Wanderlodge Owners Group  
BuyByeBlueBird.com
Donate

Go Back   Wanderlodge Owners Group > For Sale Or Wanted > Towbars, Hitches and Braking Systems for your Toads, etc.

Towbars, Hitches and Braking Systems for your Toads, etc. Questions, concerns, or suggestions regarding what equipment to use to tow your Toad with are discussed here.

Site Search:
Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #41  
Old 03-14-2013
Lee Davis's Avatar
Lee Davis Lee Davis is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Wherever we are parked
Posts: 1,624
Default Brake System

I installed an Air force One (SMI) braking system in my Honda CRV a couple of years ago and have been very satisfied. The main reason I picked that one was that it is interchangeable between toads and the M&G as I understand it is not. One never knows when one will be trading toads. And, as it turned out a few months ago I sold my CRV to my daughter and with some help from Jim Brookshire (my engineer helper who knows salespeople have trouble with stuff like this,) I swapped the Air Force one to my newer Honda Element saving mucho bucks by not having to buy a new system. it was a relatively easy swap following the instructions posted online.

It's all good!
__________________
Lee and Jacque Davis - Full Timers

Lee - 423-292-5767 or Jacque 423-262-9569
or lnjdavis@gmail.com Please call or email instead of private messages


1995 BMC 37
300 HP Cummins 6CTA 8.3 Turbocharged Diesel
Boldly Going Nowhere
http://www.bbirdmaps.com/index.cfm #117
Reply With Quote
  #42  
Old 03-14-2013
photoadjuster photoadjuster is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Lubbock
Posts: 266
Default Power brakes

Does the M&G maintain a vacuum on the power brake booster like the Air Force One does?

I have used the Air Force One system for many years to tow a Class B motorhome behind my Class A. It works very well and it is nice to have power brakes on the towed vehicle without the engine running.

The other systems that I tried, that pushed on a dead brake petal (no power brakes) caused the Class B to eat up the tow bar.
__________________
Mike Stephenson
Lubbock, TX
1978 FC35 (deceased)
Reply With Quote
  #43  
Old 03-14-2013
Rick's Avatar
Rick Rick is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Bellefonte
Posts: 13,226
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by photoadjuster View Post
Does the M&G maintain a vacuum on the power brake booster like the Air Force One does?

I have used the Air Force One system for many years to tow a Class B motorhome behind my Class A. It works very well and it is nice to have power brakes on the towed vehicle without the engine running.

The other systems that I tried, that pushed on a dead brake petal (no power brakes) caused the Class B to eat up the tow bar.
Mike, Explain how the lack of power brakes ate up your tow bar please.
__________________
Rick Shawver
1SG Ret
2000 LX
Vise Grips
Bellefonte, AR
F127656
Reply With Quote
  #44  
Old 03-14-2013
G_man's Avatar
G_man G_man is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Litchfield
Posts: 786
Default

Mike said: "Does the M&G maintain a vacuum on the power brake booster like the Air Force One does?"

No and it is not needed as the M&G system uses an air over hydraulic principle. No pedal movement occurrs and there is no need to keep a vaccuum on the booster which is not used when towing. Note that the unit is mounted after the vaccuum booster. You are using air pressure to depress the actuator so the vaccuum is not needed.



Independant review of the M&G unit.

Installing an M&G Tow Brake
by Mark Quasius

I've used a Brake Buddy and US Gear's Unified Tow Brake in the past but after trying the M&G tow brake I'm spoiled. The M&G Tow Brake is a great setup. It utilizes the existing air brake system of any coach with air brakes to proportionately actuate the toad's brakes. For RVs without air brakes they do offer an air compressor setup, but this does add to the cost. The beauty of this system is that there are no electrical connections and no decelerometers. When descending a grade the jake brake will not prematurely engage the toad's brakes. The only time the toad's brakes work are when the coach's brakes are applied. Being totally proportional the amount of braking depends upon how hard you step on the brake pedal so the toad and coach are always in sync.

