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Gavin17

Packing trailer bearings and Bearing Buddys

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Gavin17

My trailer is a 2004 SMP tandem axle w/ 4 disc brakes.  I haven't had any issues with it but last season was our first season w/ the boat so I'm trying to cover my bases.  We do quite a bit of towing, with tons of short trips and a couple of long trips per year.  Last summer I replaced the tires, added a spare tire bracket and some boat buckle straps for convenience and welded some prop guard rollers onto the frame since my driveway has a slight grade.  In the fall I noticed that 3 of of the 4 bearing buddys on my trailer were broken.  They were the older plastic types.  I replaced them with the new stainless steel ones and finished out the season.  I was afraid that if since they were broken water may have gotten in so today I was planning to repack all the bearings.  I pulled the first hub apart and it was filled w/ slimy grease.  The bearings felt smooth in my hand so I didn't really do anything to it and just put it back together.  

I think that's incredible.  Now I'm trying to decide If I should check the other ones.  I think I will but are bearing buddys that good?  As far as I can tell these have never been taken apart before on a 2004 trailer.  The caliper bolts were painted and removing them scratched the paint.  I'm assuming that someone in the past didn't service the trailer and spray paint the bolts when he was finished.  The rotors and brake pads looked great too plus they stop just fine.  Is there any other preventative maintenance I should look into.  So far I'm pretty impressed with my trailer.  Maybe I'll wax it today. 

 

 

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Fffrank

You should always pack those bearings before re-installing.  The bearing buddies aren't designed to pack them, just maintain positive pressure to keep grease pushing into them so that water can't push it out.  One of these makes it a very easy job --> https://www.amazon.com/Lisle-65250-Bearing-Packer/dp/B0002NYDYY/ref=pd_lpo_263_lp_t_3?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=FEDKVYMD8CRCP5DX9CH1

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twitchee2
6 minutes ago, Fffrank said:

You should always pack those bearings before re-installing.  The bearing buddies aren't designed to pack them, just maintain positive pressure to keep grease pushing into them so that water can't push it out.  One of these makes it a very easy job --> https://www.amazon.com/Lisle-65250-Bearing-Packer/dp/B0002NYDYY/ref=pd_lpo_263_lp_t_3?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=FEDKVYMD8CRCP5DX9CH1

+1 to all the above.

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Gavin17

I know the buddys don't pack the bearings but I was just amazed at how good of condition everything was in after not being serviced ever.  

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electricjohn

Bleeding and flushing your brake fluid is overdue I bet.  I was always impressed with the Buddy's which I've had on my 1970 trailer (salt water boat) since they were invented.

Edited by electricjohn

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toddrparr

@Gavin17 How well do your prop guard wheel work? Which ones did you get? this is on my list...

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WAwinegrapes

GREAT  PPPPP!  Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance.

 

Everyone forgets about the trailer.  

 

In additioin to the above comments.  Check the carpeting,  and the bunks for dry rot.  Easy fixes to do before you drop your boat in for the day and see one of the bunks floating away with the boat.

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Gavin17

The bunks were shot when I got it.  I replaced them last year.

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minnmarker
1 hour ago, electricjohn said:

Bleeding and flushing your brake fluid is overdue I bet.

Any special way to do this with the tiny reservoir?  I've got a Mighty Vac brake bleeder but can imagine it draining the reservoir before I could top it off.

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WAwinegrapes

be careful with what you use.  Brake fluid is pretty harsh stuff and ruins most stuff it comes into contact with.

that said, a turkey baster will suck out what little is in the reservior.  and/or just loosen the bleeder valve on each brake, use a tight fitting hose aimed into a waste can and let it drain overnight. tighten bleeder valves, fill reservior with new fluid, and then loosen each bleeder valve to allow new fluid to fill brake lines.  

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twitchee2

I just replaced my brake actuator and bled the whole system.  I manually actuated the sliding tongue with a 2x4 and a tie down as my anchor point. I highly recommend changing brake fluid on all vehicles, trailers included.

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