Chev, check out this thread and pay particular attention to the Cruzer post.
toad braking systems
Here is a little different write up from Cruzer.
I've had three different system on three coaches.
The first was the Brake Buddy. It puts out some serious pressure on the arm that connects to the brake pedal. In fact, the instructions tell you to pump the brakes to dump the vacuum out of the booster first because the Brake Buddy is designed to work with a non-power assisted pedal. The system worked but, like anything else, it has it's pros and cons. It's nice in that it's portable and can be used on just about anything and requires no installation chores (usually). You do have to set it in place and dial it in. If the seat moves you can either lose your braking capacity or drag the brakes. We had that a few times when you press the remote unlock button and the seat retracts for access on the Grand Cherokee. It's strictly inertia operated so going down a grade and using your gears or an engine brake to slow the coach down will cause the Brake Buddy to engage the toad brakes. The BB plugs into the lighter socket so if you tow a lot you may wear down your battery unless you hook up a charge kline to the RV. You also have to unhook it and remove it, then find a place to store it when you want to drive your toad. We wanted something easier to use so we sold it and went to the US Gear Unified Tow Brake.
The Unified Tow Brake is a permanent mounted system. It utilizes an electric solenoid to pull a cable that runs through a pullet that pulls on the brake pedal. It has a vacuum pump to keep the brake booster full of vacuum so it's not pulling on a dead pedal. That's a little different philosophy than Brake Buddy but they both work. The brakes energize via the trailer lighting circuit and a charge lione to the RV is also recommended. The controller is mounted up by the RV's dash and is also inertia operated although you can manually control it if desired. With this system you pretty much connect your tow bar, wiring harness, and breakaway cable to the toad and you are good to go. If you have adjustable brake pedals - forget it. The cable pulls on the pedal and if you adjust the pedal your brakes may drag or else the tow brake will be loose and won't apply the brakes. Also, the pulley takes room in the footwell and needs to line up with the brake pedal and the solenoid is big and needs to find a home as well. On my Grand Cherokee that was a real challenge. After Leann adjusted the pedals one day and my friont rotors were smoked I decided to go another way, which was the M&G.
The M&G was the best yet. It uses the coach's air pressure to apply the toad brakes. I just added a quick disconnect hose coupler next to the trailer lighting socket and the same on the toads (both Grand Cherokee and Wrangler) and connect them with a quick disconnect air line that rides right inside the center of the slinky lighting umbilical cord. This system is totally proportional and the toad brakes only go on when the coach brakes do. The toad module mounts between the master cylinder and vacuum booster so nothing goes inside the cabin. The module is failsafe in that it acts as a big pushrod when using the brake pedal yet applies the brakes via the master cylinder and air pressure whenever the coach's brake pedal is applied. The drawback is that it's only for a diesel with air brakes. You can get a compressor to use this system on a gasser but the extra cost isn't worth it because you are back to the US Gear method of braking so you might as well just get the US GEar or an SMI Stay-in-Play and ave some money.
Mark & Leann Quasius
2007 Allegro Bus 42QRP - Cummins 400 ISL
2005 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited