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Old 07-26-2018, 08:02 AM   #15
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Lots of good info! The reason I asked the question is I have seen several discussions about braking hard in a straight line to avoid a rear-end collision and posts that basically stated a truck would be superior in that situation due to it's weight and ability to assist in stopping the trailer. This got me wondering, is the trailer not "pulling it's weight" so to speak when it comes to slowing down? Sounds like if things are set right, brakes are working properly that's not the case and the trailer may actually assist the tow vehicle.
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Old 07-26-2018, 01:59 PM   #16
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One important point.
My 23’ Safari has 12” brakes on both axles, a 31’ has the same brakes, so my small trailer should stop better than a larger trailer.
For comparison, my enclosed 20’ car hauler has 10” brakes on both axles and with a car loaded the trailer is much heavier than my Airstream and I have to turn the brake controller way up.
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Old 07-27-2018, 08:21 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by smithcreek View Post
Lots of good info! The reason I asked the question is I have seen several discussions about braking hard in a straight line to avoid a rear-end collision and posts that basically stated a truck would be superior in that situation due to it's weight and ability to assist in stopping the trailer. This got me wondering, is the trailer not "pulling it's weight" so to speak when it comes to slowing down? Sounds like if things are set right, brakes are working properly that's not the case and the trailer may actually assist the tow vehicle.
Hi

Well, truck is best, but compared to what?

The brakes on a high end sports car put what you get on a normal truck to shame. They aren't exactly light weight vehicles either. They also will win if you decide to drag race ...

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Old 08-04-2018, 06:42 AM   #18
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If the TT brakes are correct” the combined rig will slow faster than the TV solo. Is the basic working rule of thumb. How well it stops is more a function of TR brake design.

But the heavier the TV (say, much past 4,500-lbs) the worse will be the performance of the rig.


Trucks will still be worst. And incapable of anything but straight-line braking (bad mojo to try a lane change at this point).

The test is to use TT brakes ONLY to stop the rig. Kent Sunderling (MR TRUCK) has an extensive disc brake conversion article I’ve linked or noted numerous times which includes this test. It’s also an EU requirement.

If the TT sways, THIS is what matters. The TT must be able to quickly slow the rig as the TV is simultaneously under hard acceleration.

Shouldn’t tax the deductive powers of one ton owners too greatly to understand that the heavier the TV, the worse the performance (again). The lower likelihood of sway recovery is the price of heavier TVs. (Sizing is a question of optimal. It is again inherent stability that matters).

The question of ratios is more TT brake design (including controls such as DirecLink) and an optimal sized TV of inherent stability. IOW, for a given TT size (maybe use a 27’ as base), performance will suffer as TV size increases (tire contact patch load) in anything but an attempted straight line stop.

Unlike a lot of you I’ve witnessed quite a few rollover accidents. There isn’t always enough room to come to a controlled stop. Even starting in excess of 700’ of space to next vehicle. Today’s drivers think nothing of changing into your lane to avoid a problem.

Drive a big truck and you’ll be up against the dilemma of whom to kill. Choose well.
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Old 08-04-2018, 06:59 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by AldeanFan View Post
One important point.
My 23’ Safari has 12” brakes on both axles, a 31’ has the same brakes, so my small trailer should stop better than a larger trailer.
For comparison, my enclosed 20’ car hauler has 10” brakes on both axles and with a car loaded the trailer is much heavier than my Airstream and I have to turn the brake controller way up.
The brakes on the Safari need to be turned down to prevent lockup, because the trailer is in reality much lighter than what the brakes are capable of stopping. Once upon a time, I had a chart that showed braking force needed on a per-pound basis, as well as braking force available, per square inch of friction material. Of course, it assumed everything adjusted and operating properly, and didn't take driving conditions into account, such as long steep downgrades or stop and go traffic, but it was a good guide.
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Old 08-04-2018, 07:11 AM   #20
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Great info, thanks slowmover!


Quote:
If the TT brakes are correct” the combined rig will slow faster than the TV solo. Is the basic working rule of thumb. How well it stops is more a function of TR brake design.
That answers the most basic question I started with which was "does the trailer provide 100% of it's own braking power?" Yes and if working right, even more than 100%.
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Old 08-06-2018, 12:55 PM   #21
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Great info, thanks slowmover!



That answers the most basic question I started with which was "does the trailer provide 100% of it's own braking power?" Yes and if working right, even more than 100%.
You’re welcome.

It is supposed to provide all of its own braking. Condition, adjustment, axle alignment and bearing preset all matter.

Then, correct hitch rigging. 20-30% of TW to TT axles to look for.

Disc brakes (antilock) keep it from needing a prayer to accompany application.

I can see where you’re headed. And, yes, where the rig has some “balance” (the load similar on any given tire of the combined rig), the potential is higher for better overall braking. Won’t really work out that way (deceleration dynamics), but it’s a start.


.
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Old 08-06-2018, 04:43 PM   #22
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As I've mentioned in another thread, technology does not cure 'stupid'. Fancy hitches, upgraded tires, trailer disc brake systems, active trailer anti-skid systems, and the like should be thought of as safety and handling enhancements, not an invitation to drive as fast as possible...

