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Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > Disappointed in Disc Brakes

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lenr

Indianapolis, IN

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Posted: 07/16/19 07:25pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I admit, I choose that topic just to get your attention. It’s the actuator and its integration with the brake controller that leaves me disappointed. I’m very interested in hearing others’ experiences.

We had Kodiak disc brakes and a Dexter actuator installed on our new fifth wheel trailer. We’re using the integrated brake controller in our 2012 F-350. The disc brakes work so well (after break in) that I have to turn the gain down to 6.5 (out of 10) to keep the wheels from locking up on hard braking. With the gain turned down the Dexter actuator doesn’t start up until the brake controller is up to 40% on the dash bar graph. Then when it does start it’s into serious braking. So, the result is no help from the trailer on light braking and a big jerk once the brake petal is pressed into medium braking. The whole business is very disappointing, and has me wishing that I had just stuck with drum brakes.
1. Does anyone think that a different actuator would solve the problem? The Titan BrakeRite apparently has a lower start up voltage--but, it still is going to be up in the range a little, probably about 20 or 30% brake.
2. I’ve read that there is a time delay with disc brake actuators. What actuators are the fastest, in your experience? While I may be experiencing this also with the Dexter, the bigger problem seems to be not getting up to the turn on voltage.
3. Installing an after-market controller such as the Prodigy seems to be a catch-all answer. If you have found this to be a solution please explain why you think so, and how it works better.
4. What setups are you perfectly happy with: controller and actuator?
Thanks.

ppine

Northern Nevada

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Posted: 07/16/19 07:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a Draw-tite brake controller.
Pulling a 25 foot trailer I am on number 4, sometimes 3.5.
2002 ford one ton. It got new brakes at 125k miles.

Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 07/16/19 08:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I will preface by saying I am NOT using disc brakes, however do have a couple of suggestions.

Your IBC IS far superior to the likes of a "Prodigy", replacing with aftermarket would be a step down in brake controller.

Second, not sure when Ford added adjustment for Electric over Hydraulic brakes but you might want to check your controller menu to see if you have that setting.

Third, some of the Ford IBCs depending on your Trim package may also have additional adjustments which may allow you to backoff the aggressiveness of the IBC.

Fourth, if all else fails add some additional load to the electric brake wire, typically one or two electric brake magnets can be hooked up and mounted on the trailer tongue. The magnets load the IBC which may help the Hydraulic controller see proper levels. In a nutshell the Hydraulic controller may not be presenting enough load which results in too high of brake voltage.

Fifth, don't be afraid to back the IBC down lower, if braking is too aggressive, by all means drop the IBC level down. I have to do that when changing from TT to my empty open flatbed trailer which is much lighter..

howardwheeler

West, Texas

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Posted: 07/16/19 08:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Make sure (which you probably already have done) that your system is set to hydraulic over electric, not just electric. I have the Kodiak with the Titan pump, and it works great! The best modification I've ever done to my somewhat heavy trailer.

Planning

Idaho

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Posted: 07/16/19 08:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I will second the Titan actuator/pump. Prior to purchase in 2016, I performed quite a bit of research and the Titan Brakerite (4813100 model for EH disc brakes) has the fastest response time to the point that there is no lag detectable lag time from when I apply (step on the brakes) until the trailer is also responding. IIRC, the response time was something on the order of 30 milliseconds.

One idiosyncrasy for 5th wheel Titan EH brakes is that it seems as if there is ANY air whatsoever in the lines, it adds a significant lag time to the response. Ensure that each caliper is comprehensively bled, and keep the actuator reservoir filled while bleeding.

(I use Prestone Synthetic DOT 4 fluid.)

Also, as Howard mentioned, on the Ford you will want to set the OEM controller to electric over hydraulic.

Also, I have the Titan 4846000 Ford/Chevy adapter in conjunction with the Titan Brakerite actuator to ensure seamless connectivity.

https://youtu.be/LU-4QlBN7kA

* This post was edited 07/16/19 09:05pm by Planning *


2016 AF 29-5K; 2016 F350 6.7, 4x4, CCLB DRW

Planning

Idaho

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Posted: 07/16/19 09:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

BTW, Eastern Marine has a rocket price on them: https://www.easternmarine.com/brakerite-electric-hydraulic-disc-brake-actuator-4813100

eHoefler

ozark mountains

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Posted: 07/17/19 05:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

On that year Ford truck, you need an adaptor to use the factory brake contoller for electric/hydralic brakes.

https://www.etrailer.com/Accessories-and-Parts/Titan/T4846000.html


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12th Man Fan

Flower Mound , Texas

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Posted: 07/17/19 06:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

eHoefler wrote:

On that year Ford truck, you need an adaptor to use the factory brake contoller for electric/hydralic brakes.

https://www.etrailer.com/Accessories-and-Parts/Titan/T4846000.html



Or you can install a ProdigyII. That's what I have and I love it.


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Lynnmor

Red Lion

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Posted: 07/17/19 06:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gdetrailer gave you information on using magnets in the first reply, then you were given a link to an adapter that, I believe, is simply a resistor and will work just like using magnets for a resistor. Whatever you do, do not downgrade to a Prodigy, you want brakes somehow connected to your foot, not a guesswork accelerometer.





howardwheeler

West, Texas

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Posted: 07/17/19 07:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I did not know the 2011 integrated brake controller did not have the electric over hydraulic setting. I had a 2012 before I got my 17. It would seem the adapter from eTrailer would be necessary. The Titan in my research and experience is the best fit for the Kodiak retrofit. Thoroughly pleased with the transformation on my 16,000 lbs trailer. Night and day.

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