Adding brakes - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-20-2014, 10:29 PM   #1
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Name: Kenny
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Hello all.
Our family has a '79 13' trillium that has been well loved and cared for by the previous owners. They did, however, tow it with something bigger than our '11 Subaru forester.
As the owners manual rates the towing capacity at 1000lbs no brakes/ 2400lbs with brakes, I want to have brakes added to the trailer. I'll have them done professionally.

Is this best done at a mechanic's or at an RV/ trailer place? What general costs and time am I looking at?
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Old 12-20-2014, 11:01 PM   #2
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I suggest neither. A trailer place knows how to install new axles, brakes, etc. You might need to replace the axle to allow brakes. A good trailer shop would know what's needed.
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Old 12-20-2014, 11:13 PM   #3
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Sorry, I meant RV/ trailer place.
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Old 12-20-2014, 11:21 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Ksimdjembe View Post
Sorry, I meant RV/ trailer place.
That's OK. I meant utility trailer place.
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Old 12-20-2014, 11:52 PM   #5
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Kenny, if you do end up having to change out the axle I would add the brakes as the extra cost is pretty small at that point. Even if you don't need the extra braking it sure is nice to know you have it avalible. I don't have brakes on any of my utility trailers and some times they get loaded pretty heavy but it's always a short tow. TT tend to be longer distance tows. Just my two cents
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Old 12-21-2014, 12:36 AM   #6
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Kenny, if you do end up having to change out the axle I would add the brakes as the extra cost is pretty small at that point. Even if you don't need the extra braking it sure is nice to know you have it avalible. I don't have brakes on any of my utility trailers and some times they get loaded pretty heavy but it's always a short tow. TT tend to be longer distance tows. Just my two cents
Ahhh. The reason she might have to replace the axle is if the backing plates are not already on the current axle. She need to put brakes on to pull with Subaru.
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Old 12-21-2014, 01:25 AM   #7
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Byron's correct!
Stay as far away from ANY RV shop for anything unless your wealthy and money doesn't matter.
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Old 12-21-2014, 07:16 AM   #8
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What sort of ballpark costs would I be looking at?

Kenny
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Old 12-21-2014, 09:46 AM   #9
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Here's the place to start. Should be able to link over to an installer in your area:

Dexter Axle - Trailer Axles and Running Gear Components - Home

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Old 12-21-2014, 10:21 AM   #10
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Kenny, we tow a Scamp 13 Standard no bath but otherwise loaded, with a 2011 Forester. We do have the brakes, and think it makes a fine tug. Plenty of power, and we average about 19 - 20 MPG. Subaru handling and traction on slippery roads is legendary, but I'm sure you know that. I think it would be worth the money to upgrade your trailer, even if it will require a new axle. Good luck!

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Old 12-21-2014, 11:46 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Ksimdjembe View Post
What sort of ballpark costs would I be looking at?

Kenny
Cost of a new axle installed, complete with new hubs and brakes varies from shop to shop & location to location - so its worth doing some shopping around. $600 would be a good ball park number here in Canada to budget on.

As others have indicated unless the current axle on the trailer has the brake mounting plate already on it you will need to change the axle out completely. You can not simple add the brake mounting plate to an old axle. It is doubtful that the old axle on the trailer has the plate though due to its age.
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Old 12-22-2014, 10:07 AM   #12
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Thanks all for the suggestions. We are easy of Toronto, and have now been researching trailer companies. Great info on here - glad I found y'all!
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Old 12-23-2014, 07:02 PM   #13
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Um... That should say 'east' not 'easy'. Silly autocorrect.
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Old 12-23-2014, 08:34 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Ksimdjembe View Post
Thanks all for the suggestions. We are easy of Toronto, and have now been researching trailer companies. Great info on here - glad I found y'all!
You might want to do a Google on who your local Dexter axle dealer is.... that should help get you on the right path to finding a shop.
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