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Old 08-19-2013, 12:13 AM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Vacaville CA
Posts: 71
Bad bearings

New owner (May 2013). Dropping friend at home after weekend in A122BH, his dad says "Sounds like your bearings are shot". We didn't notice any noise, but dad was outside when we pulled up and listened carefully when we pulled away. Anyone else experience bad bearings within 3 months of new? Will take to dealer tomorrow morning. Supposed to be driving daughter 6 hours to college and I was going to camp nearby during our orientation week. Grrr.....

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Old 08-19-2013, 01:17 AM   #2
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Do you have grease-able axels? Also, do you have any kind of weight distribution system?

I doubt your bearings are shot on a new trailer but weirder things have happened. I would at least pump some grease in if they have the grease zerks.

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Old 08-19-2013, 07:04 AM   #3
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Not sure if you have them on A-frames, but beings that he heard it while you were pulling up and you were likely on the brakes. Could he have heard your trailer brakes dragging?
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Old 08-19-2013, 07:11 AM   #4
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Aframes have grease fittings just behind the black plastic panel/mid wheel. These are pregreased at the factory .... like previous posters say, check to see if its either your WDH or the brakes ...

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Old 08-19-2013, 08:01 AM   #5
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When I first started using the A-Frame, DH said I had the brake controller set too high - he heard the brakes and showed me the black dust & said Id burn out the brakes that fast if I kept it set that setting. That was easily resolved & trailer brakes saved. Thank goodness it was the first trip by myself (90 min drive with minimal braking) so it didnt go on a long time.

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Old 08-19-2013, 01:19 PM   #6
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I would venture to guess it's the new brake shoes folks're hearing. That plus the hum and drag of the brake magnets when the brakes are applied, which very few people are used to hearing. The TV driver won't hear the magnets but someone standing next to the trailer will. We're all so used to disk brakes nowadays we forget what drum brakes sound like up close.

If you're not familiar with how electric brakes work, applying the brakes activates an electromagnet in each drum. The magnet is attracted to a polished surface in the drum. The drag of the magnet around that surface tugs a lever inside the drum which spreads the brake shoes, causing them to press against the drum's braking surface. It's a pretty simple system, even a little primitive in concept, but it works well. Both the magnet and the polished surface it contacts will wear down over time so they need periodic checking along with the brake shoes themselves. My experience is that my brakes are noisier after my trailer has been sitting unused a while, because a little rust forms on both the magnet and the drum's interior surfaces. It wears off quickly as you drive though.

I think the brake/axle maual says the new shoes have to wear down a little bit in order to conform themselves to the shape of the brake drum. Once the brakes have "worn in" you might need to adjust the brakes to the proper clearance. Again, the manual for the axle set has info on how to do that if you feel comfortable doing it yourself. Otherwise its a ten minute job at a garage with the right tools. Back in the 50s as a kid working at gas stations I used to do it often, so you know it can't be too complex :-)

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