Enclosed trailer and horse trailer manufacturers, which are fabricated from aluminum in particular, often have trouble with 3-piece rear door and ramp door hinge alignment.
It takes a precise measurement and careful hands to align most standard 3-piece rear and ramp door hinges correctly due to the challenge of laying the hinge flat for welding or bolting. This can add an inordinate amount of time to the assembly process. Additionally, while most assemblers get close, even a slightly misaligned hinge can adversely affect its durability and longevity. These are two critical expectations for buyers of high-end aluminum trailers.
The answer to the misalignment problem is found in a small but significant redesign of the standard 3-piece hinge that creates an important measure of adjustability. Specifically, the use of a notched or grooved pin in one end leaf, with a standard staked pin on the opposite end and a grease fitting in the center allows the hinge to lay flat and ensure alignment is straight. This important modification reduces time to install, increases productivity, and facilitates the durability and longevity of the hinge your customers demand.
Another benefit of Austin’s patent-pending self-aligning leaf system is that customers can expect the same performance out of both 3/8 and 0 offset versions. So, we’ve integrated the design into a number of our aluminum hinges, including the 3-piece flush and offset rear and ramp door hinges, extruded rear trailer strap hinges, and our 5x5 alternative hinge.
In addition, custom designs for larger, stronger hinges can be developed from the same extrusions, with our patent-pending pinning system, at half (or less) the usual tooling costs.
Another issue trailer manufacturers face that of vertically hinged swing doors requiring occasional removal. Typically, this necessitates the use of a slip joint hinge. Unfortunately, most slip joint hinges are susceptible to accidental removal. Austin Hardware® engineers have addressed this problem by developing an interlocking slip joint hinge that lifts off only in a range from approximately 80 to 100 degrees.