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Old 04-12-2012, 10:28 AM   #11
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Electric trailer brakes can feel "lumpy" by nature of their design. A steel insert in the brake drum(s) passes by the electromagnet with each rotation. When the electromagnet is energized, by applying your tow vehicle brakes, the steel insert wants to stop at the magnet, thus braking power. Cold brakes do this even worse. I always warm mine up by applyng a litttle pressure when starting out, even with my work trailer. I upgraded to a proportional controller also and this made a big difference.
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Old 04-12-2012, 11:37 AM   #12
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Thanks for the info. Thurman. That's the kind of info. I've been looking for. Makes a lot of sense now. That why it feels sort of like each tire has a flat spot on it and I get a pulsating lumpy feeling.

Have been trying to learn just how the Draw Tite controller works. I know there is an adjustable time delay and force. But does the controller ramp up to the preset force setting? I'm thinking yes because maybe what's happening when I let off the brakes and then lightly re-apply them on and off or when I reapply them is that the brake shoe force is ramping up to the max. setting each time it gets a braking signal. And if I'm cruising along and just want to lightly use the brakes to slow a tiny bit, that first the truck's brakes work and then the trailer brakes ramp up and kick in and can give too much overall braking effort and thus I immediately let off the brakes entirely.

Maybe it's just the way the beasty works and I need to get more used to it. Perhaps I could try playing with the settings a little? Otherwise, a new Prodigy P3 is now on my most wanted list.
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Old 04-12-2012, 12:05 PM   #13
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What you're talking about is the nature of the controller. I found that if I set the controller to provide adequate braking at normal speeds, it was way too aggressive at slow speeds.

Trust us on this...get the P3 and set it and forget it.

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Old 04-12-2012, 01:57 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myredracer View Post
Have been trying to learn just how the Draw Tite controller works. I know there is an adjustable time delay and force. But does the controller ramp up to the preset force setting? I'm thinking yes because maybe what's happening when I let off the brakes and then lightly re-apply them on and off or when I reapply them is that the brake shoe force is ramping up to the max. setting each time it gets a braking signal. And if I'm cruising along and just want to lightly use the brakes to slow a tiny bit, that first the truck's brakes work and then the trailer brakes ramp up and kick in and can give too much overall braking effort and thus I immediately let off the brakes entirely.

Maybe it's just the way the beasty works and I need to get more used to it. Perhaps I could try playing with the settings a little?
A time delay brake controller like the Activator II usually has 2 settings. The braking power, and the rate of application. If you set the rate of application, say for 4 seconds, the the braking power will gradually increase to the maximum you have it set for in 4 seconds. Second #1, is .25%, second #2 is 50%, etc. If you need to make an emergency stop, then you will not get fulling braking power until second #4. If you set the rate of application lower, say 1 second, then you are gonna get 100% of the trailer braking when your brake pedal is depressed for 1 second, leading to abrupt stops when you just want to slow down.

Any time the brake pedal is released, the process starts all over again. You can have a high power setting and low rate of application, and maybe "pump" your brake pedal when trying to gradually slow down. Or you can have a slow rate of application and a hight power setting, and get in the habit of reaching down and applying the manual control when more braking is needed. The manual control usually brakes up to the maximum power setting you have set.....if that makes sense.

That type of controller was all that was available many moons ago, unless you had a controller that was actually attached to the brake pedal. Times have changed, and a controller that measures deceleration is a much better option these days.
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Old 04-13-2012, 12:20 AM   #15
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Hello redracer some info that may help :Trailer Brake Controller Information | etrailer.com & HowStuffWorks "Brake Controller Monitors"

The issue you are describing does lead one to believe it is your controller an interim solution could be that in the CG / parking lots etc. set the delay higher and as you get out on the road decrease the delay to the desired setting
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