Tag Axle

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sasteel

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Oct 11, 2005
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Should the inclusion of a tag axle be considered a plus for a diesel Class A.? I would assume that the rear end would have less of a tendency to drag over uneven driveways, but do they ride better or have any drawbacks.? I'm new in the market for a coach and am trying to get up to speed on what to look for.

Scott Steel
Springville, TN
 

Ron from Big D

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Tag Axles are there for a reason.  They carry weight that is too much for the drive axle.  They do help on the driveways like you say, but they also require the purchase to two extra tires periodically.  Tags also tend to reduce turning radiai on large coaches, but you can dump the air in the tag and make it turn better in tight places.  Some rigs are equipped to lift the tag completely off the ground.  I doubt you would notice any difference in ride or handling.

 

caltex

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I would think that the two axles so close together would have a stabilizing effect.  They tend to resist turns so wind and truck forces would be countered to some extent. I know on boat trailers, a second axle has a big effect on keeping the trailer straight behind the tow vehicle.
 
T

Tweedy

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Hi----- no experience with tags. However, recent thread had discussion regarding driving on beach (at some places, that is attractive) to which I chimed in with a comment provided by a beach park ranger: if the tag ends up bearing the weight (uneven terrain) the drive wheels may unload and leave you without drive traction. Just something to keep in mind where ever that might ocurr.
Regards from Memphis
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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We had one tag axle coach and I would say it rode better in one regard: less tendency to pitch and bound over RR tracks and such. I think the extra axle stops the coach from pivoting around the rear axle when the front bounces up.

I noticed no difference in turning radius, but the tag's tires did tend to drag a bit in a sharp turn. I could see the "skid" marks if it was dirt and once I saw the scuffed rubber on pavement.  My coach had no provision to raise the tag, so it just dragged in a turn.

And yes, the extra two tires are a notable expense.
 

Jim Dick

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Hi Scott,

A tag axle, as stated earlier, is there to carry extra weight. It also does all the other things mentioned. One thing to keep in mind is a tag will reduce the amount of bay storage. This is important in a 40' coach. When you go longer then the extra length takes up much of the lost storage so you end up with the same amount as a 40'. Sometimes I wish I had a tag. :)
 

Ron

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Since we have never exceeded our weight limits I have never had a desire to have a tag axle.  Just another eight to nine hundred bucks to spend come tire replacement time.
 
N

Newbee

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I'm sure tag axle's on Diesels are a completely different story than on my old 35' Gas Bounder, but I've always assumed that the reason for my tag axle is that they built the coach on too short a wheelbase chassis to start with.
 

Jim Dick

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Ron,

I have never exceeded the axle rating either but could easily do so if I buy the right toy. Most of the time I have no need for the extra axle but the carrying capacity sure is nice.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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but I've always assumed that the reason for my tag axle is that they built the coach on too short a wheelbase chassis to start with.

Not so, Newbee. It's the same reason: carrying the weight.  The chassis under your older Bounder was likely BOTH short and understrength.  They fix the length by "stretching" the chassis (actually cutting it apart and inserting a section) and the capacity by adding a tag or changing to a heavier axle.
 

Ron

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Jim Dick said:
Ron,

I have never exceeded the axle rating either but could easily do so if I buy the right toy. Most of the time I have no need for the extra axle but the carrying capacity sure is nice.

We have never exceeded the GVWR either but before we got the rear axle upgraded to 20K we would come withing a 100lbs when we filled the water tank and fuel tank.  Since they did the paperwork to upgrade the rear axle to 20K  we have never even come  come close.  Thats why I just as soon not have a tag to put tires on.
 

Karl

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Not having owned anything other than a Bounder with a tag, I can't comment on ride differences, but will say that passing semi's coming from the other direction does not cause a lot of body roll; same with quartering winds - no problem. Yes, there are two more tires to replace, but I also have 2 more braking wheels!
 

Ron

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caltex said:
Ron

So what did they do to upgrade your axle to 20K (other than paperwork)?
Our coach is a 1999 American Eagle which came with a 19K rear axle.  I found out the 2000 American Eagle and Dreams came with a 20K rear axle.  The part numbers are the same.  There was a tire recall on the 99 coaches and larger tires were installed.  I asked American Coach and they contacted Spartan who as I understand it contacted the rear axle manufacturer to get the appropriate upgrade documentation which was given to to us with the appropriate decals and letter through American Coach.  Was basically recertification through paperwork and new decals.  As I understand it American Coach took the same actions for other owners that requested it.


 
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