Roller Tail Board
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  1. #1
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    Roller Tail Board

    Does anyone know how the bearing are supported in a Tail roller/ Roller tailboard? i am asking about the rollers on the back of winch trucks used allot in the oil fields to haul skids tanks etc. Pictures would be helpful I've searched and turned up with nothing. what style of bearing are they? any help would be much appreciated as i don't have one to look at.
    If it don't fit, use a bigger hammer, if it breaks it needed to be replaced anyhow.

  2. #2
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Lots of different methods are used. Some people use ball bearings (not good for the really heavy duty rollers), roller bearings are used as well (better than ball for load carrying), but I've changed both out to simple bronze bushings (plain bearings) several times.

    Sometimes the bearings are in the tube and a shaft sticks through them, other times the shaft or stub shaft sticks out of the roller and the bronze bearings are in the mounts.

    In other words they're made just with just about any method that's been thought of.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Using bronze bushings doesn't oval out from ruff roads? and do you use a shaft all the way through the roller? i guess what i am asking is what is the best/ most durable way to build one? i dont mean to question you down but thanks for your help
    If it don't fit, use a bigger hammer, if it breaks it needed to be replaced anyhow.

  4. #4
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    I don't agree with the way the company I work for does it (mainly because it's non-serviceable and easily messed up during fab) but we use a length of 8" sch160 pipe for the roller with the ends machined to accept a SKF 23220 CC/W33 spherical roller bearing. The "pocket" is sized so that you have a 10ga backer plate, spacer ring, bearing, spacer ring, and end cap. The machined pins that fit the ID of the bearings and transfer the load to the 1" T1 endplates is made of 4140 q&t roundbar. The pin is also drilled and tap for a grease zerk.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Do you need a roller tailboard or a fairlead? I never had a roller but rather a pipe, (3-1/2" Sch 80) at the back of my power wagon, just something smooth to rub the cable over. I found that even if I began a pull with the cable straight back it always turned under strain. My winch is capable of breaking 25000 LB test cable. I built a square tube upside down U that fits in stake pockets in the back of the dump body. Three anchor points allow me to move a simple snatch block as needed.
    If you do need a roller tail for loading, consider using a heavy wall pipe, fitted to utilize front wheel bearings from a newer GM four wheel drive truck. These are heavy duty with flanges to bolt both ends to.

  6. #6
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Quote Originally Posted by jakebrake42 View Post
    Using bronze bushings doesn't oval out from ruff roads? and do you use a shaft all the way through the roller? i guess what i am asking is what is the best/ most durable way to build one? i dont mean to question you down but thanks for your help
    They'll wear out eventually. The ones I've done lately have all had shafts coming out of the roller. I put bushing in bolt on flanges that bolt to mounts on the truck. When they wear out you pull the flanges and add new bushings. That's the way they want me to modify them after the ones like described below fail.

    Actually a bushing like that will take the beating better than a roller bearing that's not turning.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brink, M.E. View Post
    I don't agree with the way the company I work for does it (mainly because it's non-serviceable and easily messed up during fab) but we use a length of 8" sch160 pipe for the roller with the ends machined to accept a SKF 23220 CC/W33 spherical roller bearing. The "pocket" is sized so that you have a 10ga backer plate, spacer ring, bearing, spacer ring, and end cap. The machined pins that fit the ID of the bearings and transfer the load to the 1" T1 endplates is made of 4140 q&t roundbar. The pin is also drilled and tap for a grease zerk.
    Yeah that's common. It's why I get to modify them for easy maintenance as described above.
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  7. #7
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Its to load skids onto a trailer so i figured use what works and oil field tech works.
    If it don't fit, use a bigger hammer, if it breaks it needed to be replaced anyhow.

  8. #8
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Here's what I've made lately. They've apparently been happy since they've brought more of them back to be modified.


    Name:  roller.jpg
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    Millermatic 252
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  9. #9

    Re: Roller Tail Board

    The pin is also drilled and tap for a grease zerk.

  10. #10
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    It occurs to me that you can buy pins made for a three point hitch in a large size. Make a plate with a hole in it you will use to cap a heavy wall pipe. I would put two nuts on it, tack the nuts both in place. Before the pin gets hot, remove it and weld the nuts just enough to hold them in place. Test to make sure the pins will thread after cooling, some difficulty is a good thing. Cap the ends of your pipe with this welded well using care the pins are straight. After cooling, use red locktight on the threads, and tighten well.
    Replacement ends for large farm tractor 3 point hitch with a swiveling bored ball are available. In 100 years when they wear out, they are easy to replace.

  11. #11
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Quote Originally Posted by irish fixit View Post
    Here's what I've made lately. They've apparently been happy since they've brought more of them back to be modified.


