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Old 12-22-2011, 09:07 PM   #1
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Demco Tow Dolly Brakes

Does anyone know if electric brakes can be added to a Demco tow dolly? Picked one up pretty cheap and I am trying to figure outr how to add brakes.
Thanks
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Old 12-22-2011, 09:10 PM   #2
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Call Demco and find out. I think they only supply surge brakes though and they're certainly not easy or cheap to add. Before I ordered our KK-460 I called and asked about electric brakes, they said "no", only surge brakes for it.
If someone besides Demco makes the spindles they may have elect brakes that will fit. I had a local built dolly with surge brakes before we got our KK-460 and found that I could replace the whole backing plates with new ones almost as cheap as just buying the shoes. Got new cylinders and shoes too, plus it was all set up.
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Old 12-23-2011, 12:54 AM   #3
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You can buy one with breaks cheaper than you can add them to yours. New one with brakes is about $1,100.00
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Old 12-23-2011, 01:00 AM   #4
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Not Demco, Forest River but it is exactly the same.
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Old 12-23-2011, 09:23 AM   #5
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Talking

Thanks guys.
Looking like I might have to get a different dolly.
I emailed Demco and they came back with No, you can't add electric brakes. We only offered surge brakes with that model. This was from the sales department. Not a word about yes you can add surge brakes and we offer a kit or the parts to do it and the cost is! So I had to email them for the third time and spell it out for them that I want to add brakes. Next will be a call to straighten something and someone out if the reply is not detailed.

I think the trick is to find the right spindles and and brake setup.
Gonna check around. Nice dolly, 2004, all galvinized, tows good and best of all I only paid $300 for it. Guy had to move to ca next week and was selling all kinds of stuf. Had great job transfer. Anyway I will post later what I find.

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Old 12-24-2011, 02:11 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinebear View Post
Thanks guys.
Looking like I might have to get a different dolly.
I emailed Demco and they came back with No, you can't add electric brakes. We only offered surge brakes with that model. This was from the sales department. Not a word about yes you can add surge brakes and we offer a kit or the parts to do it and the cost is! So I had to email them for the third time and spell it out for them that I want to add brakes. Next will be a call to straighten something and someone out if the reply is not detailed.

I think the trick is to find the right spindles and and brake setup.
Gonna check around. Nice dolly, 2004, all galvinized, tows good and best of all I only paid $300 for it. Guy had to move to ca next week and was selling all kinds of stuf. Had great job transfer. Anyway I will post later what I find.

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check dexter axle equipment. most dollies and trailers use dexter axles.


Dexter Axle - Trailer Axles and Running Gear Components - Home

Electric Trailer Brakes & Brake Parts at Trailer Parts Superstore
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Old 12-24-2011, 03:32 PM   #7
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Thanks guys.
Looking like I might have to get a different dolly.
I emailed Demco and they came back with No, you can't add electric brakes. We only offered surge brakes with that model. This was from the sales department. Not a word about yes you can add surge brakes and we offer a kit or the parts to do it and the cost is! So I had to email them for the third time and spell it out for them that I want to add brakes. Next will be a call to straighten something and someone out if the reply is not detailed.

I think the trick is to find the right spindles and and brake setup.
Gonna check around. Nice dolly, 2004, all galvinized, tows good and best of all I only paid $300 for it. Guy had to move to ca next week and was selling all kinds of stuf. Had great job transfer. Anyway I will post later what I find.

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There are usually plenty for sale if you shop around. Make sure the bearings are good.
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Old 12-24-2011, 04:23 PM   #8
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Hi Pinebear,
You might want to check with uhaul... They use to use Demcos... I got mine 5 years ago..
My research found that they are the top of the line. I have only seen surge brakes. The autosteer really makes them tow nice. I paid $600 for mine and thought I stole it.
My Bug was so low to the ground that I could not clear a squirrel but it would load with
no problems... My nephew uses mine alot to tow home his cars when they break or he
gets a new one... It would be nice to have brakes.
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Old 12-24-2011, 08:21 PM   #9
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Look at it. If you see a plate on the spindles with 4 holes in it you're probably all set. You can purchase complete backing plate assemblies and hub/drum assemblies pretty reasonably, maybe 250 or so for both sides complete, assuming only that you can use your wheels over again. That leaves just wiring it up which shouldn't be a big deal for anyone thinking of adding brakes.

If the plates aren't there you may be further ahead trading it as others have mentioned.

If you don't already have a place to purchase discounted supplies like these, try here. I've had good luck with them . Trailer Parts Superstore Shopping Index
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Old 12-25-2011, 10:07 AM   #10
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There is a 4 bolt plate behind the hub, spindle, bearing unit. I am going to see if I can modify the dexter brake baking plate holes to fit and then purchase a demco 5X4.5 drum and see what's up. Demco does put surge brakes on their tralers but they offer any after you buy kit to add on and I don't like being told I can NOT do something! So I will see if it works and I will pass on the results.
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Old 12-25-2011, 05:44 PM   #11
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There is a 4 bolt plate behind the hub, spindle, bearing unit. I am going to see if I can modify the dexter brake baking plate holes to fit and then purchase a demco 5X4.5 drum and see what's up. Demco does put surge brakes on their tralers but they offer any after you buy kit to add on and I don't like being told I can NOT do something! So I will see if it works and I will pass on the results.

I'm not saying it wont work. I'm saying that sometimes it's just not worth all the trouble it takes to do it, and the cost may be more.........
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Old 12-25-2011, 06:48 PM   #12
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There is a 4 bolt plate behind the hub, spindle, bearing unit. I am going to see if I can modify the dexter brake baking plate holes to fit and then purchase a demco 5X4.5 drum and see what's up. Demco does put surge brakes on their tralers but they offer any after you buy kit to add on and I don't like being told I can NOT do something! So I will see if it works and I will pass on the results.
Well, that's not quite the plate I was thinking of, but I'm following you're thinking. Maybe you could "borrow" a drum from a dealer if you were to explain what you're doing?
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Old 12-26-2011, 01:44 PM   #13
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I went to a trailer parts store close by and bought 2 dexter 10" electric brakes assemblies for $60.00. Then I modified the holes in the brake assembly to fit the backing plate and bolt holes you see in the previous picture. Had to add a couple washers on the inside of the brake assembly to stick the hub out 1/4 inch more because it was rubbing on the magnet a little, once in a while. Now I am waiting for the drums to come to see if they will work or I need to modify the setup further. Kepp you all posted and pics if it all works.
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Old 12-27-2011, 02:11 PM   #14
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I went to a trailer parts store close by and bought 2 dexter 10" electric brakes assemblies for $60.00. Then I modified the holes in the brake assembly to fit the backing plate and bolt holes you see in the previous picture. Had to add a couple washers on the inside of the brake assembly to stick the hub out 1/4 inch more because it was rubbing on the magnet a little, once in a while. Now I am waiting for the drums to come to see if they will work or I need to modify the setup further. Kepp you all posted and pics if it all works.
Doug

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It sounds like you are getting there. Good job! I usually end up buying more parts with the total being more than if I had just bought a new one. I have had some break problems with my tow dolly. On my first trip the left wheel bearing burned up because the break was dragging slightly. Forest River sent a tech to my house and fixed it. I told him to check the other wheel too. He said he did and it was fine. Next trip that one burned out. I took the dolly back to them and they gave me a new one. It seems the break away break was malfunctioning. They added a small battery and if it goes dead the breaks drag. My motor home did not notice the breaks dragging, therefore the bearings were getting too hot. I have dialed my break controller back as far as I can also because the tow dolly breaks have no chance against the motor home when stopping. I really think they are better without breaks.
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