Post by LittleVintageTrailer on Jun 23, 2012 16:59:41 GMT -5
Ok, so on the Bellwood it has brand new tires. They are still completely hairy ;D but I'm almost positive these are car tires. It says they are radial tubeless. Am I wrong on that or are they indeed car tires?
If they are, what kind of dangers are there in using them?
Also any idea what size trailer tire I would need? If I got new trailer tires would that mean I'd also need new wheels also?
Post by LittleVintageTrailer on Jun 23, 2012 17:02:24 GMT -5
Forgot to add that I'm wondering if the size of these tires is why this trailer seems to be sitting higher? The axle isn't flipped so thinking smaller trailer tires would look better and make it sit lower.
The angle of this pic makes it sort of hard to tell but trust me, it does look a bit high.
Post by universalexports on Jun 23, 2012 17:09:39 GMT -5
yes that is a car tire, the "P" in the P205 stands for passenger car (I use to work in a tire store) the 205 is the tire width (205mm) and the 75 is the aspect ratio, meaning the tire's sidewall is 75% as tall as the tire is wide. the 15 is it fits on a 15 inch wheel.
a 205/60 would be shorter. or a 205/50 even shorter or even a 190/60 or something as long as it is approved for that width of wheel will work. a car tire is just fine for a camper unless you are going for 100 authentic setup, honestly I dont know if they make just "trailer tires" I dont think they do, do they? except for small trailers and such who's tires are smaller than any car.
Post by schweetcruisers on Jun 23, 2012 17:44:14 GMT -5
Trailer tires are sold as "ST" tires, their made specially for trailers. I know Goodyear sells them as "marathon st" and cooper sells a "st" tire, but I wouldn't recommend those. I had goodyears on my cargo trailer and never had sway, I put coopers on and can't go above 55 with out my trailer waging! It's not just marketing trailer tires have different compounds and are built differently so they can handle weight and the riggers of towing! FYI their only available in Black Wall.
Post by LittleVintageTrailer on Jun 23, 2012 18:51:32 GMT -5
Thanks so much everyone! I'm likely going to see if I can get some trailer tires on the Bellwood. I think I'd just feel better. Do you all know based on my tire size what size that would make the rims? Will I be able to get trailer tires to fit these rims or will I have to get new rims as well?
Post by WingedWonder on Jun 23, 2012 23:23:14 GMT -5
That size is a very common trailer tire size, there should not be any problem replacing your tires with proper trailer tires. They are around $75 per tire. Personally I think car tires are fine for a lighter camper, but trailer tires are built stronger. In my state, Michigan, you must use trailer tires to be legal.
'62 Compact '63 Astroflyte '64 Airflyte Think I have a problem
Post by offspringin on Jun 24, 2012 14:10:43 GMT -5
If you do decide to keep the tires you have on there at the very least check the date code. It will be a 3or 4 digit code depending on if the tire was made pre/post 2000. Even if it's got the " hairs" on it doesn't mean it's new. Tires on mine were 16+ years and still looked decently new.
In my research I found that marathons by goodyear seem to have poor reviews. Also the carlisle brand. I ended up getting Maxxis tires for mine. Got a cheap ply bias for the spare. But it usually runs on ST radials.
Post by LittleVintageTrailer on Jun 24, 2012 14:58:52 GMT -5
I'm in MI also.
Another question I had that maybe some of you can shed some light on is the axle/springs. Someone said I could move the springs under the axle and that would help lower the trailer height as it sits high in my opinion. Looking at this picture is that what you would do?
Post by universalexports on Jun 24, 2012 15:42:50 GMT -5
that would work, I done it to my 1st Shasta, however you might have an issue, if you move the axle over the springs, that will leave you with only about 2 inches of spring travel until your axle hits the frame of the trailer (unless it just looks that close in the pic) with a car you buy lowering blocks, not sure if they make them for campers but they would be easy to build. use longer U-bolts and put a spacer between the axle and the springs.
I removed the 2 smallest springs in my spring pack as well, some say thats a no-no. but it worked, and I couldnt tell any difference when pulling it.
Post by LittleVintageTrailer on Jun 24, 2012 17:15:18 GMT -5
Thanks for all the info and pic! I think for now I'll concentrate on just getting some trailer tires on it to start with. Maybe some that aren't so tall and see if that helps before messing with the axle.
Post by schweetcruisers on Jun 24, 2012 18:31:31 GMT -5
I read offspringin's link, and then went and looked at my cargo trailer, I have Carlisle's on it, those are the tires I hate and what seem to go hand in hand in my trailer wag! I personally never had any issues with my Goodyears, I do know they were recalled about 10yrs ago for separating but I think it was only the ones with raised white letters.
