so, i have a 2006 jeep wrangler unlimted and am in the market for a small [8 -12'] vintage travel trailer [cardinal, shasta, jet, caveman or kenskill?]. it occurs to me how low many of these trailers are to the ground. i've had pop up tent trailers in the past and they work okay off roading...nothing major, just to out back rural camping spots. does anyone have any experience or knowledge in the area of lifting a smaller trailer? i've hear of putting the axle under the leafs. i run 30 inch tires on the jeep [tow vehichle] and am willing to go down to p235's and am curious if i could run the same size tire on my trailer [yet to be purchased, still shopping and doing my homework]. i'm concerned about clearence and not thrashing the poor trailer, ya know? i'm most interested in getting a 60's or early 70's cardinal w/ forward kitchen and rear dinnette and they're low riders not to mention my poor stock jeep when a trailer's mounted to was planting corn w/ my dang coleman taos tent trailer for crying out loud! here's pics of the tow vehicle, appreciate any insight or words of wisdom p.s. not afraid to drive the speed limit to get to the trailhead.

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Comment by Pat Daly on November 4, 2008 at 9:36pm
Flopping travel trailer axles means mounting that the axle or axles under the springs as opposed to over the springs. This raises the trailer maybe 5 to 6inches.
It's great for more ground clearance. But also for dry camping in rough terrain and 4X4's like your jeep that sits higher so flopping the axle can be done with a vintage trailer. You want your trailer to tow level.

I'd plan on having a covered workspace with a good concrete floor since you'll need to jack up the trailer, pull the springs and axle. And, since you'll be customizing the suspension on a vintage travel trailer this is a great opportunity to completely rebuild or replace the springs, bearings, brakes if any, ubolts and have your original rims trued, sand blasted, primed and repained in their original vintage colors... I hope! It's not as hard as it sounds. I would be nice to also have a buddy or good welding shop in the neighborhood.

Here's a great article on flipping travel trailer axles with good photos from RVers Corner.

Another good source that I've used for heavier replacment suspension parts is the old line Dexter Axle Company. Their staff really knows their stuff and they use to have a kit for flipping axles. Here's some photos of one travel trailer axle job.

The process basically involves unbolting one end of each spring, unbolting the axle and removing the axle from the springs. The springs are reinstalled.

Two new axle perches are welded to the top of the axle counter to the old perches. The axle is then bolted under the spring.



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