Converting a utility trailer for Offroad camping axle and tire selection

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Nov 28, 2020
central florida
Would anyone happen to know how far is the reasonable standard that one can have a hub face from an axle perch?

If you go too far away from the spring, then too much strain, like a lever, is placed on the axle between the perch and hubface.

I’d like to upgrade my axle to a 3500 (from 2000) while at the same time moving the hub face outboards so I can mount 33” matching wheels and tires at 5x150.

Does anyone know if I could do an 85” axle with 60” perches so there is 7.5” excess axle on each side of the perches?
Reasonable standard seems to be a bit squishy (according to dexter)…a 60” spring center 85” hub face to hub face 3500 lb axle would work (my axle appears to be a 70.5” hub face to hub face and 58” spring center to spring center) …though the manufacturer would derate the 3500 lb axle to 2100 lbs.

That kind of puts the kibosh on using a basic utility trailer, adding a classic 3500 lb axle, and mounting 33” tires to it…

My spring perches (on a 5x10) trailer are actually 58”…and eyeball measuring the necessary hub face to hub face axle would need to be 96.5”…so I’m further outside what the manufacturer would even rate to 2,000 lbs.

Anyone know whether a torsion or axle-less suspension might work?

Any other ideas on how to get these 33” tires on this trailer?




The 5200lb Dexter straight axle has a 19.5" max overhang (that's 39" total). Weld your own spring perches and use your own leaf springs...that's what I did for the Escape.
The 5200lb Dexter straight axle has a 19.5" max overhang (that's 39" total). Weld your own spring perches and use your own leaf springs...that's what I did for the Escape.
Do you have photos or a link to your build?

The math seems to work perfectly. 95” axle w 19.5” overhang on each side means my 57” spring perches would be fine.
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No, I didn’t do a build thread for the Escape.

Also, no love here for Torflex.
By torflex do you mean torsion axles in general? Would you care to elaborate on the downsides?

I’ve read that they’re not as robust as a classic type axle…and that finding parts is a bit more difficult when they break.
That lacking in robustness rumor about Torflex axles can be traced all the way back to All Terrain Campers. They claimed to have had one fail on them, but never produced pictures or a sound explanation about what happened. The explanation that they did offer was dubious at best because it ignored how the axles are made. Their explanation was not possible without there first being a different type of failure. And without pictures we're all left in the dark about what really happened, if anything.

By pure coincidence I'm sure, not very long afterwards they introduced their own independent suspension system.

The rubber in a Torflex axle, at least that in mine, is vulcanized to the axle and to the housing. It is both the spring and the damper. Theoretically on something like high speed washboard you might be able to put enough heat in the rubber for it to de-vulcanize itself and fail. The builder on my TrailBlazer trailer's chassis added shocks to the Torflex axles with this very possible failure in mind. Now the shocks get most of the heat instead.

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