Thursday, September 6, 2012

My New Axle, Day #1

As I thought, it wouldn't take long for Gary to begin installing my new axle. Less than two days after returning from our latest camping trip, I was being prepared for the work to begin. In less than an hour, my old axle was out from under me. Look how wimpy it looks compared to my new axle. The new one is much heavier, is fully adjustable for height, and for the first time ever, I'll have BRAKES!!! To help with getting the new axle in place, Gary used a wooden jig attached to an old floor jack. He built the jig many years ago to help with installing an axle in an old car. Once again, it would come in handy for installing an axle, but this time in a travel trailer. As easy as it was to remove my old axle, installing the new one was more of a challenge. During the first test fitting, Gary found out that there was a piece of angle iron on my frame that was in the way of the mounts for the new axle. After lots of grinding and several test fittings, that problem was eliminated. The next problem was that two of the four mounting holes in the new axle needed to be enlarged to fit over the bolts in my frame. With all of the problems fixed, my new axle fit like a glove. It is now bolted in place, and ready for phase two of the project. Tomorrow,(hopefully), Gary will install the trailing arms, and adjust them for height. I suspect that there will be multiple test fittings of the arms to find the height that Gary wants me to be. I think he said that I was going to sit about two inches higher than I used to. That will give me enough ground clearance to not have to worry about bottoming out. That REALLY hurts! It will also make it easier for installing and removing my tires. That has been VERY difficult to do with my saggy old axle. So, depending on what Gary has on his plate for projects, I may be rockin' a whole new look by tomorrow night. I am SO excited!!! I'll keep you posted.

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