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Old 01-31-2016, 02:03 AM   #1
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5.0TA Suspension

When ETI went from the SA to the TA they changed to a spring suspension to give them the adjustability they wanted to fit the varying height of new truck beds. Saw in a recent post that Dexter has come out with a lift kit for the torsion axles and all new 5.0's will go to that style. Anyone know the benefits of one style over the other?
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Old 01-31-2016, 08:03 AM   #2
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Yes, I was wondering about that myself, which one rides nicer and smoother. Although one maybe easier to adjust, I'm more for the smoothness of towing since adjustment is done once.
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Old 01-31-2016, 09:37 AM   #3
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I do know that after 3-4 years with my previous trailer it started to eat tires. After someone suggested checking the shackles for wear, I found the bolt holes in the shackles of the spring axles had elongated and needed to be replaced along with the bushings. I don't see anything to maintain on the tor flex.

Going to replace the bolts with the wet style this spring/summer.
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Old 01-31-2016, 10:47 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by padlin View Post
I do know that after 3-4 years with my previous trailer it started to eat tires. After someone suggested checking the shackles for wear, I found the bolt holes in the shackles of the spring axles had elongated and needed to be replaced along with the bushings. I don't see anything to maintain on the tor flex.

Going to replace the bolts with the wet style this spring/summer.
How many miles do you have on you trailer? I have about 9K on mine, just wondering if I need to change the bolts as well? Or is this just a preventative measure?
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Old 01-31-2016, 11:03 AM   #5
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When ETI went from the SA to the TA ...Anyone know the benefits of one style over the other?

The rubber torsion axle has better shock absorbing than the spring suspension, unless you add shock absorbers to the spring suspension. Our Nash had shock absorbers added at our expense. The Escape rubber torsion axles don't accommodate additional shock absorbers, so I believe they might be a bit rougher on potholed or washboard roads than the spring/shock absorber combo. We haven't traveled rough enough roads yet to weigh in with our personal experience, but have proactively added straps to our fridge for travel.

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Old 01-31-2016, 02:16 PM   #6
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How many miles do you have on you trailer? I have about 9K on mine, just wondering if I need to change the bolts as well? Or is this just a preventative measure?
I'll have about 20k, same as the old trailer when I had issues. If i remember in a couple months I'll post how they looked. Going to the wet bolts as a preventative measure, at least that's the hope.
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Old 01-31-2016, 05:19 PM   #7
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There are two fundamental differences:
  1. the springing medium (rubber in the Torflex, steel leaves in the leaf-sprung beam axle)
  2. the Torflex is independent (when one wheel moves up for a bump the angle of the wheel on the other side is not affected), while the leaf-spring setup uses a beam axle which not independent
Almost all passenger cars use independent suspension at both front and rear, because it is clearly superior for ride and control, and even light trucks have independent front suspension... but the Torflex is a very basic form of independent suspension.

There's one more difference which applies only with two or more axles (tandems): the leaf spring axles are connected by a rocker arm, which (to some extent) equalizes the load between the two axles; in contrast, the Torflex suspensions are completely separate so if the trailer is not level the load is not evenly shared between the two axles.

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The rubber torsion axle has better shock absorbing than the spring suspension, unless you add shock absorbers to the spring suspension.
Yes, the difference is damping. Rubber springs inherently have better built-in damping (due to hysteresis) than leaf springs, but hydraulic shock absorbers are even better.
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Old 01-31-2016, 05:24 PM   #8
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I do know that after 3-4 years with my previous trailer it started to eat tires. After someone suggested checking the shackles for wear, I found the bolt holes in the shackles of the spring axles had elongated and needed to be replaced along with the bushings. I don't see anything to maintain on the tor flex.
I think that's the unfortunate consequence of the quality and design of trailer components (of any brand) - this kind of wear is not a problem in motor vehicles, even the leaf-spring rear suspensions which are still used in most pickup trucks.

I agree: there are no parts requiring maintenance in the suspension parts of a Torflex (although the hubs, bearings, and brakes are the same as with a leaf-spring axle).
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