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Old 01-21-2006, 02:09 PM   #1
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1963 24' Tradewind
Pittsford , New York
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Newbie: Electric brake controller for Nissan Armada (2004) advice needed

Just purchased a 1963 24' Tradewind and need to tow it back from NC in my 2004 Nissan Armada.

I need to purchase and electronic brake controller amd have a few questions:

1) Is it as simple as going to auto parts store and buying one and then installing? What is involved with the installation?

2) Any reccommendations on brands and places to buy on the net?

3) What should it cost to get the unit and have it professionally installed if that is the course I decide to take.

Much thanks in advance!

-Sig
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Old 01-21-2006, 03:27 PM   #2
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It Depends...

Welcome, and good luck with towing new trailer home..

There are several good searchable threads on brake controllers, and you'll come to love the "Search" feature on upper blue bar here...

You didn't mention whether truck already has trailer wiring, including rear receptacle for plug from trailer, and whether older trailer has round 7 connector plug or some other version... If either of those missing or different, probably best to start with professional installation.

There are several basic models of controller using different physics, from Prodigy lines at $140 and up to more exotics... They come with installation instructions, and it can be done with some bending and crawling and grunting, but places like Camping WOrld or U-Haul or hitch shops would install for about $60, equating to roughly 45 minutes to an hour of their professional labor rates. It's not rocket science, but requires competence in identifying wires, testing for power and continuity, etc.. It will also require some form of calibration once trailer hooked up, and hopefully brakes have been OK'd on trailer separately..

Enjoy searching for Controller or brakes above..

John McG
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Old 02-12-2006, 08:18 AM   #3
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1963 24' Tradewind
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Smile

John,

Well, you hit it right on the head. I went to U-Haul and purchased a unit for $89. The tech there said it would take '10 minutes max to install' since I had the wiring harness from the factory with a clip that should 'clip right in'.

Took it home and spent 1/2 hour trying to find where it clipped in to no avail. Took it back to U-Haul and told them I would pay to install - they reiterated that it would only take '15 minutes'. About 2 1/2 hours later I got a call from them stating that I would have to take it to the dealer since they could not find it either. Called the dealer and they stated that they don't do that kind of work. Returned the unit to u-haul and called a couple of trailer shops.

Interesting that I recieved quotes (including installation) from $145 to $290 for the same unit! Took it to the $145 place (Brad's trailer supply for those of you in upstate NY) and they installed it in 1/2 hour.

Thanks for your advice.

-Sig



Quote:
Originally Posted by Condoluminum
Welcome, and good luck with towing new trailer home..

There are several good searchable threads on brake controllers, and you'll come to love the "Search" feature on upper blue bar here...

You didn't mention whether truck already has trailer wiring, including rear receptacle for plug from trailer, and whether older trailer has round 7 connector plug or some other version... If either of those missing or different, probably best to start with professional installation.

There are several basic models of controller using different physics, from Prodigy lines at $140 and up to more exotics... They come with installation instructions, and it can be done with some bending and crawling and grunting, but places like Camping WOrld or U-Haul or hitch shops would install for about $60, equating to roughly 45 minutes to an hour of their professional labor rates. It's not rocket science, but requires competence in identifying wires, testing for power and continuity, etc.. It will also require some form of calibration once trailer hooked up, and hopefully brakes have been OK'd on trailer separately..

Enjoy searching for Controller or brakes above..

John McG
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Old 02-12-2006, 09:26 AM   #4
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We bought the prodigy unit off of ebay great price new in the box. We live in a small town and when I checked prices on the unit and install it was going to be around $175.00 and it was not the prodigy unit I wanted. I was able to get the unit I ordered off of ebay installed for $50.00.


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Old 02-12-2006, 10:47 AM   #5
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Titan/Armada Pre-Wire

Glad it worked out Sig.

Our now-sold Titan was the first time my dealer had to answer questions on this approx 2 years ago. Just finding the prewire was a job for them the first time -- it was held by a plastic cable tie high up under the dash above the steering wheel. A well-labelled pigtail came with the new purchase. I seem to recall there was an 8th wire in the harness for accessory lighting that i didn't use; e.g., for an interior light on a stock car trailer.

It took a fair amount of homework but only basic wiring skills/tools.

For anybody looking for a Tekonsha Prodigy, it's hard to go wrong on price and quick service from RJays. I see that they have an accessory harness for Nissan now that is said to connect to the Prodigy -- might make it simpler but I have no experience with that in particular.
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Old 02-12-2006, 10:49 AM   #6
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I highly recommend the Jordan Ultima 2020. I don't like the intertia type controllers at all.

Check it out here: http://www.bestbrakecontroller.com/
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