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Old 02-13-2018, 08:46 AM   #1
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Jack from Axle, or Frame?

So I am looking for some guidance on where to place a bottle jack to be able to remove the tires/hubs to repack my bearings for the first time. I had a flat last year and AAA jacked next to the U-bolts on the Axle, as well as the Tire shop who replaced all four tires last spring after 2 failed.

However, the owners manual says jack from the frame. In my research, I have read concerns that this could actually damage the frame. The secondary reason I ask is, I can buy a simple bottle jack and a jack stand for safety if I lift from the axle. But if I need to lift from the frame, I'll have to pony the extra dough for a safe jack which has extensions to be able to lift from the frame. But that's like $260.

Anyone care to weigh in on what they have done, or if they have had any problems?
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Old 02-13-2018, 09:24 AM   #2
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Tim, the instructions state to jack from the frame when raising the trailer. This is to prevent damaging the axle. Which is being made with a thinner wall all the time.
If you jack from the frame, it can be done with a bottle jack. You will just need a lot of blocking to set the trailer on when you get the axles off the ground.
Some pull the trailer up on a trailer aid and do one wheel at a time then have move the trailer aid to a different wheel.

I use a bottle jack to raise mine when I want to work on the bearings, brakes, etc.
I welded a piece of angle iron onto a pipe coupler that just fits over the jack head. This cradles the axle real nicely. I screw the center out on the stem of the jack so the it hits the bottom of the angle iron. That way it's not resting on the jack housing/body and the the stem bears all the weight.
I place that close to the spring hangers/u-bolts. Take the wheel off, brake drum off redo the bearings, replace drum and wheel, adjust the brakes and move on to the next wheel.
Just make sure you either have the trailer hooked to your tv, or secured in some method where it can't roll off the jack/blocks or what ever method you are using.
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Old 02-13-2018, 09:38 AM   #3
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Lloyd,

So I have to ask, for my application of a fully loaded trailer at 8K lbs., is a 6 ton bottle jack sufficient to lift one side, or does a 20 ton like yours add any real benefit. Obviously a 20 ton has more capacity, but that comes at a cost of being bigger, probably heavier, but will it really give me anything more that I wouldn't already have with a 6 ton?

IE will I be struggling with a 6 ton, and be effortless with a 20 ton? Of would a 20 ton be overkill, akin to renting an oversized U-haul to move a recliner, where the bed of my truck would have done just fine?

Thanks!
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Old 02-13-2018, 09:51 AM   #4
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Are you talking about lifting one whole side, or, one side of an axle at a time?
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Old 02-13-2018, 09:58 AM   #5
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My goal is to lift just behind the hangers on the frame to give me access to lift a wheel off on that side of the trailer so I can remove one wheel at a time. But if I'm lifting from the frame, both tires on that side will probably be lifting off the ground equally, right?

I just need to lift enough to give me access to place a jack stand for security, and remove one wheel. Once I'm done repacking the bearings and put the tire back on, adjust the jacks as necessary to remove the other tire on that side.
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Old 02-13-2018, 10:02 AM   #6
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I think you might be asking a lot from a 6 ton jack. If that is the way you think would work best for you, then by all means give it a try. Then you will know if you have enough jack for the job. Worst case scenario, you will have to pop for a bigger jack if the 6 can't do it.
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Old 02-13-2018, 10:03 AM   #7
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The U bolt attaches the axle to the
frame, I place my Jack on the U bolt.
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Old 02-13-2018, 10:59 AM   #8
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I put 6 ton bottle jack right behind the rear shackle and right in the middle of frame, works great . Put jack on some 2x6's to get jack high enough to start. When tires are off ground ,add safety stand in front of front shackle and another behind jack. simple. btw make sure you block the opposite side wheels good. or if you are leary ...hook up truck .
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Old 02-13-2018, 01:56 PM   #9
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What size jack stands do you use, seeing as we have similar units. 2 ton, or 3 ton jack stands?
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Old 02-13-2018, 05:28 PM   #10
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As long as you place jack on or between the u bolts you shouldn't have any problems. Yes your manual & others here will say do not do so, but I've done it for the last 40 years on every trailer/rv I've owned without any issues. You'll have to have a tall bottle jack &/or lots of blocks to get a wheel off the ground jacking from frame. IMHO the more blocks the taller the distance the more dangerous it gets.
If by chance you have the auto hydraulic levelers you don't need the jack, just push the buttons. Yea the manual & others here will say don't do that either, but mine sat for 4 days on the levelers only while waiting on 4 new brake backing plates & we stayed in the 5er at the time.
The fact is you choose how/where/with what you get the wheel off the ground , but do it as safely as possible, regardless of what I or anyone else on here suggest . SAFETY is the main thing!!
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