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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul. 24, 2006
    Location
    Seattle, WA
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    5,426

    Default Scary scary! Lost a trailer wheel at 60mph on the freeway!

    I was driving to a horseshow down in Eugene yesterday morning and made it to Portland (about halfway down) when I felt a little "tug" from my trailer (a 3H slant bumper pull). I looked in my mirrors and nothing looked amiss, but within seconds a car came flying up in the left lane next to me honking his horn and flashing his lights. I rolled down my window and he yelled to me that I'd just lost an entire wheel!

    I pulled over (fortunately right at an exit) and ran back to look, and sure enough my right rear wheel had sheared entirely off of my trailer....all of the pins were shorn and the wheel probably a quarter mile back. A lady pulled up behind me and said she'd watched wheel bounce across two lanes of traffic, narrowly missing a couple of cars....THANK GOD no one was hurt!

    I can't believe that I barely felt it when it happened. My trailer was still pulling relatively normally....thank god the remaining tire on that side (which was looking a little overloaded!) didn't blow under the pressure.

    I managed to pull the horses a quarter of a mile to a gas station which was in a relatively secluded spot. A good friend of mine trains at a nearby barn in Lake Oswego, and she dispatched a couple of people to pick up my horses immediately. They deposited them at the hunt club until I could get the wheel replaced on the trailer.

    Thanks to COTH I knew it was pretty likely that the lug nuts had been overtightened (I had JUST had all of the tires replaced on the trailer 2 months and <400 miles ago...wish I'd thought to remind them not to overtighten them then!). When the Les Schwab guys checked out the trailer they said that the lug nuts on the 3 remaining wheels were also overtightened. They replaced everything from the drum out....how sad that I lost my brand new tire and wheel which was apparently immediately picked up by someone else! But all in all I was surprised at how inexpensive it was to replace an entire wheel assembly (~$350).

    Anyhow, I guess my point is to echo a couple of other threads I've read lately. Make sure the folks you have working on your trailer tires know not to overtighten the lug nuts. I can't believe how unbelievably lucky we were to have escaped a catastrophe in the making. Missing all of my classes yesterday was a SMALL price to pay for what happened!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug. 15, 2008
    Posts
    4,586

    Default

    So glad no one was hurt (human or equine)!

    Scary stuff.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2002
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    16,684

    Default

    Wow! I can't imagine! Thank God you and your horses (and everyone else) were OK!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    May. 21, 2008
    Location
    Sonoma County, California
    Posts
    2,511

    Default

    Great PSA! I'm glad you and your horses were OK.

    The same thing happened to me while trailering with a friend sound of Bend (in the middle of nowhere, ever heard of Crescent, Oregon? Main street is dirt?). Except in our case, the owner of the trailer (a friend) SAID she'd had the wheel bearings serviced and re-packed, but in fact had not. The wheel froze up and broke off.

    That's amazing that your trailer kept rolling on one wheel. Angels were with you.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar. 16, 2003
    Location
    Wet and Windy Washington
    Posts
    3,788

    Default

    Glad you were safe!!

    How does over tightening the nuts cause them to shred
    I have horse to sell to you. Horse good for riding. Can pull cart. Horse good size. Eats carrots and apples. Likes attention. Move head to music. No like opera! You like you buy.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2005
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    15,268

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JackSprats Mom View Post
    Glad you were safe!!

    How does over tightening the nuts cause them to shred
    i was thinking that

    op glad all ok but it will teach you a huge lesson in that you must check everything on your car and trialer before you put the horses in everytime

    proabably over weight on to small a vechile as had three horses in the trialer add the weight of the trialer wouldnt be less than the whatever pulling it -- so hence the shred tyres pop due to being over weight

    for exsample a truck that has 1500cc engine wouldnt beable to tow two horses and trialer
    average rice or ifor weights 750k ,plus 600k kilos for each horse at say 14.2hhs is 18k add the 750k
    equals 2550 which is higher than the laeden weight in which the truck could tow

    a single horse weight at 14 2 hh at 600k and 750 trailer is 1350 for exsample so truck can tow the laiden weight via size and weight of truck plus engine size



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2004
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    293

    Default

    Forget the wheel! I'd be working on getting the stain off the seat!

