Does tug need brake controller - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-11-2009, 03:49 PM   #1
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Trailer: 1977 Trillium 4500
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Does the tug need a brake controller set up to tow a trailer that has electric brakes?
We want to use a trailer that has brakes but our full size truck has only wiring for lights.
Weight is no problem has the trailer is 13 ft. Boler.
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Old 06-11-2009, 04:10 PM   #2
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Yes you will need a controller wired in. It's what makes the brakes work.
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Old 06-11-2009, 04:30 PM   #3
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Here is your best buy for a controller. They usually have a shipping special of $5 to Canada. I had mine in less than a week at more than 1/2 the cost of purchasing in Calgary.

http://www.etrailer.com/pc-BC~90195.htm

If your vehicle is newer you may be able to purchase the "plug-n-play" wiring kit. Then it is just a matter of running a 10 ga. wire to your 7-way plug on the rear of your tug. Adapters are available to convert your existing 4-way on the tug to a 7-way.

I had to drill a hole through the firewall in my 2002 Sonoma, and the floorboards in the brother-in-laws Plymouth Van to facilitate running the wire. Since neither vehicle was pre-wired I had to locate the Stop light switch and tap into it. Fairly simple. Techonsha can tell you which wire is the stop switch for your particular vehicle.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/76boler...7604792637096/

Here is a photo documentary of the process. The brake controller install is near the end. Most everything is explained. If things aren't clear feel free to ask questions.

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Old 06-11-2009, 09:04 PM   #4
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Thanks for the replies.
I did not explain right. I do not have the time to get the controller installed nor the money. It's for just 1 weekend of use. I know my tug is heavy enough to tow with out trailer brakes (by law the weight ratio is fine). Will the trailer move with out the controller or are the trailer brakes locked on with no power going to the brakes? Thanks
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Old 06-11-2009, 09:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Thanks for the replies.
I did not explain right. I do not have the time to get the controller installed nor the money. It's for just 1 weekend of use. I know my tug is heavy enough to tow with out trailer brakes (by law the weight ratio is fine). Will the trailer move with out the controller or are the trailer brakes locked on with no power going to the brakes? Thanks
No, the brakes are not activated if there is no controller.

One other detail in case you're not familiar with electric brakes: the trailer may/should have electric emergency brakes, which are actuated by a steel cable attached to the tow vehicle. The idea is for this cable to be pulled like a ripcord if the trailer gets loose, which activates a small on-board battery to apply power to the brakes. I'd go ahead and clip that to the tow vehicle. Look for something like a small box with a big plastic key in it, with a stainless steel cable attached to it. Hook the other end to your truck. If it gets pulled by mistake, just re-insert it to turn the brakes back off.

Parker
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Old 06-12-2009, 12:09 AM   #6
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No, the brakes are not activated if there is no controller.

One other detail in case you're not familiar with electric brakes: the trailer may/should have electric emergency brakes, which are actuated by a steel cable attached to the tow vehicle. The idea is for this cable to be pulled like a ripcord if the trailer gets loose, which activates a small on-board battery to apply power to the brakes. I'd go ahead and clip that to the tow vehicle. Look for something like a small box with a big plastic key in it, with a stainless steel cable attached to it. Hook the other end to your truck. If it gets pulled by mistake, just re-insert it to turn the brakes back off.

Parker
Thanks Parker your info is what I needed to know. I will look for the cable.
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Old 06-17-2009, 12:54 AM   #7
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Not all trailers have the break-away switch that Parker describes.

If you do have a break-away switch. do NOT use it as a parking brake. It is designed to apply the brakes if there is a hitch failure and the trailer goes off on its own.

If the safety chains do their job, the break-away switch might or might not activate.
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