New start.

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Re: New start.

Postby stephent » Sun Feb 26, 2017 12:14 pm

After just over 2600 miles so far this late fall and winter pulling the teardrop..I have found some cheap Chinese tires are very picky about tire pressure. I have to run 2/3 max pressure to get ANY kind of mileage out of them. Changed one out at 1700 miles with the center wore almost out even with watching pressures. I just got back from a run down to Holly Beach, La. last week (before Mardi Gras and spring Break folks were there). I slept like a baby in it with the surf 150 feet away. I got an average of 24.8 mpg going down...23.8mpg coming back thru Tx and up to Texarkana on way better roads with 65-70 mph speed limits on Tx highways...and from Texarkana back up to my home I got 25.4mpg average. Most driving was done from 55 to 65 mph max for mileage. I can't explain the Tx mileage difference...maybe their roads are good and fairly smooth but sticky? lol
I might put quite a bit more miles in it this spring and summer...good Lord willin and the crick don't rise.
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Re: New start.

Postby working on it » Sun Feb 26, 2017 1:30 pm

stephent wrote:After just over 2600 miles so far this late fall and winter pulling the teardrop..I have found some cheap Chinese tires are very picky about tire pressure. I have to run 2/3 max pressure to get ANY kind of mileage out of them. Changed one out at 1700 miles with the center wore almost out even with watching pressures... I got an average of 24.8 mpg going down...23.8mpg coming back thru Tx and up to Texarkana on way better roads with 65-70 mph speed limits on Tx highways...and from Texarkana back up to my home I got 25.4mpg average. Most driving was done from 55 to 65 mph max for mileage. I can't explain the Tx mileage difference...maybe their roads are good and fairly smooth but sticky? ...
In my experience with trailer tires, I found that you have to run them at full listed tire pressure, or above (when they heat up). If not, the stiff sidewall begins to flex more than they're designed for, and overheat (sometimes coming apart). And my experience with the cheap Chinese trailer tires is not good, especially the radials. I'm going to switch to using LT truck tires on my little trailer; its' size and weight don't really require the super-stiff sidewalls that bigger trailers may need. They are more tolerant of slightly lower tire pressure than are trailer tires, since I can vary my trucks' LT tire pressure to adjust for loading (as recommended by the manufacturer).
different tire pressure for same tire.png
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I have an observation about our Texas roads: I don't think they are sticky, nor as smooth as other roads elsewhere (sorry, Grandad-a deceased Tx Highway Dept. manager-). I've only travelled north of the 39th parallel once, to upstate Ohio, to haul a racecar, but I was amazed to find that the further north I went, the smoother the highways were. I think the Texas heat screws up our highways. And the NAFTA-promoted trucking from further south (tearing up our roads). Just my opinion.
2013 HHRv "squareback/squaredrop", semi-offroad, 4x8 TTT, 2065 lbs
  • *3500 lb Dexter EZ-Lube axle, w/brakes *27x8.5-14LT all-terrain tires (x 3)
  • *LED lighting, triple fans, Pioneer stereo *A/C & heat, Optima AGM, inverter & charger(s)
  • *extended-run, on-board, 2500w generator *Coleman dual-fuel stove & lantern, Ikea grill
  • *zinc/stainless steel front racks *more features to come!
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Re: New start.

Postby stephent » Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:25 pm

After approx 3000 miles, I have changed very little from as it was built. But I do need to work on the "manual" hold up sticks for the hatch. They need to be shorter and fit in a pocket up on the sides for my gas coleman stove and the lantern storage box. It tows like a champ.
The latest trip a few days ago was to a USDA Forestry Park a couple of hours away.. I slept like a baby under just one thin blanket at 60 degrees out.. :)
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Re: New start.

Postby Padilen » Fri Jun 02, 2017 10:07 pm




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Re: New start.

