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Old 06-16-2013, 11:26 AM   #57
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Quick update.. Brakes did great in the mountains today. Took the Million ollar Highway from outside of Durango to Ouray. A few 10,000+ foot passes and no guard rails where the road wasn't wide enough for the white line in places.

As we descended I had to keep adjusting the power downwards. I ended the day below 7 volts I think. Could have easily locked them up on pavement today. I guess they just really needed a good breaking in.

Thanks all for the advice and troubleshoot help.
Nice - where are you headed next in CO?
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Old 06-17-2013, 02:58 PM   #58
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Nice - where are you headed next in CO?
Glad I could help calm some others worries... Good hard braking should do it, otherwise it is fairly simple to adjust them with a screw driver and a ramp.

We are hanging out this week in Crested Butte.

Doesn't get much better than this...
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:07 AM   #59
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Nice pic! I hope the hard braking does it. How long will you be in Crested Butte and where is that taken. Beautiful!
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:56 AM   #60
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It is true that new brakes need to be "broken in", as the "shoe arc" never matches the "drum arc" perfectly. We recommend that you drive around the block a few times applying the trailer brakes using the override lever only, while still depressing the accelerator. Do this for 20-30 seconds, then let the shoe/drums cool off a bit, then repeat several times. You will notice the brakes getting better with each successive application. This is true for any brake manufacturer as the shoe steel components are stampings that get welded together before the pad material is added. The manufacturing tolerances for this process are not as tight as we'd like, but with a little "break in" period, you're fine.
Another issue we've found numerous times is corrosion on the brake wire connections inside the bellypan. Keep in mind that one pair of wires enters the front of the bellypan & they pop out near each wheel. The split is typically in the center of the trailer, just ahead of the front axle, inside the bellypan, with no access hatch. The connection is done with wire nuts & electrical tape. It doesn't take much corrosion in that wonderfully damp environment to create some resistance. We run new wires on every restoration job & exit the bellypan near one wheel, then tie wrap the wire across the axle to the next wheel, then back to the second axle. Granted the connections are exposed, but we end up with complete serviceability & you know there are no potential hidden corrosion issues.
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Old 06-19-2013, 12:06 AM   #61
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Nice pic! I hope the hard braking does it. How long will you be in Crested Butte and where is that taken. Beautiful!
Thanks.

We are in Crested Butte until Sunday. Colorado until late July. Slwoly working our way up the state.

Picture is about 4 miles out on Washington Gulch Road. National Forest land, so the camping is free.
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Old 06-19-2013, 12:08 AM   #62
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It is true that new brakes need to be "broken in...
Another issue we've found numerous times is corrosion on the brake wire connections inside the bellypan. ...
All makes perfect sense. I bought new wiring thinking that was going to be my next project, but luckily they broke themselves in first.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:02 AM   #63
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It is true that new brakes need to be "broken in", as the "shoe arc" never matches the "drum arc" perfectly. We recommend that you drive around the block a few times applying the trailer brakes using the override lever only, while still depressing the accelerator. Do this for 20-30 seconds, then let the shoe/drums cool off a bit, then repeat several times. You will notice the brakes getting better with each successive application. This is true for any brake manufacturer as the shoe steel components are stampings that get welded together before the pad material is added. The manufacturing tolerances for this process are not as tight as we'd like, but with a little "break in" period, you're fine.
Another issue we've found numerous times is corrosion on the brake wire connections inside the bellypan. Keep in mind that one pair of wires enters the front of the bellypan & they pop out near each wheel. The split is typically in the center of the trailer, just ahead of the front axle, inside the bellypan, with no access hatch. The connection is done with wire nuts & electrical tape. It doesn't take much corrosion in that wonderfully damp environment to create some resistance. We run new wires on every restoration job & exit the bellypan near one wheel, then tie wrap the wire across the axle to the next wheel, then back to the second axle. Granted the connections are exposed, but we end up with complete serviceability & you know there are no potential hidden corrosion issues.
Colin
Thanks, Colin. I have done as you describe with the brake lever more than a couple of times and cannot lock up the brakes with the lever no matter how high I set it. The brakes were working fine and then we had them inspected. After the inspection they stopped gripping as tightly as before. Should I be able to lock them with the lever only? (I am using boost 2 level up to 12.7) on my tenonsha p3. They used to grip tightly at 6.4 before the inspection....
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Old 06-19-2013, 11:23 AM   #64
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bonginator,

You do not have new brake friction material. So doing the events to "break in" the brake shoes will not make a difference.

I would suggest you have an electrical not a mechanical issue, since the inspection. I would assume having your brakes physically inspected and cleaned no visual issue was discovered. And in that process the electrical connections were moved around just to do that inspection.

Look at electrical connections (Remove wire nuts) for corrosion or contamination. Also the connector between the trailer and TV. Clean as necessary.

Measure voltage (EZ to do) at each brake connection. OR measure amperage at each brake. (Harder to do) while the vehicle is stationary. You are looking for consistancy on all wheels.

Something happened at the brake inspection that changed the brake system and that needs to be addressed, not an application of the brakes to via the controller only to get the shoes to fit to the drums. That won't happen on used shoes.

The other possibility is the brakes were reassembled incorrectly. This assumes more was done than just drum removal and cleaning by compressed air or by liquid chemical. If just the drums were removed and reinstalled, my guess is there is an electrical issue. You are not specific on what was actually done in the brake inspection.

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Old 08-25-2013, 10:08 PM   #65
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Just installed (another) set of Dexter Never-Adjust brakes on a Utility trailer, I have done several travel trailers too, they have all came with directions to "Burn the In" the new pads. You will have alost no braking until you do
Another problem I have run across several times is the connections INSIDE the trailer seven poll connector are corroded. Easiest fix is a new connector. And don't leave your connector laying on the ground or where it can get wet the electrical potential between the + and other wires will start electrolosis
TomJ
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