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JCloughie

Wheel Detachment!

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2011 Bailey Valencia, fully serviced, last time in February. Since towed about 650 miles. 200 miles into France we lost a wheel at about 50. Tell tales where fitted and checked as OK before the trip.

 

Assistance have condemned the wheel and the axle. They want to give me a price to fit a new one but I have no confidence in their ability as they used the steadies to put the spare wheel on and it bounced so much on the back of the transporter that a weld was fractured on the jockey wheel, they also pulled a bumper off when trying to get it sited.

 

We have had the van sited waiting desisions, on a nice quiet municipal costing 10:60 Euros per night, but there is nothing to see or do in the area.

 

Anyway I feel it needs specialist kit to change so we are planning to cut very short our first ever long holiday and have the van brought back to Alko in Warwickshire to be done properly.

 

We have European breakdown with CSMA CC insurance and holiday insurance but I think that's just medical.

 

Just to add to our troubles the charger failed today.

 

Yes people will say its a Bailey, what can you expect. But the chassis is Alko and the charger will be made by a third party.

 

Thinking of taking legal advice on return to UK.

 

Any thoughts or advice greatfully received.

 

John

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Sorry to hear of your troubles. Not a great set of circumstances.

I think you have a claim against the assistance for the damage incurred if you have gathered evidence and recorded the events and names of drivers and the details etc. .. but other than that it sounds like it's down to you unless you can prove an inherent manufacturing fault.

Out of interest, did you fit the new recommended WSL wheel bolts? - How did the detachment happen? Did the wheel bolts come out or did the wheel break?

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I don't think the WSL bolts are recommended for the U1 - they are fitted to the U2 but the U1 has high tensile bolts torqued to 160nm. You could invalidate any insurance/warranty by fitted the wrong bolts.

Did the OP re-torque the bolts after the service as recommended in the handbook. - in fact it's not a bad idea to re-torque them after every outing.

When I bought my U1 and when it's been serviced I've had to witness that the wheel bolts were torqued up and on each occasion have been instructed to re-do it again after 50miles or so. I give mine a tweak with the torque wrench before leaving home - I don't bother whilst we are away.

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Whilst it's true it's an Alko chassis, why is it not a widespread problem with other caravans that use the Alko chassis? Why do people not feel the same need to torque up the car wheels after every trip? It seems to me this is fairly and squarely a Bailey problem.

 

John, have a look at the alternative charger / psu's that are available in almost every case theyre cheaper and certainly the one I got was a better design and much better quality too than the Bailey standard fit.

Edited by nme2no1

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I don't think the WSL bolts are recommended for the U1 - they are fitted to the U2 but the U1 has high tensile bolts torqued to 160nm. You could invalidate any insurance/warranty by fitted the wrong bolts.

Did the OP re-torque the bolts after the service as recommended in the handbook. - in fact it's not a bad idea to re-torque them after every outing.

When I bought my U1 and when it's been serviced I've had to witness that the wheel bolts were torqued up and on each occasion have been instructed to re-do it again after 50miles or so. I give mine a tweak with the torque wrench before leaving home - I don't bother whilst we are away.

The WSL wheel bolt was developed exactly because of this issue. .. See this thread --> http://www. caravantalk. co. uk/community/topic/95702-valencia-m1-wheel-bolts/?hl=%2Bwsl+%2Bwheel+%2Bbolts

 

Also, give Bailey tech support a call and ask them, they where the ones that recommended WSL to me.

I used to have to check my wheel bolts at the start of EVERY journey, and always found one or two slightly loose. Now I check every other trip and have never found a loose WSL bolt.

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Not good mate but you are save and well.

 

hope you get sorted soon

 

James

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What a nightmare. It's typical that this type of stuff has to happen when you aren't in your own country. I thought I was unlucky when I arrived in the south of France this week to be greeted by an engine management light. ... That is nothing compared to your headache. Given the issues, I think I would (with a heavy heart) do the same and return home. Hope you get a speedy resolution and are on your way again soon.

