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Rear disc's and towing question

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Muddytazz, May 3, 2003.

  1. Muddytazz

    Muddytazz 1 ton status

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    Rear disc\'s and towing question

    I've tried searching but came up empty. I'm thinking about doing the rear disc swap on my 14FF, but, how well will the pads/rotors hold up to towing/stopping a big travel trailer. Or would i be better off to leave the shoes and drums on?
     
  2. azblazor

    azblazor 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    I know that guys with pretty large motor homes do the same kind of disc brake swap as we do. New trucks have 4wdb also. My opinion is it is OK. I tow with my Suburban and I plan on doing the rear discs to that truck. My sons suburban has rear discs now also.
     
  3. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    If you're towing a large travel trailer it better have it's own brakes Jeff. Our 21 footer does and I have the brakes set so that the trailer is doing just over half the braking for both the truck and itself.

    Rene
     
  4. Muddytazz

    Muddytazz 1 ton status

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    [ QUOTE ]
    If you're towing a large travel trailer it better have it's own brakes Jeff

    [/ QUOTE ]
    My 28 footer does have its own brakes, its just the times that i use my utility trailer or use the horse trailer (no trailer brakes on it) that i'm wondering about, or am i just getting worried over nothing?
     
  5. Sparky87k5

    Sparky87k5 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    I towed a 24' travel trailer with my K5 for 3 years without rear discs. Set the TT's brakes up like Rene said. Worked well but converted to rear discs 2 years ago and what an improvement they were. Better control over how much brake to apply and pedal "feel", easy maintenance, less heat build up around the seals and after changing seals twice in 3 years with drum brakes, still using originals installed when converted to discs 2 years ago. I run the mountains of Canada a lot and they have some real hills that can tax a brake system pretty good, eh Rene?
     
  6. mudhog

    mudhog THEGAME Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    i would say they would be fine i plan on doing it and towing a boat behind my blazer /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  7. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    no idea about wear characteristics but everyone i know with 4wheel disc that tows says they will never ever go back. My dad drove all the way from my house in eastern Pennsylvania to Central Jersey towing our 20 some foot Car trailer with a heavy steel body car and equipment on it. Got there and realized that the plug on the trailer was disconnected and we had no trailer brakes the whole way. My dad said he never even noticed! Old Chevy he had with drums in the back would have been pushed through red lights like that.
     
  8. 2Dogs

    2Dogs 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    I think it will be ok. I tow motorcycle trailers all over.

    I think it is very important that you check to see how well they work and do fine tuning if necessary.
     
  9. Muddytazz

    Muddytazz 1 ton status

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    I read thru Grim's write-up and how he used an adjustable prop valve. Now his was on the 10/12 bolts, but the principle is the same for the 14FF. Now for the next question since I will be going to rear disc. How many of you had to change prop valves, and is there on that i can just swap in as to not having to use the adjustable one?
     
  10. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    Disk brakes are better than drums for one important reason, and thats because they resist "fade" much better. Going downhill trying to slow down an extra 3500lbs+ (if it doesn't have trailer brakes) certainly makes a difference to your trucks brake system, and fade is a very important aspect of that. /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif
     
  11. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    Yeah Bill, there are a few nasty hills that come to mind. Highway 3 east up to the Hope slide. Most people call it 9 mile hill (it only seems that long) it's an 8% grade and is about 4 miles long. I'm not sure which is worse...up or down.

    Coquihalla...this is a poorly engineered highway IMHO. The big hill varies between 7% and 9% for 11 miles, and many cars have overheated so bad by the top they have caught fire. The Audi's seemed to do this more than any other.../forums/images/graemlins/eek.gif

    Allison pass is also pretty tough, the hill goes on for miles with many 20 mph corners to mess with your head...

    Sunday Summit on highway 3 is another tough hill. There is a tight corner at the bottom so on the way up you can't get a run at the hill and on the way down you have to keep the speed fairly low all the way down or be faced with taking a nasty corner too fast...

    I've towed through Highway 3 quite a few times, very scenic but hard on the truck. The Coquihalla I refuse to attempt, it's too brutal and there are other routes...

    There are many more, but those four are the worst IMHO.

    Rene
     
  12. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    [ QUOTE ]
    how well will the pads/rotors hold up to towing/stopping a big travel trailer.

    [/ QUOTE ]
    Think about it this way... You're using the same pads and rotors as are on the front of the truck. But when they're mounted up front they do 80% of the work of stopping the rig. So they don't even work up a sweat out back. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  13. Muddytazz

    Muddytazz 1 ton status

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    Ok, i read thru the official swap post by Grim and don't think I got a really good answer unless i missed it. Was anything ever figured out about the proportioning valve on which one to use or do I have to use an adjustable one?
     
  14. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    Re: Rear disc\'s and towing question

    My personal experience was this: I installed all the rear disc crap and figured I'd see how it worked before messing with the prop/combo valve. I took it for a drive and tried varying brake applications to get a feel for how it was responding and what kind of bias if any there was. On my truck using the stock prop/combo valve unaltered I have no premature rear lock-up, in fact the braking is very balanced.

    I've had one near panic stop since and both the fronts and rears were on the threshold of locking up...

    Due to the 6.2 swap I currently run a one ton master and hydro-boost, other than that the rest of the braking system is stock K5 stuff. The rear calipers are 3/4 ton D44 calipers with matching rotors.

    Rene
     

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