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 boat trailers
 different size tandem trailer tires
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Capt Ron
Senior Member

504 Posts

Posted - 08/21/2009 :  12:11:48 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
In Chalmette yesterday I saw a tandem tailer with a junk car on it. The front axle tire was a much smaller diameter than the rear axle tire. The trailer was making a horrible noise. Can one tire roll at a different speed if it is a smaller diameter? Or is this perfectly ok, if not odd? If the diameters don't match, will one tire scuff or slide along the road to 'match' the roll of the larger tire? I know 4WD tractors have to keep the axle ratio coordinated to the front and rear tractor tires or it won't drive properly. Just curious?

Advanced Member

2831 Posts

Posted - 08/21/2009 :  12:26:22 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sounds like an accident waiting to happen! Seems as though the smaller diameter tires will develop excessive heat and the larger diameter tires will incur excessive load! All tires will experience pre-mature wear and possible blow-out!!!

By any chance was the trailer all aluminum and did it have an abnormally short trailer tongue?????

John Castelluccio, Jr.

New SUV-'06 Yukon, new 56 yoa house, new boat-'06 Avenger, Semi-retired-'07, soon to get "new-wife"-'09 and in debt for the rest of my life-Now&4-ever!!!

Edited by - JOHN C on 08/21/2009 12:27:57 PM
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Capt Ron
Senior Member

504 Posts

Posted - 08/21/2009 :  1:35:27 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This trailer was mostly rust but the tongue was not short! The tow vehicle was not in much better shape.
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Junior Member

123 Posts

Posted - 08/21/2009 :  4:35:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The tire on a trailer rotate independently. The tire will not scuff or slide. They can rotate at different speeds. The load will not be equal and defeats the purpose of having a tandem axle trailer.
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New Member

17 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2009 :  5:35:51 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
as long as the springs, shackles, and centerpin are working correctly, the load should equalize across the two axles, regardless of tire size. the weight capacities of the two tires will be different, though.
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Average Member

260 Posts

Posted - 09/15/2009 :  7:03:45 PM  Show Profile  Send bigtdaman an AOL message  Reply with Quote
sounds like a junk man trailer. they will put aney tire they can swip off a junk car.a bgger tire will spin slower than a smaler one i found this out when i put 17in tires on my p/u it had 16in it.it is 5mil per hour difference on my GPS.

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Capt Ron
Senior Member

504 Posts

Posted - 09/15/2009 :  8:46:36 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
It was a junk man trailer for sure. It got me thinking, which is not good. If the tire sizes on the same axle are different(right to left), I guess the trailer would pull to one side even if the wheels spin at different RPM's.
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Chris V
Senior Member

437 Posts

Posted - 09/18/2009 :  11:44:39 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
bigtdaman, Checkout Tirerack.Com they have information on there which will tell you how many revolutions per mile each tire makes in relation to the size of the tire which is a big help when looking for tires to replace the stock ones.
My F-250 came with 16" rims and I now have 20" rims and the tire diameter is pretty close to stock. My speedo is only off about 2 miles per hour at 70mph with my GPS.
On our newer vehicles you can have the dealer reprogram the computer with the new tire size so the speedo reads correctly. Most just charge a small fee which is about $50 or an hours labor.


Edited by - Chris V on 09/18/2009 11:47:04 AM
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