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Old 14 April 2011, 14:09   #1
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Wheel bearings.

I checked the wheel bearings on the trailer today and they had to be renewed so I purchased a new set of hub's and bearings from Indespension for 40 which seemed reasonable. My question is, the trailer is less than 12 months old and has only been in and out of seawater only about 6 times and has always been greased up a few days after, should I be getting more use out of the bearings than this or is it normal. ? I have also been told that on new trailers the bearings are not as good for whatever reason, but when I asked the guy at indespension he said it isn't true.
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Old 14 April 2011, 14:31   #2
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What made you think they had to be renewed?
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Old 14 April 2011, 14:46   #3
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Hi martini,there was plenty play on the wheel which could be nipped up but when spinning the wheel round it rumbled which it shouldn't do but spin round smoothly.
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Old 14 April 2011, 17:41   #4
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these a good few years old, would do 1000 mile a year, mostly put into freshwater but always greased before the start of a trip & at 100 miles during a trip & again after cooling down before launching.

I strip them down at end of season, clean with petrol, refit & re-grease.

grease is a cheap mechanic........!
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Old 14 April 2011, 18:04   #5
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That's fine T15 if it's possible but a lot of modern boat trailers have "sealed for life" -- which like UJ's or indeed anything else sealed for life, usually means the life is rather a lot shorter than if it can be maintained. Progress I think they call it

Quite correct that any rumble in a wheel bearing is very soon going to turn into a moment where your laundry bill goes up and you have to do some insurance paperwork, if you take it any distance at any speed. I used to tow mine at 25mph for about a mile on empty roads so a little rumble was acceptable (and it was a twin axle trailer) but it definitely means the bearing is starting to go.
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Old 15 April 2011, 08:18   #6
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T 15 is bang on thats what i do

my trailer is 20 years old
earings greasd every time its dipped in the sea and i have only ever replaced the bearings once in 20 years.!!

and not needed to replace the hubs at all.??

the bearings and bearing shells were replaced and greased.

regually checked, greased and adjusted.

I needed an new axel recently as the suspension units built into the axel looked a little knackered but i still have the bearings out of the old axel as spares. the new axel was fitted last year and the origional bearings had been towed all over Ireland and to and from the uk and the last run was to Wales and back without issues.
especially the bearings
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Old 15 April 2011, 09:34   #7
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been told that on new trailers the bearings are not as good for whatever reason
tis b*ll*cks
The boat and trailer I sold last year was still on its original bearings after 10 years of occasional trailing the length of the country and launching into saltwater inumerable times per year. Good waterproof grease/bearing buddies/ and once or twice a year strip down

Quote:
"sealed for life
had them under one of our smaller boats. Never felt safe with them as I couldnt get in there and strip/grease them. Would never have another.

Wouldnt bet all a surprised to hear a bit of a rumble from an unloaded jacked up wheel, --strip, clean and grease probably sort it.

Now brakes thats another matter--mild steel and salt water
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Old 15 April 2011, 10:35   #8
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My old Laser combi road base had sealed bearings. I dread to think how many tens of thousands of miles that thing did, never heard a cheap out of it. But then it never went swimming...

As said, keep greased, don't dunk hot.
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Old 15 April 2011, 10:47   #9
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Now brakes thats another matter--mild steel and salt water
When we spec'd our trailer a couple of years back there was an option for disc brakes...but at an extra 500 we baulked. Any one any experience of these? Least you can see everything (presumably?)
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Old 15 April 2011, 10:57   #10
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But then it never went swimming...
therein lies the answer. The caravan wheels and the cars never have bearing or rusty brake probs but dunk things in seawater and it all starts going **** up!
Brakes I give up on- the shoes rust and that rust prises the lining off eventually Which can be very inconvenient/dangerous but is always stupidly expensive cos its boating stuff.
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Old 15 April 2011, 11:54   #11
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I've got discs on my double axle trailer. They get dunked once a month. Just did a complete stripdown and rebuild for the journey to Oban.

They are definately much better than drums IMO. The best bit is that you do not have to expose the bearing to work on the brakes. The problem is that the calipers cannot be completely dismantled and the auto reverse mechanism has a tendancy to stick. Club hammer seems to sort it.

Complete strip, grease (as best you can) and rebuild every 2 years seems to keep them working. Pads seem to be lasting. You can give them a good flush with a power hose from the opposite side of the boat.

Cable load adjusters all stuck this year. Replaced with polished stainless plates and stainless forks.

The belden cables are plastic coated and still run free.

Discs are lasting better than my pickup.

What we need are these:

http://www.trailerandtruckparts.com/...tern_p_61.html

Completely stainless less hydraulic brakes. Nice.

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Old 15 April 2011, 12:47   #12
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Hmm dont remember ever seeing seled bearing in boat trailers they all seem to be roller bearings.
Even quite alot of cars have roller bearings as you can take up any sack by tightening the retaining nut .

like the disk breaks didnt think they were avaliable in the UK. ( are they legal ? )
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Old 15 April 2011, 14:21   #13
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I have been using ordinary grease, not marine grease, which probably didn't help and my wheels nearly always take a dunk when launching, I think the best way to get longer life out of the bearings is to try and grease them up on the same day after use, instead of a few days after, which probably helped to shorten the life of the bearings.

Would it be okay to pump marine grease into ordinary grease to save me stripping and cleaning them again ??
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Old 15 April 2011, 15:06   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kerny View Post
I have been using ordinary grease, not marine grease, which probably didn't help and my wheels nearly always take a dunk when launching, I think the best way to get longer life out of the bearings is to try and grease them up on the same day after use, instead of a few days after, which probably helped to shorten the life of the bearings.

Would it be okay to pump marine grease into ordinary grease to save me stripping and cleaning them again ??
I would say "yes"......for the last 15 years I have been using JCB grease & some times "topped up" with other grease.......mostly freshwater use, but as said before 1000 miles + a year, pump in grease drive out the water.........
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Old 15 April 2011, 15:57   #15
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buying good grease is money well spent. pack the hubs full and keep them full with the spring loaded bearing protectors.
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Old 16 April 2011, 06:56   #16
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Hmm dont remember ever seeing seled bearing in boat trailers they all seem to be roller bearings.

SBS trailers have sealed bearings, that's what mine is and as they claim to be "probably the largest UK manufacturer" I should think there are quite a few around

According to website: "Fitted with torsion beam axles and sealed for life bearings. We have been fitting this type of bearing for over a decade and on balance they are 5 times better than traditional taper roller bearings."

I'd prefer maintainable bearings but they have built a lot more trailers than I have and presumably choose their parts based on experience, the important thing from my side is that the wheels stay on
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Old 17 April 2011, 12:47   #17
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Would it be okay to pump marine grease into ordinary grease to save me stripping and cleaning them again ??
Has more to do with the base that the grease is on. Most of the off the shelf greases are a lithium base, and nearly all of these can be mixed without a problem. There are, however, a few aluminum complex based greases around, which are supposedly better at water resistance, but completely incompatible with lithium based greases. Not sure exactly what the problem is when mixing them.

http://www.finalube.com/reference_ma...lity_chart.htm

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Old 19 April 2011, 12:15   #18
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Thanks everyone, From now on, I will take the grease gun with me and give the bearings a good old greasing, after being dipped in the salty stuff.
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