SPRING FLING

   

One of the big discussions about Aliners, and some other brands, is how the springs in the corners of the trailers that help you lift the roof panels have a tendency to "flip" 180° and basically destroy either the front and back panels of the trailer, or the roof panels by poking holes from the inside to the great outdoors. When the springs flip around you are trying to either push the roof up or push the roof down against the spring pressure in the wrong direction. Clever, eh?

The main cause of the problem seems to be a severe lack of engineering at the end of the spring inside the wall. The spring is only kept in place by a few pieces of wood grabbing on to it. If those pieces of wood become loose, or they get wet and start to rot they will let go of the spring and that's all she wrote.

What some people have done, both before and after the spinning event, is to put pieces of pipe in the coils and then attach those pipes to the wall of the trailer to physically keep the springs from spinning. Some people even run a piece of pipe all of the way across the front and back between set of springs and use them as things like towel racks. That IS clever.

From the looks of it I don't think this can happen in my 2017 Aliner. Using the annotated picture above:

-- Spring tail "A" is putting pressure on the coil by pressing on the roof panel "B" which would spin the spring counter clock-wise (CCW). The coil can't spin CCW because it is resting on the wall of the trailer at "D".

-- There doesn't seem to be anything trying to spin the spring clock-wise (CW).

-- I can't put a pipe in the coil and straighten out the spring so that the center of the coil is in line with arrow "E", because to turn this coil the end going into the wall at hole "E" would have to go 'up' and to the right, because the other side of the coil is resting on the wall at "D". Also, if I were to rotate the coil CCW the tail "A" would get in the way of the side of the trailer at point "C". I wouldn't be able to put the side wall up all of the way.

Aliner has done a bad job of putting a little caulk around the spring coils. That all seems to be holding where it is, so I'm pretty sure the springs in my trailer are not on the move...but I'm going to keep a close eye on all of this. I'll also cut a couple of pieces of hardwood dowel and keep them handy in case things go to hell out in the wild.

If you have one of these pop-ups where the spring is a little more 'free standing' and not resting its coils on the wall you should really keep an eye on things, or even look around for fixes now and make them before something bad happens.

2018-03-03