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Sorry to hear of your troubles. Not a great set of circumstances. I think you have a claim against the assistance for the damage incurred if you have gathered evidence and recorded the events and names of drivers and the details etc. .. but other than that it sounds like it's down to you unless you can prove an inherent manufacturing fault. Out of interest, did you fit the new recommended WSL wheel bolts? - How did the detachment happen? Did the wheel bolts come out or did the wheel break?

Yes I have kept all info on the assistance garage and the organisation will pass this on to their litigation dept.

 

The wheel came of whole. Is studs worked loose. Strangely enough it was towing better than normal up to the second it came off.

 

The bolts were changed by the dealer as per Bailey recall and log book brought up to date. Don't know if they are WSL but they are the correct ones.

 

John

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Sorry to read your having a bad time :(

 

Hope you get sorted and as James said glad you're safe - could of been nasty :o

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Nightmare. Glad to hear you are OK - let me guess, nearside wheel? How much damage has it done to the side of the van and wheel arch?

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I don't think the WSL bolts are recommended for the U1 - they are fitted to the U2 but the U1 has high tensile bolts torqued to 160nm. You could invalidate any insurance/warranty by fitted the wrong bolts. Did the OP re-torque the bolts after the service as recommended in the handbook. - in fact it's not a bad idea to re-torque them after every outing. When I bought my U1 and when it's been serviced I've had to witness that the wheel bolts were torqued up and on each occasion have been instructed to re-do it again after 50miles or so. I give mine a tweak with the torque wrench before leaving home - I don't bother whilst we are away.

My service people have never ever advised me to check the torque. However I am aware of this and did so. Also used tell tales and kept an eye on them.

 

By the way I was very dissatisfied with the dealer I have used from new for other reasons and had already vowed to stay away. In future I will use Chipping Sodbury. Wish I could name and shame the dealer however I understand CT's reasons for this. If anyone wants to know who to avoid in Gloucestershire and why send me a PM

 

 

I don't expect to have to re-torque on a trip.

 

John

Whilst it's true it's an Alko chassis, why is it not a widespread problem with other caravans that use the Alko chassis? Why do people not feel the same need to torque up the car wheels after every trip? It seems to me this is fairly and squarely a Bailey problem. John, have a look at the alternative charger / psu's that are available in almost every case theyre cheaper and certainly the one I got was a better design and much better quality too than the Bailey standard fit.

I hear what you are saying, I find this very strange. I will be speaking with Alko tomorrow and will ask them.

 

Re charger, I was going to try this on the guarantee, if not I will take your advice.

 

John

The WSL wheel bolt was developed exactly because of this issue. .. See this thread --> http://www. caravantalk. co. uk/community/topic/95702-valencia-m1-wheel-bolts/?hl=%2Bwsl+%2Bwheel+%2Bbolts Also, give Bailey tech support a call and ask them, they where the ones that recommended WSL to me. I used to have to check my wheel bolts at the start of EVERY journey, and always found one or two slightly loose. Now I check every other trip and have never found a loose WSL bolt.

My bolts were correct, service book stamped to that effect, if there has been a further update I would have hoped I would have been informed.

 

John

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Name and shame them NO we dont want to get in the way of bad service do we.

 

sorry it just bugs me.

 

james

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Glad to hear that you and yours are unharmed and hope things get resolved quickly with minimum additional hassle.

 

In respect to litigation I suspect a critical point will be whether the bolts had been retorqued a few tens of miles after the wheel had been refitted. Wheel loss is after all very well documented and the precautions needed well published, as indeed it is on forums such as this one.

My supplying/servicing dealer even back in 2008 required that I had to sign, that I had witnessed mine being torqued and understood it was my responsibility to check them at between 20 and 30 miles from leaving the dealership. For the record that was not on a Bailey but a Hymer.

 

Edit: I read now that you understood this requirement and did so; that should help any legal action.

Edited by JTQ

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The problem lies in the fact that the wheels & tyres are of questionable quality &, being 15" aggravates this. If they are not balanced to compensate for the poor quality they will vibrate themselves off.
The method frequently (as in always!) used after service to demonstrate the 'tightness' of the bolts serves little purpose other than to prove that they have been done up to…. something.

