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Old 06-06-2020, 05:16 AM   #1
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Moved to AF1 brake system

Bit the bullet and purchased the AF system in time for my annual trip to Montana this year. Also swapped tow vehicle from the jeep to my Ram. The jeep towed fine, but I can carry more in the truck bed as opposed to the jeeps cargo compartment.

Looking forward to using this

BTW, I have an even brake and baseplate for sale if anyones interested
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Old 06-06-2020, 09:19 AM   #2
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Bruce

I am pretty sure that you will find the Air Force One system to be very much to your liking.... takes virtually no upkeep or adjustment and just does what it is supposed to do. Most people feel that the LED light that comes on in the toad when the brakes are applied does not work very well, but the rest of the system is "Sweet".

Gary
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Old 06-06-2020, 11:23 AM   #3
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For what one personís opinion is worth, I donít see much point to the LED ďbrakes onĒ indicator light and never bothered to hook it up when I installed our Air Force One braking system.

A previous SMI ďbrake-in-a-boxĒ system we had included a small control box mounted in the coach. That box had a light that came on when the system was applying the brakes in the towed vehicle. Seemed like a good idea, but I found that after a while I didnít pay any attention to it.

The LED light that comes with the Air Force One system is designed to hang from the rear-view mirror (or similar) in the towed vehicle, so the only way youíre going to see it is by looking at the rear view camera screen in the coach. Not that easy to see a small indicator light on a small screen in bright daylight, plus it isnít a particularly good idea to be focused on that screen when you should be looking at the road ahead.

If I felt a strong need for a towed-vehicle-brakes-on indicator light, Iíd do the wiring necessary to have the indicator light near the driverís seat in the motorhome, where I could see it without looking away from the road, Iíve thought about doing that, but havenít been able to convince myself itís worth the effort, becauseÖ

A key step in our pre-departure routine is Amy in the driverís seat of the coach with the engine running and me back at the Jeep checking for operational running lights, turn signals and brake lights. The last thing I do back there is have Amy apply & release the motorhomeís brake pedal several times while Iím looking at the brake pedal in the Jeep. When I see the Jeepís brake pedal going up & down, that is my verification that the towed vehicle braking system is working.

Yes, itís remotely possible that the braking system could fail at some point during our driving day, even though it was working when we departed. And itís possible that after that happened we might encounter a situation that necessitated a panic stop. And itís possible that had the braking system been working we would have stopped in time but with it not working we couldnít. I know all about Murphy, but Iím really not too worried about all three of those things happening in the same day.

Not to belabor the point, but letís assume I did have a clearly visible indicator light in the coach. And letís say that 150 miles into a 300 mile driving day, I notice the light is no longer coming on when I apply the motorhomeís brake pedal. Is it likely Iím going to pull over on the side of the road or at the next rest stop and attempt to diagnose & repair the problem? Or is it more likely weíre going to continue to our planned destination for that day and deal with it there?

Just my two cents. Differing opinions welcome.
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Old 06-06-2020, 11:44 AM   #4
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What he said (up there)

x2

Gary
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Old 06-06-2020, 12:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LWBAZ View Post

Not to belabor the point, but letís assume I did have a clearly visible indicator light in the coach. And letís say that 150 miles into a 300 mile driving day, I notice the light is no longer coming on when I apply the motorhomeís brake pedal. Is it likely Iím going to pull over on the side of the road or at the next rest stop and attempt to diagnose & repair the problem? Or is it more likely weíre going to continue to our planned destination for that day and deal with it there?

Just my two cents. Differing opinions welcome.
Without a light, how will you know you even have a problem to deal with?
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Old 06-06-2020, 01:07 PM   #6
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I'm not terribly concerned about an indicator light.
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Old 06-06-2020, 01:39 PM   #7
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Without a light, how will you know you even have a problem to deal with?
Ben, as indicated in my post above, Amy & I check the operation of our Air Force One braking system the morning of each day we'll be on the road. So if the system happened to fail part way through our prior driving day, I'd know about it the next morning.

If I was more concerned about a failure than I actually am, I could do the same check each time we arrive at an RV park for the night. That way I'd know the night before rather than the morning after.

In all the years we've been using the Air Force One braking system, there was only one time it didn't pass our pre-departure test. In that instance, we were just about to embark on a trip from our home in Arizona. Turned out the reason the braking system wasn't working was that the guy who was supposed to connect the air line between the coach and the Jeep forgot to do so.

