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Old 04-06-2003, 10:53 PM   #1
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Vacuum Disk Brakes

Anyone ever figure out if the Airstream disk brake pads used in the '70s have additional applications? In other words, were these pads used on some other vehicle and perhaps still available?
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Old 04-07-2003, 12:14 PM   #2
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The disc brakes pads were unique to Airstream.

We have those pads as well as many other disc brake parts.


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Old 04-14-2009, 03:33 AM   #3
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I'm looking for advice on brakes. My setup:
1977 29' Ambassador with Vacuum over Hydraulic brakes.
1999 Chevy Tahoe, fuel injected 5.7 litre vortec.
Am I better off going with a product from Carlisle ( if so which one ) or the actuator system if you still have one of those systems left.
The unit has not been towed for 20 plus years.
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Old 04-14-2009, 03:49 AM   #4
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Give it a shot it may work. I have been very happy with the brakes on my trailer.
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Old 04-14-2009, 04:44 AM   #5
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If it works, use it. If it does not and you intend to travel the nation in the trailer, change it out. Almost no one but Andy has parts or how to fix the system. I got stuck without operating brakes in remote locations several times before the caliper holding bracket's welds failed and I gave up and converted. Electrics make the simplest and cost effective solution. You can get them fixed anywhere and are reliable. Disks have higher performance but you rarely need their capacity. Electrics can usually lock the trailer brakes strong enough to skid the wheels.
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Old 04-14-2009, 04:58 AM   #6
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Am I correct to assume that the newer fuel injected motors do not produce sufficient vacuum to operate the older vacuum brake system and therefore removing all of the components on the tongue minus the brake lines, and installing a newer pump and keep the disk brake setup is a viable solution. I intend on replacing most of the brake components.
Don't I have to replace the axles if I'm going electric?
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Old 04-14-2009, 05:30 AM   #7
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If you want to convert to electric/hydraulic disc brakes you can use the existing lines and the conversion is simple. As for the electric brakes being strong and able to lock the wheels that is the point. You don't want to lock the wheels or you loose traction. The hydraulic are less likely to actually lock because the pressure is equal an all 4 wheels. And in most situations you may not need them but if you need them once it is worth having them. Safety first!
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Old 04-14-2009, 06:02 AM   #8
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Keep your disc brakes. Get a hydraulic activator that your brake controller will activate. Be sure to pay attention to the grounding and wiring instructions that come with the activator. the actibrake wants 30 amps to operate correctly.
You'll appreciate being able to pull down your whole rig using the manual lever on your controller while coming down out of Borden into Elkland.
Phone call to Andy and you get all parts you need, or you can study up and order parts by part.
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Old 04-14-2009, 07:52 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by 77Ambassador View Post
Am I correct to assume that the newer fuel injected motors do not produce sufficient vacuum to operate the older vacuum brake system and therefore removing all of the components on the tongue minus the brake lines, and installing a newer pump and keep the disk brake setup is a viable solution. I intend on replacing most of the brake components.
Don't I have to replace the axles if I'm going electric?
Super charged engines usually do not have a source of vacuum, that you need for the original Airstream disc brake setup.

You can change the actuator assembly that's behind the LPG bottles, to a new style actuator, that does not need any vacuum.

The Carlisle 1600 psi model, is the proper replacement for the original equipment.

We are the only company left, that has repair parts for the calipers and the sync valve, but the sync valve is a part of the actuator that you will be replacing.

No, you don't need to change the axles when you change to a different type actuator.

But, since you say the trailer has not been used for 10 years, the axles then are probably shot, due to the rubber rod failure.

Therefore, in that case, changing the axles would be necessary, and if done properly, you can still transfer the disc brake setup that's presently on the axles, and still use the same rotors as well.

Obviously, a bearing pack and new grease seals would be necessary.

I will PM you the article on how to check your axles out.

If you go to electric brakes, you will be making a giant step "backwards" in brake performance.

Andy
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Old 05-13-2009, 08:04 PM   #10
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Greetings. I have a question for you regarding trailer brakes. I am currently looking to purchase a 1982 34' Limited Airstream. It is in good condition and not junk.

I have an '02 Yukon with a 5.7l to tow it. I recently found out that these older Airstream trailers used what is called a hydraulic actuator vs the common electric brake systems. Am I correct on this?