    Glad everyone is OK.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    I'm not an outlier; I just haven't found my distribution yet!



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec. 25, 2007
    Posts
    1,406

    Default

    Why do you post when you have not even read what happened?

    The tire did not shred.

    The wheel broke out around the lug nusts. Metal fatigue.

    CSSJR

    If we do not wish to lose our freedom, we must learn to tolerate our
    neighbor's right to freedom even though he might express that freedom
    in a manner we consider to be eccentric.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep. 17, 2008
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    199

    Default

    I asked my hubby how an overtightened lug nut would cause a wheel to get sheared. He said the metal used for the wheel studs has a certain tension threshold. When you massively overtighten the nuts the threshold can be exceeded and the pressure of the wheel on the studs causes them to fracture. Alternatively, overtightening the lug nuts can strip the inside of the lugs so they loosen/come off when the wheel is moving.

    The best way to tighten the lugs is to have the trailer on the ground and tighten the lugs using a torque wrench, matching the trailer manufacturer's specs.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr. 27, 2009
    Location
    Western Washington
    Posts
    39

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by cocopuff View Post
    I asked my hubby how an overtightened lug nut would cause a wheel to get sheared. He said the metal used for the wheel studs has a certain tension threshold. When you massively overtighten the nuts the threshold can be exceeded and the pressure of the wheel on the studs causes them to fracture. Alternatively, overtightening the lug nuts can strip the inside of the lugs so they loosen/come off when the wheel is moving.

    The best way to tighten the lugs is to have the trailer on the ground and tighten the lugs using a torque wrench, matching the trailer manufacturer's specs.
    Tell that to the gorillas at the tire place who just want to shove 'em in and shove 'em out. They don't check the torque settings on the impact wrench when putting the wheels back on. Further if you aren't watching or mention it to them most of the time they won't even bother to use a torque wrench. They just whack it on with an impact wrench and send it out the door.
    Power and grace
    A beauty sublime
    Thus is the nature
    Of this creature Equine



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul. 24, 2006
    Location
    Seattle, WA
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    5,426

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by goeslikestink View Post
    proabably over weight on to small a vechile as had three horses in the trialer add the weight of the trialer wouldnt be less than the whatever pulling it -- so hence the shred tyres pop due to being over weight

    for exsample a truck that has 1500cc engine wouldnt beable to tow two horses and trialer
    average rice or ifor weights 750k ,plus 600k kilos for each horse at say 14.2hhs is 18k add the 750k
    equals 2550 which is higher than the laeden weight in which the truck could tow

    a single horse weight at 14 2 hh at 600k and 750 trailer is 1350 for exsample so truck can tow the laiden weight via size and weight of truck plus engine size
    It was definitely not a case of an over-weight trailer for my truck! I have a brand new F-350 Diesel truck to haul my trailer (and could have MUCH more trailer than I have). I only had 2 horses in the trailer and not much tack. I would guess that the fact that trailer was only "partially" loaded is what allowed the remaining tire to assume the full weight without shredding. Oh, and as someone else pointed out.....the WHOLE WHEEL came off, not just the tire (the tire was in perfect condition....whoever picked it up off the road before we went back to look lucked out!)

    It's also worth mentioning that I'd just had the trailer FULLY serviced (at a "trailer place," not just a "car place") in January and the all the tires replaced in February. I check EVERYTHING before I load a horse each and every time (especially before a 5-hour drive), but I never would have known that the lug nuts were too tight (where they are now...loosened by the service shop....feels just about as tight to me as they did before).

    Thank you for the explanation, cocopuff! I've had several people tell me they don't understand how overtightened lug nuts could be a problem and therefore it must not be true. The tire shop guys told me that when all of the pins shear at once it's almost always because of overtightened lug nuts. Loose nuts cause different problems (wobbling, one or two pins shearing, etc.).



