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Old 03-28-2009, 04:31 PM   #1
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1978 25' Tradewind
Walnut Creek , California
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 12
Which brake controller system should I purchase?

I am a new member having just recently purchased a 1978 Trade Wind. My tow vehicle is a 2001 Toyota Sequoia. I contacted a few trailer shops in my area and received a few similar recommendations from these shops. Can you help me determine what is best for this trailer-tow vehicle-new trailer driver set-up.

Option 1: MANUAL braking system (Valley Journey HD Digital - $90) or
Option 2: PROPORTIONAL braking system (Valley Odyssey $129)

Most shops recommended I go with the less expensive MANUAL brake as they have “less issues with these failing” and they are more flexible to use by the driver.

Please advise on the type of braking system (Manual vs Proportional) and the manufacturer name Valley vs other Braking system Manufacturer/models.

Thank you in advance.

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Old 03-28-2009, 04:43 PM   #2
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1986 31' Sovereign
Miami , Florida
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My Prodigy proportional brake controller has been installed 3+ years and has worked flawlessly. Easy self-install.


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Old 03-28-2009, 04:48 PM   #3
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1975 25' Tradewind
Dewey , Arizona
Join Date: Mar 2005
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I think that the Tekonsha Prodigy (older) or P3 are great brake controllers. They are by far the most popular ones in the RV industry. If your Toyota came with the towing package, you should be able to just plug it into the SUV's wiring plug with the Toyota adapter.

I have used the Prodigy for several years and am very satisfied with it's performance. It is a proportional brake controller.


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Old 03-28-2009, 05:16 PM   #4
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1978 25' Tradewind
Walnut Creek , California
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 12
Thank you all of the prompt replies. Apparently 2001, was the last year the the Sequoia WAS NOT prewired for this brake. Local quotes are $175 to install. Does that sound fair?
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Old 03-28-2009, 05:58 PM   #5
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2014 23' FB International
1959 24' Tradewind
Santa Rosa , California
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I am also very happy with the prodigy brake controller. $175 dollars for installation sounds like 1 1/2hours to install. Probably right. I dont want the kid from Circuit city doing mine so if i couldnt do it myself i would pay for the installation.

2014 Intl 23' FB
1959 Tradewind 24'
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Old 03-28-2009, 06:13 PM   #6
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2008 25' Safari FB SE
Grand Junction , Colorado
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We have the Prodigy and it works fine. If you're good with auto/trailer wiring, you can probably do this, and with a 30 year old trailer, no doubt you'll have to learn about wiring sooner or later. I don't know if you'll have to upgrade the trailer umbilical and the receptacle at the back of the Sequoia, but make sure you know which pin does what and if there is one there for a brake controller.
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Old 03-28-2009, 08:15 PM   #7
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1990 34' Excella
1964 22' Safari
Savage , Minnesota
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Originally Posted by azflycaster View Post
I have used the Prodigy for several years and am very satisfied with it's performance. It is a proportional brake controller.
I second this.
"I've got aluminum fever, and the only prescription, is more AIRSTREAM!!!"

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Old 03-28-2009, 08:43 PM   #8

2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , WNY
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This is the best I've used.....Tru-Control Brake Controller
AF #1

"Sticks & stones can break your bones...and hail will dent your Airstream"

So when is this..."old enough to know better" supposed to kick in?
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Old 03-29-2009, 01:41 AM   #9
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2005 19' International CCD
T , Oregon
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I have a Tekonsha Prodigy on my 2000 Tundra. (Same basic frame as a Sequoia.) I had camping world do the install. No issues after 2 years.
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Old 03-29-2009, 07:20 AM   #10
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1973 27' Overlander
Southport (Panama City) , Florida
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I have the Prodigy on my 99 Surburban installed by U-Haul no problems after 2 years If I remember correctly it cost about 150.00 to install as they had to manually wire in the connections....SAM
Your Friend Sam In (Southport) Panama City Florida

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Old 03-29-2009, 09:55 AM   #11
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2013 27' FB Classic
North Wales , Pennsylvania
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We also have a Prodigy controller and as with the other posts have not had any problems. We have had the controller for 5 or so years and have moved from one tow vehicle to another. $175 for installation doesn't sound bad considering the the wiring has to be done.

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Old 03-29-2009, 09:56 AM   #12
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2008 22' Safari
Oracle , Arizona
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Have had the Prodigy for 3 years now and love it. Was installed by the trailer shop where we bought the trailer for free in about 10 minutes.
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Old 03-30-2009, 01:38 PM   #13
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2005 19' Safari
Phoenix , Arizona
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The Airstream dealer installed a Prodigy on our old Chevy pickup in 2005 for free (I purchased Prodigy for about $85 on the Internet, separately). Last year, I transferred it to our new Tundra, which only required a $10 adapter harness. Absolutely, no problems with it.
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Old 05-10-2009, 08:58 PM   #14
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Warrenton , Virginia
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Check out Trailer hitch, hitches and bike rack (800)298-8924 for some really cool install videos of how to do it. I plan on running the wiring for a P3 in all the trucks this week.

... I dropped about $350 for all the stuff, but I like having many options of tow vehicle available Maybe I have too many trucks! Nah.

Trailer: 1948 Spartan Mansion 30'
Tow Rig: 2010 Cadillac Escalade ESV
Tow Rig: 1971 Chevy C-10 with 5.3 LS and T5 conversion
Other: 1979 Porsche 911 SC
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