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Dexter Single Axle Suspension Kit Legacy Elite

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Here's a Dexter Suspension Kit upgrade with bronze bushings and wet pins on the single axle 2015 Legacy Elite.

 

Old parts removed,  less a few nylon bushings. The pins and bushings removed were in good condition.

 

Removed the straight grease fittings and installed 45 degree fittings:

 

 

 

Installing bronze bushings:

 

 

 

One hand grease gun stand:

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Bill

LE2 Tundra

 

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One hand grease gun stand:  

 

Bill, that is simply brilliant. I hate wrestling with a grease gun while lying on my back under a vehicle. I eventually bought a high end pneumatic gun and am very pleased, but that ties me to a compressed air source.

 

Note to grease gun shoppers. Do not cheap out here - buy an expensive model. The really cheap ones are frustrating, poorly assembled and designed, leak prone, will quit working in the middle of a job, and they make you say bad words.

 

John Davies

 

Spokane WA

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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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And I always thought that those were good words - since I seem to say them soooo much.

 

Bill

 

p.s. I agree, nice design on the one handed stand.

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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Bill and John,

 

Thanks!!!!!

 

Made the stand out of scrap wood and it works great. Made it easy to grease the Ollie!

 

 


Bill

LE2 Tundra

 

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Bill,

 

Thanks, that looks like a very worthwhile upgrade.

 

So it looks like you replaced the all stock grease fittings that came with the upgrade kit with the 45 degree ones?

 

Also, is there a torque spec for the bolts? Did you also loc-tite them? I'll be doing this upgrade for sure.

 

Dave

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2015 Oliver Elite, Hull 107


1998 Ford E-250, 5.4 liter

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I have done this upgrade on my Ollie and it sure is a good thing to do.  The suspension is much more robust.  Just follow the instructions that come with the kit.

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Bill,

 

Just took another look - the stand is still very nice, but, that vise sure could use some work.

 

Bill

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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Dave,

 

The kit came with recommended torque values instructions, like Bwright mentioned and a torque wrench was used. The nuts are self locking, but when we installed a couple of lock nuts and removed them, used Blue thread locker on the nuts during re-installation to be safe. Left the instructions at AL where we did the job. Purchased 45 degree fittings from a Tractor Supply Store.

 

http://www.dexteraxle.com/inc/sdetail/3902

 

Bill, Sharp eye, the vise was in rough shape, but it was the only one available where we did the job.

 

Took one Ollie rig photo before leaving Davidson Rocket Center AL:

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Bill

LE2 Tundra

 

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Also used a Harbor Freight ball joint service kit to press out a couple of old bolts and press in some new bolts, had this kit from another project: http://www.harborfreight.com/ball-joint-service-kit-for-2wd-and-4wd-vehicles-60827.html  

I bought that c clamp set quite a few months ago to replace the ball joints in my Ram 3500, but I am having a hard time getting motivated to do that unpleasant repair. How do you like the tool and do you have any constructive comments for me? Or even the other kind. Any complaints?

 

John Davies

 

Spokane WA

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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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Nick,

 

The stock pin bushings are nylon with no grease fittings.  They wear out pretty quickly and leave the steel pins riding in the spring eye with no bushing and lots of play between them.  This wears the pins and they get thinner and thinner over time.  The whole system gets more and more play in it.

 

The new pins ride in Bronze bushings and are greaseable.    The new shackle plates are about twice as thick as the stock ones.

 

So, you'll end up with suspension that lasts a long time with minimal play and minimal wear.

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John


"I only exaggerate enough to compensate for being taken with a grain of salt."


LE2 #92 (sold),   Black Series HQ19   

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Nick, in addition to making the system more robust and long lived (in exchange for extra time required  to keep the bushings greased) it really quiets the trailer and softens the ride.

 

With a tandem, you get the added benefit of the squishy rubber equalizers which remove much of the little road vibrations.

 

Even brand new regular suspensions can be noisy. If you have ever heard a tandem trailer making tight turns, you will have heard all kinds of unsettling creaks, groans, pops and bangs as the dry pieces shift and shudder against each other. An upgraded, lubricated suspension is relatively silent and will not wake the entire campground if you want to make an early morning getaway.

