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Old 08-07-2018, 08:35 AM   #1
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Brake Replacement

Hey everyone, I have an 04 Forest River Sierra toyhauler that I recently bought. The brakes work ok as-is and I am sure need an adjusment, but I am wanting to replace them as I am pretty sure they are the originals from 2004. What I am looking for is your opinions on whether I would be ok just replacing the shoes or if I should replace the entire assembly (shoes, magnets, backing plate all in one)? I have not opened them up to check them out yet, but it was primarily used to haul from Phoenix to Glamis so there was a lot of things were never upgraded or replaced because of the short distances it traveled. Thanks for any help you can provide!
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Old 08-07-2018, 09:14 AM   #2
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Brake pads(?) linings do not get dry and time out like a Tire. It is very possible you have 80% of your brakes left.
By all means pull the drums and have look, its the only way to find out where you stand.
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Old 08-07-2018, 09:33 AM   #3
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That would be great if I could just adjust them and go! I am a motorcycle/atv mechanic so I have seen several atv drum brakes fall apart, It is mostly due to water/mud but it still made nervous with a 10k+ pound trailer.
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Old 08-07-2018, 02:25 PM   #4
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Brakes on a 10k+ trailer are not something to guess about. At the age of your trailer I would be checking all wiring as well as a thorough inspection of brakes and bearings.


Since you are a mechanic I suggest looking into the cost of E/H disc brake conversion parts. It will take a good mechanic about 1 days work to install. If you are going to replace assemblies anyway it might make sense to go all the way and have the superior system...

I personally installed them on my 5er and a 27' enclosed snowmobile trailer.
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Old 08-07-2018, 04:38 PM   #5
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I have already looked in to the disk conversions as that was what I really wanted, but with a triple axle it is out of the budget for now. I do plan on checking over everything as well as greasing/replacing anything that needs it and adding an aftermarket equalizer setup at the same time.
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Old 08-07-2018, 10:21 PM   #6
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I would pull the drums and check the linings, magnets and repack the bearings with new seals. I would also check the spring shackles and bolts and if they are not grease able put in a wet bolt kit.
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Old 08-08-2018, 05:23 AM   #7
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About 7 years ago, I had some leaking grease seals on our 2001 5'er. I went to a a Redneck Trailer parts house and found out that the cost to replace the complete brake assembly was just a smidgen higher than purchasing the new brakes along with other parts we needed. Ended up replacing the whole unit.

Happy Trails
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Old 08-08-2018, 06:28 AM   #8
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Don't overthink it. It's just about like the old drum brakes but not adjustable and no cylinders to leak. Watch a youtube about it and roll on.
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Old 08-08-2018, 08:26 AM   #9
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I think I will take a couple apart and see what they look like, then order whatever I think I need. I am just trying to get everything so I can upgrade the suspension as well as replace/maintain the other axle parts at the same time. It will be a pain to jack up so I might as well do it all at once if possible. Thank you all for your help so far, I am sure there will be plenty more questions as I get in to this.
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