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Old 07-08-2014, 11:29 AM   #1
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1972 Dodge Champion

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Looking for anything for this rv. Plus trying to get some insight to do a drum to disc break swap. any older dodge truck compatible fore easy axle swap
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Old 07-08-2014, 11:46 AM   #2
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Can't help with parts but would be a shame to swap the big drums for discs that dodge had on these.... bullet proof drums
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Old 07-08-2014, 12:18 PM   #3
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really ! these drums are a pain
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Old 07-09-2014, 09:08 AM   #4
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so it would be better to keep the drum breaks
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Old 07-10-2014, 06:26 PM   #5
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so it would be better to keep the drum breaks

Probably, yes.

Just get them setup properly and you shouldn't have any troubles at all with them.
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Old 07-10-2014, 06:27 PM   #6
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Oh and cool looking old MH! Also, welcome to iRV2!
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Old 07-10-2014, 07:41 PM   #7
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1972 dodge champion

Hey wildbill. I have '73 Titan. Great to see another Champion.

Send me your email... I'd send you some very detailed manuals.
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Old 07-11-2014, 06:29 AM   #8
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Hey thanks.
My email is donegraphix@hotmail.com
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Old 07-11-2014, 08:55 AM   #9
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sent - enjoy
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Old 07-11-2014, 07:52 PM   #10
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Anyone who would argue not to convert to disk brakes has not ever done a conversion. The basic problem with drum brakes is that they use the rotation of the drum to increase the pressure against the drum. This results in a delayed response from the time you hit the peddle, till the time the brake is actually applied. In a panic stop, that can easily be the difference between a somewhat hard stop and shear panic. The second problem with this design is as the brake heats up and begins to fade, this compounded by the fact that the drum rotation is what is really putting force on the brakes. This means the fade is much more pronounced.

I did a conversion on my coach. In my case, because I have front wheel drive, the rear axles are Dexter trailer axles. (rated at over twice the capacity that they were being used at) The conversion was a drop in replacement, so that aspect was easy. The only thing extra I had to do was remove the proportioning valve to make it work.

One thing to keep in mind, drum brakes require a check valve that maintains a few lbs of pressure in the line at all times, so the brakes stay close to the drums. This must be removed, otherwise the disk brakes will drag and overheat. Sometimes this check valve is inline where it comes out of the master cylinder, or it may be within the proportioning valve.

The conversion resulted in a night and day difference in safety. Living near Chicago, I end up driving through highly congested areas. Panic stops were very common. Now what used to be a panic stop is just a normal stop. You don't feel the coach struggle to slow down. It just brakes like a car.
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Old 07-20-2014, 05:43 PM   #11
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very nice i have been looking at a 77 champion,,,,fell in love with the boxy look..
we have a couple vintage campers and thought it would be a nice piece to our collection..,,,
i also wondered about the drum brakes..but we dont live in a highly populated area and our most used camp ground---carter caves,in ky is only 15miles away..lol
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Old 07-21-2014, 11:29 AM   #12
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I love this camper. Its the same age as me . and it has the old feel style that I like. But my breaks suck
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Old 07-21-2014, 07:13 PM   #13
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I love this camper. Its the same age as me . and it has the old feel style that I like. But my breaks suck
You should get them checked out and repaired if they aren't stopping your rig.
There is no reason to change over to disks if they are working correctly other than you have too much money.
Drum brakes stop 10's of thousands of pounds everyday, just look under any tractor trailer and you will see basically the same system in use as yours.

You probably have some issues with your brakes that need addressed. When they are working correctly, you should be able to lock up and slide at least some of the wheels.
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Old 07-22-2014, 12:57 PM   #14
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Drum brakes stop 10's of thousands of pounds everyday, just look under any tractor trailer and you will see basically the same system in use as yours.
The reason for that is 2 fold. Backward compatibility being the first. No one is going to obsolete every trailer out there. Secondly, Air brakes means the brakes are operated mechanically, rather than hydraulically. Non-hydraulic actuated disk brake have never worked very well. Its very complicated, which is not what you want in your braking system. Drum brake actuation is not linear. Disk brakes are very linear. While there are many systems that combine the 2, none work very well, particularly on slippery surfaces.

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You probably have some issues with your brakes that need addressed. When they are working correctly, you should be able to lock up and slide at least some of the wheels.
Hmm, interesting criteria for "good" working brakes. I would think [b]all[b] the wheels should be able to lock up. Each tire should be approaching lock up at the same time.
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