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Old 11-01-2022, 08:22 AM   #1
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EZE Tow dolly Brake Job

Hopefully I'm putting this in the correct forum.

I noticed that the rotor on my EZE Tow Dolly was mangled prior to a trip this coming weekend. So, between now (Sunday I noticed it) and Friday 8am, I need to acquire parts, get it swapped out, and hope that nothing goes wrong. This thread will detail the process. It's not hugely different that would be for a brake job on any other trailer, but it does have some nuance. First up, how to get parts? The rotor and hub on the previous generation EZE dolly is all one piece. Bearings and races are inside and there's a spindle bolted to the frame of the dolly. They use Vault bearing caps and lube, which is a Dexter product. At first glance, I went to the EZE website and they had the parts, so I ordered from them on Sunday. I expect to have them Wednesday by 7pm delivered via UPS. I did not have to pay extra for expedited shipping (though I did offer). Link to the rotor/hub combo and the pads:
https://cartowdolly.com/tow-dolly/hub-rotor-set/
https://cartowdolly.com/tow-dolly/ca...ly-brake-pads/

Did a bit of research on this because I wondered if there were other outlets for parts. Turns out, this setup was originally built by UFP (Unique Functional Products), which is who originally built this rotor/hub combo and subsequently bought out by Dexter in 2013. So, you can in fact purchase the rotor/hub combo from other vendors under the part number K08-443-05. However, if you purchase from EZE direct, you get the bearings, vault lube, nut, washer, seals, etc. Which is nice because the seals are specific to the hub and you'd have to chase those down. And if you're going to swap the rotor, I'd think you'd want new bearings anyway.

I haven't torn it down yet, so I'm risking a bit by not doing that with the calipers. If I run into an issue with the calipers, I'm kind of up a creek for the trip and we'll have to figure out how to make do without the car. As I tear things down, I'll get pictures and update the thread with process and how it all goes.
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Old 11-02-2022, 12:16 PM   #2
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Started to tear into the dolly last night to prep for this evening. I don't like surprises.

There's no real good way to get the calipers off of the bracket, which needs removal prior to removal of the rotor/hub. There are two ways: 1. remove the two 14mm bolts holding the caliper bracket to the frame or, 2. remove the allen screws holding the caliper slide pins. Both are not easily gotten to. The bolts holding the caliper bracket to the frame are tight. Super tight. An the upper one took a while of rocking it back and forth to get out. The lower one cannot be removed because of clearance issues. The allen bolts are much in the same boat, being blocked by the frame. I didn't have ball end allen wrenches at the house, so had to stop there for the evening. I got a set today and I should be able to get them out this evening.

I also removed the vault bearing cap just to see how that would go. Pretty straightforward. The grease is a special grease that supposed to have the viscosity of bearing grease until heated up by use. When I removed the cap, it dripped out pretty good and was somewhere between grease and oil. We'll see how cleaning that up and adding new goes.
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Old 11-03-2022, 10:04 AM   #3
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Well, that was definitely the worst brake job I've ever done, and almost one of the worst projects I've ever done in 35+ years of working on crap. Whoever designed this did NOT think about changing the brakes on this. Or at the very least they have special tools, the likes of which I've never seen.

I put the tow dolly up on jack stands to make things a bit easier. The brake line just fit in the curved space on top of the jack stand and made for easier work.

I'll start with the 7mm allen head bolts that hold the caliper to the bracket. The top one has just enough room to get a ball end allen in there and break it loose. But, you can't get the bolt all the way out. So, I had to use pliers on the smooth round head and turn it the rest of the way out. Same thing going back in. And of course they slathered it in red loctite when they built it, so not finger turning at all. the bottom bolt was worse. The brake line and light wiring are in the way, and there's no way to get the ball end in there because the frame is right there as well. I contemplated drilling a hole through the frame to get at the bolt head, and in hindsight, I should have. On the first one, I managed to get a 7mm (which is a weird size by the way) 3/8" drive socket in there and an 8mm wrench on it to try to turn it as there's not enough room for an actual ratchet. I about ruined the small open end wrench trying to get it loose. No luck. I finally found a 7mm regular allen wrench that would fit in the space, put a box end wrench on it and got it loose. Fighting the brake line and wiring the whole way, and getting 1/8-1/4 turn each time, it finally came all the way out. going back in, same thing. 1/8-1/4 turn each time all the way in. Both sides went this way. Once I got the caliper off, I was able to clean up any rust/brake dust off the bracket with some emery cloth, place the pads on, compress the piston, and put the caliper back on without issue (well, except for those darn bolts).

