Adding a Trailer Breakaway Kit - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-06-2017, 11:06 AM   #21
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Name: bob
Trailer: Was A-Liner now 13f Scamp
Missouri
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wow and double woa

john another amazing post. I can just bet how the highways were in 1974 down there but they may still be the same!

I was in Mexico on time many years ago couple of guys were digging a ditch no backhoe in sight guess labor was that cheap then and no doubt now

I sure would like to hear your story sometime regarding your trip!!

bob
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Old 11-06-2017, 11:57 AM   #22
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Colorado
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Originally Posted by k0wtz View Post
in my job I drove as much as 50k a year sometimes 60k I did this for 35 years in that time I never saw a trailer that broke away from the tug! I once saw a semi trailer catch on fire due to bad brakes on the trailer. I once saw a semi pulling a trailer flip over due to high speed on the drivers part.
bob
About 10 years back I was at the Scamp Camp near Sebring Florida and there was a trailer leaving that had their trailer come unhitched when it went over a speed bump, apparently forgot to latch the hitch and the trailer came unhitched. Very slow so no harm done. Only time I ever heard of that happening.
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Old 11-06-2017, 02:14 PM   #23
Raz
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Name: Raz
Trailer: Trillium 2010
Vermont
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When I installed my break away switch I wondered which should be the last line of defense the break away switch or the chains. A search will find pages of posts on various forums arguing one vs the other with good arguments for either. I decided that the break away switch cord should be longer because I only wanted the brakes on should the chains fail. Unlike the brake controller, the break away switch is not proportional. It applies a full 12 volts, i.e. maximum braking when activated.
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Old 11-06-2017, 02:59 PM   #24
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Name: Wayne & Barbara
Trailer: Parkliner
Iowa
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A breakaway switch is like closing the door after the horse is out of the barn.
A proper set of safety chains should catch the trailer well before the switch activates. Make sure the chains are not too long, just enough to let you turn tight corners. But, to reduce the chance of a breakaway, make sure your ball hitch and drawbar to receiver connections are snug. Inspect the pins and regularly. BUT, assuming Murphy's Law applies: that if something CAN go wrong, it WILL go wrong, go ahead with the switch. Use the Scamp battery.
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Old 11-06-2017, 06:15 PM   #25
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Name: Jeff T
Trailer: 2017 Scamp 16 Deluxe
Midwest
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Good discussion all......
I found this to be a good safety addition for our trailer to protect against the possibility of the trailer becoming unhitched. The setup also included a method to protect your tow vehicle while backing up to hitch up.

durasafelocks.com/product/coupler-connect-plus-protect-systems/
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Old 11-06-2017, 08:53 PM   #26
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Trailer: Escape 19' sold, 21' August 2015
POBox 1267, Denison, Texas
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Originally Posted by Wayne Collins View Post
A breakaway switch is like closing the door after the horse is out of the barn.
A proper set of safety chains should catch the trailer well before the switch activates. Make sure the chains are not too long, just enough to let you turn tight corners. But, to reduce the chance of a breakaway, make sure your ball hitch and drawbar to receiver connections are snug. Inspect the pins and regularly. BUT, assuming Murphy's Law applies: that if something CAN go wrong, it WILL go wrong, go ahead with the switch. Use the Scamp battery.
Yes, the chains will hopefully work. Have to have them crossed to hold up the tongue. Some people don't have chains though. Also, they may not have a brake controller. We can use our manual switch on the brake controller to slow the trailer. As Raz, I would prefer to not be connected to the trailer if the break-away switch activates. But everyone does not have the same set up.
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Old 11-07-2017, 11:34 PM   #27
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Scamp 13
California
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You want the safety chains as short as you can get away with so if you loose the ball mount pin it doesn't pull out of the reciever socket. If the chains are properly set up so they are properly crossed under the tongue. It would be hard for the coupler to jump off the ball if disconnected. You want the break away switch pull cable to be as short as possible so it fairly quickly activates the trailer brakes. So when the tug is unhooked and pulling the trailer by the chains the trailer breaks activate so the trailer doesn't slam into the back of the tug as your trying to stop and trying to get the whole shebang under control.

