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Trailer Talk
how to replace ramp springs
 MrTruck, txdad, windy Last Activity 2014-07-23 2:30 PM
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horseygirlpaul

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Joined: 2010-05-18
Location: Gowen, Michigan,

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Subject : how to replace ramp springs
Posted : 2010-05-18 7:39 PM
Post #120326

The ramp springs are broken on out Merhow trailer and we purchased new springs. Now we need to find out how to compress the springs to install them.
They are torsion springs and are very strong. Is there a tool that compresses them? Any ideas?
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loveduffy

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Subject : RE: how to replace ramp springs
Posted : 2010-05-18 10:15 PM
Post #120335 - In reply to #120326

Have you tried calling the a deal and asking sometime they are willing to give you the answer 
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humnbass

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Joined: 2011-02-21

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Subject : RE: how to replace ramp springs
Posted : 2011-10-27 7:29 AM
Post #138541 - In reply to #120326

Did you get your springs replaced.  Also, can you tell me where you purchased your springs.  I have an old Merhow trailer and I'm trying to find the springs for the horse ramp.  So far, no luck.

 

thanks


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BigT

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Joined: 2003-10-25
Location: Lockport, Illinois

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Subject : RE: how to replace ramp springs
Posted : 2011-10-27 8:15 AM
Post #138542 - In reply to #120326

Just scroll down this website, and you should find your springs.http://www.horsetraileraccessorystore.com/ramp_assist_springs.htm
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tobruk

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Location: White Pine, TN

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Subject : RE: how to replace ramp springs
Posted : 2011-10-27 8:19 PM
Post #138561 - In reply to #120326

None of the springs referenced will work on the Merhow. WE have some or you can get them directly from Merhow. They are bears to replace as you have to torque one of the ears a full 270 degrees. We've developed a jig that we use that is very similar to what they use at the factory. It's still a trick to do it and not get hurt.
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horseloversdad

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Location: Ohio

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Subject : RE: how to replace ramp springs
Posted : 2012-06-01 2:36 PM
Post #144418 - In reply to #138561

I just completed installing new ramp springs on my Merhow. This is a dangerous job and I'd recommend a pro do it. But if you're determined to do it yourself, read on. If you prepare a jig to hold the spring, I believe it can be done relatively safely. Here's what I did: If you have a garage door, look up at the steel angles that mount the rails to the garage ceiling. That's basically the jig. Start by BOLTING (bolts not screws) a 3-4 foot piece of this type angle to a 2X4 foot, heavy piece of plywood. Place it parallel to the 4 foot length and about 8 inches from the left side. Then bolt about a foot long piece of angle to that one sticking straight up. The exact height depends on the height of your ramp hinges off the ground. A 3rd piece running at an angle from the verticle piece down to the left side to the plywood and another piece angled back to the 3 foot piece. All attached with bolts. You don't want anything coming loose because this is a giant mouse trap and you don't want to be the mouse.  The verticle steel angle will now be very stable. You can then use U bolts and a piece of flat steel to clamp a piece of 1/2 inch pipe into the Vee of the verticle steel angle and drop a piece of 1/4 inch pipe into that to hold the tang of new spring while you torque it. The pipe needs to be the right length so that the spring will fit right up to the hinge. 

Torqueing the spring is done by sliding a 2 foot piece of 1/4 inch pipe down the center of the spring and putting another 2 foot piece of 1/4 inch pipe with a 1/2 inch piece sleeved over it for strength on the other tang (the first tang  is stuck into the jig). To hold the torquing pipe in place once it's torqued, attach a U bolt and a piece of heavy chain near the other end of the 1/2 inch torquing pipe. An eye bolt through the plywood and heavy carabeener type clip (like for a water bucket)on the other end of the chain will secure the pipe once it's torqued. 

You torque the spring starting kind of cross handed with the left hand holding the pipe that goes down the center of the spring. Rotate the spring to the right and parallel to the hinges as you pull the torquing pipe over and to the left with your right hand. Torque the spring so that the pipe is about horizontal, then clip the chain to the eye bolt to hold it down. Now the whole thing should be stable and can be slid up to the hinge rod. Slack off pushing on the torquing pipe slowly to make sure everyrthing holds and keep you body clear of where that pipe would go if it got loose. I actually knelt on the plywood, got the spring pretty much lined up, torqued the spring, anchored it to the plywood with the chain and then had my wife hit the plywood with a sledge hammer to align me and the whole jig into the exact right place. The pipe down the center of the spring should be able to be removed once the torquing pipe is secured so you can align the spring right into the line of the hinge rod. After pounding the hinge rod through to the next hinge, the torquing pipe is pushed down, the chain unclipped and the torque is gently released.

I suggest using a new hinge rod so that it goes in easier and that you grind a pencil tip point on it so you can easily slip the end of each spring into it and so it aligns easily with the next hinge point. Use the trailer's jack or shims under the plywood to adjust the height of the jig and you might even have a large C clamp and a tire jack handy to clamp the spring exactly where you want it while the rod is getting pounded through. Finally, I got a bunch of really small hose clamps to put on the spring tangs so that the pipes didn't get up between the spring and the trailer.     


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horseygirlpaul

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Location: Gowen, Michigan,

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Subject : RE: how to replace ramp springs
Posted : 2012-06-01 7:50 PM
Post #144422 - In reply to #144418

Wow! Great writeup! We took ours to a guy that works on trailers and he had no idea how to do it, but figured it out. He welded up a jig, probably something similar to yours. Thanks for the info. I'm sure someone will benefit from your effort.
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