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Reducing Overall Trailer Weight By Replacing Beam Axle with Timbren Axle-Less Suspension

Question:

Hi, In my journey of getting my 5x8 aluminium lighter and lighter I was asking myself about the axle. I currently have a standard 3500lbs leaf axle. My maximum tow weight is 1900lbs when Im fully loaded and I will never overpass this weight. I was looking about different kind of axles timbren axle less, torsion axle etc... If I want to downgrade my axle to 2000-2500lbs, which axle system do you suggest which is good and could manage to be lighter than my current 3500lbs axle with leaf. The lightest possible. Thank you.

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Expert Reply:

A standard beam axle made for a leaf spring suspension will vary only slightly more in its actual weight, depending on its carrying capacity, than two Timbren axle-less systems of different capacities. This is because as weight ratings increase a beam axle tends to have a larger diameter and more steel, which makes it heavier. With Timbren kits there will be a bit less of a weight difference.

For instance, Timbren 3500-lb-rated kit # ASR35HDS02 has a shipping weight of 152-lbs, while their 2000-lb rated kit # ASR2KHDS03 still weighs 110-lbs (28% less).

The 3500-lb-rated beam axle # T3584F-8974 (no hubs) weighs 35-lbs. The 2000-lb-rated beam axle # T20BTR-7258 (again, no hubs) weighs 24-lbs (32% less). Do note this axle is also a shorter length than the 89-inch one rated for 3.5K.

Where you tend to actually save weight is the total weight of the overall suspension; the axle, leaf springs, hangers and shackles, all of which are part of the suspension. This consideration tends to give more of a weight advantage to the Timbrens since they do not use such parts.

If you happened to have hub/drums like # AKHD-545-35-EZ-K (35-lbs each) on the trailer now but you determine you do not need brakes, then you could lose trailer weight by switching to idler hubs like # AKIHUB-545-35-K (only 8-lbs each). In this example the hub change alone would save you 48-lbs.

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