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Upgrading Underrated Axles on 31-4BH Coleman Lantern Travel Trailer


I purchased a new 31-4BH Coleman Lantern Travel Trailer about a year ago. From day one... I did not like the braking action. I have to be set at full gain to realize any braking from the trailer, marginal at that. I have owned many and have towed many more trailers to know right from wrong. This is wrong. I have fought as good a fight as I could with Camping World, Keystone and now LCI but feel the lawyer fees would be better spent putting the proper brakes or axels on this trailer. It has 2 x 6-5.5 3500# LCI axels w/ 10.25” brakes. Trailer weighs 7500# dry and it payload rating is 2500#. First part of the question is... these axels are clearly under rated for this trailer.... correct?!!! Second part is...can these axels be retrofit to 12” brakes? Third part is what axel do you recommend that I install out of my own pocket now that the unit is out of warrantee?


Expert Reply:

If I'm reading you correctly, your travel trailer has a GVWR of 10K, but has two 3500 axles? If that's the case, your axles are horrifically overloaded and should be upgraded. Installing 12 inch brake assemblies (which likely wouldn't work because the available 12 inch drums would use a different bearing set than a 3500 lb axle) would provide better braking, but wouldn't fix the fact that the axles are underrated.

Your best course of action would be to replace your current axles with 5200 lb axles. We offer a few different off-the shelf replacement axles. To see if anything we offer would work, you'd need to measure your hub face to hub face distance and the center to center distance between your spring seats. If your hub faces are 95 inches apart and the spring seats are 80 inches apart, use # 6340624-EB which includes the axle, the 6 lug hub/drums and the 12 inch brake assemblies.

If the hub face distance is 86-1/2 inches and the spring seats are 71-1/2 inches apart on center, use the # 8327816-EB. Or, if the hub face distance is 89 inches and the spring seats are 74 inches apart on center, use # 8327820-EB.

If the hub faces match but the spring centers do not, it's pretty easy to use an angle grinder to remove the existing spring seats and replacing with with new ones like # TRSS300.

If your travel trailer has a different hub face measurement, you'll need to have your local trailer shop order you a custom axle.

expert reply by:
Mike L

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