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Open Roads Forum  >  Fifth-Wheels

 > brakes on a double tow

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SDcampowneroperator

South Dakota

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Posted: 05/31/20 08:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We have been double towing 3500 / 5er/ MC trailer for many years all over the states and provinces that allow it, across some AHJs that frown on it without issue. The second trailer was light, short, under 1500# , so not required to have brakes.

Now we are entering another stage of life ( retiring ) where we will double tow our 20' i/o boat behind our 35' 5er. Its in 75' legal length and under 26k weight here in the hinterland but does require brakes on the heavier second.

I agree, I dont want that pushing us. The light weight toy trailer was noticable the 3500 # boat unacceptable for your safety and sensibly required by law to have brakes.

My issue is to wheather install a hyd. surge brake system that is independent of electric brake activation . Surge brakes only activate on deceleration of the tow vehicle, cannot anticipate or correct from grades in the same way an experienced driver does.
On the other hand, even braking on the light toy trailer would be great I can do that . I refer to my question of electric or surge hydraulic.
I have long experience with both types, but I fear voltage/ amp drops to the second unit would reduce braking to less than positive where surge braking is inertial.

reluyog

Colorado

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Posted: 05/31/20 09:50pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I pull double trailers from time to time, and installed a second brake controller for the second trailer. In my case it's air over electric, but I ran a pair of 10 gauge brake activation wires, and also a pair of 10 gauge for ground back. I can't remember the exact voltage loss, but it was very slight. Easy to lock up the second trailer in testing. Pulling a 36 foot 5th wheel as the first trailer. My lighting circuits for the second trailer are also independent from the 5th wheel, and the wiring including three cameras run in pvc conduit under the 5th.


Damian
1983 KW W900, 3406B Cat, RTO14615, 355's
1995 Carriage by Carriage triple axle 22K


byronlj

Arizona

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Posted: 05/31/20 10:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Boat=water=surge brakes.


byronlj
07.5 Silverado LTZ Ex. Cab 3500HD dually 4X4 duramax 2013 Dynamax Trilogy 3800RL 99 Arctic Fox 990S truck camper


Cummins12V98

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Posted: 06/01/20 08:42am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

byronlj wrote:

Boat=water=surge brakes.


HAAAAAA

That's a joke! Wet coming out of the water = NO BRAKES. Now add Salt water and you will get the below. YES I did flush out the drums every time.

Got sick and tired of lousy brakes and spent the bIG $$$ and went with this and have EXCELENT brakes now and a 5 year 100k warranty on the wheel bearings that don't have to be touched.
Added the EOH actuator and it is awesome.

NEVER will I have any type of trailer with drums or surge again.

[image]
[image]
[image]


2015 RAM LongHorn 3500 Dually CrewCab 4X4 CUMMINS/AISIN RearAir 385HP/865TQ 4:10's
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"HeavyWeight" B&W RVK3600

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Retired JSO

North Georgia Mountains

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Posted: 06/01/20 04:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Go with the surge brakes. You will never get the electric brakes timed to the fiver.





WE-C-USA

NW Missouri

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Posted: 06/01/20 06:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Surge Disc Brake system.


Frank & PJ
2004 2500HD GMC Duramax 4X4
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SDcampowneroperator

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Posted: 06/01/20 08:37pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

thanks everyone,
I did go with the surge brakes Bought the coupler, drum/ hubs and backing plates locally A local NAPA shop can outfit us with 3/16 steel tubing and hoses to the brakes.
Electric just did not seem as effective on a double tow with the length of wire , loss of V/A that the truck might not supply. and the complexity.
Surge brake coupler and hyd. 10 " 2.25" dexter backing plates.
Surge brakes sized and adjusted properly are idiot proof, respond only to the weight of the load, independent of all other factors.
price wise very spendy ( hyd. backing pl. double, plus surge and hyd. lines and hoses) over electric by the time it is done. Even considering my time in my welding/ mech shop. . Cheap compared to the value of a life.
The drum brakes also have a free backing feature, so no need to lock out the coupler when backing the trailer. We are not in salt water so the more professional air/ elec/ over hyd. discs are over the top, nolicable for us.
I do make it a point to inspect pack and adjust regularly. My pappy tought me that down on the farm.
Thanks, I was headed this way just wanted a couple other opinions with experience. The electric system just had too many points to fail or not deliver braking power.

* This post was edited 06/01/20 09:04pm by SDcampowneroperator *

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