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1naylor

Trailer bearing failure - FIRE -what a day

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So after help from members here - I properly installed the bimini top, and PROBABLY fixed the speedo on my newly purchased 2002 186 SSi.

I bought it yesterday and drove it over two hours home on the trailer.   Then put it in the river here for a few hours... lots of fun.   

Last night I cleaned it all up - got it loaded - bought a tube.   

In my excitement - I never bothered to check the grease in the bearings of the trailer - so I will never know how this happened - but most likely ... no grease in the bearings.

Loaded everyone up and we left out this morning for a ONE hour drive to my favorite lake.   20 minutes from the lake I look back and see smoke.   When I pulled over flames came shooting out from the wheel.   Grabbed the fire extinguisher from the boat and put the flames out.    Looks like the bearing disintegrated ... the spline of the axle is most likely destroyed as it was just grinding away on the hub.  

Found some place that does axles on 18 wheelers not far away and had a wrecker with a flat bed load my entire boat and trailer  and drop it off there.   On the side of the road for 3.5 hours - then we said screw it and drove to the Buffalo river to do some floating.

I'm super crazy pissed.... not sure if the electric brake caught fire or it was no grease....was certainly enough grease there for it to burst into flames!

I will probably need a new axle... and I'm sure it will be a custom order part.   No telling what I'm out here - maybe more than I paid for the boat!

 

Check out the pic for the burned out / fire extinguisher covered wheel / hub.    What a day!

 

 

omg.jpg

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Wow, sorry to hear. At least it will be repaired now, still pretty early in the season and you will be good. Floating on the Buffalo River isn't too bad of a day.

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True... plan was to buy a used - but good boat to see if the fam gets into it... kinda' curious what this axle is going to cost for the custom chap prestige trailer.   Petrified actually.   

There were a lot of other boats for a few thousand more that I think I would have liked better.... Ugh.   

Will update when I get a quote - hopefully tomorrow.

Buffalo was beautiful today...however my new ski tube and all the work I did last night was useless :)

I am happy that it wasn't worse - and that the kids weren't with me today.   Could have been a real disaster.

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Prestige is now Heritage trailers and they used common parts.  I don't think it will be horrible but you never know with the age.

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Well there had to be some grease in it.  That's what was probably burning.  :)  Chin up its probably not that bad.  There's a good chance the spindle is fine.  My guess is you will need a new hub with bearings, and new brake backing plate.  go ahead and replace the brake assembly on the other side and repack those bearings as well.  basically you'll be looking at $80 more than what a brake and bearing repack job would have cost. Is it a torsion axle or a spring suspension.  You mentioned electric brakes.  That would be pretty out of ordinary for a boat trailer.  It would more than likely have hydraulic surge brakes.  

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I think it's a Prestige single with surge brakes. Built in southern Illinois, parts are easy to access. They used torsion axles.

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Now that the bearing issue will be resolved, here's a thought.  Check the temp of the hub after a trip but before you back down the ramp into the cool lake water. Either use a infrared temp gun or just touch the hub area with your hand. I like to let the hubs cool down before I submerge them in the lake. Some folks believe that lake water can enter past the seal when a hot hub is submerged into the cool lake.

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An axle should only be a few hundred dollars.  Dexter and Lippert are the two biggest names, good chance it is one of those manufacturers.  

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Had a bearing go on my  last trailer, I was able to drive it with the boat to a local trailer dealer ( not boat trailers) and they repaired it with parts on hand in 1/2 a day. I think they replaced the complete hub assembly but not the axil.

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Spindle is shot... need a new axle.    Shop cannot find one.   Tgey called chap , heritage...etc.   have calls out to 5 manufacturers ...nothing.    boat sitting two towns away on busted trailer.     

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If they get it fixed.     They are saying a new axle will be at least 1k.    And they will have to cut the old one out.   Im seeing a few thousand here.      Surely I coukd get s nice trailer for that.   

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Sorry to hear about your troubles, especially with a new owner who is trying to get into boating on a budget to gauge family interest.  We all know that BOAT means Break Out Another Thousand, but it sucks when it happens so early in the purchase.  Don't worry though, it will be quickly forgotten when you're family is enjoying riding in the tube!

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1 hour ago, 1naylor said:

If they get it fixed.     They are saying a new axle will be at least 1k.    And they will have to cut the old one out.   Im seeing a few thousand here.      Surely I coukd get s nice trailer for that.   