Installation on the coach is very simple. You simply tap into one of the brake service lines at the rear axle with a tee fitting, then run the extra nylon line to the rear of the coach where you intall a quick disconnect coupling. Tapping into this line is no different than feeding a tag axle. In the event of a failure the brake system's isolating valves would still give you 3 wheels worth of braking and the air pressure loss by a severed line would be very minimal because it's the service line, not the "hot" emergency line.

So, after having this system on my Allegro Bus and Grand Cherokee for some time I felt it was time to add it to the Wrangler for when we tow it. Following details some of those steps.

First, you have to install the M&G adaptor.





This adaptor fits between the master cylinder and the vacuum booster. It consists of a housing with an internal split shaft. Where the shaft is split the piston on the frontmost half is acted upon by the air pressure input. Whenever you are not towing, this system acts as a large pushrod allowing the brakes to function normally. This is a fail-safe design so even if the M&G module was to fail you would still have manual braking. However, when towing, there is nothing pushing on the pedal. Instead, the air pressure from the coach is applied to the M&G module which works the front half of the split shaft to apply the brakes evenly and in direct proportion to the coach. I did have to relocate the cruise control diaphragm unit which was in the way of the master cylinder but that was easy enough. I just relocated it to a wide open space underneath the master cylinder (it's barely visible in the lower-right corner of the above photo).

The RV connects to the front of the Jeep with a short nylon hose with a male and female quick disconnect fitting. I find that running it inside the coiled trailer light umbilical makes it nice and simple. There is nothing to hook up or install inside the towed vehicle and once installed it's totally invisible. You just plug in the hose and go.





Full information here: http://m-gengineering.com/index.html
__________________
Rich D. Former Owner; '90 PT40, '99LXi43 & '06 M450 LXi (CT)
Reply With Quote
  #45  
Old 03-15-2013
Mallie Lennon's Avatar
Mallie Lennon Mallie Lennon is offline
1995 WB 42’ Series 60
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Eufaula
Posts: 4,946
Default

Little history on braking systems. Brake buddy and several others simpley push the brake pedel. The first few presses will still have vacuum in the system and will slide the wheels it you do not pump the peddle and bleed the vacuum out. The new brake buddy does this automaticly. But these type sytems rely on the air cylinder to provide all the power to the dead brake system, including M&G which has a build in cylinder.

I also have the air force one. One advantage to this system is it generates vacuum when the brakes peddle is pushed. The vacuum remains and is ready for next stop. A very small air cylinder can eaisly push the brake when there is vacuum, so the cylinder is very small and mounts under the dash.
As Lee says, easy to swap from one towed to another.
__________________
Mallie & Karen Lennon
Eufaula, Oklahoma
95 42' Wanderlodge
Please use e mail instead of Private Message
Mallie@EuLake.com
Reply With Quote
  #46  
Old 03-15-2013
mrkane mrkane is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 212
Default

Stopped in Athens, TX yesterday to have the M&G system installed at the factory (without an appointment.) Cost was $440 for a re-manufactured system, plus $195 for the break-away add-on. Labor was $300: Two men had it done in 2 hours.

There isn't much space in the engine compartment of modern pick-ups, but the air brake actuator and the break-away were fitted with some modification to a coolant hose. Satisfying a retired engineer is probably as hard as treating a sick doctor: I would have done some things differently, and will be attaching some buffers to the radiator hose at potential rubbing points.

The first tow went well, and it is much simpler to hook-up than the Even Brake it replaces.


Quote:
But these type systems rely on the air cylinder to provide all the power to the dead brake system, including M&G which has a built in cylinder.
The M&G system has NO built-in cylinder. Air comes directly from the coach brakes to the actuator. Only the (optional) break-away system uses a small cylinder to apply the brakes if the toad gets away.

Quote:
...air force one. One advantage to this system is it generates vacuum when the brakes peddle is pushed. The vacuum remains and is ready for next stop. A very small air cylinder can eaisly push the brake when there is vacuum, so the cylinder is very small and mounts under the dash.
My truck uses a hydroboost system--not vacuum boost. This is powered from the power steering pump. While SMI states the Air Force One system will fit any vehicle, I could find no reference to non-vacuum boost applications. (GM uses hydroboost on their HD 2500 and 3500 pick-ups, and this may be true of other diesel-powered applications. My truck is a 2004 one-ton 3500.)

