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Old 01-09-2014, 03:24 PM   #1
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1982 31' Excella
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RE: Does anyone know what this is?

Trying again to post the picture.

Edit: Looks as though I made it.
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Old 01-09-2014, 03:29 PM   #2
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That is the receptacle for the breakaway cable. Crucial piece of equipment.

You need to have a cable go from it to your car so that in the unfortunate case your trailer detaches from your tow vehicle the brakes will activate on the trailer and stop it.

I would make sure to replace it with a functional unit or take it to your local RV dealer to have it replaced as soon as possible.

-J
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Old 01-09-2014, 03:32 PM   #3
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Yup, that's it. It looks pretty crusty, you may want to replace it. Probably only costs pennies more to replace the whole thing than to get a new cable for that one.
Shop your favorite vendor, but this one is $6.50

http://www.nueratrailerparts.com/p-4...FQISMwodMVwAJQ
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Old 01-09-2014, 04:27 PM   #4
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Thanks jpons & Rich, it's a relief to know what it is. Have you ever noticed that the answer to a question often generates more questions? So...

To where does the break away cable attach on the trailer? Is it the little loop in the front of the device?

I know nothing about electric brakes. Are they normally on (applied) and held open while being towed or normally held open and off (released to brake) when energized by braking?

Sorry about this but when it comes to trailers I really am a complete novice.
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Old 01-09-2014, 04:30 PM   #5
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I absolutely agree: Just get a new one. They're a straightforward install and available at any RV supply. And they're important, very important.

Lynn
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Old 01-09-2014, 04:40 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AFUser View Post
Thanks jpons & Rich, it's a relief to know what it is. Have you ever noticed that the answer to a question often generates more questions? So...

To where does the break away cable attach on the trailer? Is it the little loop in the front of the device?

I know nothing about electric brakes. Are they normally on (applied) and held open while being towed or normally held open and off (released to brake) when energized by braking?

Sorry about this but when it comes to trailers I really am a complete novice.
Electric trailer brakes are off until power from the tow vehicle brake controller is applied. The break away switch applied full 12 volt power to the brakes when the pin is pulled out by the lanyard which is attached to the tow vehicle if the two become detached. That means that you do need an operating, charged, battery in the trailer in an emergency situation. In normal braking, the power comes from the tow vehicle in a modulated form, lower for easy stops, more for hard ones.
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Old 01-09-2014, 04:48 PM   #7
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Electric brakes are normally "off". There is a brake controller in the tow vehicle. It applies the brakes by feeding more or less electricity to the system. Power must be controlled, if you fed them full power the brakes would throw you through the windshield!

The safety device applies the brakes in case the trailer comes loose from the hitch. There is a steel wire that goes from the tow vehicle to the safety switch. If the trailer comes loose it will yank on the steel wire, applying the brakes and bringing the trailer to a stop.

Its power comes from the trailer battery.

^PS sorry about the duplicate post, the one above appeared while I was typing this one.
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Old 01-09-2014, 04:53 PM   #8
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The vehicle end of the cable should attach to something other than the receiver. Some attach to bumper, vehicle frame, tie down loop in the bed, etc. That way, if there is ANY failure of the hitch system, including a receiver coming off the vehicle, the cable will pull the switch plug out, applying the trailer brakes so it doesn't roll into oncoming traffic etc....
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Old 01-10-2014, 08:07 PM   #9
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Thank you all so much for your explanations. I'm so glad I found this forum.

Norm
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