And if you move the axle up with tall tires it will make it harder to change a tire, being that much farther up in the wheel well. As well as maybe hitting the wheel well on bumps, if the tires are really taller than they are supposed to be. Make sure you get a tire-top-to-wheel-well measurement.
Those springs do seem quite a bit more flattened out than most I've seen on here (like Universal's), is your trailer a lot heavier than it used to be?
Post by LittleVintageTrailer on Jun 26, 2012 8:05:28 GMT -5
Thank you Cowcharge. Is the springs being flattened out like that a bad thing? I actually haven't towed this trailer yet but will be to take it down to be weighed tomorrow after I pick up a 1 3/8th ball for it. So I'm not sure yet how it tows. I guess we'll find out. I'll also find out the weight of it tomorrow and will let you know. Good advice on measuring the tire top to wheel well ratio!
I wondered because all the spring action comes from a curved starting point, so in the pic it looks like it's heavily loaded (or it's got flat feet). If that was a car and they were flattened that much I'd be concerned, because it means there isn't much spring travel left. Couldn't tell you in regard to your camper, never seen one before. Everything looks in practically new shape though, maybe that brand just has a stiffer suspension or is very light? I bet it doesn't bounce much when you walk around inside. Any other Bellwood owners out there?
Post by LittleVintageTrailer on Jun 27, 2012 10:59:45 GMT -5
Just got back from the grain elevator to weight Jelly Bean. She's officially a chubby 1600 lbs even (: Somehow I lost the hitch wheel on the way there. Hubby came to the rescue and drove my route and found it for me. Then on to the Secretary of State and she's now official with a new title on it's way and new plates. She towed great and all exterior lights work...Yeah!
Glad she towed so well, Kel. I wouldn't change anything right now. Tow her for a while and she how things go.
If you lower the trailer, you'll have clearance issues going in and out of driveways and the like. (dragging at the back) Cowcharge is correct on the tire changing. The wheel well opening is tight in these little vintage trailers and the tire/wheel doesn't clear the hub by much...
My Bellwood was raised when I got it; the axle had been flipped. In other words, the arm of the axle pointed down, raising the trailer 6 inches. We un flipped it. Yours looks to be the way it should be. I would get the opinion of a reputable frame shop on the springs. Changing the running gear can cause problems.
One consideration for tires: typical passenger car tires are 35psi max whereas ST tires will be 50psi max due to heavier sidewall construction. If a tire is nearing or exceeding capacity sidewall deflection is more pronounced. This means the tire is flexing the sidewall more with each rotation. This generates heat. Excessive heat can cause tire failure.
Post by LittleVintageTrailer on Jun 27, 2012 15:12:48 GMT -5
OK, so I called around and got prices. The places I called have ST205/75R15 size tires in stock. The first is Supertrail which is 6 ply C rated (which from what I read means Load Range: C (6-ply) Max. Capacity: 1820 lb Maximum PSI: 50 lb) and the second brand is Goodyear Marathon which I believe are also C rated. The Goodyear's are about $16 more for both installed so price difference isn't a big deal here. Which tire is better to go with? My Bellwood weighs 1,600 lbs even.
Post by azshastanut on Jun 27, 2012 16:49:15 GMT -5
I suggest you check with Michael Heim, President/Owner of Superior Wholesale Tire, 1-800-405-5115. I have purchased from them for my trailers and have never had a problem. Michael will not lead you astray. One thing he told me a month or so ago was that all trailer tires are manufactured outside of the U.S., even Goodyear. The last tires I purchased were ST225 75 E15 10 Ply @ $77.00 each out the door. Mounting, balancing, and valve stems was an additional $10.00. The ST205 75 D15 six ply is $67.00. They advertise on Craigslist Phoenix regularly. The prices vary a few dollars from month to month. I have also purchased from a company in Indiana or Ohio and the price with shipping was $30 or $40 less per tire than I could buy locally. I forgot to mention that Superior is located @ 4919 W. Colter, Glendale, Az. Glendale is a suburb of Phoenix.
By the way, I'd advise everyone to never buy Delta tires. My van came with 4 new ones when I bought it, and two of them had structural failure, and the left front tire was so weird it made the van pull to the right so hard my hands got exhausted driving it (Delta force?). Thought my alignment was shot to hell, but when I replaced the two front tires it drove straight as an arrow again.