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Old 08-09-2010, 12:58 PM   #1
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Parking Brake

I've got a new question to ask of all you long timers. This 2004 38' has the air parking brake as I'm sure all of you have. It is my first with an air parking brake.

My question is: "Is there any way to lock / safety the parking brake after applying it so it does not accidentally get bumped down and thereby releasing the coach and it starts rolling, when parked on an incline ?? "

I've been told by others that they put clothes pins under it after setting it or to chock the rear wheels, etc.

Thanks in advance,
Dave Stanley
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Old 08-09-2010, 11:30 PM   #2
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Dave- that's about the sum of options. Either make a shim to stuff under the button cap or chock tires. You could get elaborate & go to a clevis type pin to hold the knob on while operating & remove the clevis & knob when parked, but I think you'd induce inordinate wear that would be more trouble than the other methods.
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Old 08-10-2010, 12:45 AM   #3
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Somewhere on this forum was mention of a plastic gadget someone had found that secures the parking brake. I'd search for it but currently have a terribly slow Internet connection.
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Old 08-10-2010, 01:20 AM   #4
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When we got our coach I was worried about the same thing. Did a search, and found a place that made something which would go under the knob to prevent it being pushed in. Cannot find that link now. Some very dense foam or a piece of wood which had been shaped to fit under the knob and was notched would work. Since we don't have pets, or kids, we don't have anyone in our coach which might push it in by mistake, but I still worry about it, and need to find that link. If I run across it I will post it here. I did find a few aftermarket locking things but they were in the hundreds of dollars and I don't think they would be cost effective. The thing I remember was like 20 bucks, and fit under the know with a tag, showing it in place.
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Old 08-10-2010, 01:48 AM   #5
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Here is one, don't know the cost. Many forums are just saying to use a clothes pin, seems to simple and could come off. Also some say they have seen them at rallys for sale. Will keep looking.

JENDYK Enterprises, Inc. | PARKING BRAKE LOCK FOR STRAIGHT TRUCKS, BUSES AND RV?S
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:53 AM   #6
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Dave, just a piece of information since this is new to you. The parking brake is actually applied by a large spring. When you push in the brake button you allow air into the cylinder which compresses the spring and releases the brake. So if you are parked and have released all the air by lowering the suspension etc. the parking brake will not release until you start up the engine and get the air compressor going. It will obviously release if you have stored air pressure and hence the gadgets mentioned above are useful to prevent this happening accidentally.

The early coaches like mine have an hydraulic release rather than air and my brake will not release until the engine is running since hydraulic pressure is not stored.
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Old 08-10-2010, 02:50 PM   #7
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Thank you all so much. Sure is nice having such great responses. I bought a couple of the large wheel chocks at Camping World when they were on sale for 12 bucks and the second one was free.

My concern was where I store it, it is on a slant and I don't { but maybe I should } release the air bags and then when its in front of the house for loading and unloading it is on a steeper slope yet.

Thanks again, Dave Stanley
Vacaville, CA 2005 38'er
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Old 08-10-2010, 03:12 PM   #8
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Here's the purpose made clothes pin: Smith on Safety ::WELCOME::
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Old 08-11-2010, 12:19 AM   #9
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Thanks Imagine! That's just the ticket.
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Old 08-11-2010, 01:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by takepride View Post
Somewhere on this forum was mention of a plastic gadget someone had found that secures the parking brake. I'd search for it but currently have a terribly slow Internet connection.
I use one of those plastic clips that are for holding the top of a potato chip bag closed. It goes around the switch like a collar and prevents it from being pushed in. Get the narrow one, not the wide one. I worry that my dog would bump it. He likes to sit in my chair and look out of the window while we are parked. Joe
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Old 08-12-2010, 08:47 AM   #11
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On the topic of parking brakes and at the risk of asking a goofy question...

Can the parking brake be "feathered" (i.e. not fully engaged) to bring a coach to a stop from low speed (e.g. 5 mph or more). I've wondered that in the event of a brake failure and following the use of my exhaust brake (which disengages before a stop), could I use the parking brake (without an abrupt wheel lock-up) to stop the coach.

This message will self-destruct upon the occurence of excessive humiliation or the suggestion that I be the first to try it...
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Old 08-12-2010, 09:09 AM   #12
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Ive seen it done in a demo of another brand of coach. There was no "feathering" perse, the salesman just pulled the handle and the parking brake began slowing the coach--it wasnt a harsh braking and I dont recall if he let it come to a full stop or just slowed down. Since the Alpine parking brake is a brake shoe(s) inside a drum activated by a spring, you should be able to bring your coach to a stop from hi-way speed. Given the wear/tear on the shoe, its probably not something you should practice. Probably not a good idea on wet or icy surfaces as the ABS is by-passed and braking is only applied to the rear wheels--but as a last resort.
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Old 08-12-2010, 09:15 AM   #13
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As Old Scout points out there is no "feathering" as the brake is either on or off. The brake drum is around the drive shaft so the engine will stop the wheels locking up until you reach a low enough speed where the transmission will disengage.
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Old 08-12-2010, 10:36 AM   #14
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I've tried it. Works like stomping on the brakes. If you are going too slow to get any slippage, it can be quite abrupt, but if you are rolling say 10mph, then it is like hard braking till it stops the coach. Emergency brake deployment is exactly what you should do in a brake failure emergency; just be sure you are heading to a proper landing spot rather than stopping in traffic.
Try it in a neighborhood WalMart parking lot for fun!!!
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