cruisemaster suspension bearing overhaul kits

Submitted: Sunday, Aug 28, 2016 at 22:05
ThreadID: 133325 Views:4147 Replies:8 FollowUps:8
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Had quick search and no avail.

Anybody ever purchased a bearing overhaul kit, apart from going directly to suspension manufacturer or a authorised service centre ?

Plenty of bearing supply companies around who should have relevant sizes more a case of knowing what sizes to get -there anyway to tell exactly what size fitted to camper the pdf sales/media burbs are a bit vague for my liking from a technical aspect

Any traveler who goes bush or even on the road will always carry spare tyres alternator belts etc, I believe carrying one spare kit is a worthy thing to be packing, not that i want to have issues just in case, rather prepared than stuck with nearest decent townsite being 300+ kms away

Number of times I have seen the boat trailer parked up with wheel and hub missing due to failure is bewildering esp during July school holidays going north to exmouth coral bay etc

Any info appreciated
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Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Sunday, Aug 28, 2016 at 22:28

Sunday, Aug 28, 2016 at 22:28
The existing bearings & seals have numbers on them.
That is all a bearing supplier needs.

Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 motorhome
AnswerID: 603924

Reply By: Ron N - Sunday, Aug 28, 2016 at 23:16

Sunday, Aug 28, 2016 at 23:16
Dean - 90% of the buggered wheelbearing dramas I've seen, involve damage to the stub as well - so the chances of a bearing destroying itself, and then you being able to just whack in a new one, are not particularly good.

9 times out of 10, when a bearing collapses, the inner race starts being dragged around on its seating area on the stub, thus creating seating area damage and ensuring any new bearing is either difficult to fit - or there's a bodgy fix done, with loctite required between bearing and stub, to retain the bearing race.

The best technique is preventative maintenance. Most boat trailer bearings get checked about once every 5 years (if at all), and that's the reason you see so many wheel-less boat trailers by the side of the road.

Before you set off, pull the hubs, check the bearings for grease quantity and quality, and re-grease if needed.
Check the bearing condition by spinning the hub first, to see if there's any roughness or rumbling.

An inspection of bearing races soon shows if there's any serious marking or roughness that indicates possible failure soon.
A properly-lubricated and properly-sealed bearing will last the life of your trailer/caravan, if a good quality bearing has been fitted, if the seal hasn't been damaged - and it has been supplied with adequate grease.

All too often, bearing installers only slap a sniff of grease around the rollers and reckon that's good enough.
It's not - the hub should be filled with grease to the level of the bearings, to ensure that grease continues to flow to the bearings over time and kms.

By doing so, you also help eliminate an area where water can otherwise collect, when the wheel bearings are submerged.
Water inside a hub will start to rust bearings in as little time as a week, as soon as the trailer/caravan stops.

One area that causes bearing failures, is the seal on the inside. This seal cops a hammering from road debris and flying rocks, dust, and water thrown up by the tow vehicles wheels.

I have always made a point of cutting a heavy duty "seal protector" from thick felt, when re-installing wheel bearings.
You acquire some felt about 10mm thick and cut a washer out of it, with the centre hole just a little smaller than the diameter of the axle. The outer diameter needs to be the diameter of the inner seal.

Push the felt onto the axle until it's positioned just on the inside of the inner seal position.
Coat the surface of the felt facing the seal with a good coating of grease , and install the hub with the seal and bearings.
If there's a gap between seal and felt washer, push the felt washer snugly against the seal.
The felt washer then acts as both a seal protector from road debris, and as an additional labyrinth seal.

I have used this trick for many decades, and I have never had a wheel bearing fail since I started doing it, and I have owned numerous tandem trailers and caravans.

Cheers, Ron.
AnswerID: 603926

Follow Up By: 9900Eagle - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 05:07

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 05:07
Ron,
is dead set on the money with what he has posted. Properly adjusted and lubricated bearings last and last with only grit and water being the enemy.

Because of water ingress problems, many truck companies will not allow their drivers to go into water deeper than 300mm even if they know the bottom is good and there is little flow.



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FollowupID: 873552

Reply By: gbc - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 05:55

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 05:55
They can be ordered with sm, slm or vt bearing kits depending on the load rating of the trailer - info from the order form on their website.
You will have to open up your hubs and get the number off your front bearing to confirm which one you have.
AnswerID: 603928

Follow Up By: MEMBER - Darian, SA - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 13:03

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 13:03
Ditto on the last point...when 'way out back' there is some comfort in knowing that your spare kit matches your existing parts exactly...recording part numbers when your own hub is serviced is the go.
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FollowupID: 873574

Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 07:53

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 07:53
Our caravan uses Cruisemaster components. I rang the manufacturer Vehicle Components and they supplied me the part numbers - went and bought a set of Timken bearings and seal. I also emailed the caravan manufacturer and they emailed me the same part numbers. In the next few weeks I need to do the first bearing service so will confirm the numbers then.