 

For a single axle trailer, the noises are simply not a problem since the axles don't get binding forces when you are turning sharply.

 

The OEM suspension is garbage, the upgrade makes it serviceable, but not great. I do hope that buyers will keep pushing Oliver to offer a truly a high performance longer travel suspension (NO BREAKAGE PRONE LEAF SPRINGS) as an option.

 

John Davies

 

Spokane WA


"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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Well I just installed this kit on my single axle Elite and all came out very well, but it did take some fussing around. The hard part was getting the mounting holes to realign with the spring eyes. There is very little play and everything has to line up just so. Took some messing with the jack and a pry bar to get everything to go together. I cleaned out all the openings in the spring eyes and spacers/bushings with a wire bottle brush, and pre-greased everything before putting it all together. I didn't need the ball joint press noted above, but instead used a 9/16 x 4" bolt with a washer to drive the bronze bushings home. A couple I could almost push in with my hands so this was not a big issue. It's pretty sweet and way heavier duty than the stock setup. I also went with the standard zerk setup as I could get my grease gun on them without going to the 45 degree zerks. I plan to get some zerk covers (little snap on rubber caps) to cover them up since they are so close to my tires and all the dirt and crud that they will be subjected to.

 

One thing that was a surprise is that the shackles are quite a bit longer (as well as twice as thick) than the factory ones. As a result of this, I can not raise my rear leveling jacks all the way as the jack pads will hit the shackle. It is a matter of only 1/2" or less from being completely raised so I'm not too worried about it. I think there is still plenty of clearance back there. Everything is pretty tight on the little Elite! Very glad to have done this. Especially as we will be on a lot of rough unpaved roads.

 

Dave


2015 Oliver Elite, Hull 107


1998 Ford E-250, 5.4 liter

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One thing that was a surprise is that the shackles are quite a bit longer (as well as twice as thick) than the factory ones. As a result of this, I can not raise my rear leveling jacks all the way as the jack pads will hit the shackle. It is a matter of only 1/2″ or less from being completely raised so I’m not too worried about it. I think there is still plenty of clearance back there. 

Dave,

 

Looking at photos of the Oliver we installed the Dexter kit on earlier in this thread and the jack pads in the full up position clear shackles on both sides, but one side is closer than we are comfortable with.

 

Will you measure the original Oliver shackle center of pin to center of pin distances?

 

Talked to Dexter and there are shorter shackles with wet pins available.

 

Longer shackles, 3.12" center of pin to center of pin, with wet pins are available in single axle wet pin/bronze bushing kit, K71-358-00, the kit we used.

 

The shorter shackles, 2.25", center of pin to center of pin, with wet pins are available in the dual axle wet pin/bronze bushing kit, K71-359-00.

 

Shorter shackle part numbers found in wet pin/bronze bushing kit # K71-359-00 for dual axle trailers:

 

2 each- 018-024-01

 

2 each- 018-026-00

 

Appreciate your post.

 

Thanks,


Bill

LE2 Tundra

 

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Bill,

 

the new shackles have a center to center measurement of about 3-1/8", with an OAL of 4-5/8". The original shackle has a center to center measurement of 2-5/8" with an OAL of 3-7/8". It's a pretty big difference. I was going to measure to see if the new, larger shackles gave my Ollie some extra ground clearance but forgot to measure before the install. I wonder how much those shackles move around while traveling, I can't imagine too much. I want to be sure to give my jack pads good clearance.

 

Those shorter shackles you mentioned would be shorter than the original ones. The new ones are part 018-022-01. Thanks again.

 

Dave

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2015 Oliver Elite, Hull 107


1998 Ford E-250, 5.4 liter

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I am impressed that the stand got painted. Great place to store the gun too…

 

Thanks!!!!!

 

Built the stand out of scrap wood for a friend!


