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View Full Version : Broken leaf spring, disaster averted


Voodoo
07-14-2012, 12:46 PM
Gents --

'87 ProStar -- original trailer

Starboard side leaf spring broke yesterday at 20mph. Fortunately the only damage was to the starboard tire, we were only one mile from home and the incident occurred on secondary road. The axle was severely misaligned rendering the trailer immobile. The tow truck company came up with an ingenious solution to get this rig moved when they realized that we lived nearby -- they used the flat bed truck movable ramp as a jack, placed it beneath the prop guard structure, lifted the rear of the trailer unweighting the axle and then used two ratchet straps to realign and hold the axle in position, then escorted me home.

Any advise on leaf spring replacement? I have already applied power blaster to all the nuts and bolts. Here is my plan: jack up the trailer at the rear of the bunks and up toward the bow. Remove the tires. Support the axle with a floor jack. Unbolt the leaf springs from trailer. Remove axle/leaf spring assembly. Remove leaf springs from axle. Install new leaf springs and new hardware -- in reverse order.

Anybody see problems with my plan or have any helpful recommendations?

Thank you in advance,
Voodoo

j.mccreight@hotmail.com
07-14-2012, 12:57 PM
Gents --

'87 ProStar -- original trailer

Starboard side leaf spring broke yesterday at 20mph. Fortunately the only damage was to the starboard tire, we were only one mile from home and the incident occurred on secondary road. The axle was severely misaligned rendering the trailer immobile. The tow truck company came up with an ingenious solution to get this rig moved when they realized that we lived nearby -- they used the flat bed truck movable ramp as a jack, placed it beneath the prop guard structure, lifted the rear of the trailer unweighting the axle and then used two ratchet straps to realign and hold the axle in position, then escorted me home.

Any advise on leaf spring replacement? I have already applied power blaster to all the nuts and bolts. Here is my plan: jack up the trailer at the rear of the bunks and up toward the bow. Remove the tires. Support the axle with a floor jack. Unbolt the leaf springs from trailer. Remove axle/leaf spring assembly. Remove leaf springs from axle. Install new leaf springs and new hardware -- in reverse order.

Anybody see problems with my plan or have any helpful recommendations?

Thank you in advance,
Voodoo

Sounds like a NATOPS plan :D

ahhudgins
07-14-2012, 01:18 PM
I just removed and replaced the shackle bolts on one side of my trailer and will be doing the other side also. The bolts are knurled so may have to give them a good whack to get them out. Soak them pretty good with WD-40 because I'm sure there will be a lot of rust holding them in as well. I got new bolts and bushings at my local trailer store. The new bolts are called "wet bolts" and they are hollow with a grease fitting on the end.

Where are you at in VA? We are on Leesville Lake.

Voodoo
07-14-2012, 02:17 PM
Thanks for the info -- I'll be hitting the trailer supply store on Monday and will inquire about the wet bolts, bushings, etc. I am located in Chesapeake.

Question -- when you remove the shackle bolts, the axle should supported, correct?

Thanks,
Voodoo

ahhudgins
07-14-2012, 05:49 PM
I slightly raised the trailer and then supported it with blocks and jack stands. I then put the jack under the axle to support it. The nuts came off my shackle bolts pretty easy with just a 1/2 drive rachet. I had to drive the bolts out with a BF hammer. I had to put a couple of C clamps on the outside of the shackles so they wouldn't bend when I hammered out the bolts. You might want to check the OD of your bushings because mine used two different sizes. The bushings on each end of the leaf spring were the same, but the one on the top of the shackle was different. Even after I replaced my bushings and bolts, I had the annoying squeak, so I think the noise is coming from between the springs. Looks like I will be pulling them off this winter. Here is the link to my post:

http://mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=47014&highlight=leaf+spring+removal

Voodoo
07-14-2012, 07:06 PM
Fantastic -- thanks for the info, very helpful. This leaf spring replacement is a quick patch job. After the season I'll do a complete trailer overhaul -- sounds like we'll be on the same project this winter.

Thanks,
Voodoo

d2jp
07-14-2012, 07:24 PM
......
Where are you at in VA? We are on Leesville Lake.

....hijack: Brookville High School...late 70's/early 80's?

ahhudgins
07-14-2012, 07:50 PM
....hijack: Brookville High School...late 70's/early 80's?

Graduated in 80. Anyone I know??

d2jp
07-15-2012, 09:26 AM
Graduated in 80. Anyone I know??

PM sent and I may be replacing my old springs soon!

Voodoo
07-17-2012, 08:19 PM
1987 ProStar, trailer parts/pieces original -- broken leaf spring last Friday

Repair complete. Two new springs, bolts/u-bolts, backer plates, and nuts. Picked up 4+ inches in ride height -- quite a shock to me. My springs must have been pretty bad for awhile. Thinking of adding wheels or rollers to your prop guard like I was? Or adding a 3+ inch spacer block to the top of your axle like I was? I am no longer considering either of these options. Total cost was $118.00.

Voodoo

ahhudgins
07-18-2012, 03:03 PM
1987 ProStar, trailer parts/pieces original -- broken leaf spring last Friday

Repair complete. Two new springs, bolts/u-bolts, backer plates, and nuts. Picked up 4+ inches in ride height -- quite a shock to me. My springs must have been pretty bad for awhile. Thinking of adding wheels or rollers to your prop guard like I was? Or adding a 3+ inch spacer block to the top of your axle like I was? I am no longer considering either of these options. Total cost was $118.00.

Voodoo

Always great to hear from a satisfied customer who saved some money! You just cheated Obama out of his share.....because he said we didn't earn it on our own.:D

d2jp
07-18-2012, 10:21 PM
1987 ProStar, trailer parts/pieces original -- broken leaf spring last Friday

Repair complete. Two new springs, bolts/u-bolts, backer plates, and nuts. Picked up 4+ inches in ride height -- quite a shock to me. My springs must have been pretty bad for awhile. Thinking of adding wheels or rollers to your prop guard like I was? Or adding a 3+ inch spacer block to the top of your axle like I was? I am no longer considering either of these options. Total cost was $118.00.

Voodoo

Thanks for the info, as I had been considering spacers - trailer drags really bad on my driveway - will start with the $120 fix.

LittleFuss
07-18-2012, 11:36 PM
I went with some updated beefier springs and got a couple of extra inches of clearance...have not scraped the prop guard sense...I did one side and then the other...also went to local spring and brake shop and they custom made me some great stainless steel u-bolts for the updated leaf springs...I paid $20 for the bolts I thought it was a steal