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Author Topic: Supplemental braking for the toad  (Read 274 times)

Bill Englund

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Supplemental braking for the toad
« on: April 17, 2019, 02:20:20 AM »
Well the brake controller for my car has died after 12 years and being installed in 4 different tow vehicles. It was a Unified Braking System and they are no longer in business. You could describe them as such, as company that used to sell them, no longer supports them, and some new outfit is selling a “new version”. Guess it’s kind of like when that Motosat fiasco took place some years back.

In talking to Hitch Pro & Tow in Eugene, the are recommending I go with an Air Force One system. It provides proportion braking and is tied into the air system in the coach. From what research I’ve done, I can’t seem to find any downside to the system. It’s been on the marked for a longe time and is now sold by Demco. They also suggested the SMI brake system, but the Air Force one seemed to be a better way to go.

My question is …. Does anyone have any experience with the Air Force One braking system and what are you thoughts about it.
Bill Englund
2008 Country Coach Affinity 45'
600 Cummins
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Jim Houghton

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Re: Supplemental braking for the toad
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2019, 02:29:21 AM »
I currently and have used the Air Force One system for a couple of years now. Once installed its out of sight and easy to connect and disconnect. Immediately noticed the difference from the tow dolly we had with surge brakes. I like the proportioned braking and believe it is much better than without. Others I'm sure will also chime in with their input. 
2003 Beaver Contessa Tuscany
370 Cummins
Pleasant View, TN :)

Joel Ashley

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Re: Supplemental braking for the toad
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2019, 04:34:49 AM »
I know many members here use Air Force One, but also consider Roadmaster’s Brakemaster or Invisibrake models.  The Invisibrake came out long after we had our Brakemaster installed, and we are perfectly happy with it;  but given an Invisibrake as an option at the time I likely would’ve chosen it for its ease of installation and operation. 

And Roadmaster’s main facility is in Vancouver where you could go for in-person research and professional installation.  They have been helpful a couple of times tweaking a Camping World questionable install, micro-balancing our hitch setup, and refreshing our Falcon towbar.

https://www.roadmasterinc.com/products/braking/invisibrake/index.html
https://www.roadmasterinc.com/pdf/trailblazer_article.pdf

Joel
« Last Edit: April 17, 2019, 04:40:28 AM by Joel Ashley »
Joel and Lee Rae Ashley
Clackamas, Oregon
36.9 ft. 2006 Monterey Ventura IV, aka"Monty Rae"
C9 400HP Cat
towing a 1997 Ford Explorer Limited, aka "Pearl"
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David T. Richelderfer

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Re: Supplemental braking for the toad
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2019, 04:56:34 AM »
We have used an EvenBrake in the toad, a Chevy Avalanche, since we bought the coach in 2012.  It takes about 2 minutes to install and is quicker to remove.  It is wifi connected to a module in the coach that monitors the coach's inertia.  Depending upon the sensitivity adjustment, the EvenBrake in the toad will push on the brake pedal if the coach is slowing down.  The EvenBrake unit in the toad gets its power from being plugged into a 12v cigarette lighter type plug.
David, Leslie & JB
Towing a black Chevy Avalanche
Using a Blackhawk Towbar & Evenbrake
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George Harwell

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Re: Supplemental braking for the toad
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2019, 02:23:01 PM »
Installed Air Force 1 in my 2011 Buick Regal back in January 2012. Works perfectly with no problems.
03 Beaver Monterey
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Gerald Farris

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Re: Supplemental braking for the toad
« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2019, 03:37:06 PM »
Bill,
The Air Force One is one of the best tow brake systems on the market, but it can be a little bit of a complicated installation. So moving it from one toad to another is not easy, and since it sounds like you change tow cars about every three years, you may want to take the portability issue into consideration.

Gerald
2002 Solitaire (2017 -  )
2000 Marquis, C12 (2004 - 2017)
1993 Patriot  (2000-2004)
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Bill Lampkin

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Re: Supplemental braking for the toad
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2019, 12:23:14 AM »
We had Hitch Pro in Eugene install our AF1 in 2015 when we bought our new to us Beaver. They did the complete installation, including the tow bracket on our Jeep Liberty. About $3k and they did a good job. They did cheat on where they placed the brake indicator light. It is supposed to be mounted to the back of the toad's mirror, so you can see the bright red LED from the rear view camera on the MH. They mounted the light to the tow bar; I can see it, but after 3 years in the weather, it is intermittent now. As for the AF1, it just works and its easy to hitch-unhitch, only have to connect the air line and 4 prong pigtail,  and the brake indicator light. We have the Roadmaster Sterling tow bar.
2005 Patriot Thunder Lexington, 3 slides
40' tag axle (short wheelbase)
525 hp C13
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Doug Allman

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Re: Supplemental braking for the toad
« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2019, 12:39:52 AM »
Installed the Air Force One in 2012, have moved it twice now and will move it again this December. It has performed flawlessly and other than about 1.5 hours working at your leisure using the same exact components you are wired and ready for the road again on your next toad.
Would have liked to have it been less expensive at purchase but as in most all items today you get what you pay for. I would buy another without even having to think about it at whatever they want for it today. It works. The air line hook up takes less than 30 seconds.
1991 Beaver Contessa  1994-2012   3116 Cat
2004 Beaver Marquis    2012 - 2017  C-12 CAT
2017 Entegra Cornerstone 45B   600 Cummins
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