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Old 03-23-2013, 04:22 PM   #1
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Montana High Country Axles

Thought I would throw this out.

We have a 2011 Keystone Montana High Country 343RL. Gross loaded weight max is 12,500. It comes with Dexter 5,300 lb axles and an estimated 18% tongue weight on the pin which gives you a glorious safety margin of about 200 pounds. Keystone -thanks for nothing!

Even though I tow at approx 11,500 pounds (I weighed it), at about 4,000 miles, the the left rear tire wore to a frazzle on the inside. I contacted Dexter Axle for advice (no point going to Keystone) and they upgraded my axle to their 6,000 lb model. Super nice folks to deal with.

At about 10,000 miles, I blew the left front tire on Interstate 10 at 65mph. (I can't say enough about tire pressure monitors. They saved my bacon.) Examination showed both front tires heavily worn on the inside indicating the axle had splayed out. I examined the tires on the rear upgraded axle and they were perfect (one had 6,000 mi, the other 10,000 mi). As I said, I don't overload my trailer so I have to conclude the standard 5,300 lb axle is inadequate. Once again Dexter came to my aid and is helping me take care of this problem.

I wonder if anyone else has a High Country with excessive tire ware issues?

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Old 03-23-2013, 04:34 PM   #2
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Why didn't they upgrade both axles when they upgraded one?

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Old 03-23-2013, 04:51 PM   #3
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Can I ask where on the axle is the "weight rating"? I know I also have Dexter axles on my tt, which I'm curious as to how close mine are to the max. Was at a towing seminar two weeks ago where that was brought up. The person running the seminar didn't give a straight answer to a location.
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Old 03-23-2013, 05:18 PM   #4
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The axle weight rating is on an aluminum tag on the axle.
Keystone was/obviously still is notorious for putting a heavy load on undersized axles.
My Everest had a 12,400 gvwr. and had the 5200lb axles with a 6 lug wheel.
Buyer beware.

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Old 03-23-2013, 07:52 PM   #5
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Are all your numbers estimates or actual scaled weights.

A 11500 lb trailer weight equates to approx 9400 lbs on the axles. (11500 minus 18 percent hitch weight = 9400 lbs)
Or 4700 lbs per axle load.
Or 2350 lbs per tire.

Blown tire issues sounds like the trailer has 15" ST225/75-15 D tires on it. I would have the suspension check and upgrade to 16" wheels and LT E tires.
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Old 03-24-2013, 06:58 AM   #6
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Follow up on axles

My weights were from a truck scale - not estimates.
My 343 has TowMax ST235/80R16 tires on aluminum wheels.
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Old 03-27-2013, 05:50 AM   #7
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I have always though that 5k and 6k axles have same thickness tubes. They get thicker on 7K and and 8K axles.
I had 15 tires on 5k axles before and had all kinds of tire and springs problems until I went to LT's. Found an axle alignment problem with the tire wear problem. All my ST tires were junk. My LT tires lasted over 6 years until I traded.
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:16 AM   #8
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Wink Axle wall thickness

According to Dexter, standard 5,300 lb axles have a wall thickness of 3/16". Their 6,000lb axle is the same diameter outside, but the wall thickness is 1/4".
I'm outside my comfort zone here so I just believe what I see and most of what I'm told.
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Old 04-06-2013, 09:52 AM   #9
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I believe the tires are also part of the problem--check country of origin, probably Chinese?
Change other axle and go to LT tires in highest load rating the wheel will take.

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