Thanks for the info EA37TS.
Originally Posted by tankcj
Am I missing something?
Yes. Aircraft have a completely different use case for brakes than land based vehicles and also already have extensive hydraulic systems onboard. It is not useful to compare air brakes to the hydraulic systems in aircraft since they are not the same as the hydraulic systems used in the vehicles being discussed on this forum. In land vehicles, only light- and some medium-duty vehicles have hydraulic brakes. All semis and most medium-duty trucks (dump, tow, delivery, etc) use air brakes. No, that sweet F350 is not a "heavy duty truck" no matter what badges they stick on it.
Air brakes are fault-tolerant and if they fail completely they fail closed (that is, brakes apply with loss of air) as opposed to hydraulic systems which "fail open" (a.k.a. you ded). It takes a modicum of knowledge to understand how to operate air brakes safely, but a 20-minute YouTube video and some parking lot practice should take care of that. If you care to know more, Google is your friend.
Yes one of the main advantages of air brakes is that you can easily provide braking power to trailers which may not be used in an RV setting. However I know that many folks with these Super Cs and diesel Class A's do use air brakes for their toads and/or big stacker trailers.