I'm resurrecting this fun old thread which never approached consensus.
I was at the trailer dump station (always the high point of any trip) and for a quick and dirty test to make sure my aluminum rim's lug nuts were tight I grabbed the tire and pulled it back and forth. I've done a lot of mechanic work on auto and trucks but none on trailer axles. I could feel what seemed like more movement than I am accustomed to on a properly adjusted automotive wheel bearing.
So, much to Mary's dismay, our leaving was postponed by me jacking up the trailer, taking off the wheel and checking the adjustment of the wheel bearing - which was fine according to Dexter's adjustment method. After I had it all reassembled there was still seemed like more play than I am used to on other automotive applications.
The bearings were new last year and only have a couple thousand miles on them. When we got home (briefly between trips) I again rechecked the adjustment on both sides this time (no I didn't completely disassemble them, and inspect them like I probably should have, as they are still so new.) After doing some more reading I have just decided that trailer wheel bearings must have more acceptable play than other automotive applications? I drove by the mechanics place who did the work, and had him feel the play and he laughed and said he'd felt way
looser bearings than that going down the road on trailers.
It reminded me of what an old mechanic used to say about wheel bearings- "better too loose than too tight."
As we head out in the morning for a relatively short (250 miles each way) trip - I will keep reminding myself of that saying.....