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  #61  
Old 05-09-2014, 03:32 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

Array, you have an exhaust brake, which I expected. That is what I had on my CAT C7 and my Cummins ISC. That is the cheapest level. Next is the real Jake brake involving the valves and another (very expensive) unit found on buses and a very small handful of motorhomes is the transmission retarders (invented by the founder of Cummins).

From my understanding an exhaust brake is NOT considered to be an engine brake and of course that was my view when I used my exhaust brake in an area that was signed "use of Engine Brakes not permitted". The exhaust brake is no where near as loud as an engine brake.

I'm the owner of the Yahoo Kodiak Class C Chassis Group and the vast majority of our members have the Duramax with an exhaust brake.

I no longer have a DP (we worked our way up starting with a 34 ft Class A Gasser, then a 39.5 ft DP (Journey with C7), then 41 ft DP (Ambassaor with ISC) and then decided to work our say back down in size, first to a 32.5 ft Kodiak Class C, and now a 28 ft E450 Itasca Class C. That is why we needed the Cherokee as I wanted a toad with a transfer case with Neutral. Our Escape was a total PITA because of the way the transmission fluid heated up when towing (put a ScanGauge in the Escape and watched the fluid get up to 220 deg). We previously towed a Tahoe LTZ and prior to that a Colorado (hated it). The shame is that we hardly use the MH now averaging only a bit over a week a year since we no longer take a MH to Florida for the winter season.

What did I miss when we no longer had a DP? The Exhaust Brake and the torque. IMO the Exhaust Brake adds considerably to the safety. At times I get the urge to go back to a diesel with an Exhaust Brake, then DW gives me that look and I forget about it. I have to say that when I start talking a Sprinter based unit she does smile instead of frown - but IMO they are drastically overpriced.

GR
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  #62  
Old 05-09-2014, 04:08 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

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Originally Posted by MartinC View Post
.... Any thoughts?
1) It adds a relay to the brake light circuit rather than a simple diode. When the brake/blink interference came up, I considered putting a relay/diode set on a tiny project board but then decided not because in my case the supplemental brakes are hardly ever on. 2) Do the wires ldsoles1066 tapped into include the high-mount brake light? If not, the supplemental brake light system will still turn it on, which is a good thing.

My first RV was on a Ford F53 chassis and I had the supplemental brakes set to come on for every stop (mistake). It wore slop into my tow bar. The Patriot is a proportionate system which should help.
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Old 05-09-2014, 04:35 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

Array, our first MH - the 34 ft gasser was on an F53 as well. The coach itself (2000 Triple E Commander - purchased used - all there rest were new - was better built than anything we've had since but the 4 speed transmission (3 plus O/D) was the Achilles Heal. IMO it was terrible. That coupled with the V10's high revs was a turn off.

We never towed with it. DW was of the view that anyone who has to tow doesn't know how to plan. After a few trips where we were tied down to the park, she relented. Now she is back on that theme again.

GR
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Old 05-09-2014, 04:36 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

grandriver125 - Ha! Don't get me started on these diesel torque monsters. I could go on for hours. Love them. Can't imagine what the 600 HP rigs are like. We've been around the country a couple times and spend 5 months in FL each winter. I'll be ordering a Cherokee AD2 when we get home. Not sure if that will result in a 2014 or 2015.
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Old 05-09-2014, 05:02 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

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grandriver125 - Ha! Don't get me started on these diesel torque monsters. I could go on for hours. Love them. Can't imagine what the 600 HP rigs are like. We've been around the country a couple times and spend 5 months in FL each winter. I'll be ordering a Cherokee AD2 when we get home. Not sure if that will result in a 2014 or 2015.
Hmmm. My ISC torque was 960 and I always thought I should have bought one with the ISL 400/1200. So, depends where you sit.

A fellow in our park bought a new Foretravel. He told me that was it, his previous Foretravel lasted 18 years and he could not out live the new one. A few years later he disappeared for a month. A couple of weeks after he returned a friend asked me if I'd seen this guys NEW Foretravel. Turns out he'd been to Texas while they finished it off and it had the same color scheme and I had not looked close enough when he returned. I had to ask him "why" given his earlier comment. Well, he wanted a marble heated floor and a host of other things. Some of the other things - ISX with over 600 hp and 2000 lbs ft of torque - and an Allison 4000MHR with retarder. A beautiful machine. You'd love it.
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Old 05-09-2014, 05:03 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

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grandriver125 - We've been around the country a couple times and spend 5 months in FL each winter. .

Where in FL? We hibernate in KOA Naples for 4 months.



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  #67  
Old 05-09-2014, 06:11 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

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Where in FL? We hibernate in KOA Naples for 4 months.



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Nice Park - I've seen it. Basically one season that far south - tropical. Our son used to live in Lauderdale By The Sea so we camped at Markham Park a Broward County Park (the other end of Alligator Alley from you). Great park (supported by tax $) including large lots, huge model-plane air field, shooting range for pistol/skeet/trap and huge small & large dog parks. It's at the edge of the Everglades in a wealthy town Weston. Our son moved to Jacksonville three years ago. So we've been staying at the Flamingo Lake RV Resort in north Jax since then. Well run place. A lot colder. We unhook from Jax and go south for the month of January to play with friends we made at Markham.
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Old 05-09-2014, 07:43 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

I have the Blue Ox baseplate, brake light relay and Roadmaster Invisibrake on my Limited. After some initial problems, all is working great.

