Shepherds Hut Axle Rebuild - Hut Date: July/August 2009

Earlier this year I was contacted by a Shepherds Hut owner who had an axle rebuild requirement.  This is the Hut as the owner received it ...

 
The wheels were all locked up with rust and broke up the axles as it was pulled out of the hedge.  The axles arrive at Thurgarton Iron Works ...
 
 
Using 3 propane gas torches and spinning the wheel off a crane to heat the wheel and axles evenly to avoid cracking.  Luckily the axles had a steep taper bearing surface so they soon came free when heated to break the rust which was locking them solid ...
 
 
The freed axle ...
 
 
Back from the grit blaster ...
 
 
I always treat the iron with a rust killer after blasting as the iron is like a sponge and the rust has eaten deep into the surface ...
 
 
Hand fitting the front stub axles into the new oak axle beam ...
 
 
I give the two axles a bit of a "toe in " like a car so the wheels will run towards the stub shoulder (and the centre of the hut), and away from the hub cap when going forwards ...
 
 
Drilling 1.5" pivot hole ...
 
 
Checking the tow frames are true ...
 
 
All the old bolts were re-used with the heads cut off, tapped out in the lathe and fitted onto screw cut stainless steel bars - 1/2" and 5/8" ...
 
 
Last fitting of the tow arms with stainless bolts ...
 
 
Building the rear axle ...
 
 
They have been rebuilt in oak with stainless bolts remade with the old heads threaded back on so the oak won't eat them ...oak finds steel very tasty thanks to the acid.
 
 
 
 
All the metal has been grit blasted and treated with rust killer, followed by two primer coats and a top coat of Berger black gloss ...
 
 
The finished axles ...
 
 
Being the 30th July it had to hail when I was loading onto the trailer ...
 
 
Followed by a thunderstorm and a monsoon just to make things easier ...
 
 
The axles safely transported to their pick-up point ...
 
 
The Hut awaits the fitting of her new axles ...
 
 
Hop over here to experience the "Axle Fitting" day!