On the removal and replacement of the buggered hub/rotor, I had to remove the caliper bracket. Top bolt went fairly well as it was relatively easy to get to. 14mm wrench, but it was SUPER tight due to a steel ring around the threads that was rusted to the zinc bracket and loads of loctite. The bottom bolt was a different story. I could only get the open end of the wrench on there and not a lot of leverage. I did manage to get enough leverage to round the head of the bolt a bit though. So, I took a deadblow hammer to the bracket and got it to rotate a bit, which moved the bolt, but not enough to break it loose. So, out came the torch. I didn't want to heat it too much because I didn't want to mess up or warp the zinc bracket. So, I heated the end of the threads that was protruding from the back of the bracket and then moved to the head of the bolt. Several iterations of that and it came loose. Several more, and I managed to get it loose enough to rotate the bracket back and forth enough to get a decent bite on the bolt head each time. Damage was done though, and the bolt head suffered several rounded portions. I cleaned those up with a file and wire wheeled the threads and steel band and used the bolts in the opposite positions going back together.

For the hub, I removed the vault bearing cap with some hard hits side to side to walk it out, removed the cotter pin, castellated nut cover, nut, and off it came. I cleaned everything up and noticed that the spindle was drilled and tapped for a zirc. So, dug one out and installed it. Got a new grease gun because the vault special grease is thinner than wheel bearing grease and thicker than oil and I'll use that moving forward. These days I have a grease gun for tons of different stuff, so why not. Placed the rotor on and pumped some grease in to get the bearing some grease and then pulled it back off and filled the middle with grease, put it back on and slowly pumped more grease in. Rotate, more grease, rotate some more. Installed the outer bearing and o-ring, washer, nut finger tight, more rotation. More grease. Fairly standard install. Filled the vault cap with grease and put it on. It takes a bit to smack it on there as it's a press fit and has an o-ring in there.

I'll for sure be keeping an eye on the brake pads from now on. I certainly don't want to do this again. I'll pull it back to the coach storage this evening and check everything out to make sure it's all still tight and not getting hot. On to the pics. You can see how close some of the bolts are to the frame.
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Old 11-04-2022, 12:54 PM   #4
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I just did this too. I was able to get the lower bolt holding the caliper loose with a 3/8" breaker bar and 6 point socket, then switched to a 12 point socket do those 1/8 turns for a long time. It was tedious.



Did you notice any clearance issues with the outer pad on the caliper? I noticed mine were lightly touching the piston area of the caliper in two spots, tried another set of pads of different manufacture and had the same issue. I ended up using it as is, but it's an odd situation.



Kudos on getting through it. I think I'm going to ditch the vault caps if I do it again, and go with something more standard. It bugs to to have to keep another grease gun around just for this and they seem kind of gimmicky (that spring loaded cap probably doesn't accomplish anything).
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Old 11-07-2022, 12:04 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChesterRVs2 View Post
I just did this too. I was able to get the lower bolt holding the caliper loose with a 3/8" breaker bar and 6 point socket, then switched to a 12 point socket do those 1/8 turns for a long time. It was tedious.



Did you notice any clearance issues with the outer pad on the caliper? I noticed mine were lightly touching the piston area of the caliper in two spots, tried another set of pads of different manufacture and had the same issue. I ended up using it as is, but it's an odd situation.



Kudos on getting through it. I think I'm going to ditch the vault caps if I do it again, and go with something more standard. It bugs to to have to keep another grease gun around just for this and they seem kind of gimmicky (that spring loaded cap probably doesn't accomplish anything).
I didn't notice any clearance issues with the pads. I checked the wheel bearing after towing for a bit down to the storage lot and then ran it all the way from Cincinnati to Blue Ridge, GA. I need to check prior to leaving to go back tomorrow. The other wheel has just a touch of movement in it, but I don't think it's anything to worry about.

I wish I would have been able to get a socket on the lower bolt. Just not enough room on mine, and possibly that's due to the weld on the frame.

I lost the dang light again on the back after I just replaced it. Not sure what I did wrong there.
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Old 11-09-2022, 07:19 AM   #6
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Did the light stop working, or fall out? I used the oval LED lights from Harbor Freight when I redid mine, ran the wiring in loom through the tongue and under the axle with stainless steel zip ties. I soldered and shrink wrapped the connections at the lights and they've held up well. I also secured a service loop in the wheel well which made it easy to move the wiring out of the way for the bearing and brake service. There is a hole in frame to put a plastic tie around the lense too. The harbor freight lights fit pretty tight -- I had to sand down the nubs to get them to pop in.
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Old 11-09-2022, 08:37 AM   #7
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Did the light stop working, or fall out? I used the oval LED lights from Harbor Freight when I redid mine, ran the wiring in loom through the tongue and under the axle with stainless steel zip ties. I soldered and shrink wrapped the connections at the lights and they've held up well. I also secured a service loop in the wheel well which made it easy to move the wiring out of the way for the bearing and brake service. There is a hole in frame to put a plastic tie around the lense too. The harbor freight lights fit pretty tight -- I had to sand down the nubs to get them to pop in.
It fell out...twice...

First, the OE light flew out going down the road and then I got another one from Menards, which had a similar plug configuration and the light itself seemed to fit nicely. I popped it in, by the time I got to my destination, it was gone again. I'll have to see about zip tying it in next time.
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