But when you're away it takes very little time to jack up a wheel, rotate it and check for play. I usually do this after the first day or two and occasionally during the trip. I expect most bearing failures were failing for some time. I've never had a bearing failure, but I also never use cheap bearings.
AnswerID: 603932

Follow Up By: GarryR - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 18:13

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 18:13
you will need to check the year of manufacture of the trailer. Both myself and son in law have offroad camper form the same manufacture, but 12 months apart. Both trailer have different bearing sets, and both suspension sets came from vechile components. My son in law's bearings are the same inner and outer, yet mine are different inners and outers. We done a bearing change to be on the safe side although the bearing sets were ok. We washed and regreased the old bearing sets, and vac packed them for emergency use, so we don't have to re grease bearings on the side of the road. Don't just rely on someone else who my have the same trailer, because you might just get caught out accidently by the good faith of others. That why a good pre check at home is good, at least you can get parts easily
location - Warragul -Victoria
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FollowupID: 873580

Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 19:28

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 19:28
Yes, good point Garry. But as posted earlier, there are at least 3 different bearing kits they use for different axles. In my case Vehicle Components told me it was most likely the VT bearing set because my axles were rated at 2.5T. But to be sure I emailed the manufacturer with my chassis number and they confirmed it.
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FollowupID: 873584

Reply By: Dean K3 - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 11:29

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 11:29
I'll give OEM a call see what they say, I don't have the specifics of what was ordered on the camper this info is missing from the project paperwork.

PMI is one of my biggest things going -i hate seeing others lack of mechancial sympathy on some vehicles around the place -often death traps for the innocent in some cases.

Know axles have been pulled apart regreased etc but at times it makes me wonder if they are fully competent or not as concerned as i am.

example of this i could hear a rumbling sound from lhs whilst sitting in silly seat mentioned it, driver eventually stopped checked tyres removed a few ball bearing stones (lateritic gravel in WA) and couldn't find anything really obvious started again noise was worse, even swmbo could hear it now.

Stopped at Moora the starter motor packed it in 4wd was sent off to toyota then autosparkie to be fixed overnight, now the driver could even hear the rumbling sound whilst travellign at semi highway speeds, off to tyre shop see what they could find.

Turns out a wheel stud had snapped and was oscillating inside the hub cap giving the sound, to me this means wheel aren't tight enough and needs to rectified (replaced straightaway) but atlas no leave it until we get back to Perth.

That was nearly a month ago after a 2 1/2 week surveying trip and still to be fixed, fortunately owners going overseas for 3 months so give me bit of time to sort these issues out.

So thus why I get a tad concerned about some maintenance on this camper unit. Sods law clearly states that if anything will go wrong it happens to me.

The 6 P's also comes to mind: prior planning and preparation prevents pi** poor performance
AnswerID: 603934

Follow Up By: Ron N - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 12:22

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 12:22
"The 6 P's also comes to mind: prior planning and preparation prevents pi** poor performance" ....

Never were truer words spoken. The problem is so many people have no idea of the principle of PM. They drive it until it stops, then they're shocked when the failure happens.
Cooling systems are a classic. They only check the cooling system, or get it checked by a mechanic, when the vehicle starts losing coolant or overheats.

Seen some nasty accidents when wheels come off in traffic. One here on the Kwinana Freeway, a trailer lost a wheel, it jumped the 1.6M high concrete rail barrier, bounced on the rail line, went high in the air, and came down on the windscreen of a car going the other way at 100kmh, on the far side of the rail line.

The woman driving the car copped the wheel in the face, she was critically injured and died a couple of days later from her injuries. All because of a lack of trailer maintenance.

Cheers, Ron.
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FollowupID: 873571

Reply By: Dean K3 - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 14:27

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 14:27
sounds kinda familiar we both sand gophers Ron.

PMI is radio comms for Planned Maintenance and Inspection - not to be confused with Telstra issues over past year that's just a competency thing or lack thereof with SOP for start up of system
AnswerID: 603940

Reply By: Member - KeithB - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 17:02

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 17:02
I use a $15 ebay digital thermometer to check bearing and tyre temperatures on the vehicle and trailer. Only takes a moment. Does that make any sense?
Keith
AnswerID: 603943

Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 19:24

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 19:24
Or use your finger?
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FollowupID: 873583

Follow Up By: Member - KeithB - Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 08:38

Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 08:38
Over the years, my finger has let me down on so many things I just can't rely on it any more.
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FollowupID: 873603

Reply By: Dean K3 - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 19:36

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 19:36
glad i had closer inspection outside of lhs wheel totally worn away not sure if it excess toe in or camber issue so this point waiting to see what supplier says topic

I emailed them of this issue and taking it from there -reading the media blurbs (sales specs etc) seems specialist tools needed for alignment -thermal imaging FLIR beyond my budget to test a bearing for excess heat but if you got a seized caliper then you can smell and feel heat flume around 4 metres away admit that point its probably too late
AnswerID: 603947

Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 20:58

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 20:58
Dean, no special tools required although you'd need a decent right angle for camber instead of their digital version:
http://www.vehiclecomponents.com.au/resources/how-to-perform-a-wheel-alignment-on-cruisemaster-suspension-systems
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FollowupID: 873593

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