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Old 09-14-2007, 10:53 AM   #1
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"Vegascpl" presented a question about the use of a RoadMaster braking system on his 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid in the "Physics of Towed-Vehicle Braking" thread. This is an important topic to be sure, but in an effort to keep the afore mentioned thread devoted to generic towed-vehicle braking, I have started this new thread.

Quote:
...I'm now thinking about the Roadmaster which is similar and installed for about the same price as the purchase price of the SMI. http://www.roadmasterinc.com/product...r/brake_m.html

Anyone have any experiece with this system?

Thanks for the information on the thread. It convinced me I should add a breaking system.

Michael

2005 Dutch Star 40' 4 slide
2005 BMW K1200LT motorcycle on lift
2006 Ford Escape Hybrid
Michael,

I would caution you not to use a RoadMaster system on your Escape Hybrid. They (RoadMaster) implicitly tell you NOT to use any of their braking systems on this vehicle. Here is the link Roadmaster Vehicle Guide. Select you vehicle in the top of the page and click the "Braking System" tab in the middle of the page. Here is what it says...

--

Braking Systems

The following information relates to the installation of the supplemental braking system selected above.
Every reasonable effort has been made to verify the accuracy of this information; however, ROADMASTER, Inc. does not warrant its accuracy and disclaims liability for any claims or damages which may result from errors or omissions.

At This time there is NO braking system for the H3 Hummer, the Lexus GX470, any Ford Escape Hybrids or Mercury Mariner Hybrids.

--

The bottom statement is a little misleading. There are braking systems available for all of the vehicles, just not from RoadMaster. I have personally installed many of our systems, both Air Force One and Stay-IN-Play, in all of those vehicles; and have heard nothing but 100% positive feedback. Why does SMI work? SMI systems are designed to work a vacuum-assisted brake pedal at a little over half boost or a hydra-boost pedal at no boost. Your Hybrid has hydra-boost brakes. Here is the difference in the two configurations.

Vacuum-assisted braking decreases the pedal effort of a vehicle by using a lack of atmospheric pressure generated by the engine to assist in moving the hydraulic fluid from the master cylinder to the brake calipers/drums. The vacuum level in the booster varies depending on the vehicle, the RPM at which the engine is running, and the load on the engine. An average value is ~20 inHg. SMI systems are engineered to operate the brake pedal of the towed properly at 12 inHg. A fully boosted vacuum pedal would be next to impossible to properly modulate, and would greatly amplify any user error.

Hydraulically boosted braking (or hydra-boost) decreases the pedal effort of a vehicle by the use of hydraulic pressure (similar to power steering). Typically this pressure is attained from the power-steering pump, although some newer vehicles (H3, Vue Hybrid, Escape Hybrid) use a completely separate hydraulic system.


Why do the SMI systems work the same in both applications? What is the difference?

A vacuum-assisted pedal is very stiff when it is not energized because the pedal is actually fighting air pressure (from compressing the brake booster which is now at atmosphere) and braking fluid pressure. A hydra-boost pedal does not have the resistance of the brake booster, and it takes 60-70 full depressions before it is completely "unboosted." This is why RoadMaster (designed to ram a dead vacuum pedal) has this disclaimer stating that they do not work on hydra-boost brakes. The system would burn the brakes (and tires eventually) off the car in no time.

Brent Schuck
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Old 09-14-2007, 10:53 AM   #2
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"Vegascpl" presented a question about the use of a RoadMaster braking system on his 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid in the "Physics of Towed-Vehicle Braking" thread. This is an important topic to be sure, but in an effort to keep the afore mentioned thread devoted to generic towed-vehicle braking, I have started this new thread.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">
...I'm now thinking about the Roadmaster which is similar and installed for about the same price as the purchase price of the SMI. http://www.roadmasterinc.com/product...r/brake_m.html

Anyone have any experiece with this system?

Thanks for the information on the thread. It convinced me I should add a breaking system.

