1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

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1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby MatHanz » Thu May 21, 2020 3:25 pm

Hey everyone.

2 years ago I dragged a rotten 1990 starcraft pop up home, tore it down to the bare frame, and started building my tear drop from there.

I'd like to replace the axle. For simplicity sake, I'd be fine replacing it with another dexter torsion axle, but would like it to have more capacity (at least 2k lbs).

I'm not sure where to start with this. Etrailer.com doesn't seem to offer this. Anyone have any history / experience with this?

Thanks!

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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby adapotato » Thu May 21, 2020 4:57 pm

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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby Squigie » Thu May 21, 2020 5:29 pm

Looks like the 10 foot model that I have. Axle rating is only 1,800 lb on mine. ...With a GVWR of 1,562 lb, if I recall correctly.
(And it's on its 4th axle...)

Find a dealer/distributor you want to work with, take your measurements, and call to order:
https://www.dexteraxle.com/distributor-locator/us-and-canada


Personally, I would look into converting to Timbren.
But that may be easier said than done, depending upon what you've done to the frame and layout.
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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby les45 » Thu May 21, 2020 5:50 pm

Call Dexter directly. I replaced one on my 89 Jayco and they were super to deal with. Very helpful with determining the exact model needed, fast shipping and very good price.
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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby tony.latham » Thu May 21, 2020 6:17 pm

Call Dexter directly.


Les is right. All Dexter torsion axles are special order. Somewhere deep in the Internets there's an order form you can fill out and email to them for a quote.

Here's the dope I send to them for a an axle for a 5-wide 'drop:

#9 Dexter Torflex axle, downrated to 1600 pounds
• Start Angle: 22.5” down
• Trailer width: 59.5”
• Hub face: 74”
• Hub diameter: 6.5”
• Bolt Pattern: 5 on 4-1/2” with standard studs
• Lubrication: EZ Lube

T
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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby MatHanz » Fri May 22, 2020 7:27 am

Thanks for the thoughts everyone. I might go with the Timbren or another independent torsion axle set up. Anyone have experience with this? Is pretty much dummy-proof?

BTW, here are some pics of the build as it sits today. 2 years later and I continue to tweak it, mostly I'm still finishing out the inside.

I'm buying a 5k BTU window unit A/C to fit inside this weekend. The axle will be the next big project after that. I need to get the darn thing weighed. My guess is that I'm sitting around 2k lbs, but who knows.

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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby tony.latham » Fri May 22, 2020 10:32 am

I might go with the Timbren or another independent torsion axle set up. Anyone have experience with this?


CapnTelescope, aka Brad keeps wearing tires out with his Timbrens. They need to be aligned and the system isn't working for him. You might ask him...

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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby Squigie » Fri May 22, 2020 10:55 am

Several members have gone with the Timbren suspension on new builds, as well as retrofits.
I designed my 'rough road' tear build around the Timbren (ASR1THDS01) and have all of the suspension components on hand, but have not yet been able to get started (but maybe soon - I hear that I can buy steel again!).

I do believe your trailer to be the prior year version of the Starcraft/Starlite that I own. If so, I believe there would only be two guaranteed complications for converting to Timbren:
1. The frame extension in front of the wheels, that supports the door sill, and its counterpart on the other side of the frame. This may need to be modified somehow, to allow the Timbren suspension to mount on the frame. That, or notch the Timbren bracket.
2. The frame should probably be reinforced in the mount area, and would definitely need a doubler on the inside, to get enough width for proper mounting of the new suspension.

Another major consideration would be whether or not the Timbren suspension is going to align the wheel with the skinny little wheel wells that these trailers have.

If you want to ponder the conversion and take some measurements, the Timbren spec sheet is here: Timbren Axle-Less ASR400-7000 Dims Specs Imperial Rev032918

Most of us are using the 2,000 lb, 2,000 lb HD, 3,500 lb, 3,500 lb HD, or 1-Tonne (down-rated 3,500 HD due to longer swing arm and more travel). Beyond that, the differences are in the different spindles, to get the desired ride height for a specific application.

A quick look at my trailer and the Timbren spec sheet (dimension 'g', front of bracket to axle centerline) leads me to the preliminary conclusion that frame modification (beyond a doubler) would be required for everything in the above categories except:
2k (standard) ASR2000S01/ASR2000S02
2kHD w/ 4" lift (w/ and w/o off road tire spindles) -- ASR2KHDS04, ASR2KHDS03
3.5k (standard) w/ 4" lift -- ASR3500S06
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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby MatHanz » Fri May 22, 2020 2:29 pm

Darn. It's not going to be as straightforward as I thought. This is good info though. Thanks!

When I built the bottom of the teardrop I put in slightly bigger wheel wells, but if I could do it again I would simply buy oval shaped galvanized tubs. Building and sealing the wheel wells was unnecessarily complicated.

I might go with a traditional axle and leaf springs. I will need to get someone to weld the leaf spring brackets on though. I'll measure the current distance between hub faces and the distance of the main rails where the leaf springs would sit. Any thoughts on this set up?

Thanks again everyone!
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Re: 1990 Starcraft Axle Replacement

Postby Squigie » Sat May 23, 2020 1:34 pm

Leaf springs are likely to ride rougher than the torsion axle.
Should work, though.

The frame is pretty thin. Doubler plates and strategic reinforcement would probably be a good idea.
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