Brakes or No Brakes

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athearn2
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Brakes or No Brakes

Years ago when I worked with trailers a lot we used a rule to determine if trailer brakes were needed.  That rule was: "If the trailer weighed less than half the weight of the TV the trailer did not need brakes". Today many new vehicles weigh less than the older ones did. For example the Subaru Forrester weighs just under 3,300 LBS.  Using the above rule, that  Forrester is just borderline, at best with a Scamp 13. (I think the weight of Scamps shown in the catalogs is under what they really weigh!) In my opinion that means that a Scamp 13 should have brakes if the TV is a Forrester. Our TV weighs about 4,000 LBS. Our 13 Scamp does not have brakes. We feel that our TV does well at braking. The other part of the equation is how you drive. You need to be willing to keep your speed down, follow at a greater distance, brake early, and down shift (even with an automatic!) as needed while towing.

Hope this is helpful

ELongest
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Brakes

States differ but in Va. trailers over 3K require brakes. My 2011 Outback owners manual states trailer brakes are required on trailers over 1K#. Without  trailer brakes it is had on smaller cars  brakes and rotors and it greatly increases your stopping distance. People usually don't think they need trailer brakes until they get pushed through and intersection on a rainy day or they experience trailer sway. Both situations will make you a believer in trailer brakes.

Eddie

Eddie   

enigma1083
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$200 dollars for brakes,

$200 dollars for brakes, another $2-300 for a controller and installation. Sounds like cheap accident prevention to me.

ManWithaVan
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Trailer Brakes Are Necessary !!!!

I think Brakes should be required on ALL Scamps. I think the Scamp factory making them optional is Irresponsible And Dangerous !!!

Think about this, a loaded Scamp weighs just over a Ton !

Adding Brakes on a Trailer that weighs a Ton is simply a "No-Brainer" in my book !!

 

As Always,

Happy Scamping !!!

bpfick
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Most, not All

That's a reach, don't you think?  Most do.  But not ALL.   Thus the problem with absolute statements. A heavy duty truck can haul that weight in the bed.  Can't add brakes to the bed of the truck, so the truck is designed to handle that weight.     While there are some little Scamps that may weight a ton, there are many "loaded" Scamps that weigh less than 1500 lbs.  I know this because I've owned two of them and weighed them.

There aren't brakes standard on any of the small utility trailers, landscape trailers or smaller boat/engine trailer combos either. Are all these builders "irresponsible" as well?  One can argue for increased awareness and safety, but over-reaching doesn't help the cause.

 

ManWithaVan
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Brakes on Scamps

While it is true that a full size truck can easily handle the weight of a Scamp, Scamps are marketed as lightweight campers that can be towed by smaller cars and small SUVs. Evidence of Scamp's success in marketing to Owners of these smaller vehicles can be found in this very forum: the most read thread is "Honda CRV towing a 13' Scamp", followed closely by "Towing With a Subaru Forrester".

These smaller vehicles may weigh only a few hundred pounds more than the Scamps they are towing and can be easily pushed around by the weight of a Scamp behind them during an emergency braking situation. Additionally, a Tow Vehicle pulling a Scamp equipped with brakes will be able to stop much quicker (and likely straighter) than a TV pulling a Scamp without brakes (even the full size truck will take longer to stop if the Scamp does not have brakes).

Because Scamps are RVs  and they are marketed to owners with smaller tow vehicles I think ALL Scamps should be equipped with trailer Brakes. And, I think Scamp should make brakes Standard equipment on ALL Models.

PS: in regard to landscaping trailers, boat trailers and utility trailers not being equipped with brakes those trailers probably do not weigh as much as Scamps. Additionally, many utility trailers are equipped with brakes (surge brakes).

 

As Always,

Happy Scamping !!!

Flyboyscamp
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We have a 16 and all,of them

We have a 16 and all,of them have trailer brakes. I am sure glad I have them, came in very handy in the mountains! We have a brake controller under the dash, and can be adjusted for more braking on the trailer, or less. True that Scamps weigh more than any brochure states! Get trailer brakes. 

<p>Doug Allen 2016 Ford F-150 2018 Lance 1575</p>

bpfick
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mandatory brakes on 13s?

Scamp does offer brakes on all models.  It is the argument that Scamp should/must install them on all 13's that gives me pause.  Personal responsibility and personal decision making be darned?  Again, if one want brakes on their 1300 pound Scamp, they are readily available.  It's the freedom of choice, an increasingly rare commodity these days it seems. Do I believe many people with compact Subaru type TVs SHOULD buy brakes?  Yes, of course, and would advise them to do so, but I'm not willing to be their nanny. Nor am I willing to run around to every last utility, boat, cargo trailer builder and instruct them either. Each state and the federal DOT systems govern these things, not me.

For years, I was a tow truck operator for four police departments while in college. We hooked and towed five thousand pound plus vehicles and towed them and not one of those towed vehicles had operating brakes as we relied upon the stout brakes of the truck to stop safely.

My position is derived from over 40 years of towing many, many utility trailers and boat/motor/trailer combinations that far outweigh a small 13' Scamps and none ever came with brakes, surge or electric.  They do not.  I used an appropriate tow vehicle and exercised personal responsibility to drive appropriately, what a concept. Many states have the 1500 lb rule while others even have a 2000 lb rule before requiring trailer brakes.  That someone speculates that those trailers quote: "probably don't weigh as much as Scamps" sorely betrays a lack of knowledge, sorry to say.  So, with that, I'm out of this conversation.  Have a good day everyone. 

 

Flyboyscamp
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Scamp trailer brakes

I am with you 100% friend. All Scamps weigh more than marketing brochures tell them! Brakes are essential, needed and safe. I am glad we have a 16 as all of them have brakes. 

<p>Doug Allen 2016 Ford F-150 2018 Lance 1575</p>

Flyboyscamp
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And I will say this, I doubt

And I will say this, I doubt anyone finds a 13 out there that truly weighs 1300 pounds! No way, that is just marketing talking. Options, luggage, extras and that 13 weighs more than 1300 pounds for sure! I would absolutely opt for trailer brakes on any Scamp. Once our brakes need replacement, I am off to the factory for a new axle and brakes.

<p>Doug Allen 2016 Ford F-150 2018 Lance 1575</p>

dhelgeson
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I am also going back and

I am also going back and forth on this issue. Do I trade in my car for a 6 cylinder or put the brake controller on my hyundai tucson (2.4 liter). I had a new axle with brakes put on last summer. Tucson towing capacity is 1000 lbs without the brakes, 2000 lbs with brakes. I do not have propane or batteries at this point on the scamp therefore I'm leaning towards getting the controller and seeing how it rides.

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