Many accidents, including ones leading to destructive trailer roll-overs initiated by uncontrolled sway incidents, can be attributed to "speed too great for conditions".

There is no real need to tow any trailer at speeds above the posted truck, trailer, and towing speed limit. In California, its set at 55 MPH. I've lost count of the number of rigs going by me at way over that limit, and I usually am glad to see them go past me safely--so I don't get caught up in the aftermath.

Yeah, its good to have your setup such that the tires, hitch, brakes, and tow vehicle can support moving out at greater speeds--Texas is one example of a place that does not place reduced speed limits on towed vehicles, IIRC. But why push it?

Being ABLE to tow at 65+ miles per hour does not mean you NEED to tow at those speeds. Slow down, relax, and enjoy the scenery at a much slower pace. Doing that improves your chances of surviving the experience without breaking equipment, causing injuries, or losing lives.
Best advice I have read here in months
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Old 08-08-2018, 11:37 AM   #23
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When driving 55 on an interstate where the speed limit is between 70 and 80, you might have a different kind of problem, like getting rear ended.
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Old 08-08-2018, 12:09 PM   #24
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I know I would no longer drive a car with 4 or even 2 drum brakes. I know the wiring to the trailer can have a fault. I know I have not been able to optimise my controller for all conditions. I know that electric brakes are not even legal for carrying passengers. I know I do not want my trailer to lock up when I touch the brakes on a wet downhill curve.
I see nothing to makee me comfortable with the idea that the trailer will stop itself. I have seen signs that said "grades up to 10 % for the next 26 miles". I have had to stop at the bottom of some of those grades.
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Old 08-08-2018, 12:22 PM   #25
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When driving 55 on an interstate where the speed limit is between 70 and 80, you might have a different kind of problem, like getting rear ended.
The top POSTED US speed limit is typically 70 MPH. I'm well aware that the traffic speed is typically way above that, especially around were I commute daily in California. (GPS often points out that I'm moving at 72+ MPH true speed in the #2 lane on cruise control and I'm still being passed occasionally) The Truck/vehicle being towed posted speed limit on the exact same freeway is 55 MPH right here in California. So the law-abiding types are in the far right lane, following the trucks which are doing typically 60 MPH unless the Highway Patrol is in the area.

I'm NOT advocating being a traffic hazard. What I'm suggesting is that it is more prudent to travel on highways and freeways at a reasonable, safe-for-conditions speed. What bugs me most is the vehicle that is going way under the traffic speed in the #1 lane (far left) and causing congestion and swerving.

If I'm moving at less than traffic speeds, I keep an eye on traffic behind me and get the heck outta the way of the faster vehicles. With the AS in tow, I'm rarely in the #1 (farthest left) lane. If freeway/large highway is moving at faster than reasonable speed--I'm going to pick an alternate, more sane route when towing. I like lots of space around me to maneuver in, and keep running lights on in daylight to be more conspicuous to passing traffic, besides the fact that its a good driving habit anyway..

Besides, higher speed means burning a LOT more gas to sustain that speed, rougher ride, and a busier driver workload. I'll admit to getting up to the speed limit in Texas and other places, but never over--it just does not make sense when towing 45 feet of rig and grossing over 9,000 pounds total with a light pickup truck. As I've often pointed out, I may be crazy, but I'm not stupid...I'd rather get to where I'm going without having a bad day.
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Old 08-08-2018, 06:39 PM   #26
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When driving 55 on an interstate where the speed limit is between 70 and 80, you might have a different kind of problem, like getting rear ended.
No, absolutely not! The speed limit for towing may be 55 mph, when the solo speed limit is much higher. That is the law and signage is in place.

Additionally, there is no justification to travel faster than the speed at which your rig is stable. And if your speed falls below 40 mph, get those flashers flashing.

Also, if you can not smartly pass another vehicle, slow down and follow. Do not block the fast lane for any more time than is absolutely necessary.



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Old 08-08-2018, 06:52 PM   #27
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The top POSTED US speed limit is typically 70 MPH. I'm well aware that the traffic speed is typically way above that, especially around were I commute daily in California. (GPS often points out that I'm moving at 72+ MPH true speed in the #2 lane on cruise control and I'm still being passed occasionally) The Truck/vehicle being towed posted speed limit on the exact same freeway is 55 MPH right here in California. So the law-abiding types are in the far right lane, following the trucks which are doing typically 60 MPH unless the Highway Patrol is in the area.
~~
There are many places in the US with higher posted speeds than 70 mph. Texas has lots of 75 mph and some 80 mph stretches. There's even one 85 mph stretch on a tollway in central Texas. Texas doesn't mandate a lower speed limit for towing. That said, I don't tow my Airstream at 80 but neither do I imagine it would be a relaxing experience to tow it 55 on the interstate. I generally hang out to the right around 65-68 mph under those conditions.
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Old 08-08-2018, 07:41 PM   #28
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So will the trailer brakes stop the trailer from 80 mph or do the TV brakes need to pick up part of the trailer stopping?
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