Still looking for that guy so I can tell him how dumb he is...
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Old 06-06-2020, 01:57 PM   #8
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My bad!

I missed where you stated the two of you check brake pedal movement each travel day.
I'll bet very few people do ..... including myself !
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Old 06-06-2020, 02:26 PM   #9
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Have never seen my light go one, but Iím looking at the road not the rear view monitor. I am solo so I have no one to step on the break, but I do check the emergency flashers and left and right turn signals to make sure the electrical connection is working properly. I just pray that the Air Force 1 is doing itís job. Driving a Class A towing a Jeep Wrangler you donít even know the tow vehicle is there. I sometimes look at the rear view monitor to make sure the Jeep is still attached!
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Old 06-06-2020, 03:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LWBAZ View Post
Ben, as indicated in my post above, Amy & I check the operation of our Air Force One braking system the morning of each day we'll be on the road. So if the system happened to fail part way through our prior driving day, I'd know about it the next morning.

If I was more concerned about a failure than I actually am, I could do the same check each time we arrive at an RV park for the night. That way I'd know the night before rather than the morning after.

In all the years we've been using the Air Force One braking system, there was only one time it didn't pass our pre-departure test. In that instance, we were just about to embark on a trip from our home in Arizona. Turned out the reason the braking system wasn't working was that the guy who was supposed to connect the air line between the coach and the Jeep forgot to do so.

Still looking for that guy so I can tell him how dumb he is...
When you find that guy let him know from me too

I've had the light in the RV dash, and in my previous toad, on its dash. Didn't pay any attention to either. Like Larry and Amy, Phyllis and I check every morning.

But there is an exception to every rule. The one time we didn't because we had to hook up where we were blocking CG traffic and just forgot, that same dummy hadn't hooked up the airline! Another camper flagged us down to tell us we had something dragging. Lesson learned!
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Old 06-06-2020, 06:15 PM   #11
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When you find that guy let him know from me too

I've had the light in the RV dash, and in my previous toad, on its dash. Didn't pay any attention to either. Like Larry and Amy, Phyllis and I check every morning.

But there is an exception to every rule. The one time we didn't because we had to hook up where we were blocking CG traffic and just forgot, that same dummy hadn't hooked up the airline! Another camper flagged us down to tell us we had something dragging. Lesson learned!
Gary, it sounds like the guy responsible for connecting your air line is only half as dumb as the guy responsible for connecting ours.

For your air line to be dragging, one end of it must have been connected. The fool responsible for connecting ours didn't connect EITHER end!
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Old 06-06-2020, 06:27 PM   #12
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Oh, I know someone even dumber than those two guys combined.

All loaded up with my 24' enclosed car trailer, race car strapped down, tool box secure, fuel jugs cinched down tightly, pop up tents loaded, trailer safety chains hooked, electrical hooked, crew in the motorhome off we go!

I hear an awful scraping sound and stop mid way into the road from my driveway. WTH?

I forgot to drop the trailer on to the hitch

Ok now we know who is the dumbest guy in IRV2

Carry on
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Old 06-06-2020, 06:51 PM   #13
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I'm getting ready to have the Ready Brake installed on our jeep Cherokee.
https://www.readybrake.com/store/p4/...V_Tow_Bar.html

I think this system makes a lot of sense. If i need to tow my jeep behind something else I can. No air lines or hydraulic lines to deal with.
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Old 06-06-2020, 07:12 PM   #14
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While we're pulling back the Emperor's robe... :whistling

Purchased the Coach @ NIRVC Phoenix 4/2018,Tech installed the baseplate and wiring on my Scion, Coach half had been completed by previous Owner, car completed at 11:15 am with a hard departure time of 11:30 am. I did a test hook-up, connected electric line, checked lighting functions by way of the flashers waved goodbye and drove into the sunset. 2 days later after pulling into a Cracker Barrel in Missouri to eat, we were approached by a gentleman that politely advised me that when changing lanes, the left blinker on the Coach would blink but the Scion's right blinker would blink and vice versa when moving the other way.
To say the least I was embarrassed, but had thought it peculiar that there never seemed to be much traffic around whenever I would decide to change lanes...all the way from Phoenix!
The issue was easily fixed upon my arrival home to Cleveland, switching the yellow and green wires on the receptacle of the car, with NIRVC reimbursing me for my time.
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