floors replaced, about 1500 miles.
I explained the issues we had and told them we were having excessive bouncing which we thought might be partly due to the living room slide floor seperating from the wall. I asked them to check the suspension at that time.
I have never used Roto-Choks. I use ordinary wheel chocks and had no uneven tire wear.
The longer springs did not affect alignment, simply banged the center hanger when flexing, and in retrospect put undue pressure on the shackle bolts.
I have been rv'ing for more than 35 years and have fulltimed for most of that time. We sold our last home more than 26 years ago. I have a pretty fair knowledge of how these things are supposed to perform, but am not a suspension expert....so I asked Peterson to check it out as I never felt the spring replacement we had done in Savannah was right. The tech/mechanic looked at it. I was charged a half hour labor, told everything was OK. About 1500 miles down the road, the shackle bolt in the rear curbside sping broke. Like I said in my post, the damage/scuffing on the center hanger should have been obvious to a trained tech.
We now have about 3,000 miles with our new correct length springs and Ez-flex system with the wet bolt kit. Our trailer appears to be riding much better with far less bouncing and we think our suspension issues are now resolved.
I guess we got a bit spoiled by our last trailer which we lived in for 14 years and towed (the trailer) more than 200,000 miles with NO suspension issues or any other, ever in 14 years.

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Old 11-15-2010, 09:52 PM   #4
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Sid, Thanks for clearing this up for me......I reread your original post....I didn't see where it said you replaced ALL springs....You're right if they were all wrong length and all the springs were the same, the alignment wouldn't be off. Again thanks for clearing the info up in your second message. Didn't mean to suggest you didn't know what you're doing.....you've RVed almost as long as I've been alive!!!! rockin'
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Old 11-16-2010, 10:14 AM   #5
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The last RV park I parked in one of the others there had a broken spring on his 5-er

I helped him to remove it.. We then took it to "Springs-r-us" (A auto shop specializing in springs, the name is I use here is "Generic" that was not the name of the shop) who rebuilt it to exactly the same size.

I then helped him bolt it back in

You see... I have the tools for this kind of thing (He did not)

I have done several automotive springs (Cars) over the last 40 years.. And that is always how I did it.. Take the broken spring to the spring maker and have them make me a new one.
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