brake failure in 2014 scamp 13 - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV
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Old 05-20-2019, 04:50 PM   #21
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Name: David
Trailer: 2014 13' Scamp -standard w/ front bunk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike_L View Post
David, you are correct about the wire gauge, same or heavier will do. If you use a lighter gauge you may burn your fingers.

Electric brakes usually fail in one of three areas, the ground portion of the wiring harness (most common), the live (positive) portion of the harness or the electromagnets that activate the brakes themselves, especially where the live wire connects to these electromagnets. Checking out these three sections of your system allows you to identify where the problem is and saves time and work.

I share your concern about removing insulation from a wire that may remain in service. Electric tape is useful to prevent shorts but doesn't do much to keep out moisture/prevent corrosion where water may be present. I've had better success with a "brush on electrical tape" product that seals to the original insulation on the wire.

I've never owned a Scamp but the electric brakes I have seen appear to be quite similar. You are looking for access to the positive wire that activates the electromagnet. There may be an access point inside the drum so you don't have to remove any insulation. This is also a good location to check for continuity if the brakes activate with the jumper wire in place. Good luck!

Thanks Mike. I've now determined that 1) the brake controller is sending a signal and 2) the ground is solid and 3) the positive wiring up to the brake drums is functioning and 4) applying a 12v potential just outside the drums does not activate the brakes. Next step appears to be to open it up and check the internal wiring and coils.



I'm still curious if any scamp owners know where scamp ties the frame (since the brakes use the frame as ground) back to the system ground wiring. I'm not an electrician, but it seems to me they have to be tied together somewhere. Scamp's wiring diagram is inadequate to answer this question. Or maybe I'm just confused?
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Old 05-20-2019, 07:08 PM   #22
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You might find this tutorial on etrailer.com useful for testing your brakes. I had one magnet fail due to being ground so much by contact with the side of the drum that the magnet was worn and shorting, giving me unusual readings from my dashboard brake controller. I ended up buying compete self adjusting brake assemblies from etrailer.com which work great.
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Old 05-20-2019, 07:09 PM   #23
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Name: Dan
Trailer: Scamp
Minnesota
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Originally Posted by WDavidG View Post
>snip<
I'm still curious if any scamp owners know where scamp ties the frame (since the brakes use the frame as ground) back to the system ground wiring. I'm not an electrician, but it seems to me they have to be tied together somewhere. Scamp's wiring diagram is inadequate to answer this question. Or maybe I'm just confused?
Since it isn't raining here this evening, I went out and checked where the 12 volt negative line is connected to the frame. As I indicated in an earlier post, the blue brake line, the bare copper 120 volt ground line and the white 12 volt negative line exit the inside of the camper behind the left wheelwell. When I looked under the camper today I found both the bare 120 volt ground and the white 12 volt ground bonded to the frame just behind the left rear wheel.

--Dan Meyer
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Old 05-21-2019, 04:53 AM   #24
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Name: David
Trailer: 2014 13' Scamp -standard w/ front bunk
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Originally Posted by Dan Meyer View Post
Since it isn't raining here this evening, I went out and checked where the 12 volt negative line is connected to the frame. As I indicated in an earlier post, the blue brake line, the bare copper 120 volt ground line and the white 12 volt negative line exit the inside of the camper behind the left wheelwell. When I looked under the camper today I found both the bare 120 volt ground and the white 12 volt ground bonded to the frame just behind the left rear wheel.

--Dan Meyer
Thank you Dan. Sorry I missed the information in your earlier post and appreciate you re-posting it.
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Old 05-21-2019, 07:02 AM   #25
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Name: JD
Trailer: Scamp 16 Modified (BIGLY)
Florida
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If you have an ohmmeter then a quick check from the brake pin on the connector Pin #__ to ground will tell the tale.


Each coil has a resistance of about 4 ohms so two in parallel would measure about 2 ohms.
You can check at the plug and at the splice at the brake to understand what is happening.
Digital meters are cheap at Harbor Freight and handy to have as well.
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Old 05-21-2019, 12:23 PM   #26
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Name: Michael
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Good news David, it appears you're making progress!
If I understand correctly you have 12 volt power, positive and negative, to the wheels but no brake action on either wheel?
Again, I'm not familiar with the electrical system on your trailer but if you have ground to the hub (axle) and apply live (positive) to the coils, you have bypassed all the components of your braking system except the coils which you are now testing.
Do I understand correctly that the brakes don't work on either wheel?
These coils do fail but not usually both at the same time.
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Old 05-21-2019, 03:38 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by WDavidG View Post
Thank you Dan. Sorry I missed the information in your earlier post and appreciate you re-posting it.

My apologies for not being very clear; There was new information in my last posting. I confirmed the bonding to the frame yesterday; since it was raining a few days ago I didn't want to lay on the wet ground to check.



Best of luck, and keep us posted with your progress!


--Dan Meyer
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Old 05-22-2019, 01:21 AM   #28
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Name: Chas
Trailer: Escape 21 - previously 16' Scamp
Washington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redbarron55 View Post
If you have an ohmmeter then a quick check from the brake pin on the connector Pin #__ to ground will tell the tale.


Each coil has a resistance of about 4 ohms so two in parallel would measure about 2 ohms.
You can check at the plug and at the splice at the brake to understand what is happening.
Digital meters are cheap at Harbor Freight and handy to have as well.
My 2003 16' Scamp had a similar problem. Using a digital meter like redbarron55 I found that I had continuity between the brake pin (2) and the frame, but none to the trailer ground pin (1). I ended up bonding the frame to the trailer ground and all was well. Not sure if the original trailer ground to frame bond broke or if it never existed. In either case - easy diagnostic, easy fix.
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Old 06-01-2019, 07:22 PM   #29
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Name: David
Trailer: 2014 13' Scamp -standard w/ front bunk
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Thanks to all of you I received many tips on troubleshooting my brake problem and in the process have learned a lot about how they are wired and grounded. I'm a bit embarrassed about how simple the problem turned out to be.



I finally determined that everything from the brake controller to the receptacle at the rear of the TV was working properly and that everything from the trailer electrical plug back to and including the brakes was functioning (my earlier post about 12 V applied at the brakes and failing to activate them was obviously a testing error). Hmmm... what is left in the circuit? The mating of the plug and receptacle! I cleaned the contacts and the brakes are now working.



Thanks to all of you for your patience and advice. The scamp is now ready to travel.
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