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Old    TRDon (trdon)      Join Date: Sep 2007       12-21-2009, 3:20 PM Reply   
I am buying a new trailer and going to put an order in tomorrow more than likely. I have the option for brakes on both axles or on just one of the 2. It will cost a total of about 200 more.

I wasnt sure if it was worth it to get it or is the cost not justified or is there a lot of more money needed for maintenece blah blah.

What are your thoughts?
Old    Brady (pdxWAKE.com) (big_b_21v)      Join Date: Oct 2006       12-21-2009, 3:55 PM Reply   
It depends on how, where , and how much you tow your boat. Some states have a requirement to have brakes on every axle.
I personally prefer to have brakes on all 4 wheels. It is less stress on the tow rig and in those rare cases that you need to stop quickly it is almost stopping the tow rig vs. being pushed.
If its only $200. I would go for it. Its money well spent.
Old    Brett Yates (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       12-21-2009, 4:06 PM Reply   
TRDon, are they putting on disc brakes or drum brakes. From my experience disc brakes on one axle will be better than drum brakes on 2 axles. Another thing to consider since you live in Minnesota is that if you ever wanted to sell the boat to a buyer from canada you may have a problem. I have heard that in canada all wheels need brakes. I could be hearing things that aren't true though.
Old     (malibudude)      Join Date: Feb 2001       12-21-2009, 4:33 PM Reply   
Brett,

Sold my old boat to a guy in Alberta with only single axle brakes w/o any issue.

I've got 4-wheel disc brakes on the new boat trailer and wouldn't ever order w/o it again.
Old    Hate N Pain (hatepain)      Join Date: Aug 2006       12-21-2009, 5:27 PM Reply   
I had a single drum on my last trailer but the one I just picked up has dual disc. For 200 more id get em I did for more than that.
Old    VLX Envy (cavlxenvy)      Join Date: Aug 2007       12-21-2009, 5:35 PM Reply   
My two cents...

If you need to hit the brakes, do you want BOTH AXLES to lock up?

I have towed both. The one time I dumped on the brakes with dual axle brakes, the trailer had a mind of its own.

That being said for having owned, towed, sold both types... my trailer has single axle disc brakes.
Old    TRDon (trdon)      Join Date: Sep 2007       12-21-2009, 6:56 PM Reply   
A trailer with a gross weight of 3000 lbs, GVW or more, or a gross weight that exceeds the empty weight of the towing vehicle, must be equipped with brakes that can adequately control the movement of and stop and hold the trailer.

This is all I have found on the subject. I saw a couple of others confirming this. VLX makes a solid point that makes me think.

I trailer 50 miles round trip about 2 days a week, a couple times a year of 500 or so miles round trip. My boat is a garage baby and is trailered everywhere. I have a 2003 Tundra V8 that I tow with. This trailer and the other 2 boats I have had before this one did not have functioning brakes on it and the truck stops it pretty well except in harder situations.

The manufacturer is puting on disk brakes.
Old    Dave Gast (nautiquesonly)      Join Date: Sep 2007       12-21-2009, 6:56 PM Reply   
Don on your 210 single axle is plenty. I had one set of drums on my old tandem on my last 210 and it was fine. Definitely. get disc though. they don't rust up like the drums do.
Old    Charlie Koch (cwkoch)      Join Date: Aug 2006       12-21-2009, 9:59 PM Reply   
Hydraulic brakes on a trailer locking up??? Fat chance. Maybe if it was empty, but not with a boat on it.

For $200, you'll wish you had brakes on both axles that one time you couldn't stop..... It's a no brainer for $200....
Old    VLX Envy (cavlxenvy)      Join Date: Aug 2007       12-21-2009, 10:43 PM Reply   
It happens. Trust me.
Old    JUST-IN-TIME (justintime)      Join Date: Mar 2009       12-22-2009, 12:38 AM Reply   
matters what size disc

4 disc brakes is over kill unless you have over 8K in wieght
Old    Ctimrun (ctimrun)      Join Date: Aug 2009       12-22-2009, 12:38 AM Reply   
The brakes on my last trailer would lock up all 4 tires causing the trailer to fishtail. Serious pucker factor! I had the brakes repaired before I sold the boat and told the new owner about it, but I am glad I am not towing that thing anymore. My new trailer I ordered with just one set of brakes to keep at least two wheels planted, and so far so good.