Postby stephent » Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:20 pm

After 4200 miles the only problem is with tires. I can't seem to get much over 2000-2500 miles out of bias ply tires.....even with reducing the pressure down to approx 60% of max and the tires wearing fairly even all the way across the treads.. I'm thinking about ordering some radials to fit...145R12....or there about..From what I read I should get about 4 times the mileage out of them I get from the bias plys.
I also went to PMF on the white part of the roof since I was getting some hail pecks :( that was making some moisture/splitting under the paint problems.. That PMF is some tough stuff! :thumbsup:
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Re: New start.

Postby stephent » Sat Jul 15, 2017 7:45 am

teardrop_chuck_box.jpg
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After some thought and hail pecks bad enough to cause the elastomeric roof coating to seep some water under the coating :( ..I decided to PMF the top. I like the looks of the canvas weave slightly showing in the paint. And this front mount chuck-box which is in process of getting it's PMF put on. I have begun to wonder if the construction of a teardrop ever ceases? lol
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Re: New start.

Postby stephent » Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:26 pm

Well... after over 4900 miles on the teardrop I am finally happy with tire mileage.....finally! About 750 miles ago I put on a set of steel belted ST145R12 D/8PR. At this mileage I can't even tell for sure if they have wore off all of the little nibs that were sticking out all about on the tires.
I went camping west of Clarksville, Ar at a lake for a day..caught 8-9 pounds of catfish (2 fish)...got poured on by rain....slept like a baby in the teardrop.....then up to NW Arkansas to see some family and from there up to Joplin (7th St.) and picked up old Route 66 west.. through Kansas...then down in Oklahoma and along that last 15 mile remnant of the old 9 foot wide "Ribbon Road". That was a dusty gravelly thing to drive. It has what I think is some rather dusty SB2 fines or something gray-ish/white and extremely dusty all over most of the remaining 9' wide highway. Still...I did drive along some historic highway. I went way more down on old 66 and then doubled back a ways and took the route down Hwy 69 and hwy 59 down along the Neosho River..purty there.. lots of canoes and kayaks.. And some nice purty scenery. :)
But mainly those radials are the thing.. even though cheap chinese radials they still beat the heck out of the mileage of those sorry bias-ply tires. Rated at 65psi and I run about 58psi and the tread is still FLAT across and wearing that way too. And they carry a speed rating of "L"...75mph. The old bias tires would be 1/2 wore out by now even with careful pressure and checking them often.. And no...I only had 50% of both tires weight rating together on the whole trailer and that's with the tongue weight thrown in too...740 pounds of total sprung/unsprung/tongue weight. The radials handle a little bit better at almost 60psi then the bias did at 60% of their max pressure.. Not sideways rubbery at all.
I'm convinced that radials are the only way to get any mileage out of 12" and maybe even 13" tires now.
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Re: New start.

Postby working on it » Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:09 pm