That is a really expensive axle. Do an internet search...

brick

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Check my boat trailer rebuild thread pics, if you have drop center axles, like on my EZ loader, they are probably made by Reliable or UFP.  Check your axle for an identification tag that would have the build info numbers etc. If you have them they will help the vendor with build spec info.  My tags were long gone, I had to get my saddle width measurements and torsion arm angle and have a trailer shop order them custom built from Reliable. I recall they were about 750 deer ea.  

 

 

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Well that blows. Honestly though, you won't find a new trailer for a couple of thousand and used ones you see out there are very used and won't fit your boat.

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Sorry to hear of the troubles!

Just a note to all: we carry a separate fire extinguisher (large) when towing. It's located in the back of the SUV and NOT ON THE BOAT.  After having my brakes overheat last summer, came to the conclusion this would be a wise idea...  Last thing I want to do when the trailer's on fire is climb on board the boat to get the extinguisher...  that boat also contains 60 gallons of high explosive (aka gasoline).

We also carry a cheap handheld infrared thermometer device to measure temps of the rims and bearing caps when we stop for fuel, restrooms, etc.  About $20 on Amazon.

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Try Tennessee Trailers in Soddy Daisey or EZ Loader in Mountain Home Arkansas. 

Or try a local utility trailer manufacturer. Is your axle a standard leaf spring type, or a torsion axle?

brick

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20 minutes ago, 1naylor said:

Shop is saying he tried them and they don't make that axle anymore?  Thank you though! 

If they are drop center axles, they are custom.  In my case, EZ loader designed the trailer with axle specs and had Reliable build them X number for their trailer builds. The trailer manufacture or supplier do not stock them, they build to order.      I think you are going to have to take over the procurement of the axle yourself, it will take some patience and persistence on your part, but it is doable.   Before you call, measure your saddle width and torsion arm angle so they can price the axle for you.   

 

http://www.reliablepmw.com/body.cfm?lvl1=contac&lvl2=freque

Q: CAN I BUY REPLACEMENT PARTS DIRECT FROM RELIABLE?
A: Reliable sells its products through Distributors. In many cases a consumer may buy replacement parts from the Original Manufacturer of the product such as the trailer or implement manufacturer. A list of Reliable Distributors can be viewed on our CONTACT page. If after you've contacted your product manufacturer or spoken to our distributors and still have not found the part(s) you need, please use our CONTACT page to inquire with a Reliable Customer Service Representative.

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Is it spring or torsion?  single axle or tandem?  

If it is indeed a torsion axle with a drop in the center for clearance for the keel, you may still have options. 

What about converting to a spring type axle?  They are cheaper, and the springs would probably put the axle tube low enough to clear the keel.  They would just need to cut the old mounts off and weld new spring hangers on.  axle / hangers

Another option might be to torch out the old spindle and weld in a new one.  Spindle  I know of this being done on a torsion axle.

Lastly, and I have done this one myself, would be to build up the damaged areas on the spindle with welding.  Then grind and file to fit the bearing.  If there is damage where the seal rides, just remove any high spots, and use a Speedi-Sleeve.  Speedi Sleeve

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Called and got all the info from the place that has my trailer (and boat).

It is the factory Prestige trailer "built custom for Chap"     with "reliable" TORSION AXLE

78" OUTSIDE OF FRAME 

84" TO FLANGE AND 94" TO HUB WITH HYDRAULIC BRAKE.

6 lug 5200 lb

axle - RELIABLE TRAILER SUPPLY - 5200 LBS BEAM CAP       Serial :  A-597848

Axle has like a 4 or 5" drop in the middle to clear the deep "V" of the boat.  Check out the pic of it being sooo sadly loaded onto a flatbed.   Notice the trailer has the curved steel beams under it... the axle goes through one of those.  I bought this boat on Sat... Cleaned it up and loaded it for the lake... took off Sunday and never made it.  Looks like I'm not gonna make it in the near future either unless I come up with a friggin' axle! :)

Thank you for all of the ideas.   I will try to give reliable or one of their distributors a call tomorrow.  The shop I have it at doesn't seem to be interested in "rigging" it... but I'd sure let someone give it a shot!

trailer_zps9zf0ikgb.jpg

 

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