Electric Trailer Brake problems

Submitted: Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 17:17
ThreadID: 23825 Views:3235 Replies:7 FollowUps:0
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Having just run over some fairly rough roads - Dalhousie to Mt Dare etc the camper trailer brake wiring (which was cable tied to the axle) was knocked off by the constant battering of rocks etc. So were a number of other things including the water tank connection, some lights and reflectors.

With some help from John at the William Creek Hotel (great bloke) I re connected the wires and re cable tied them inside some rubber tube for more protection. My question is:

Can anyone suggest a way to protect those two single insulated wires as they go into the brake drums etc, as I can see they will cop a bit more of a pasting next rocky road we travel on?

Is there any polarity on the two wires going into the brake drum? They were both the same colour so I took a punt and they seemed to work OK, but I would like to know for sure.

Any advice much appreciated.
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Reply By: Member - Paul P (Bris) - Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 17:33

Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 17:33

If the brakes apply correctly when you rotate the trailers wheels in the direction of forward travel ( trailer connected to vehicle brake control. Jack up each wheel alternatively and apply brake controller ) all is obviously well.

Hard to protect these wires. I run flaps below my trailer stone guard with a view to minimising stones thrown by the vehicle, hitting under the trailer.

I am about a week away from seeing if it all works as it should!!:-)



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AnswerID: 115556

Reply By: Moggs - Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 17:42

Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 17:42
I have an O'briens Offroad Trailer with electric brakes fitted. They have run the wires to the axle through the drawbar, and then have them inside some steel square that is welded to the back of the axle housing. Any parts of the wire that are not enclosed in the steel square are run through garden hose. This includes the section that runs up to the drums.

Not sure what others think of this method of protecting the wires - but John from O'briens has found this the most robust way of protecting them - based on his 25+ years building off-road trailers.
AnswerID: 115558

Reply By: Member - Banjo (SA) - Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 17:44

Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 17:44
There a pic of my stone flap under the Campomatic on my site.......
As you say, the feed wire set up is bloody hopeless - they make no allowance at all for rough road travel - the set up is designed by the usual tech heads that have no idea about the battering they can easily get. The magnet is said to be the HR Off-Road version - the rest of the entire brake hub is probably made for light vans on the black top only !
AnswerID: 115559

Reply By: Member - Wayne N (QLD) - Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 18:00

Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 18:00
Hi Nissan Gnome,
Yea this is a little more difficult. I Ran the wires once they emerge from the trailer A frame though a length of reinfored type garden hose, and clamp it to the back of the axle with a number of metal hose clamps. These can be done up very tight, and seem to keep everthing out of trouble.
Crossing the Wenlock

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AnswerID: 115562

Reply By: Russel & Mary - Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 18:45

Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 18:45
hullo Nissan Gnome, a $6 tube of silicon should make a fairly large dob of protection where the wires run into the brake drum area. Rus.
AnswerID: 115569

Reply By: HeyDad - Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 21:15

Monday, Jun 13, 2005 at 21:15
Re: Polarity,
No the polarity makes no difference. All that happens is that the current flow produces a magnetic effect thus it is attracted to the rotating drum and whella, the brake is applied.
As for protecting the cable cores, If the cables are run the the centre of the axle where travel is minimal then up to the floor chassis in hose etc, just allow enough for the full travel of the axle, 2" from unloaded would be sufficient in most cases.
Check it by jacking the chassis until the axle hangs.

AnswerID: 115598

Reply By: cmilton54 - Tuesday, Jun 14, 2005 at 20:33

Tuesday, Jun 14, 2005 at 20:33
Run wiring on my trailer on back of axle in heavy wall plastic hose held onto axle with tridon hose clamps. wiring needs to be of equal lenght to brakes to give no voltage loss to one side, for equal magnetic force to drums.
AnswerID: 115768

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