stephent wrote:Well... after over 4900 miles on the teardrop I am finally happy with tire mileage.....finally! About 750 miles ago I put on a set of steel belted ST145R12 D/8PR. At this mileage I can't even tell for sure if they have wore off all of the little nibs that were sticking out all about on the tires...
But mainly those radials are the thing.. even though cheap chinese radials they still beat the heck out of the mileage of those sorry bias-ply tires. Rated at 65psi and I run about 58psi and the tread is still FLAT across and wearing that way too. And they carry a speed rating of "L"...75mph. The old bias tires would be 1/2 wore out by now even with careful pressure and checking them often.. And no...I only had 50% of both tires weight rating together on the whole trailer and that's with the tongue weight thrown in too...740 pounds of total sprung/unsprung/tongue weight. The radials handle a little bit better at almost 60psi then the bias did at 60% of their max pressure.. Not sideways rubbery at all.
I'm convinced that radials are the only way to get any mileage out of 12" and maybe even 13" tires now.
  • Looks like you found a good set; after using Chinese radials and bias-ply (same mfg., and bought from the same dealer...he only had two of each) on the same trailer at the same time, I found the bias-ply to be better tires, as the radials both had problems later on (about 5000 miles). All four 15" tires were mounted on my 16 ft, dove-tailed car-hauler trailer, on brand new axles I had just installed (so there was no question of improper alignment), with the higher rated radials on the rear axle, bias on the front. Tread wear was almost unnoticeable, and they were better than the 12-year old Denmans they replaced. One was semi-porous, and kept going flat (I took it to the same dealer who tested it and confirmed it), and the other had complete tread separation, after sitting for a year in the yard (more sun on that side). The bias-ply tires still look OK, but I'll replace them before I move the trailer again (been sitting since 2012). I actually had better luck with the Chinese tires than a friend had had with Goodyear Marathon ST radials (14") on his trailer. Three of the four disintegrated, under what circumstances, I don't know, and he got Carlisle bias-plies to replace them.
  • I later got two of those Carlisle bias-plies from him, and used them for 5.5 years on my TTT squareback trailer, and recently replaced them with LT radial truck tires since they were now 12 years old.
  • Over the years, I'had better luck with domestic (including my Mexican-made LTs) than with Chinese tires, and always preferred bias to radial ST tires. But, now that you've found some good tires, and I'm leaning towards radials, maybe there's a chance that there might be some Chinese radials in my future (nah). Good luck with yours.
2013 HHRv "squareback/squaredrop", semi-offroad, 4x8 TTT, 2065 lbs
  • *3500 lb Dexter EZ-Lube axle, w/brakes *27x8.5-14LT all-terrain tires (x 3)
  • *LED lighting, triple fans, Pioneer stereo *A/C & heat, Optima AGM, inverter & charger(s)
  • *extended-run, on-board, 2500w generator *Coleman dual-fuel stove & lantern, Ikea grill
  • *zinc/stainless steel front racks *more features to come!
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Re: New start.

Postby stephent » Wed Aug 02, 2017 2:00 pm

Got the chuckbox installed today, It is PMF'ed like the teardrop top. That brought the teardrop tongue hitch weight up to 120 pds....up from 104pds before. I gotta watch what I put in the box now. Can't exceed 300 pds. Guess I need to go find the local truck scales and weigh the axle weight to get the balance again. I probably will need the extra storage here in a few weeks.....plans pending and not wanting plans of mice and men to go aglee
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Re: New start.

Postby stephent » Sat Aug 26, 2017 8:46 am

]Over 5400 miles on me and the teardrop together now. About 1500+ on the radials and ya can't hardly tell they have hit the road....except for the dust.. lol
I just got back from a quick trip up to south-central Missouri to see my "kids"... youngest is over 40 there....lol
I slept like a baby in that cooled down 62 degree air Thursday nite.. :) I hit about every fleamarket and yardsale I could get the car and teardrop turned around in their drives on the way back.. I found the big pressure canner I had been looking for and at a decent price too! And it had the canning basket inside it too! I made a normal leisurely 4 1/4 hour one way trip into an over 6 1/2 hour trip...lol And found some more "treasures" as well..
Cooked Italian sausage pasta and garlic bagels (don't ask even..lol) for dinner ...supper to us hillbillys.. for me and my daughter...and my ex..and later my son and his new squeeze. when they showed up. Then a sausage gravy and biscuit breakfast Friday morning when my daughter showed back up to open the flower shop up...but after a leisurely few cups of coffee and some serious appreciation of a fine morning to be alive in......all In my teardrop galley.
I had a blast over all of this trip....needless to say. :applause:
I blacked out the florist shop name so I wouldn't post a shameless plug for my daughter...lol

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Re: New start.

Postby stephent » Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:06 pm

Well...after 6900 miles on me and the teardrop hooked together, and driving a few places..and close to 2800 miles on the 12" radial tires..which show very little wear at 45psi pressure!... I had to paint the sides of the tear white. The sunlight had started messing with the plywood thru the clear coats of thinned marine varnish to several coats of full marine varnish. But white is nice too...seems a bit cooler inside now too. :)
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white is ok too...I liked the woody look too..
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