Can you lock up your trailer brakes? - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 09-27-2016, 04:21 AM   #1
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Can you lock up your trailer brakes?

I'm wondering if you guys can lock up your brakes with your brake controller. I was trying to adjust my controller before a long trip & turned up my controller to max. When I applied them I felt them slow the trailer but the tires would not lock up. Is this normal or should I get them adjusted?
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Old 09-27-2016, 05:56 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by mcpaul View Post
I'm wondering if you guys can lock up your brakes with your brake controller. I was trying to adjust my controller before a long trip & turned up my controller to max. When I applied them I felt them slow the trailer but the tires would not lock up. Is this normal or should I get them adjusted?
Personally, that is the exact reason I upgraded to disk brakes.

I tow with a Hensley Hitch, being able to lockup the brakes is very helpful at times, when your slaming the drawbar home or dropping the trailer.

We tow to many miles in too many unfamiliar roads and road surfaces to have to stop every week to week and a half to adjust the dumb brakes. Pretty much wastes a whole day and more if my truck needs any maintenance work.

I would never leave home if the drum brakes would not lock up in the driveway. By the time we drove about 15 miles to our "interstate", I could no longer lock them up from a standing start.

So yes you should get them adjusted. If you"ve never adjust drum brakes before, it is a very easy job to learn and master and a valuable skill to aquire for the road. There's lots of good tutorials online. In fact learning how the electric drum brakes opererate and how to repair them on the road is worth learning.

There axel and brake manufacturers offer self adjusting kits. Cheack the Dexter Axel page, I believe their kits claim adjusting in both forward and reverse braking. I toyed with the idea and in my usual "go bigger or go home" mentality, went to the disks. If I could have fit 14" rotors on if I could.
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Old 09-27-2016, 10:06 AM   #3
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Yes, I can lock mine up. I adjust my controller by testing on a gravel lot so I can hear when they lock.
Rusty
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Old 09-27-2016, 04:29 PM   #4
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Mine will lock on gravel but not on pavement. They're fine.

To be more precise: if I'm stopped and put the manual brake control on max, the trailer wheels won't turn but if I'm on the highway and do the same thing, the brakes don't lock and I wouldn't want them to.
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Old 09-27-2016, 04:37 PM   #5
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I can tell you mine will lock if the safety gets pulled. Happened to me twice while making slow tight turns to the right this past vacation. Cable got hung on hitch and pulled out. Stopped me in my tracks.
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Old 09-28-2016, 03:20 PM   #6
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I've had that same "brown underpants" moment myself.
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Old 09-29-2016, 09:41 PM   #7
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I can tell you mine will lock if the safety gets pulled. Happened to me twice while making slow tight turns to the right this past vacation. Cable got hung on hitch and pulled out. Stopped me in my tracks.
Had the same thing happen to me recently. Towed the trailer clear around the campground not knowing the pin was pulled as there was little or no drag. The wheels didn't drag in the gravel. My 3805 is unsafe on the road and so far the dealer hasn't been able to fix it. Of course they claim there isn't anything wrong with brakes. Go figure.....��
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Old 09-29-2016, 10:10 PM   #8
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Had the same thing happen to me recently. Towed the trailer clear around the campground not knowing the pin was pulled as there was little or no drag. The wheels didn't drag in the gravel. My 3805 is unsafe on the road and so far the dealer hasn't been able to fix it. Of course they claim there isn't anything wrong with brakes. Go figure.....��
Sound to me like they need to be adjusted tighter. Electric drum brakes need to be adjust tighter than you would adjust hydraulic brakes. Also never seen a automatic adjuster ever work well on electric brakes. If I had the $$ I would switch to electric over hydraulic disc brakes in a heart beat.
When I ordered a new 5th wheel flatbed trailer for work, electric over hyd. disc brakes, 17.5 tires & hyd. dovetail bed is what I upgraded too.
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Old 09-29-2016, 10:24 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by DesertRat View Post
Sound to me like they need to be adjusted tighter. Electric drum brakes need to be adjust tighter than you would adjust hydraulic brakes. Also never seen a automatic adjuster ever work well on electric brakes. If I had the $$ I would switch to electric over hydraulic disc brakes in a heart beat.
When I ordered a new 5th wheel flatbed trailer for work, electric over hyd. disc brakes, 17.5 tires & hyd. dovetail bed is what I upgraded too.
Electric over hydraulic disk brakes are definitely in the near future!
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Old 09-29-2016, 10:39 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertRat View Post
I can tell you mine will lock if the safety gets pulled. Happened to me twice while making slow tight turns to the right this past vacation. Cable got hung on hitch and pulled out. Stopped me in my tracks.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertRat View Post
Sound to me like they need to be adjusted tighter. Electric drum brakes need to be adjust tighter than you would adjust hydraulic brakes. Also never seen a automatic adjuster ever work well on electric brakes. If I had the $$ I would switch to electric over hydraulic disc brakes in a heart beat.
When I ordered a new 5th wheel flatbed trailer for work, electric over hyd. disc brakes, 17.5 tires & hyd. dovetail bed is what I upgraded too.
Mike,

It's not as costly as you think. My 2 axel rig cost me about $2500C, includes brake parts from etrailer and a pair of custom built 6K axels and wet bolt kit from a local supplier.

If I wouldn't have had it all at once, I would have acummulated the parts over time. Can't beat etrailers free shipping.
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