Brake Controller - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-23-2005, 08:42 PM   #15
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Name: Gina D.
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woo hoo! Me has brakes AND a charge line. I can now run my fridge on the road. Yee Ha!

It will take me some trial and error to get the settings right. I pretty much drove home with it at the lowest setting possible. I tried the instructions, set it to 6, drove 25 and hit the "panc Button, but the brakes did not lock up (Kind wierd to PURPOSELY try to lock yourself up) so I set it higher, still no lock up, but I felt drag, so I backed it off and kept trying. Never got it quite right.

It's kind of fun to stop the car with the trialer at low speeds (No, I was just checking, it isn't something I will do normally, unless I need that for failed car brakes.)

Even at the lowest setting I feel drag, and can apply the trailer brakes with the panic button. It isn't very strong, but is this normal at 5 MPH or so?
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Old 11-23-2005, 11:06 PM   #16
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Quote:
...I tried the instructions, set it to 6, drove 25 and hit the "panc Button, but the brakes did not lock up (Kind wierd to PURPOSELY try to lock yourself up) so I set it higher, still no lock up, but I felt drag, so I backed it off and kept trying. Never got it quite right.
...
As Tekonsha/Cequent explains in their installation documentation, some trailer and brake combinations will never lock up the brakes under normal traction conditions - even full battery voltage supplied to the brake magnets just doesn't cause enough brake friction. In this case (which applies to my Boler), the right setting is not full blast, but whatever makes the trailer do its share of the braking work - it sounds to me like you're doing the right thing, Gina. Since this means that the brakes really aren't quite strong enough for the trailer weight at maximum braking, the proportional braking effort will only be right up to some level of deceleration, and harder stops just won't have as much trailer braking as ideal.

This adjustment for the Prodigy is basically the same as for Gina's Reese POD; however, since the POD is not a proportional contoller, the adjustment would be right only for one braking situation, in which the driver increases braking effort from zero towards maxium at a specific rate, while the Prodigy will follow how hard the tow vehicle is actually braking. The POD is sold as a Reese, Draw-Tite, and Tekonsha/AccuPower.

Quote:
...Even at the lowest setting I feel drag, and can apply the trailer brakes with the panic button. It isn't very strong, but is this normal at 5 MPH or so?
If the trailer seems to be dragging - doing more braking than it needs to thus being an anchor for the tow vehicle - then either the boost (the three levels controlled by a pushbutton on the Prodigy) or the gain (overall adjustment dial) is too high. Excessive boost means the trailer drags right away when the brakes are applied, then backs off; too much gain means the trailer drags the tow vehicle under all braking conditions. I find getting on and off the brakes briefly and lightly when traveling slowly is the least smooth condition with my rig - less boost is better for me in this case, and it becomes a compromise between parking lots (no boost) and highway (boost level 1 or 2) settings for me.

The manual lever (a.k.a. "panic button") should work at all speeds - whatever the speed, fully activating the lever means applying full-effort braking to the trailer.
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Old 12-01-2005, 08:37 PM   #17
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This site has the Prodigy controllers for $89.99. That does not seem like too much $$ for top of the line.

http://rvwholesalers.com/catalog/home.php?cat=6
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Old 12-02-2005, 08:36 AM   #18
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I just ordered a Prodigy controller after reading all these posts.

Has anyone out there installed one? Are their directions clear? I have a 96' Toyota 4 cylinder truck. There is already a 7 pin plug on the bumper. The only wire not installed to it is the brake controller wire. The trailer is all set up.

The RV supply/service business here wanted $180 to sell and install one, and that was not even the Prodigy. So, I guess I'll take a whack at it myself unless I hear otherwise from someone from this forum.
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Old 12-02-2005, 09:28 AM   #19
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Gary, although for my last two installs I have chosen not to do it myself, it is actually a pretty simple installation. Just follow the instructions from Tekonsha and you'll do fine. Make sure that you use the proper size breaker for the brakeline, and that you route the wires so they won't chafe or overheat/melt/burn from the exhaust.

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Old 12-02-2005, 10:28 AM   #20
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Roger,

Thank you for the information. I'll make sure I address these details.
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Old 12-02-2005, 12:45 PM   #21
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Hi Gary,

I sent you a PM, but I will post here too, for others to see

The instructions seem pretty straight forward IF your car has a pre wired connector under the dash.

Then they don't instruct you HOW to run the wiring back to the pigtail @ The hitch, thats an individual car thing.

I am no expert on auto electric, so I left it up to folks that do this all the time. I know when NOT to mess with things that can potentially cost me lots of money if done incorrectly.

Since I have to rely on my car for so much, this is a bad place to experiment with a learning curve.

My controller install and wiring of the charge line, safety inspection of the trailer and frame, hitch, and re routing of the pigtail to standard was 250 bucks. Money well spent, and they had it done in a day.
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