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Old 11-18-2013, 12:50 PM   #1
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Need aux brakes on Toad with 29 foot Class C?

First of all let me apologize for starting Yet Another Toad Brake thread.

I know this is a hot topic and have read many posts from people on both sides of the argument. I'm about to buy a used Mini Cooper to use as a Toad, curb weight of only about 2,500 lbs, and I tended to agree with the posters who basically said "it's so light that I don't need a complicated expensive braking system".

Then I realized many of them are driving big diesel Class A's. Ooops. My Winnebago is a 29' Class C with a GVWR of 14,000 and a GCWR of 20,000 whereas I think those big diesel pushers often weigh twice that.

So, given that the Toad weighs in at 18% of the RV weight, would this setup pretty much mandate using an auxiliary braking system on the Toad?

Thanks,

Tim
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Old 11-18-2013, 01:02 PM   #2
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It doesn't really matter (unless it's the law of your state), but the aux. braking system is not so much as being able to stop your RV, as the security of having a braking system, with a break-away switch, in case your toad comes loose from your RV.

I'm sure that my DPRV could stop itself and the toad, but I worry about if it breaks away! Another worry would be that if you did have an accident and didn't have the brake, would you automatically held liable for all damages?
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Old 11-18-2013, 01:28 PM   #3
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Actually you can shorten the question to:

Do you need Aux Brakes on your Towed?

And the answer is always the same: YES.

Fact: depending on where you are towing, as little as 1500 pounds requires brakes on a trailer,, and your towed, IS a trailer, not like a trailer, it IS a trailer.

Some states it is closer to 2 tons, but frankly... You rear end me, You gonna WISH you had aux brakes no matter what the size.
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Old 11-18-2013, 04:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wa8yxm View Post
Actually you can shorten the question to:

Do you need Aux Brakes on your Towed?

And the answer is always the same: YES.

Fact: depending on where you are towing, as little as 1500 pounds requires brakes on a trailer,, and your towed, IS a trailer, not like a trailer, it IS a trailer.

Some states it is closer to 2 tons, but frankly... You rear end me, You gonna WISH you had aux brakes no matter what the size.
The Ford Chassis manual says either 1000# or 1500# towed loaded requires a braking system.

Ken
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Old 11-18-2013, 04:29 PM   #5
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X2 on aux brakes. In that moment of truth, when you have to
panic stop, and yes it will happen, then you will be glad you have them.
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Old 11-18-2013, 04:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wa8yxm View Post

Fact: depending on where you are towing, as little as 1500 pounds requires brakes on a trailer,, and your towed, IS a trailer, not like a trailer, it IS a trailer.
Not true in all states, here in WA the definition of a trailer is a vehicle designed without motive power.
If you'r towing a motorized vehicle in WA (same in CA and OR) it changes your rig designation to a "combination vehicle" and the braking requirement changes to a performance spec. If you can stop from XX mph in XX feet than no add'l braking is required.
HOWEVER
I would not tow a towed without add'l braking. Just as it takes more engine power to accelerate more weight it takes more braking force to stop it.
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Old 11-18-2013, 05:26 PM   #7
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I would use a braking system on it. I just can't get the thought of hitting the brakes in a panic and watching it jackknife, or swerving and braking and watching the TOAD not follow as it should. May not think you need one, but I will try and hedge the odds to my favor anytime it is practical. In this case I would rather have it and not need it, than need it and wish I had it.
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Old 11-18-2013, 05:39 PM   #8
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It always surprises me when someone thinks it's a good idea to not have brakes on their towed vehicle, just to save a relatively small amount of money, especially when in most states it's required to be legal for towing, allows you to slow down and stop much more quickly, and keeps your toad from becoming a runaway vehicle, all of which adds to your peace of mind! Those who say their toad is so light that they don't need brakes on it to stop are forgetting a big part of the equation- what will stop the toad if it becomes disconnected from the RV? Something will stop it, another vehicle? A building? People? I don't want to think about the liability issues involved, and I doubt the insurance agency is going to want to help. Having brakes on your toad is the common sense thing to do. Be safe, be smart, have brakes for your toad.
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Old 11-18-2013, 09:34 PM   #9
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As a former automotive/aerospace engineer, my input is that if the toad is more than 15% of the RV weight, as the RV is being driven, you need toad braking.
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Old 11-19-2013, 07:27 AM   #10
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Hmmm I'm not sure I agree with the breakaway fear being the most important factor to consider. I think the likelihood of a breakaway is very, very remote indeed. Assuming of course one is using a modern, quality, correctly installed tow bar and safety cables. Those setups, rated upwards of 10K lbs, are simply not going to let that toad go. How is a tow bar rated at 7500 lbs and dual safety cables rated at 10000 lbs EACH not going to keep a 2500 lb car attached? Our fear of that (which I share, having pulled a travel trailer for many years) is more emotional than rational. Same with a jackknife -- I just don't see that happening with a light load.

To me it's more about how much the Toad affects panic-stop braking distance. And from what I've read that is greatly dependent on the type of braking system. Some seem to be better than others at panic stops. Some look pretty inadequate.
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Old 11-19-2013, 07:38 AM   #11
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Well, if one is going to be rational they will use supplemental braking with any RV and toad.

Inertia makes that 2500 lbs toad apply more force than 2500 lbs. I've seen baseplates ripped right off the front of a vehicle in a mishap. Once one part of the towing system is compromised all bets are off on the rest of it.
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Old 11-19-2013, 08:11 AM   #12
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For about 6 years we drove a 1993 22' Class C with a 1995 Jeep Wrangler toad (early Jeeps were often less than 3000 lb.) behind it without a brake system. No problem...but, in retrospect, we were probably young and foolish. Now we tow our 2013 Wrangler behind a 2013 40' Class A. We use a brake system. A bit older and, hopefully, wiser.
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Old 11-19-2013, 07:01 PM   #13
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Timbo, I understand your thoughts concerning the weight ratings, but you don't mention the human error factor, which influences the construction of everything you mention as well as how it's all hooked up. And errors do occur!
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Old 11-19-2013, 07:45 PM   #14
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I don't understand why would you not want to stop as quickly as you can. Breaks on any MH fade when hot and the heaver the load the faster they fade now add another ton to the probably already overloaded coach and your asking for at least higher maintenance cost, as well as compromising safety.
.

John
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