 

To check the correct torque & seating the wheel needs to be off the ground with the bolts undone. The bolts should then be done up to, say 20 Ft Lbs or so. This allows the wheel to centre itself via the bolt cones, on the hub (which will not happen if it is torqued up with the wheel under load) The final torquing can be done with the wheels on the ground. This is a common cause of self-loosening bolts as the wheel frets trying to self-centre.

 

It is permissible to do the above check (eg. a re-check) with the wheels on the floor, PROVIDED that they have been centred previously, but the bolts should be un-done 1/4 turn before being re-tightened. This allows the correct torque to be achieved.

 

I've never trusted anyone else to do this job & always re-seat the wheels myself after they have been disturbed. Hence my faith in not re-checking more than once a year.
I'm sure you're all tired of me saying my wheels do not come of. ......but it's true. ...all it takes is the right methodology.

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What a nightmare. It's typical that this type of stuff has to happen when you aren't in your own country. I thought I was unlucky when I arrived in the south of France this week to be greeted by an engine management light. ... That is nothing compared to your headache. Given the issues, I think I would (with a heavy heart) do the same and return home. Hope you get a speedy resolution and are on your way again soon.

Thanks, its looking like Warwickshire is the closest place to me, hope you solve your issue, we were planning on 6 weeks in Provence.

 

John

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Is there any chance the brake on that wheel could have over-heated on the journey?

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The wheel came off whole and the studs came loose.

Has anyone else heard of this happening before?

I am assuming the studs are normally tight in the brake housing and the nuts hold the wheel on the axle.

 

If I have read this right, it is almost as if someone loosened your studs deliberatedly.

Or have I read this wrong?

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The wheel came off whole and the studs came loose.

Has anyone else heard of this happening before?

I am assuming the studs are normally tight in the brake housing and the nuts hold the wheel on the axle.

 

If I have read this right, it is almost as if someone loosened your studs deliberatedly.

Or have I read this wrong?

No, its a well known and documented fault with early Alutech vans, especially the single axle Unicorn as it uses bigger wheels.

 

Baileys official line I believe is -->

 

From the 1st September 2011all Bailey Caravans wheel bolts changed to the new type

Delta Protekt VH301 GZ low friction coating, however the torque value for all Orion's, Olympus,

Pegasus and Unicorn Seville, Barcelona and Pamplona fitted with these wheel bolts is 120NM/88lb ft. .

* The original wheel bolts and the new Delta Protekt VH301GZ low friction coated bolts can be

used on all ALU-TECH steel spare wheels and should be torqued to 120NM/88lb ft.

* All ALU-TECH caravans built prior to September 2011 and Series built caravans with OE fitted

alloy wheels as standard should be torqued to 110NM/81lb ft again the same wheel bolts should be used

on the steel spare wheel and torqued to a value of 110NM/81ft lb.

* All Series and pre Series built caravans fitted with OE steel wheels should be torqued to a value of 88NM/65lb ft

All Bailey Unicorn Madrid, Valencia, Almeria & Cabrera models

should be fitted with Delta Protekt (grey) bolts and torqued to a value of 160Nm

 

However, Since replacing the original bolts Bailey started to use the WSL bolts and I have never heard of an issue using these bolts with detachment or even loosening.

It is only my personal belief that the replacement bolts for the Series 1 Unicorn are probably just as useless as the original type but are likely not being 'officially' recalled due to cost.

 

See --> http://www. caravantimes. co. uk/news/makes/bailey/unicorn/bailey-caravans-offers-further-advice-on-unicorn-wheel-detachments-$21379948. htm

 

See --> http://www. baileyofbristol. co. uk/whats-new/latest-news/newsitem. php?recordid=228

 

I would suggest letting the NCC aware of your issue and that you did follow the correct procedures.

Edited by dreadly

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Is there any chance the brake on that wheel could have over-heated on the journey?

No, it rolled freely.