My dilema is that I don't have the connections to connect to the hydraulic actuator. Are these still made? What options do I have? Electric vs hydraulic?

Please educate me along with costs.

Look forward to hearing from you.
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Old 05-13-2009, 08:20 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Airstream34 View Post
Greetings. I have a question for you regarding trailer brakes. I am currently looking to purchase a 1982 34' Limited Airstream. It is in good condition and not junk.

I have an '02 Yukon with a 5.7l to tow it. I recently found out that these older Airstream trailers used what is called a hydraulic actuator vs the common electric brake systems. Am I correct on this?

My dilema is that I don't have the connections to connect to the hydraulic actuator. Are these still made? What options do I have? Electric vs hydraulic?

Please educate me along with costs.

Look forward to hearing from you.
We are the only company that has the orginal parts for he Airstream vacuum disc brake system.

At this point, you would need to make some tests to see what, if any, problems the system may have.

You can replace the actuator if you wish, which would eliminate the need for a vacuum supply system.

Down grading to electric brake, would be a huge step backwards.

Since we are a vendor, we cannot post prices on this Forums.

But, you can call us for them.

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Old 05-13-2009, 10:09 PM   #12
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Andy is right, he is the only person in the World that has brake parts for the old disk brake system. The question is: Do you want to be anywhere but parked next to his shop when the brakes fail? I had the old disks on my 77 for 7 years and got stuck for days on the road a number of times trying to get parts. The electric brakes I put on the trailer cost under $300 for all the parts in two hours of my own time. They worked more reliably and gave better stopping characteristics than the old Disks. The old disks caliper holders have a fatal design defect and can fail catastrophically with no warning. The welds fail due to fatigue factures. I had one scatter parts and oil all over the road and I when I took the other ones off I found two others had the start of the same fatigue crack. The new disk brake systems are designed and made by a different manufacturer.

If you insist on Disk brakes, buy a whole new system. Be aware, that Airstream also made an error on assembling this system also and worn through and crippled brake lines have been reported. Most other trailer manufacturers use the standard electric brakes and they are easily maintained or repaired anywhere in the country.
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Old 05-13-2009, 10:12 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Airstream34 View Post
Greetings. I have a question for you regarding trailer brakes. I am currently looking to purchase a 1982 34' Limited Airstream. It is in good condition and not junk.

I have an '02 Yukon with a 5.7l to tow it. I recently found out that these older Airstream trailers used what is called a hydraulic actuator vs the common electric brake systems. Am I correct on this?

My dilema is that I don't have the connections to connect to the hydraulic actuator. Are these still made? What options do I have? Electric vs hydraulic?

Please educate me along with costs.

Look forward to hearing from you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In View Post
We are the only company that has the orginal parts for he Airstream vacuum disc brake system.

At this point, you would need to make some tests to see what, if any, problems the system may have.

You can replace the actuator if you wish, which would eliminate the need for a vacuum supply system.

Down grading to electric brake, would be a huge step backwards.

Since we are a vendor, we cannot post prices on this Forums.

But, you can call us for them.

Andy
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwightdi View Post
Andy is right, he is the only person in the World that has brake parts for the old disk brake system. The question is: Do you want to be anywhere but parked next to his shop when the brakes fail? I had the old disks on my 77 for 7 years and got stuck for days on the road a number of times trying to get parts. The electric brakes I put on the trailer cost under $300 for all the parts in two hours of my own time. They worked more reliably and gave better stopping characteristics than the old Disks. The old disks caliper holders have a fatal design defect and can fail catastrophically with no warning. The welds fail due to fatigue factures. I had one scatter parts and oil all over the road and I when I took the other ones off I found two others had the start of the same fatigue crack. The new disk brake systems are designed and made by a different manufacturer.

If you insist on Disk brakes, buy a whole new system. Be aware, that Airstream also made an error on assembling this system also and worn through and crippled brake lines have been reported. Most other trailer manufacturers use the standard electric brakes and they are easily maintained or repaired anywhere in the country.
Before everybody panics, are you sure you even have disk brakes on that trailer?
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Old 05-13-2009, 11:12 PM   #14
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Oh Lord..
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