[Top] [All Lists]

Re: [Fot] Summers Brothers Axle Failures?

Subject: Re: [Fot] Summers Brothers Axle Failures?
Date: Mon, 15 Jan 2007 11:32:44 -0800 (PST)
List: I've kinda stayed in the background on this axle issue. I was aware of 
the failure of Steve's axle in the UK and have corresponded with him and 
Summer's on the issue. I designed the axles that Steve and the guys on the 
other side of the pond are using, in addition to about ten people here in the 
states. Tom Strange did the prototype testing for me, and we were pretty sure 
we took care of any problems. These axles are made as one piece, axle and hub 
together. There is no groove cut for a "C" clip. Like the ones Glen has, they 
have press on collars. The yoke is removable, which allows the axle to be 
inserted through the trunnion from the outside, then it has the collar pressed 
on. The only problem we had with the first batch of axles was with the washer 
that together with a 5/16"x24 #8 bolt, held the yoke on. The bolts were backing 
out, which caused the yoke to "hammer" the washer into a concave. After that, 
we drilled and safety wired the bolts, along with Locktite.
 That was the end of that problem. Steve received the second set of axles, and 
has been running them for about four years. There have been no reports of 
failures here in the states so my engineering mind wonders what is the 
difference between how they run them in Europe and we run them here; i.e. 
number of races per season, horsepower to wheels, size of tires, etc. Whatever 
the case...they (Europeans) appear to use them harder than we (Colonists) do. 
Steve worked with the new Summer's Bro's (they are under new management) to 
strengthen the axles further. They are making them even thicker all the way to 
the yoke. This required opening the trunnions to the limit of their metal, and 
using even larger bearings. Just a footnote; when Summer's Bro's reopened under 
new management the previous owners (Mr's Summers) didn't leave their drawings 
behind. People had been calling me wanting to order axles, and I really didn't 
care to deal with the selling of axles at cost anymore so, I
 contacted Summer's and sent them the drawings, along with the permission to do 
with them as they wished. It was only a week later that Steve contacted me 
about his breakage. That's the poop on Summer's Bro's axles since 2001 when, at 
Mid Ohio we ( a bunch of FOT'ers) sat down together and decided we needed to do 
something about the lack of decent axles. Thanks - Ed wrote:   FWIW I've got a set of the old Mueller axles in my 
spit. They're one-piece, 
with the circlip bearing retention. They have a lot of national races on them 
from the old days when Jim Johnson had the car, plus 20 or so weekends I've 
done. They will bend before they break.
I've only gotten 1 set of the Summers Bros axles, they're the same design 
but have the press-on sleeve instead of the circlip. I've have a set out of a 
customers car on the bench right now, out of a GP car that must have a 
gazillion races on them, crack check fine. Even with sticky slicks, I have a 
time understanding how they fail, unless the suspension is repeatedly slamming 
hard into full bump.
I think Russ Moore & Ed Barnard have gotten some over the past few years, 
mebbe they'll jump in on this one.
drive as slow as I do & the axles will last forever...
Fot mailing list
Fot mailing list

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>