Michael

2005 Dutch Star 40' 4 slide
2005 BMW K1200LT motorcycle on lift
2006 Ford Escape Hybrid </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Michael,

I would caution you not to use a RoadMaster system on your Escape Hybrid. They (RoadMaster) implicitly tell you NOT to use any of their braking systems on this vehicle. Here is the link Roadmaster Vehicle Guide. Select you vehicle in the top of the page and click the "Braking System" tab in the middle of the page. Here is what it says...

--

Braking Systems

The following information relates to the installation of the supplemental braking system selected above.
Every reasonable effort has been made to verify the accuracy of this information; however, ROADMASTER, Inc. does not warrant its accuracy and disclaims liability for any claims or damages which may result from errors or omissions.

At This time there is NO braking system for the H3 Hummer, the Lexus GX470, any Ford Escape Hybrids or Mercury Mariner Hybrids.

--

The bottom statement is a little misleading. There are braking systems available for all of the vehicles, just not from RoadMaster. I have personally installed many of our systems, both Air Force One and Stay-IN-Play, in all of those vehicles; and have heard nothing but 100% positive feedback. Why does SMI work? SMI systems are designed to work a vacuum-assisted brake pedal at a little over half boost or a hydra-boost pedal at no boost. Your Hybrid has hydra-boost brakes. Here is the difference in the two configurations.

Vacuum-assisted braking decreases the pedal effort of a vehicle by using a lack of atmospheric pressure generated by the engine to assist in moving the hydraulic fluid from the master cylinder to the brake calipers/drums. The vacuum level in the booster varies depending on the vehicle, the RPM at which the engine is running, and the load on the engine. An average value is ~20 inHg. SMI systems are engineered to operate the brake pedal of the towed properly at 12 inHg. A fully boosted vacuum pedal would be next to impossible to properly modulate, and would greatly amplify any user error.

Hydraulically boosted braking (or hydra-boost) decreases the pedal effort of a vehicle by the use of hydraulic pressure (similar to power steering). Typically this pressure is attained from the power-steering pump, although some newer vehicles (H3, Vue Hybrid, Escape Hybrid) use a completely separate hydraulic system.


Why do the SMI systems work the same in both applications? What is the difference?

A vacuum-assisted pedal is very stiff when it is not energized because the pedal is actually fighting air pressure (from compressing the brake booster which is now at atmosphere) and braking fluid pressure. A hydra-boost pedal does not have the resistance of the brake booster, and it takes 60-70 full depressions before it is completely "unboosted." This is why RoadMaster (designed to ram a dead vacuum pedal) has this disclaimer stating that they do not work on hydra-boost brakes. The system would burn the brakes (and tires eventually) off the car in no time.

Brent Schuck
Research and Development
Graphic Design
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Old 09-14-2007, 02:16 PM   #3
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Thank you very much for the information. I just confirmed that with Roadmaster. Camping World was more than willing to sell me one and install it!

I'm really not excited about doing a "do it yourself" installation. Maybe I can get one installed when I'm on the road someplace? I'll contact you after the first of the year for locations.

Did mean to side track the other discussion, sorry.

Michael

2005 Dutch Star 40' 4 slide
2005 BMW K1200LT motorcycle on lift
2006 Ford Escape Hybrid
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Old 09-18-2007, 12:30 PM   #4
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Michael,

No problem at all. That is a little disturbing about Camping World. A system like that WOULD destroy your Escape. We have many dealers all over the country and also have factory installers at most major shows. Give us a call and I am sure we can get you in somewhere.

Thanks,
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Old 11-09-2007, 10:36 AM   #5
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This may not be allowed as I didn't read the entire "don't do this" list.

This isn't the first time I have read anecdotal comments about Camping World's service being a potential danger to society. Another forum's post about base plate failures etc. had a comment about a just installed base plate with loose and over tightened attachment bolts to the vehicle. When you can't do it yourself you have to depend on approved installers to do it correctly and that seems to be a risky choice. Just being able to go back and sue them later won't bring back the dead.
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Old 02-03-2008, 05:49 AM   #6
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Looks like RoadMaster has this problem worked out now. Any comments?

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