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Open Roads Forum  >  Towing

 > Annual Brake Inspection and Axle Re - Lube (Pic's)

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dcdtn

Chattanooga, TN

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Posted: 04/07/06 06:21am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JBarca wrote:


dcdtn

Good for you! Now you know what is inside and what to expect. And since you found a few dry bearings, how long to not go again. Or you had it done at the right interval and they did not put enough grease in. Dexter recommends every 12,000 miles or every year on grease repacking.

A few things I do to stay clean.

A. Stay ahead of the grease mess. Meaning when something get's all mucked up, wipe it up B4 going on. Clean as you go.

B. Old or new grease globs. I use old news paper as a receptacle. Meaning wipe out old gunk, either screw driver or finger and wipe it down inside the newspaper. Paper towels work too, just old news/junk mail adds are cheaper and work.

C. I do the dirty work, then clean up before installing anything. This way when you pick up brake drum or bearing it is clean to start with and you are not contaminating the new stuff.

I have been working on machines for the last 35 years and I do remember being a whole lot dirtier in the first few years. I still remember my mother telling me during the teen years, John what did you do jump in the grease? Oh well guess I made it to being cleaner as time when on.

On the bearing inspection, this is what I look for:

D. Corrosion pitting, galling or any metal bumps. Look at the rollers and the races. You are looking for actual metal lose or high spots. Small pits, holes, bumpy surfaces. When new, the rollers and races are ground to a very smooth finish surface on 100% of the rolling surfaces. If you have a pit, soon it will get bigger in time and eventually lead to bearing failure. I'll see if I can find a few shot bearings to post pics of.

E. Discoloration or blueish color. This comes from lack of lube and high heat. When you start seeing the blue tint, heavy blueish or other distorted colors the heat has became high enough that it may affect the temper of the metal and the bearing life will most generally be reduced.

F. Uneven wear. You may not see any pits or rough metal but things should be wearing evenly. Look for burnished surfaces then high polished ones. This generally points to something not running true. If you see this you have to figure out what is not true or loose.

Good luck and glad the post helped.

Happy camping

John


Thanks for the advice. I don't know when the last time the bearings were packed. I have only had the TT a little over a year, and put about 4000 miles on it. The previous owner had put very few miles on the trailer.


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larry30000

St. Louis, MO

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Posted: 04/19/06 07:40pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just repacked today, one question did not soak bearings in cleaner, sprayed off with cleaner then dried with towels. Used a bearing packer seen some old grease oozing out and hopefully cleaner too. Have not pulled trailer yet just wondering if I should redo to make sure no cleaner was left in and has contaminated new grease.


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JBarca

Dublin, Ohio, USA

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Posted: 04/19/06 08:25pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

larry30000 wrote:

Just repacked today, one question did not soak bearings in cleaner, sprayed off with cleaner then dried with towels. Used a bearing packer seen some old grease oozing out and hopefully cleaner too. Have not pulled trailer yet just wondering if I should redo to make sure no cleaner was left in and has contaminated new grease.


H'mm. Well did you use traditional brake cleaner that evaporates off real quick and completely goes away? Or did you use turpentine or some other cleaner that dissolves grease and does not evaporate off like brake cleaner?

I normally always remove all the old grease down to bare steel. The air gun trick helps to to dry them out too. Then you know you have no issues.

I your case the question is is the solvent still 1/2 left in the old grease? If it is, this may not be a good thing. If you are sure you purged out all the old grease and any solvent, then maybe not an issue.

Maybe some one else who has tried something similar and had a bad experience can chime in here. This one is a judgment call for sure. Not being there to see first hand, it is hard to call from here. If you do not change the grease, do a temp check after your first short trip and then after a few more longer ones.

Good luck and let us know how you make out.

* This post was edited 04/19/06 08:49pm by JBarca *


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larry30000

St. Louis, MO

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Posted: 04/19/06 08:33pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Used brake cleaner, going on a short trip soon will keep a eye on temps!!!!!

larry30000

St. Louis, MO

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Posted: 04/20/06 01:25pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Took her out for a 40 mile spin today lots of breaking in city traffic, temps were between 150f-170f degrees on all of the wheels & hubs. What would be an acceptable temp. range?

JBarca

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Posted: 04/24/06 09:13pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

larry30000 wrote:

Took her out for a 40 mile spin today lots of breaking in city traffic, temps were between 150f-170f degrees on all of the wheels & hubs. What would be an acceptable temp. range?


Larry, getting back to you. I had the TT out this weekend. I do not know exactly where you took your temps. Meaning location on the wheel. Are they drum or bearing temps? Part of this is are they all the same in the same spot on all 4 wheels within reason. A lot of heavy braking will heat the whole thing up with drum OD being hotter but the magnet dragging can heat the side too.

To get a truer bearing temp you need more rolling with less braking. Also what did you use to measure with? What type of probe?

I find my bearing areas to be in the ~ 110 area when just cruising down the highway and not a lot of braking. But this will go up to ~ 130 after a lot of stops.

These temps are as I have measured them with my casting thickness etc. If you probe in a different area or have different castings by a great extent you will have different numbers and hotter ones if closer to the OD of the drum.

As a guide from somewhat normal machine temps. here are some temps as a general guide. These are more from machines I use at work, not your wheel drums. I do not have exact numbers from a host of wheel bearings but these may give you a guide. Others may jump in here and help give a wider range on wheel temps and where they took them at.

120F is cool. 150 is getting warm. Bearings at 170 are very warm. Bearings at 220 are getting hot and bearings at 300 had better have the right grease and expansion clearance or they are in serious trouble. You should be using high temp wheel bearing grease but it too will melt at real high temps. of 350 to 400F

They do make real high temp bearings/grease for special applications to run at 300 degrees all day long, but I'm sure you do not have them...

To help, I took my temps this weekend. I also found I had one brake shoe to tight in relation to the others and it was braking first. I adjusted it at the campground and retook temps on the way home. So helping you, helped me. I also edited the first page of this post in BLUE with my measurements and where I took them

Hope this helps

John

larry30000

St. Louis, MO

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Posted: 04/27/06 07:19pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Taking temp readings on the rim in between the lug nuts, using a IR thermometer from Radio Shack.

Bearings are packed with Mobile 1 synthetic. After packing the bearings I also adjusted the breaks,adjusted until I could not turn wheel then backed off enough wheel would spin 1 rotation. Maybe to tight on the break adjustment?

I will take her out again and stay off the breaks and check temps again. Trailer weighs 10k, have a prodigy using boost setting of 2 with the gain of 10 needs a lot of break to slow her down.

Thanks for all the information, this simple job has turned into a great learning experience.

larry30000

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Posted: 05/02/06 11:04am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Another sort trip, stayed off the brakes and temps were around 100 degrees. All is well

JBarca

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Posted: 05/02/06 11:08am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

larry30000 wrote:

Another sort trip, stayed off the brakes and temps were around 100 degrees. All is well


Larry, Great! Glad things worked out.

toto

Mississauga,Ontario,Canada

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Posted: 05/04/06 09:26am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nice post and great pics.
If you want to repack the bearings and save your manicure, put the grease and bearing in a plastic ziploc bag and then work the grease in.

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