One set of brakes on a trailer and boat your size is more than adequate.
Old    Cody (loudontn)      Join Date: Feb 2005       12-22-2009, 4:20 AM Reply   
$200?? Go for it! I only have brakes on the one axle of my trailer and I had to slam on the brakes with my 24SSV one time. After lots of squeeling, smoke, and burnt rubber smell we got back on the road only to have one of those tires explode about two miles down the road. I can't help but think that if I had brakes on all of the tires it would have distributed better and wouldn't have exploded. The tires were old, so that may have been the catalyst, but I think if I had bought my boat new I would have opted for tandem brakes.
Old    moombadaze (moombadaze)      Join Date: Dec 2003       12-22-2009, 5:07 AM Reply   
for $200 better to have and not need than to need and not have and need-as Cody above wrote
Old    Michael Hunter (mhunter)      Join Date: Mar 2008       12-22-2009, 6:41 AM Reply   
absolutely yes
Old    Jared Jambor (jambor07)      Join Date: Sep 2008       12-22-2009, 7:13 AM Reply   
Regardless of which scenario you choose, you need to make sure you have a decent electronic brake controller. If you have 4-wheel disk brakes, you can adjust the output of the braking system to prevent the trailer from locking up. If you don't have the controller, the brakes will lock up at full power causing the trailer to get it's swerve on.
Old    Paul (fish6942)      Join Date: Dec 2005       12-22-2009, 7:17 AM Reply   
I believe in MN you are required to have brakes on every axle for a GVW over a certain weight.

Regardless, I'd definitely spend the extra $200. And yes, you can lock up trailer tires fairly easily during a panic stop especially when the tow vehicle has ABS.
Old    Charlie Koch (cwkoch)      Join Date: Aug 2006       12-22-2009, 7:25 AM Reply   
An electric brake controller is for electric brakes. It has nothing to do with hydraulic brakes, which is what is used on boat trailers.
Old    TRDon (trdon)      Join Date: Sep 2007       12-22-2009, 8:39 AM Reply   
This will be a surge brake disk setup. 200 bux is nothing, I realize that, but with the thought of all 4 locking up and the trailer getting its swerve on is a little more than frightening. Seeing as how more than one person posted similar stories, it makes me think.

Money is no object, but safety is the concern. I prefer answers of experience instead of "for just 200 I would go for it". Tell me why, please.
Old    corey king (snowboardcorey)      Join Date: Jan 2004       12-22-2009, 9:50 AM Reply   
I think the added stopping power would far outweigh the chance of locking up the brakes, and if you did lock them up whats to say you wouldnt just get pushed into something with single brakes? In my books added stopping power is always better than limited stopping power.

Another good question would be what if you had a blow out on the axle with brakes? I think you'd want the second axle to have brakes in that situation.
Old    fletch (cwfletch)      Join Date: Dec 2009       12-22-2009, 11:30 AM Reply   
My SANTE is sitting on a Metalcraft tandem with dual axle surge drums, curb weight of about 6200ish lbs. You posted that "locking up all 4 and the trailer swerving frightens you" Surge brakes work in direct opposing force from the tow vehicle in relationship to both of thier speeds, trailer and vehicle. The tow vehicles ABS modulates brake pressure off the wheels speed sensors in effect "pumping" the brakes for you to prevent skidding. The surge brakes on the trailer never see enough opposing force to lock-up and swerve. You may get an initial chirp out of the trailer but thats the extent of it. This assuming that the trailer brake system is maintained and operating correctly. In the wonderful town of Las Vegas and 72 mile round trips to the launch, although I try to space myself from other drivers, panic stops have happened. That being said I have yet to lock-up my trailer brakes or create a swerving situation, mostly just creates colorful language. Hope this helps in your decision.
Old    Art (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       12-22-2009, 1:27 PM Reply   
I've never heard anyone complain that their brakes were too good.
Old    Paul (fish6942)      Join Date: Dec 2005       12-22-2009, 2:24 PM Reply   
Fletch - All of your theory aside, I can personally verify that it IS possible to lock up surge brakes. I've seen it on two different boat trailers, both with disc brakes.
Old    Hate N Pain (hatepain)      Join Date: Aug 2006       12-22-2009, 2:35 PM Reply   
I've locked up the brakes on my old trailer twice, talking full blown white smoke and skid marks (not just on the road). Yeah you can lock em up.
Old    Meathead (meathead65)      Join Date: Sep 2006       12-22-2009, 2:48 PM Reply   
As a 20 year dealer...yes, you can lock up surge brakes if the brakes are in proper working order. The simple plunger style master cylinder on a boat trailer cannot react quickly enough to notice ABS "pump" reaction. Usually happens on light boats, but we've seen it happen to all types.