    Name:  roller.jpg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Willie B View Post
    It occurs to me that you can buy pins made for a three point hitch in a large size. Make a plate with a hole in it you will use to cap a heavy wall pipe. I would put two nuts on it, tack the nuts both in place. Before the pin gets hot, remove it and weld the nuts just enough to hold them in place. Test to make sure the pins will thread after cooling, some difficulty is a good thing. Cap the ends of your pipe with this welded well using care the pins are straight. After cooling, use red locktight on the threads, and tighten well.
    Replacement ends for large farm tractor 3 point hitch with a swiveling bored ball are available. In 100 years when they wear out, they are easy to replace.
    Using tractor parts reminds me, i have some steel bushings from a backhoe line boring job i did what if i use steel bushings instead of the brass? what do you guys think of that? any reason they would be worse / better than brass or hiems?
    If it don't fit, use a bigger hammer, if it breaks it needed to be replaced anyhow.

  12. #12
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    The need to weld the bushings in place will soften, but more importantly, misshape them. If you have an 8' lathe and line boring equipment, you could make holes to press the bushings into, the "axle" pins must be perfectly straight. I suggested the store bought Three point pins and weld on swivels as minor imperfections in straightness will be corrected by the ball swivels. Also unless your roller is incredibly stiff it will deflect under load straining the pins. I've had good performance with a three point similar device for unrolling heavy reels of underground power cable.

  13. #13
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Quote Originally Posted by jakebrake42 View Post
    Using tractor parts reminds me, i have some steel bushings from a backhoe line boring job i did what if i use steel bushings instead of the brass? what do you guys think of that? any reason they would be worse / better than brass or hiems?
    The only problem with the harden steel bushings is that you need a hardened steel shaft for them to run on. There's only two materials you can use for a plain bearing that are the same for both bushing and bearing if you want good life and resistance to galling. That's cast iron on cast iron. The other is hardened steel on hardened steel (and it needs to be really hard) which is one of the most durable bearings around for high pressure low speed and dirty enviroment. Hardened steel would be great for these but you really need a hardened steel shaft for them to run on and that's difficult to do.

    One other point is that most heavy loaded rolling tailboards have rollers setup under the big rollers. Usually two sets of two rollers. They help support the long roller in the middle.

    The plain ball bushings that Willie suggests are ok for infrequently moved parts. Several advantages to them but most aren't that hard and will have a limited life in heavy use. There are hardened steel spherical plain bearings out there. They're not common but one brand of pump jack used them in there tail bearings. They work ok but have there own problems.

    The bushing in my drawing above is in the flanged part. The shaft is fixed to the roller. Also mounting plate is made so that it supports the flange on the boss. That way the bolts aren't taking all the load.
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  14. #14
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    I was planning on putting in the two sets of “helper Rollers” this will be moving a custom build Concrete mixer skid that weighs 70k on a biweekly basis so I figured before we went and just put roller bearings into it I would ask thanks Willie B and irish fixit for all your help this helped a ton
    If it don't fit, use a bigger hammer, if it breaks it needed to be replaced anyhow.

  15. #15
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Wow, 70 K You can't move that.

  16. #16
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Your moving a lot of weight but it can be done. You have to think outside the box. Get a couple of top track rollers from a bulldozer, use schedule 160 or double extra heavy pipe. If you have to turn the OD of the track rollers to fit snug into the pipe. Stitch the track rollers into the pipe and you have the best hardened bushings already running in oil. Build some bosses to bolt the shafts into and add your two center support rollers and your done. Have probably built 40 or so over the years and some are still working well.
    Hope this helps

  17. #17
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    if your going to be moving it on that frequent of a basis i would invest in a trailer built for oilfield work. ITs going to beat the livin hell out of a regular step deck
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  18. #18
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    Ones that I've seen in use are like these. There are generally rollers midway underneath the main roller, these help to prevent deflection of the main roller when moving heavy stuff.

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    A good number of oilfield trailers don't have jackstands, and are simply pulled up over the roller to get them attached to the fifth wheel. Lot of weight, and a lot of abuse.

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    Million different ways to do these things I guess. Everyone seems to have an opinion. These guys do it this way, and it seems to work out pretty good for them.
    "Any day above ground is a good day"

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  19. #19
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    Re: Roller Tail Board

    It was originally going on a self contained trailer but now they want us to add the roller to an existing trailer, we build vac trailers and heavy use lowboys and step decks so this is no problem we just were not sure as how to mount the roller but this answers allot of questions ill see if i can get some picture of it up when we are done
    If it don't fit, use a bigger hammer, if it breaks it needed to be replaced anyhow.

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