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Old 10-05-2014, 04:53 PM   #1
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Spring Hanger Fail - Forest River

My toyhauler is a 2013 38' Forest River XLR with ~12,000 miles of travel. I was doing a routine inspection in preparation for a trip next week when I found cracks where the spring hangers mount. I am having a hard time understanding why the mounts cracks. It seems as though the majority of the force would be down, and any rotational force would be out. Instead, the cracks seem to be from an up and in motion. Feel free to share your own experience, speculate on the cause, advise on how to repair, offer opinion on in the manufacturer should cover the cost of repair, etc. Be sure and take a look at your spring hangers before your next move.

passenger side rear hanger - dual axle configuration - FWIW, I had a flat on this side this spring.






passenger side front hanger-


driver's side rear hanger


The last 2 don't show cracks that I can see, but the weld line looks suspect.
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Old 10-06-2014, 10:35 AM   #2
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I think you answered your own question about "How" when you mentioned the flat on that axle. Was it just a flat you discovered one morning, or was it a blowout or thread separation at speed?

As for the driver's side in the last pic, It looks like the frame tube is open-ended near the hanger weld in question. Stuff a rag in the tube, just beyond the weld, and spray in a generous amount of Penetrating Oil (careful not to get it on the outside of the tube). Look to see if the Oil is leaking through, indicating a crack.
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Old 10-07-2014, 04:57 AM   #3
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Calibrator, Thanks for the post. I had a flat in May. The tire disintegrated and the lower rear body panel was bent. I straightened the panel, replaced all the tires, and inspected the suspension/wheel components when I did this work. I didn't see any damage to the hanger at that time. FWIW, I hope and pray that the construction of my unit is robust enough to survive a flat tire.



I believe that the weld was to hot making the metal around the weld brittle. It seems to me that the spring hanger would always be under compression forces except for side loads when turning.

I like your idea of using penetrating oil to check for cracks on the other brackets is good.

I took the trailer to mt RV repair place. They are going to contact Lippert about the issue. I ma hoping that Lippert will fund the repair. I want all of the hanger attachment point re-enforced.
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Old 10-07-2014, 07:36 PM   #4
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Dexter axle recommended that you reinforce the spring hangers like this pic shows, its a piece of channel welded across the hangers. I know you said yours were Lippert but could be done the same way.
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Old 10-08-2014, 05:18 AM   #5
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Thanksl for the picture. It looks like they re-enforced the spring hanger holes, the hangers themselves (plates welded inside the hangers), plus the channel welded across the hangers.
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Old 10-08-2014, 08:49 AM   #6
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Yes all that should be reinforced, the side load is generally what causes the shackles to fail. IMO it was not your blow out, but twisting in and out of tight places loaded, especially backing up.
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Old 10-08-2014, 09:28 AM   #7
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Are you backing in at home or a campsite that requires you to almost jack-knife the trl to get it parked. The cracks look like they formed from excessive lateral (sideways) pressure from very tight turning.
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Old 10-08-2014, 01:17 PM   #8
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I have pull in parking at home. I have only had 1 campsite where I had to back in, that was on dirt/gravel, there was not jack knife involved. I have made a couple of U turns across 4 lane roads, but I was going slow.
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