I installed the diodes in the taillights and ran the wire inside under the trim and through the firewall. As has been noted, it takes a while but does yield a neat job. The diodes were installed in the area behind each light housing. I have read that they should be as close as possible to the lights.

The brake light relay is also not a fun job but can be done. Some people remove the front bolts on the seat to get more elbow room under dash. You can also easily pop out the small storage cubby left of the steering wheel. I installed a simple SPST switch inside the same cubby that activates the relay from the Jeep battery (through a fuse). Just remember to install the relay NC. I use the same switch to connect/disconnect power to the Invisibrake so that it doesn't go on if the brakeaway switch is pulled when not towing.

Also installed a small warning light that goes on when the switch is closed to remind me to turn it off as first step when finished breaking.

I also use a "Toad-Charge" TOAD-CHARGE Dinghy Vehicle Battery Charger/Maintainer
to keep the Jeep's battery charged - puts 10 amp charge into battery and prevents feedback and reverse polarity. it has worked great for 5 years on previous toad so I just removed it and put it in the Jeep.
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  #69  
Old 05-09-2014, 07:58 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

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Originally Posted by grandriver125 View Post
.... ISX with over 600 hp and 2000 lbs ft of torque - and an Allison 4000MHR with retarder. A beautiful machine. You'd love it.
That's almost 70% more torque than the ISL 8.9L engine. Crazy good. Mine will slow down to 45 mph on a long enough 7% grade when I'm packed and towing. A friend that had a 400 and 600 HP said the MPG was the same. Do you think that's a fair statement?
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Old 05-09-2014, 08:24 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

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Originally Posted by Array View Post
That's almost 70% more torque than the ISL 8.9L engine. Crazy good. Mine will slow down to 45 mph on a long enough 7% grade when I'm packed and towing. A friend that had a 400 and 600 HP said the MPG was the same. Do you think that's a fair statement?
That would not surprise me - perhaps because he may rarely use the 600 HP.

When on the way to and from FLA I really enjoyed the Exhaust Brake on i-75 in N. Tennessee. Even with the ISC the climb was a nothing and I'd leave the EB on for the entire trip down having it kick in whenever I took my foot off the accelerator.

Our Kodiak (it was the gasser (8.1 Vortec) because the Duramax version, believe it or not, didn't have enough capacity (GCWR-GVWR) to tow our Tahoe) would really whine all the way up, as does the E450. I sure hope Chrysler sees the opportunity for the Fiat 3L diesel in a Class C MH. At this point they are using the 3.6 Pentastar and that is a non-starter for me. I have it in my T&C and can't imagine something 3x the weight with that engine (which is very good in the T&C and gets better MPG than the Cherokee at this point).
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Old 05-09-2014, 10:43 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

larry111 - Thanks for all the good info.
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Old 05-17-2014, 10:39 PM
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Re: Blue Ox Baseplate for Trailhawk

Job Completed!

That is the 'toadifying' of the rear lights. You will recall I was concerned about the Jeep's brake lights overriding the turn signal sent by the coach. Here is my solution to the problem which has been proved to work.

The kit I used was a RadioShack DPDT relay ( Part No. 275-0206 , less than $3 ), two of the diodes I had got from the Demco kit, a one gang electrical box with lid and a collection of crimp on connectors and wire. The relay is actuated by the 12v feed from the rig and changes over the feed to the brake light lamps from Jeep to rig when towing. The CHML is not inhibited by the relay.

Attached is a series of photos which show the sequence of work. The relay is first wired up and placed in the elec. box. The pairs of wires exiting the sides of the box will lead to the brake/turn lights in the tail lamps. The 4-wire set plus the red 12v enter the box at the end. Next into the box are the two pre-wired diodes ( sharing the common brown running light feed from the rig ) Again, another two pairs exit the side of the box to lead off to the running lights in the tail lamps.

After the 4-wire looms are brought into the area by the 'basket' in the trunk and connected up, the whole kit and caboodle is tucked away and the basket put in place.

I refer you to the excellent description by isodoles of the connections behind the tail lamps and I thank him again for giving me the color codes for the specific wires.

One comment I should make - I could not find a way of fishing the loom straight down to the basket area. That route is stuffed full of foam insulation. In the end, I ran it down outside that panel and through one element of the air vent down there. I used the same entry for the loom coming down and across from the right hand tail lamp.

After all that, I connected a temporary 6 wire socket to the wires at the front and hooked up to the rig. Everything worked fine and, most importantly, operating the Jeep's brake did not override the turn signal coming from the rig.

Here's hoping the photos get uploaded and in the right sequence.

MartinImageUploadedByJeepGarage1400384067.078757.jpgImageUploadedByJeepGarage1400384105.176983.jpgImageUploadedByJeepGarage1400384127.985353.jpgImageUploadedByJeepGarage1400384153.696859.jpg




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