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The Sprung Axle Versus Torsion Axle Tracks


to-side transfer when one side of the trailer encounters uneven terrain, reducing stress on the load. Triple axle systems are also not recommended unless axles are specifically designed for triple applications.


There is nearly no maintenance required for a torsion axle beam since it is mostly a self- contained system therefore replacement parts are not characteristically available. Removable spindle options have recently been introduced to the market reducing field service costs by


allowing the replacement of only the spindle in the field instead of the whole axle. Torsion axles with removable complete trailing arms are also available which allows the start angle to be changed.


Torsion axles can be upgraded to an air ride suspension system offering an improved softer ride. This high end feature is used most often in horse trailers or race car trailers due to cost. It’s usually available on 7K or 8K torsion axles in single, tandem or triple applications.


Warranty coverage for torsion axles is generally longer than leaf spring. Most manufacturers offer a 5-year limited warranty on the suspension system where sprung axles are usually a 2-year limited warranty. Few manufacturers extend warranties to 3 years with the use of matching HAP (hanging and attaching parts) kits.


Example of a torsion axle.


While most agree that torsion axles are less suitable for rough terrain, off road use, or heavier loads, the agricultural and specialty markets are seeing an increase in torsion axle use for high vibration applications. In some heavier vibration uses – such as wood chippers – extreme duty torsions are preferred over sprung axles because the rubber will remove the metal to metal contact factor that could result in potential damage.


Satisfaction = Happy Customer


Torsion axles will provide a smoother ride with less maintenance where leaf spring axles are more durable, less expensive and easier to repair. Your overall satisfaction will depend on selecting the axle and trailer that best meets your intended use based on the load and application. And as always, properly loaded cargo coupled with periodic maintenance will assure a long axle and suspension life.


Feature Ride Quality Capacity Range Options available Warranty Coverage Applications Maintenance Leaf Spring Good 2K – 27.5K


Equalizer HAP Kits


Heavy Duty Suspension Systems


Equipment, RV, medium & heavy duty applications, recommended for off-road or rough terrain applications


Requires periodic maintenance and part replacement


Rubber Torsion Better 600 lb – 12K in 100 lb increments


Removable spindle air ride suspension upgrade extreme duty


2-year limited* (3 years with HAP kit) 5-year limited*


Cargo, agriculture, marine, horse; best when fully loaded at all times


Minimal maintenance


*Warranties provided vary based on manufacturer. Warranty information stated is typical for the axle market. Check with your axle manufacturer to verify warranty duration.


www.NATM.com March/April 2016 71


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