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Old 06-16-2013, 10:04 AM   #1
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Ready Brake (always on going down steep grade)

We went to Yosemite last week going up 120 through Groveland and our little Tracker pulled like a charm. On the way back down the (New) Old Priest Grade I was able to have the Motor Home in 2nd and it held very well, but I noticed that the notification light for my Ready Brake was on the whole way. Does this mean the brakes on the Tracker were on the whole time? I stopped at the bottom but did not notice and Brake SMELL.

The Tracker does not weigh that much and I didn't feel it yanking us as if the brakes were applied.

Any thoughts?

LeeB....
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Old 06-16-2013, 10:19 AM   #2
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I would recommend contacting NSA to discuss, 866-981-5874. Their FAQs on the Ready Brake indicate that the brake should NOT engage in that situation. From their website:

Going down a steep grade a mountain pass will the Ready Brake activate?

No we have engineered the Ready Brake not to activate until you step on the brake pedal of the motorhome. In our Ready Brake we have an oil filled shock absorber and a 250 lbs spring. The weight of the towed vehicle has to over come both of these before it will activate.

When traveling down a steep grade the motorhome and the towed vehicle are traveling at the same speed so the Ready Brake will not active. Or if you put your jake brake on in the motorhome it does not allow enough pressure to be put on the Ready Brake to active it.
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Old 06-16-2013, 10:29 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SarahW View Post
I would recommend contacting NSA to discuss, 866-981-5874. Their FAQs on the Ready Brake indicate that the brake should NOT engage in that situation. From their website:

Going down a steep grade a mountain pass will the Ready Brake activate?

No we have engineered the Ready Brake not to activate until you step on the brake pedal of the motorhome. In our Ready Brake we have an oil filled shock absorber and a 250 lbs spring. The weight of the towed vehicle has to over come both of these before it will activate.

When traveling down a steep grade the motorhome and the towed vehicle are traveling at the same speed so the Ready Brake will not active. Or if you put your jake brake on in the motorhome it does not allow enough pressure to be put on the Ready Brake to active it.
Thanks I will...... What happens is on the initial slow down using the brakes and then downshifting to 2nd the light comes on but does not turn off until I use the accelerator, I wonder if the oil filled shock along with the 250 pound spring is enough to push it back? I am sure the light comes on at the slightest movement of the RB arm...

Thanks LeeB
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Old 06-16-2013, 11:57 AM   #4
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It sounds to me that when you downshifted, the shock or "jolt" was enough to activate the surge brake function enough to trip the indicator. Then, as you say, it would not release until you accelerated. As to whether the brakes were actually activated would depend, I would think, on your cable adjustment.
I always carry an infrared thermometer and check the wheel hubs on the toad every so often, just to be sure the brakes aren't dragging
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Old 06-16-2013, 01:42 PM   #5
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Like "baraff" said, your cable may need a tad more slack. Took me a while to get mine in the comfort zone. The only slight problem I've yet to overcome is when the bus is elevated and the toad is coming up over the hump like in some truck fuel areas. I know I can adjust that out, but then the toad brakes would not activate as strongly when needed in normal driving.

Oh, one more glitch that does happen is the cable drops into the slot for stowing the tow bars. This does not happen when bus and toad are level but in the above scenario, the cable drops into that slot and will not snap out until the bus and toad are level again and not in a turn.

Overall, I've not noticed any excessive toad brake warmth so things must be generally well adjusted.

I had best explain that I'm using the Ready Brake inertial mechanism with a Blue Ox tow bar plugged into it. If it wears out, I'm buying the entire Ready Brute tow bar and integral inertial mechanism. That will bring the toad a little closer behind the bus.
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Old 06-17-2013, 01:26 AM   #6
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If the indicator light is the one you received with the Ready Brake, it will activate when there is surge pressure to complete the circuit.
Depending on how much slack you have in the cable will determine whether or not your brakes are actually activated.
Some users have a separate light connected to their brake pedal circuit in the toad and place it on the dash of the toad. Should be able to see if it lights up by checking rear view camera.
Iver.
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