Wednesday, July 31, 2019

It's a Funny Squeaky Sound...

Aunt Bethany says it best... About one month ago we were pulling into our RV park in La Veta and I had the truck windows down as we were maneuvering to our site. I thought I heard a sound - it's a funny squeaky sound... Unfortunately I did not investigate the sound until a week ago... (keep in mind I gave us a only a week to render the repairs before we leave tomorrow for Creede).

So last Wednesday I got our floor jack and raised each trailer wheel to spin them and I found one wheel that wouldn't turn. I enlisted the expertise of Keith for La Veta Oil and Tire and we removed the tire and then the hub and found that the pads on that wheel had separated from the brake shoes (picture above) and jammed inside of the hub. Keith called his boss and he told me of a trailer shop in Trinidad that might have new parts for me. So I drove down to Trinidad (53 miles each way) with the hub and shoes to get what I needed for a repair.

They sold me a hub and a pair of brake shoes that supposedly would fit... well I got back and then had to wait until last Friday for Keith to come back and install the new hardware. Unfortunately I did not take the time to check everything thoroughly and the brake shoes were not the correct type. I needed self-adjusting brake shoes and they sold me the manual adjust brake shoes. So I drove back to Trinidad (second trip) to the trailer shop to return the brake shoes and get the correct ones. Well... they didn't carry self-adjusting brake shoes but referred me to Carquest in Trinidad. Carquest didn't have them either but said they had some in their store in Raton - they could have them for me on Saturday.

So on Saturday morning I drove back to Trinidad (third trip) to pick up the brake shoes... wait for it - they were the wrong ones again! Carquest worked with me to find the correct brake shoe part and I called all the way to Colorado Springs to find them - no one stocks these brake shoes - so I ordered them online and asked for overnight delivery - the earliest I could get the brake shoes was Tuesday.

The correct self-adjusting brake shoes arrived on Tuesday afternoon (thank you and UPS) and Keith said he could be out first thing Wednesday morning to install everything and get us rolling. So this morning Keith got the new self-adjusting brake shoes installed (photo above)  and then went to install the new hub and it wouldn't go back on... Guess what? I drove back down to Trinidad (fourth trip) with the new hub to see if they had given me the wrong one. They inspected the hub and said it was the correct one and so I cane back to La Veta. Keith told me he could come out after lunch so while I waited I looked over the new hub vs. the old one...

After I cleaned up the old original hub (lots of grease obstructing the detail of the hub) I discovered that the original hub was not the same as the new hub! No wonder it wouldn't work - duh! What I learned online was that my Dexter axle was a Torflex axle and the Dexter hub that was almost identical was for a standard Dexter axle. I really didn't have to replace the hub - it just seemed logical since I was replacing the bearings and brake shoes. The photo above shows the new (wrong) hub on the left and the original hub on the right - not quite the same even though they both use the same bearings.

So tonight we are all ready to hit the road again. Lessons I have learned:

1. Always order your RV parts online yourself and match the exact part numbers. Local trailer shops really only have parts for utility, stock, and farm trailers. Most RV dealers do not stock these parts - they order them as they need them (called several RV Dealers in Colorado Springs - they all said they could order the parts for me but could not get the parts quick enough).

2. If you her something (like Aunt Bethany)  - don't wait to investigate - better to have plenty of time to research and remedy problems - causes less stress for yourself and your spouse :)