If everything worked as planned we wouldn't need belt and suspender back up plans. I have personally seen a trailer disconnect from tug. I have seen that same trailer go down the highway some 300 yards and then hit a ditch and go cartwheeling in the air. I have picked up trailer ball mounts off the highway and hitch pins off the road. It takes time to properly set up your trailer for best effort hitch up but once you get it figured out it takes no extra set up time each time you hitch up for a trip.

All i know i would feel very bad if my unhitched trailer went off on its own and destroyed some other peoples life without even trying to prevent it.
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Old 11-08-2017, 06:37 AM   #28
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Name: John Michael
Trailer: Scamp 13
Madison, Wisconsin
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Wise thoughts Steve. Thanks, john
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Old 11-08-2017, 12:00 PM   #29
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Name: Joe
Trailer: 1999 Casita 17' SD
Ohio
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Jeff, the original poster lists his Scamp as a 2017 model.
Here it says https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CFR-20...-sec393-44.pdf

(d) Breakaway braking requirements for
trailers. Every trailer required to be
equipped with brakes shall have brakes
which apply automatically and immediately
upon breakaway from the towing
vehicle.


So why does his Scamp not have them?

How and when it is actuated is a matter for debate, I could fing nothing saying exactly when it is applied regards chains.

Joe
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Old 11-08-2017, 02:09 PM   #30
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Name: John Michael
Trailer: Scamp 13
Madison, Wisconsin
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Originally Posted by Joe Romas View Post
Jeff, the original poster lists his Scamp as a 2017 model.
Here it says https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CFR-20...-sec393-44.pdf

(d) Breakaway braking requirements for
trailers. Every trailer required to be
equipped with brakes shall have brakes
which apply automatically and immediately
upon breakaway from the towing
vehicle.


So why does his Scamp not have them?

Joe
Brakes were optional on my 13. Certainly not required. Don't know about the 16s. I would guess that trailers above a certain weight are required to have brakes and perhaps a break-away switch.

john
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Old 11-08-2017, 02:41 PM   #31
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Name: Wayne & Barbara
Trailer: Parkliner
Iowa
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Originally Posted by Thom Rowland View Post
About 10 years back I was at the Scamp Camp near Sebring Florida and there was a trailer leaving that had their trailer come unhitched when it went over a speed bump, apparently forgot to latch the hitch and the trailer came unhitched. Very slow so no harm done. Only time I ever heard of that happening.
And,in 2012, we went from Sebring to the Keys. Camped at Pig Pine Key.
As we were leaving, went over a speed bump. the hitch ball jumped off. The chains caught it, but let the jack foot pad drag on the ground.. made noise, but no damage. Made me all the more careful to be sure the ball latch was engaged and locked.
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Old 11-08-2017, 04:36 PM   #32
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Scamp 13
California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Romas View Post
Jeff, the original poster lists his Scamp as a 2017 model.
Here it says https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CFR-20...-sec393-44.pdf

(d) Breakaway braking requirements for
trailers. Every trailer required to be
equipped with brakes shall have brakes
which apply automatically and immediately
upon breakaway from the towing
vehicle.


So why does his Scamp not have them?

How and when it is actuated is a matter for debate, I could fing nothing saying exactly when it is applied regards chains.

Joe
Because title 49 section 393 mainly applies to commercial trucks not passenger vehicles. There is a section that applies to federal law that trailers over 3000 lbs must have trailer brakes and the brake away switch applies there. Does Scamp make a trailer over 3,000 lbs? maybe the 5th wheel models?

Passenger car trailer brakes are more stringently controlled by individual state laws and those regulations are all over the place. So be careful crossing state lines if your one of those people that don't feel trailer brakes are necessary in light trailers.
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