 

John

The wheel came off whole and the studs came loose. Has anyone else heard of this happening before?I am assuming the studs are normally tight in the brake housing and the nuts hold the wheel on the axle. If I have read this right, it is almost as if someone loosened your studs deliberatedly. Or have I read this wrong?

Think the studs came loose before the wheel came off! Yes its a known phenominan on the near side to do with the direction of rotation. They seem to have cured the problem on cars many years ago. I thought I had checked sufficiently.

 

Interesting that some say their dealers are clear on the instruction re torque. My never ever mentioned it though I was aware. It worries me that there will be lots of non mechanically minded people who trust in the service and are proceeding on shear luck.

 

This could have been very dangerous, in reality it all happened very quickly. I recognised what had happened imediatly via sound, feel and the angle of the van in the rear view mirror. Said to wife, "the wheels come off" and just coated onto the verge. I was amazed at how calm we were.

 

Later, after the cones were put in place, two cars hit them, that was the scary bit. I spent my time relating and replacing the cones.

 

John

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No, its a well known and documented fault with early Alutech vans, especially the single axle Unicorn as it uses bigger wheels. Baileys official line I believe is --> From the 1st September 2011all Bailey Caravans wheel bolts changed to the new typeDelta Protekt VH301 GZ low friction coating, however the torque value for all Orion's, Olympus,Pegasus and Unicorn Seville, Barcelona and Pamplona fitted with these wheel bolts is 120NM/88lb ft. .* The original wheel bolts and the new Delta Protekt VH301GZ low friction coated bolts can beused on all ALU-TECH steel spare wheels and should be torqued to 120NM/88lb ft. * All ALU-TECH caravans built prior to September 2011 and Series built caravans with OE fittedalloy wheels as standard should be torqued to 110NM/81lb ft again the same wheel bolts should be usedon the steel spare wheel and torqued to a value of 110NM/81ft lb. * All Series and pre Series built caravans fitted with OE steel wheels should be torqued to a value of 88NM/65lb ftAll Bailey Unicorn Madrid, Valencia, Almeria & Cabrera modelsshould be fitted with Delta Protekt (grey) bolts and torqued to a value of 160Nm However, Since replacing the original bolts Bailey started to use the WSL bolts and I have never heard of an issue using these bolts with detachment or even loosening. It is only my personal belief that the replacement bolts for the Series 1 Unicorn are probably just as useless as the original type but are likely not being 'officially' recalled due to cost. See --> http://www. caravantimes. co. uk/news/makes/bailey/unicorn/bailey-caravans-offers-further-advice-on-unicorn-wheel-detachments-$21379948. htm See --> http://www. baileyofbristol. co. uk/whats-new/latest-news/newsitem. php?recordid=228 I would suggest letting the NCC aware of your issue and that you did follow the correct procedures.

Will do re NCC

 

Re cost. Would not like to calculate the cost (in live, injury and money) if my wheel hit a vehicle coming the other way, that could have been a 100 mph collision.

 

John

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Unbelievable this is still going on on such modern high priced vans, surely Bailey must be liable for this in some way.

Still, glad you came out of this ok.

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I read this as the wheels are held on by studs and domed nuts, they are not wheel bolts then?

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Update

 

Axle has to be made to order. 4 weeks!

 

Alko got very cagey when I asked who makes the desision re which bolts to fit but admitted that it was a joint desision between them and the caravan manufacturer.

 

When I pushed the matter he said the service centre will need to investigate the cause.

 

Devitt insurance said it was all too common.

 

Why don't insurance companies put pressure on the industry to get it right?

 

Why don't manufacturers and service centres ensure customers are fully informed and equipped to check the security. (I know that some centres do but I guess they are in the minority, mine certenly did not).

 

John

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I read this as the wheels are held on by studs and domed nuts, they are not wheel bolts then?

They are most certainly bolts on my Sterling Eccles Moonstone.

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Sorry I used the word studs, they are in fact bolts on the Bailey and no doubt on all ALKO chassis.

 

They principle re loosening is the same however.

 

(I am not the stud before the anticipated comments).

John

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