The hands down most enjoyable brake experience for me is an electric, cab controlled actuator on a hydraulic disc brake set up. Actually very common on trailers at or over the 10K gross mark. It is what we use on our shop haul trailer, and has never let us down. Can be added to any hydraulic surge brake system. The other great part about those systems is it eliminates the trailer brakes from coming on during long downhill runs, unless you want them too. On manual transmission tow vehicles, you also have the ability to use the trailer brakes to hold you from rolling backwards when you are starting out on an uphill incline.
Old    fletch (cwfletch)      Join Date: Dec 2009       12-22-2009, 2:52 PM Reply   
I am not saying it is impossible, there are a lot of other factors such as condition of the trailer brake system, roads, etc. I am just throwing my .02 in that under normal driving surge brakes should not be locking up if they are you have a brake system issue. If your towing and have to panic stop to the point of white knuckling the steering wheel and cause the trailer to lock up you have more problems at that moment than a trailer. The ONLY benefit I see to having single axle brakes on a tandem is over all cost of maintenance, one less set of brake parts to replace. TRDon's last post, unless I read it wrong, sounded like he was worried about lock up and swerving under normal conditions.
Old    Richard Coop (mendo247)      Join Date: Mar 2005       12-22-2009, 2:58 PM Reply   
Hate, what kind of trailer did you get?
Old    TRDon (trdon)      Join Date: Sep 2007       12-22-2009, 3:01 PM Reply   
I am worried about lockup under emergency conditions. I dont think it would be a problem under normal conditions. Emergency braking is bad enough to worry about muchless the trailer jack knifing because of brake lockup. That is why I am so back and forth on the subject.
Old    fletch (cwfletch)      Join Date: Dec 2009       12-22-2009, 3:15 PM Reply   
I read my original post and it does read like I was saying the ABS will stop the lock up, my bad I know better (thanks meathead). TRDon asked about single vs dual brakes and safety, IMO both are fine but on a 210 with a good tow vehicle single axle brakes would be the way to go (less maintenance).
Old    fletch (cwfletch)      Join Date: Dec 2009       12-22-2009, 3:21 PM Reply   
TRDon as far as emergency conditions and jack knifing that is subjective to so many variables other than single or dual brakes.
Old    TRDon (trdon)      Join Date: Sep 2007       12-22-2009, 3:26 PM Reply   
Unless it is caused by the brakes. I have locked up brakes on a car without abs, and it has turned sideways. A trailer could do the same thing. I am just taking that into consideration.
Old    fletch (cwfletch)      Join Date: Dec 2009       12-22-2009, 3:45 PM Reply   
A vehicle is a little different than a trailer, brakes are biased front to rear, sometimes by as much as 60/40, vehicle weight is not distributed equally over both axles and wheel alignment is not static (fronts turn). Like I put in my other post go with a single brake and tag axle, less maintenance and you don't have to worry about the brake induce jack knifing. I hope this helps ya out.
Old    Charlie Koch (cwkoch)      Join Date: Aug 2006       12-22-2009, 8:21 PM Reply   
I honestly think you're worried about nothing. The chances of the trailer brakes locking up and the trailer coming around and jack-knifing are extremely small. The benefits of brakes on both axles greatly out-weigh the negatives.

Also, in respect to the people that have said it will be "more maintenance"..... Not really. With brakes on only one axle, they'll be working twice as hard, and wearing out twice as fast. The cost associated with replacing brake parts is so minimal anyways, I just wouldn't worry about it.

(Message edited by cwkoch on December 22, 2009)

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