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Old 06-23-2013, 07:49 PM   #1
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Help anyone, weak brake issues!

weak brakes. Help needed anyone.
Hi,

I bought a 2013 365SAQ sandpiper 5th wheel last summer and from the beginning this trailer has been plagued with weak brakes. The axles are 6000# AL-KO with self adjusting brakes. Controller is maxed out 10 and can barely stop the trailer. Trailer weights 14000lbs.

I adjusted the brake shoes as close as possible to the hub. Still have weak brake.

Truck brake controller is working fine as we tested it on a different 365 with Lippert axle. With this trailer we could not get the controller higher then 3.5 on the controller without the wheel locking up.

I've checked each magnet amps individual and they are all drawing 3.2amps. Ohms are OK as well. Amps loading of all the magnet at the plug is 11amps.

I've removed all the drums to inspect if there was any issues, I could not see anything wrong.

I am in the process of replacing the brakes backing plates to 6000# dexter as I have seen that the magnet is a lot bigger on these.

Dealer is no help as I suspect he thinks I'm imagining the issues. There are some brake, but nothing that could stop me in a emergency. It doesn't help that the dealer is also 800miles away!

Does anyone have any suggestion from replacing all the brakes.

Have anyone else experience issues with AL-KO brakes.

Any suggestion would be greatly appreciated
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Old 06-23-2013, 08:15 PM   #2
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Are the shoes installed correctly? Not familiar with your set up but I know on autos, they have a long and a short shoe, install backwards, no brakes.
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Old 06-23-2013, 08:34 PM   #3
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The left and right side brake assemblies are different. Could they be installed on the wrong side?

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Old 06-23-2013, 09:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ida Ratherbe Camping View Post
Are the shoes installed correctly? Not familiar with your set up but I know on autos, they have a long and a short shoe, install backwards, no brakes.
I am a mechanic and this was the first thing I thought of, the leading and trailing shoes mixed up.
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Old 06-23-2013, 09:51 PM   #5
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MBER, I have a 13 365 and am experiencing the same issue. Have had truck checked at GM dealer and all is good. Trailer brakes were adjusted by tech and they say they are good, however, I am at 8 on the controler to get drag and at 10 I can't lock it up. I am open to suggestions as well. As much as I like my trailer dealer he seems to be lost on this one too.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:03 PM   #6
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No, I checked the shoes. They are ok. On the right way. I even checked to make sure that the assemblies were on the right side.

I've dismantled all the magnet and ohm them. They all read about 3.2 ohms no short. Amp reading about 3.2amps.

Question, have self adjusted brakes been around for a while? The magnet are extremely small compared to dexter manual brakes. See pictures. I'm wondering if this could be the issues.

Also, has any seen a drum with this type of pattern in it?

I suspect this drum will need to be re-turned. Does anyone know if they turn the part were the magnet contact or should I get two new drum.

I'm not impress with AL-KO brakes.

I think I will replace all the brakes assembly with dexters and get all the drums turned just to make sure there nothing wrong with them as well. As you can see I the picture, they are suspect.

Then pull a 10gauge wire to the brakes just to make sure there is enough current to the brake. All do I had 11 amps when I did a load check from the 7 pin plug.

I hate packing bearings with grease!

I sure wish there was a forestriver dealer close by!

If any has any other suggestion or something else I should be doing, please let me know.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:04 PM   #7
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This may sound expensive, but my family is woth every penny. I would convert to discs. I have even thought about doing it to the roo, but brakes work very well.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:26 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwpdir View Post
MBER, I have a 13 365 and am experiencing the same issue. Have had truck checked at GM dealer and all is good. Trailer brakes were adjusted by tech and they say they are good, however, I am at 8 on the controler to get drag and at 10 I can't lock it up. I am open to suggestions as well. As much as I like my trailer dealer he seems to be lost on this one too.
RWPDIR,

My truck too is a GM with intergrated controller. I work fine on my father-in-law trailer "365 Seville" crossroad. He can't get the controller pass 3.5 without locking.

I'm at 10 and can barely get the trailer to slowdown. Hell, I can pull the trailer with the knob at 10 and the wheel are turning. Not what I'm accustomed to. My dealer and two other mechanics at a lost. It has to be the type of brakes.

Are your AL-KO too. Did you get lippert brake instructions and then found out it was AL-ko axle on your trailer?

Did your trailer surge intermittently at 30km/hr. Felt like the drum were out of round.

Do a load check at the 7 pin plug. It was at 8amps until a ran another wire. It got to 11 amps with a new 12 gauge wire. Help a little but not enough for me.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:57 PM   #9
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if you are changing, go get electric over hydraulic disc brakes. They are way better
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Old 06-24-2013, 11:49 AM   #10
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Call Forest River and see what trailer shop they can recommend that is closer to you. In all honesty, the dealers can't do much more than sell accessories IMO. You are not getting the signal from the truck to the axles for some reason. My 345 RET will lock-em down at 30 MPH.
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