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Old 06-21-2010, 07:58 PM   #1
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1979 31' Excella 500
mckinney , Texas
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Vacuum Disc Breaks!! HELP!

I bought a 79 Excella 500 with the vacuum disc break system. Unfortunately, new cars today can't be used with this system. Do I need to replace the entire break system or is ther another option? Has anyone converted this system, and what was the cost.
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Old 06-21-2010, 08:36 PM   #2
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1979 23' Safari
1954 29' Liner
Orange , California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Further99 View Post
I bought a 79 Excella 500 with the vacuum disc break system. Unfortunately, new cars today can't be used with this system. Do I need to replace the entire break system or is ther another option? Has anyone converted this system, and what was the cost.
You need to purchase an electric over hydraulic actuator to replace the vacuum portion of the brakes. If you search this forum you will find out what is available, or contact an Airstream service center.

Disc brakes are much better than electric. But if you decide to go backwards to electric drum brakes, I will take the discs.

Bill
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1973 Dodge W200 PowerWagon, 1977 Lincoln Continental, 2014 Dodge Durango
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Old 06-22-2010, 07:45 PM   #3
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1977 27' Overlander
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Call Randy over at North Dallas RV, Carrollton.
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Old 06-22-2010, 09:10 PM   #4
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I have the same brake system on my 77 Excella and just had a Carlisle 1600 actuator installed at Inland RV Center. The original discs and rotors were in good shape and work fine with the Carlisle actuator. Eventually we will need to convert to a newer disc system as parts are becoming scarce. Be sure all your caliper bolts are tight. A caliper bolt was loose, hit the inside of the rim and broke off. Fortunately the threads were not screwed in so I didn't have to tap out the bolt. The inside of the rim took quite a shaving as I drove 50 miles before noticing the bolt had broken off. I replaced the bolt and everything is working fine so far after 500 miles of towing. I agree that there is no comparison to disc brakes on a trailer. It is worth the money to keep them in my opinion. A Carlisle should run $625 for the actuator plus installation. Good luck!
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Old 06-22-2010, 11:19 PM   #5
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1977 31' Excella 500
plano , Texas
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I agree with KL77. I converted my 77 excella 500 off of vacuum controlled brakes based on Randy's advice. He is the only service center in the area that I trust. Typically, I do everything myself, but tomorrow my trailer will be with him to do the things that I am scared to try myself (like A/C servicing).

-thomas
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