Alex Holden (alex_holden) wrote,
Alex Holden

New old wheels

The trailer-tent chassis came with only two wheels (ie. no spare) and the tyres are in poor shape - they are both badly cracked due to age. Not much of a surprise really, but I was a little irritated that the eBay seller claimed they "look fine" considering I had to tow the thing home on them and I didn't have a spare if one of them failed. I set out yesterday to find either one wheel of exactly the same size and type to use as the spare (I knew this was unlikely) or a matching set of three that fit the hubs on the axle.

I'd carefully measured the relevant dimensions of the old wheels so knew what size I needed. Unfortunately the local scrapyard is run by a chap who first kept me waiting around in torrential rain, then struggled to understand such concepts as 'measurements' and 'it's not a car, it's a trailer,' then repeatedly tried to sell me some part-worn tyres despite my explaining why I'd rather get new ones and I was only looking for a wheel.

This turned out to be a blessing in disguise however, because my next errand was to the tip recycling centre, where I found a big pile of wheels and tyres in the rubble skip. Half an hour of sorting through and measuring, and I'd found four matching suitably-sized wheels with tyres still fitted. The people running the tip here are pretty good in that they will sell you practically anything for a few quid - this time I picked up the three best wheels for £10 the lot. The tyres on two of them are old but usable, and the third one is starting to crack a bit but it will do for now as a spare (I'll get three new ones put on at some point after the caravan is finished). I think the wheels look pretty good and they fit perfectly.

One of the new wheels is leant against the chassis in this picture. I don't suppose anyone recognises what car they came from? They are 13" wheels and they have 'GM' (presumably General Motors) stamped on them.

This morning I took the brake drums off to check the condition of the brakes and bearings. They want a little bit of cleaning up but otherwise they are all fine. I had been concerned that the bearings were a little wobbly, but they are the taper roller type so the play will all be adjusted out when I put them back together. It's an Al-Ko caravan chassis (they are a good make) and generally in good/excellent condition so I'm very happy with the purchase.

In other startling revelations:

Cats enjoy cardboard boxes and Rayburn stoves. Who would have thought it?
Tags: caravan, engineering

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