Bill

LE2 Tundra

 

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Bill, the new shackles have a center to center measurement of about 3-1/8″, with an OAL of 4-5/8″. The original shackle has a center to center measurement of 2-5/8″ with an OAL of 3-7/8″. It’s a pretty big difference. I was going to measure to see if the new, larger shackles gave my Ollie some extra ground clearance but forgot to measure before the install. I wonder how much those shackles move around while traveling, I can’t imagine too much. I want to be sure to give my jack pads good clearance. Those shorter shackles you mentioned would be shorter than the original ones. The new ones are part 018-022-01. Thanks again. Dave

 

Dave,

 

We had everything moved out of the house for interior work yesterday, so just got the computer set up and have much work to do in our home this week.

 

Will search the internet when I have time later this week to see if there are other manufactured wet pin shackles close to 2 5/8" center of pin to center of pin.

 

Appreciate the measurements!

 

Thanks,


Bill

LE2 Tundra

 

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While at the factory recently, management told me that the Dexter EZ Flex system will probably become standard equipment in the future.

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Steve, Tali and the dogs: Reacher, Lucy and Rocky plus our beloved Storm and Maggie (both waiting at the Rainbow Bridge) 2008 Legacy Elite I - Outlaw Oliver, HULL NUMBER: 0026 2014 Legacy Elite II - Outlaw Oliver, HULL NUMBER: 0050 2017 Silverado High Country 2500HD Diesel 4x4 

 

      ALAKAZARCACOCTDEFLGAIDILINIAKSKYLAMEMDMA       ABBCMBNSYTsm.jpg

 

 

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Dave,

 

Found the following parts available at Redneck trailer supply. The 2 5/8" on center shackles are about the same thickness as the shackles removed from your Ollie.  Sorry to hear about the clearance issues. Redneck trailer has a toll free number on their site, too.

 

4 each: 2 5/8in Galv Shackle Strap 115052GALV

 

http://shop.redneck-trailer.com/p-830-2-58in-galv-shackle-strap-115052galv.aspx

 

1 wet bolt/locknut pack: Four 9/16 x 3 Shackle Bolts w/Nuts and Grease Zerks SP04-021

 

http://shop.redneck-trailer.com/p-1526-redline-916-x-3-shackle-bolts-wnuts-and-zerks-sp04-021.aspx

 

Hope this helps,

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Bill

LE2 Tundra

 

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Thanks for the links Bill.

 

After all the effort to get the Dexter kit installed, I think I will leave it as is. I really like how heavy duty the setup is. Since the longer shackles that came with the kit probably lifted my rig 1/2" +/-, I'm hoping that will somewhat balance out my levelers not being able to be fully raised. Time will tell!

 

Dave

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2015 Oliver Elite, Hull 107


1998 Ford E-250, 5.4 liter

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Dave,

 

I like the heavy duty Dexter upgrade on my Elite II, also.  If someone uses the Dexter wet pin/bronze bushing upgrade on their single axle Ollie, they could use a two piece split collar on the jack rod to prevent the jack pad from contacting the shackle. Sounds like the jack pad ground clearance might be about the same as the original Ollie since the trailer is lifted slightly with the Dexter modification. My Ollie rear jack rods are 1 3/4" OD, I don't know if the single axle Ollie jack rods are the same.

 

Do you think the two piece split collar would work?

 

Two piece split collar:

 

http://www.daytonsuperiorproducts.com/double-split-collars.html


Bill

LE2 Tundra

 

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Bill,

 

That is a great idea! Yes my jack rods are also 1-3/4" diameter. The stainless split collars are very expensive in that size. I may cheap out and use SS hose clamps on a split piece of black ABS pipe if I can find the right size. It sure will make raising the jacks a lot easier not having to keep looking if I have enough clearance with the shackles. Thanks again.

 

Dave

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2015 Oliver Elite, Hull 107


1998 Ford E-250, 5.4 liter

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Dave

 

please post pictures of your final solution. I too have the Ollie Elite and the Dexter upgrade kit, recently installed.  My  door-side jack has fair clearance, but the opposite side is too close for comfort.  I struggle with a reasonable solution.

 

Thanks

 

Coy

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