Randy: Leon was in the shop working on prepping his MCI for repainting the back-cap. He said it has been a long time since you last spoke.

M.R.Kane
1987 PT40 'Sleipnir"
currently near Elmo, TX
Reply With Quote
  #47  
Old 03-16-2013
rjslota rjslota is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Forked River
Posts: 69
Default

I just use the simple in and out Brake buddy, no instalation other the setting it on the driver side floor, hooking it up to the brake peddle and pluging it into the lighter. Oh ya if you want a break away you can hook that up but if it does disconnect I intend to floor the old girl and get out of Dodge. ha ha. So if you want to tow something ells no instalation needed on your alternate, simple. One other thing did I mention the instalation cost $0 nada.
__________________
Raymond Slota
Forked River, New Jersey
1983 FC35
Reply With Quote
  #48  
Old 03-16-2013
DonB's Avatar
DonB DonB is offline
Geek
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Eureka
Posts: 4,350
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rjslota View Post
I just use the simple in and out Brake buddy, no instalation other the setting it on the driver side floor, hooking it up to the brake peddle and pluging it into the lighter.
How often do you put it in and remove it? I used one for ten years, traveling on average 6 months out of the year, with only occasional stops being longer than 3 days.

Long before the end of that 10 years I was absolutely sick and tired of the Brake Buddy. It had also become very flaky, hitting the brakes for no reason at all.

Believe me, I was very happy to never, ever have to put it in again after I bought an AFO!
__________________
Don Bradner
Current: No RV at this time
2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee
Prior: 2004 M380 Double Slide
Prior: 1990 WB40 "Blue Thunder"
My location: www.bbirdmaps.com/user2.cfm?user=1
Reply With Quote
  #49  
Old 03-16-2013
bubblerboy64 bubblerboy64 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Shippensburg Pa
Posts: 6,839
Default

While we are on the subject how do you know or how do you adjust these systems which are supposed to be proportional? Seems like that is the most critical element. And proportionality is only part of my concern. I would rather have light braking under all conditions rather then too hard on occasion.

I guess I have a mistrust of the claims made. If you are getting harder then ideal brake application you are going to rapidly damage the brakes on the toad. Just because it's proportional doesn't necessarily mean the correct pressure is being applied. It could be too hard under light braking and even harder under medium forces and way too hard from there on up.

I've had some experience with trailers and when you are towing a trailer you can tell when you have it right. If the brake controller is applying too much to the trailer brakes you will have wheels on the trailer lock up. Typically they tell you to test on a gravel road and see if the controller locks the trailer wheels. But you can tell how the thing is by "feel" with just a little experience.

With an 20 ton motorhome and a 2 ton car you can't feel much if anything.

I've damaged brakes on the towed vehicle and I am suspicious of the claims made. You do want to have it right. Might have some one ride in the passengers seat and see how the towed car is acting? Short of that I don't know how you would accurately set the systems up. It's a balance you want the towed car stopping it's own self but you sure don't want it trying to drag the motor home to a stop.

So it has to be proportional but also correct. HOW?
I have a road master system which is transferable from vehicle to vehicle. Supposed to be proportional but if it's working on a 3000 lb vehicle and then you put it on a 6000 lb vehicle its not going to be correct for both. See my concern? Same with all the others unless there is some tuning which is done. Plus some cars require more pressure then others on the brake to get the same stopping. See my concerns?
__________________

John Heckman
Shippensburg Pa
1987 PT 36
The Bella Mia Sold
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Toad that is not a toad Dennis Towbars, Hitches and Braking Systems for your Toads, etc. 58 12-14-2008 07:16 PM
making a toad Crit Bliss Towbars, Hitches and Braking Systems for your Toads, etc. 3 10-15-2008 03:54 PM

Web Search:

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:17 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.