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul. 24, 2006
    Location
    Seattle, WA
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    5,426

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Watermark Farm View Post
    The same thing happened to me while trailering with a friend sound of Bend.... The wheel froze up and broke off.

    That's amazing that your trailer kept rolling on one wheel. Angels were with you.
    What happened when it happened to you guys? Did the trailer keep going?



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2005
    Location
    uk
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    15,268

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by PNWjumper View Post
    It was definitely not a case of an over-weight trailer for my truck! I have a brand new F-350 Diesel truck to haul my trailer (and could have MUCH more trailer than I have). I only had 2 horses in the trailer and not much tack. I would guess that the fact that trailer was only "partially" loaded is what allowed the remaining tire to assume the full weight without shredding. Oh, and as someone else pointed out.....the WHOLE WHEEL came off, not just the tire (the tire was in perfect condition....whoever picked it up off the road before we went back to look lucked out!)

    It's also worth mentioning that I'd just had the trailer FULLY serviced (at a "trailer place," not just a "car place") in January and the all the tires replaced in February. I check EVERYTHING before I load a horse each and every time (especially before a 5-hour drive), but I never would have known that the lug nuts were too tight (where they are now...loosened by the service shop....feels just about as tight to me as they did before).

    Thank you for the explanation, cocopuff! I've had several people tell me they don't understand how overtightened lug nuts could be a problem and therefore it must not be true. The tire shop guys told me that when all of the pins shear at once it's almost always because of overtightened lug nuts. Loose nuts cause different problems (wobbling, one or two pins shearing, etc.).

    and its worth mentioning all cuases when trialering so others are aware and can help others
    dont get so defensive ---
    cocopuff



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep. 17, 2008
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    199

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by goeslikestink View Post
    and its worth mentioning all cuases when trialering so others are aware and can help others
    dont get so defensive ---
    cocopuff
    Was my post defensive? It sure wasn't meant to be. I read the thread, was curious how this stuff happens and asked my hubby who is a car guy. I figured he would know so I posted what he said to be helpful to those who own a truck and trailer. I believe the person who said shops are quick to use an impact wrench to remove/replace lug nuts and don't bother with using a torque wrench.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2005
    Location
    uk
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    15,268

    Default

    whoops my fault not you the op



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar. 6, 2005
    Posts
    2,051

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    Wow! Glad to here that no one (human or equine) was harmed!
    ***Honorary Member of the "What is BOSS?" Cult...er...CLIQUE***
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    CrayolaPosse ~ Bluegreen



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec. 14, 2007
    Location
    Wilsonville, Ontario, CANADA
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    4,389

    Default

    Wow! How unbelievably scary

    Thank God everyone came out okay - you, your horses and the other drivers around you ...



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb. 22, 2007
    Posts
    3,928

    Default

    That is scary, especially since it isn't something that most of us would even think to check. Thanks for the PSA and I'm glad everyone is okay (and that it didn't break the bank to fix it!).



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct. 31, 2006
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    1,997

    Default

    Very glad you and everyone involved is okay! I had something similar happen driving home in heavy interstate traffic. A large double axel trailer in left lane had a tire sheer right off the side traffic was on. It rolled across the middle lane of traffic, bounced off someone's side, boinged its way right toward the middle front of my grand cherokee and I had nowhere to evasively manuver. The thing miraculously bounced right into my grillwork, took a big rebound off the impact and bounced over my windshield as it went across the median into oncoming traffic. The trailer tower sped off to an exit ramp, not even bothering to see if anyone was affected. I couldn't possibly get over to follow from my lane and the chaos that ensued. It's scarey stuff though.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct. 23, 2004
    Location
    Sisters, Oregon
    Posts
    1,903

    Default

    Wow! This is so timely. I just last week had three tires replaced on my trailer at Les Schwab. I am going to call them first thing Monday morning and talk to them about this.

    Bye the way.... I am heading down Highway 97 right through Cresent, Oregon on my way to California!
    Kanoe Godby
    www.dyrkgodby.com
    See, I was raised by wolves and am really behind the 8-ball on diplomatic issue resolution.



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