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Old 10-23-2018, 07:01 AM   #1
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Exclamation Why are these China Bombs? Possible reason here

When I inspected my Castle Rock tires (2018 model trailer purchased new in 2017) which were manufactured in 2017, I discovered what appeared to be dry rot cracks on three of the four valve stems. I took the trailer to a tire dealer yesterday to replace all five (included the spare) stems.

The good news is that the dealer only charged me $5 per tire labor, and the stems were free (and the technician suggested I do the spare and he threw it in for nothing).

The technician put in high pressure stems as that is there policy for tires over 50 psi (I run mine at 65 per the trailer data lable). He told me that the stems he removed were standard pressure ones.

Could it be that either at Forest River, or wherever the tires are mounted FOR Forest River, they don't know the difference in the stems? Because I doubt mine are the only non-high pressure stems installed on these tires.

I'm surmising that a possible cause for these "China Bomb" tires failing so frequently and causing so much damage is because they're using the incorrect stems, old (more prone to dry rot) stems, and most importantly, people may NOT be keeping as close an eye on the tire pressures as they could or should. I run a TST 507 Color system and watch those puppies VERY closely.

I'd like to hear what the community thinks about what I've found.
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Old 10-23-2018, 07:12 AM   #2
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I've had plenty of experiences with "China bombs" unfortunately on a previous fifth wheel and in every case it was identified as manufacturing problems with the tire - not the valve stem.

Possibly what you encountered is responsible for some of the issue, but I still suspect the primary cause of "China bomb failure" is simply due to cheap construction and manufacturing. And, I further suspect that won't change as long as RV manufacturers continue to equip trailers with the cheapest tires they can find.
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Old 10-23-2018, 07:49 AM   #3
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A Microlight with 86 PSI tires?
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Old 10-23-2018, 07:54 AM   #4
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My castle rock "China Bombs" went bad not due to valve stems, but due to tread separation.



Had a blow out, tore up some trim, put it in the shop.

When I picked it up from the shop I drove straight to the tire shop to buy 4 new tires. When I got there, about 6 miles from the RV place, I had another tire separating and about to blow out!

If I had gone home and waited to buy new tires I would have had another blow out and been back in the shop!
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Old 10-23-2018, 08:02 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B and B View Post
A Microlight with 86 PSI tires?
Sorry, typo. 65 psi.
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Old 10-23-2018, 08:19 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by kfd82 View Post
My castle rock "China Bombs" went bad not due to valve stems, but due to tread separation.

Had a blow out, tore up some trim, put it in the shop.

When I picked it up from the shop I drove straight to the tire shop to buy 4 new tires. When I got there, about 6 miles from the RV place, I had another tire separating and about to blow out!

If I had gone home and waited to buy new tires I would have had another blow out and been back in the shop!
Wow! I've had no problems so far, other than the valve stems not being high pressure and the dry rot. I'm going to be changing the tires before long. Thanks everyone for your inputs. I've got about 4,000 miles on these, and am going to be VERY cautious now.
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Old 10-23-2018, 09:16 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by marinerjoe View Post
When I inspected my Castle Rock tires (2018 model trailer purchased new in 2017) which were manufactured in 2017, I discovered what appeared to be dry rot cracks on three of the four valve stems. I took the trailer to a tire dealer yesterday to replace all five (included the spare) stems.

The good news is that the dealer only charged me $5 per tire labor, and the stems were free (and the technician suggested I do the spare and he threw it in for nothing).

The technician put in high pressure stems as that is there policy for tires over 50 psi (I run mine at 65 per the trailer data lable). He told me that the stems he removed were standard pressure ones.

Could it be that either at Forest River, or wherever the tires are mounted FOR Forest River, they don't know the difference in the stems? Because I doubt mine are the only non-high pressure stems installed on these tires.

I'm surmising that a possible cause for these "China Bomb" tires failing so frequently and causing so much damage is because they're using the incorrect stems, old (more prone to dry rot) stems, and most importantly, people may NOT be keeping as close an eye on the tire pressures as they could or should. I run a TST 507 Color system and watch those puppies VERY closely.

I'd like to hear what the community thinks about what I've found.
Forrest River, and I doubt that any trailer/5th wheel manufacturer make their own frames/suspensions/running gear. I believe that most are made by Lippert, and a few others. They are the ones who install the wheels/tires. They apparently use rims/tires that just barely meet the weight requirements of the frames as per the info supplied them by the manufacturer of the rv as to what the "approximate" finished weight will be.
If you do a bit of research and finger walking thru google you'll find stories of 8000 lb trailers being built on frames rated for 8000 lbs, thus leaving NO capacity for anything you may carry. The minute you load a can of chili, your over weight. Now, add all your stuff and you can begin to see the problem.
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Old 10-23-2018, 11:45 AM   #8
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Of the two blowouts I had neither had anything to do with the valve stems. One was from a large pothole on I-5, the other was a literal *BOOM* blowout going about 45MPH.
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Old 10-23-2018, 12:21 PM   #9
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I did not have a blowout on my Rockwood but when i went to put Good Years Marathons on it the Towmax crumble to pieces. Being in Warranty for the second year FR paid $400 as a good will gesture leaving me only $180 out of pocket for 4 tires.
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Old 10-23-2018, 12:22 PM   #10
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You received one persons' opinion. I would think that with the thousands of trailers sold with these valve stems that Forest River has a pretty good idea what they are doing.
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