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Old 04-12-2013, 10:45 AM   #31
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Dalford
I crawled under my camper last night and found two wires that go to the drivers front brake that were pinched to the point it had split the wire coating open. There was no corrosion and wires were not broke and looked fine so I straightened wires and wrapped with tape really good. In that etrailer troubleshoot you showed me it said a pinched wire can possibly cause this so we will see what happens when I get to take it for a spin. Thanks again for your help.
That sure sounds like your problem. That exposed wire could bounce around and cause momentary grounding.

Was the wire itself inside the insulation good? If it pinched hard enough to shear away the insulation it could have broken the individual strands of wire as well. While it will still conduct, that is a possible fault area as well.
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Old 04-12-2013, 11:23 AM   #32
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That sure sounds like your problem. That exposed wire could bounce around and cause momentary grounding.

Was the wire itself inside the insulation good? If it pinched hard enough to shear away the insulation it could have broken the individual strands of wire as well. While it will still conduct, that is a possible fault area as well.
All the strands inside looked fine none of them looked broke what so ever. I just need to hook back up and go for a ride.
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Old 04-13-2013, 12:08 AM   #33
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Wyo, sounds like you may have found your problem. Bare wires can definitely short together, especially under motion. Hope this clears your problems. Let us know after you test drive. Glad I could be of some help.
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Old 04-13-2013, 12:30 AM   #34
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Well the two separate wires weren't actually touching each other but the two open spots in the wires coating that were open were right next to each other so maybe they were shorting out when it was moving. I hope so.
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Old 04-21-2013, 10:25 PM   #35
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Ok so I finally got around to hooking up and going for a drive today and problem is still there. I have cleaned and checked all wires. I also did the suggestion of cutting the blue output wire to see if the problem goes away and I got a trailer disconnected message. When watching the controller it will cut out and give me overload message right when it's about to hit 1.8. But here is where I am thinking the controller is the problem. What would it matter if I am moving or not when I have the controller set to 5.0 and I can move the manual lever and it doesn't do it. I know it's a proportional controller but what would it matter it's still sending the same amount power to the brakes no matter if I'm moving or not. I can max it out not moving and nothing and all brakes are being applied. The controller is level and pointing straight. I called etrailer but all tech support was off but I am supposed to get a phone call tomorrow. They people I did talk to we're very polite and helped me the best they could but would be willing to send me a new one to try it out cause its only 2 months old. This has been very frustrating and time consuming I hope all it is is the controller. Has any one had a problem with P3 out of the box?
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Old 04-23-2013, 12:34 AM   #36
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Wyo, I hope you took them up on a replacement controller to try. Out of the box failures are rare but they do happen.

Now lets discuss the difference between moving and not moving. When you put the brakes on at a stand still all that happens is the electromagnet grabs the inside of the drum. No braking action takes place. When you are moving the magnet grabs the drum and the rotational force of the drum turning causes the magnet to move and to actuate an actuator arm to expand the brake shoes out to contact the inside of the drum. This acts the same as a hydraulic piston on standard braking. So the magnet moves forward by the force of grabbing a rotating drum and throws the brake shoes out to grab the inside of the drum to brake. The harder you brake the harder the magnet grabs and applies more braking force. All that being said then there could be an issue when the magnet grabs the drums and moves. I don't know, a wire that is shorting or something.

Here is how I would try to isolate which tire. Since the problem only happens when moving I would jack up one side of the trailer. I would spin one wheel. I am not sure with what and maybe someone could suggest a way to spin the wheel at a good speed. Then apply the brake and see if you experience the problem. If no do the other wheels and see if you have the problem. I guess I an trying to come up with an easy way to isolate which brake, if any, is causing the problem without having to remove each hub to inspect each brake or to cut wires going to each brake.

I hope it is the controller...
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Old 04-23-2013, 01:58 PM   #37
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Wyo, I hope you took them up on a replacement controller to try. Out of the box failures are rare but they do happen.

Now lets discuss the difference between moving and not moving. When you put the brakes on at a stand still all that happens is the electromagnet grabs the inside of the drum. No braking action takes place. When you are moving the magnet grabs the drum and the rotational force of the drum turning causes the magnet to move and to actuate an actuator arm to expand the brake shoes out to contact the inside of the drum. This acts the same as a hydraulic piston on standard braking. So the magnet moves forward by the force of grabbing a rotating drum and throws the brake shoes out to grab the inside of the drum to brake. The harder you brake the harder the magnet grabs and applies more braking force. All that being said then there could be an issue when the magnet grabs the drums and moves. I don't know, a wire that is shorting or something.

Here is how I would try to isolate which tire. Since the problem only happens when moving I would jack up one side of the trailer. I would spin one wheel. I am not sure with what and maybe someone could suggest a way to spin the wheel at a good speed. Then apply the brake and see if you experience the problem. If no do the other wheels and see if you have the problem. I guess I an trying to come up with an easy way to isolate which brake, if any, is causing the problem without having to remove each hub to inspect each brake or to cut wires going to each brake.

I hope it is the controller...
That's a heck of an idea. I never thought of that I will try that tonight. I think that would work. Good thinking I will let you know if it works as planned. But I am thinking a magnet is giving me my troubles not the controller. Etrailer wants me to try the magnets before they give me a new controller.
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:23 PM   #38
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here's my thoughts, one of the magnets is worn such that when it's energized, it pulls in, but if your moving, it rocks or drags then shorts out to the drum. Just a guess.
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:30 PM   #39
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Same problem on new fifth wheel----------

I had the same problem on a new fifth wheel Rockwood 8285WS as you have described. After replacing the P-2 with a new P-3, checking all connections, still brakes would show good sitting still, but once you started moving they would not work.

The problem was a bad magnet in one of my four wheels. If you look in the ALCO owner's manual you will find the readings that you should get on each magnet when you read in OHMS! You have to read each magnet when it is disconnected from the system. No POWER! If your unit is under warranty, it will be covered. After four different places saying they had fixed the problem, I had contacted ALCO about the brakes. They said to take it to my local dealer and for dealer to call them before starting work.
Bingo, bad magnet when it got hot! All the dealer had to do is read the magnet. Problem fixed, magnet replaced after 3 months of no brakes.

Good luck
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Old 04-23-2013, 09:35 PM   #40
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Well I found it tonight with dalfords suggestion of turn each wheel at a time I found the problem. And of course it was the last one I checked. So I pulled the drum off the one that was throwing the overload. There was too much wire from the magnet side that was pushed back into the drum and was making contact with the drum and had rubbed a flat spot in both wires and It was grounding it self to the drum. I cut out bad spot soldered in new wire and wala she works like a champ. I went for a drive around town and I couldn't be happier. Works great. Thanks for everyone who chimed and a HUGE thanks to dalford who helped me through most of this. You were a great help dal thanks again. Now I'm ready to go camping.
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