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Addictedto6

Upgrade Trailer Brakes to Disc Brakes

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Addictedto6

I have a 99 Sportboat Trailer tandem with Drum brakes and a UFP A60 Actuator.

My wife will be towing the boat with an Acura MDX while I tow the travel trailer. The MDX tows the boat at least as well as my Suburban, but I'm thinking of upgrading the trailer brakes to better handle any emergency situations.

So, my questions:

- Has anyone converted their trailer drum brakes to discs, and if so, how easy is the process?

- Should I go with 1 axle discs or a 2 axle system

- Any recommendations on which brands/kits to go with?

- Can/Should I reuse the existing brake lines (metal) or convert over to the thermo-plastic lines being sold with the new kits?

- pacific trailers sells a full kit that includes 2 discs brakes + a A60 actuator for Disc brakes. I replaced my actuator about 2 years ago and would prefer not to have to replace it unnecessarily. Do I need an different actuator (I also have an email into UFP on the actuator)?

Here's the link to the full UFP kit:

http://store.pacifictrailers.com/index.cfm...p;categoryID=48

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MalibuTime
I have a 99 Sportboat Trailer tandem with Drum brakes and a UFP A60 Actuator.

My wife will be towing the boat with an Acura MDX while I tow the travel trailer. The MDX tows the boat at least as well as my Suburban, but I'm thinking of upgrading the trailer brakes to better handle any emergency situations.

So, my questions:

- Has anyone converted their trailer drum brakes to discs, and if so, how easy is the process?

- Should I go with 1 axle discs or a 2 axle system

- Any recommendations on which brands/kits to go with?

- Can/Should I reuse the existing brake lines (metal) or convert over to the thermo-plastic lines being sold with the new kits?

- pacific trailers sells a full kit that includes 2 discs brakes + a A60 actuator for Disc brakes. I replaced my actuator about 2 years ago and would prefer not to have to replace it unnecessarily. Do I need an different actuator (I also have an email into UFP on the actuator)?

Here's the link to the full UFP kit:

<a href="http://store.pacifictrailers.com/index.cfm...p;categoryID=48" target="_blank">http://store.pacifictrailers.com/index.cfm...p;categoryID=48</a>

How well do the brakes work now? If they are in good working order, maybe leave well enough alone. But, I must say discs should be more trouble free and a easier to check and service. Once you start having problems with drums, they can be a real PITA. As for the plastic lines, I think they might be better. Since trailers sit for long periods, the plastic will never corrode even if you get moisture in the lines.

As for the actuator, Pacific Trailers will know for sure.

Edited by TheBlackPearl

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Addictedto6
How well do the brakes work now? If they are in good working order, maybe leave well enough alone. But, I must say discs should be more trouble free and a easier to check and service. Once you start having problems with drums, they can be a real PITA. As for the plastic lines, I think they might be better. Since trailers sit for long periods, the plastic will never corrode even if you get moisture in the lines.

As for the actuator, Pacific Trailers will know for sure.

They're just ok right now. I'm due for a full adjustment (as well as a repacking of the bearings) and they've definitely been lots of trouble over the years, so that's why I'm considering changing them out.

Edited by Addictedto6

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edwin

I'd give a call to Lyn O. Dyer, UFP/Trailer Buddy Warranty Supervisor, and get his take. 800-854-1905 ext.107 He's quite active on another forum I follow from time to time...seems to know his stuff inside and out and should be able to provide some good insight on the upgrade.

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Sunsetter95

If you do the conversion, do your research and get a complete kit. the MC may need changing in order to hold the higher volume of fluid generally needed for disc brakes.

I prefer metal lines. They are harder to work with but a rock will not break them as easy as plastic. Plastic will also get brittle with time. That would depend on how high of quality of plastic is used.

Brake maintenance is less,... fade under load is less,... affected by water is less,... easier to replace pads,... repack bearings is more work,... I would go with single axle, I prefer the front axle,... rear is ok if that is where your drum brakes are now.

Just my 0.02 worth.

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SacRiverRat

Sounds like a lot of work to me on a older boat (I didn't say old).. what sort of cost are you looking at for the conversion. If you do it, do both axles... since what you are going for is stopping confidence.. why settle for 1/2 the axles?

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VinRLX

Gotta agree with Troy here, regarding both axles. The time, trouble, and expense will not go up exponentially by doing the second axle, but your stopping power will. :)

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D-GOOSE

Both axle would be best and as mentioned what kind of cost are you looking at? I know your in Sac and I know of a few trailer shops that could do the workand place's to pick up the parts if your doing it your self. If your going to send out the work I would just go around and find 3 quotes and see what each would replace with cost.

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DIE2SURF

I was thinking of doing the same thing for my Echelon trailer, also a tandem. I checked into it last year from DHM/DHL Trailers in Sacto/Elg Grove. They told me it's a pretty easy job (but then...they do this stuff for a living). The parts added up to around $500 for 1 axle; about $700 for both.

http://www.dhmtrailers.com/online/home.php?cat=15

http://www.dhmtrailers.com/online/home.php?cat=6

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awilco

It sounds like you have surge brakes on the trailer now. I do not know if you can just change the drums to disk without changing the entire system. You do not want the trailer brakes to lock up in a critical situation

Another option is to change them to electric brakes and install a brake controller. That way you can set the brakes the way you want them.

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VinRLX

Electric brakes do not generally hold up well on boat trailers. There are electric over hydraulic, however, but more expensive.

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MUpde
Another option is to change them to electric brakes and install a brake controller. That way you can set the brakes the way you want them.

I don't think this is a good solution. All the times you submerge the wheels of your trailer when launching and picking up, I don't think you want all those electrical parts getting submerged.

Just my $0.02.

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