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Old 02-14-2014, 07:40 PM   #85
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Originally Posted by rodsterinfl View Post
On the brakes, that is a controversial issue. For handling and performance disc is better but in most heavy weight applications and unclean environments drum brakes are used as they have greater frictional area.
I don't know the formula for calculating braking power but aren't drum brakes basically obsolete in modern passenger cars and pick up trucks? I do know the formula for the torque capacity of an automotive clutch and AREA is not one of the factors, looks are deceiving.

I have a picture that I took of the back of a semi trailer with a Canada license plate.

"CAUTION DISC BRAKES 30% SHORTER STOPPING DISTANCE"

Just search disc brakes for semis for lots of reading.

I'm really glad my Dodge Ram and Airstream both have disc brakes.
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Old 02-14-2014, 11:12 PM   #86
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Here is my take on trailer brakes.

Electric drum brakes are more than sufficient on an Airstream weighing less than 6500 lbs.

Disk elec\hyd brakes would be an upgrade, but well adjusted elec drums work well.

I am not a fan of antilock trailer brakes. They can be problematic, and are of little benefit IMO. As far as reliability the electric hyd unit, I have found that some brands are very reliable over the course of many years, others not so much.

I have lots of experience with both systems, I really like the elec/hyd units for heavy trailers, they are unnecessary for light weight Airstreams.
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Old 02-15-2014, 03:55 AM   #87
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J.Morgan,

Don't have the engineering data to back up when a certain brake system is the recommended choice. But disc brakes have braking advantages and somedays deservedly so have taken a bad rap due to poor installation or execution. But correctly setup they are darn strong. My rig came with them and my GVWR is 10,300 on 4 tires.

Lets go camping, snow started to melt yesterday.

gary
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Old 02-15-2014, 08:36 AM   #88
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My reliability experience with elec/hyd brakes has ranged from good to excellent depending on the brand of the trailer mounted master cylinder unit.

In my experience, next to full blown air brakes, elec/hyd/disk brake setups are the very best setup for trailering.

I have used these setups constantly on my 26,000 lb GCVWR "hot shots" since 1990.

I find that straight electric brakes are suitable and safe on my 6500 pound airstream, but I am fastidious about adjustment operation, and feel. I am very uncomfortable when my trailer brakes don't feel right.
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