First time 21' observations……and emergency cable discussion - Page 9 - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 01-16-2014, 04:15 PM   #81
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I'll raise my compulsive hand, but I got an excuse: I'm retired. These pictures may be of interest here.

It seems clear the amount of chain slack is critical to whether or not the tube will be an issue in an emergency.
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Old 01-16-2014, 04:34 PM   #82
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Great pics Myron!

1) It is obvious from your photos that the coupler wheel should be removed when transporting the trailer and the jack should be brought up to its highest setting. (I wonder if the coupler wheel is rated for highway speeds? )
2) When the coupler is down and resting on the chain, your emergency break away cable is still connected, and is unlikely to disconnect unless the chains completely break. With the coupler down and resting on the chains, you had better hope that the trailer electrical cable does not detach from the tow vehicle or there will be no brakes at all. With my own trailer, I am not sure that I could rely on the trailer electrical cable remaining plugged into the TV. I think this is convincing me that I should shorten my own emergency disconnect cable to activate the brakes if the coupler detaches and falls onto the chains.
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Old 01-16-2014, 04:54 PM   #83
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santacruzer - thanks for that info. Knowing Reace, I am confident that those threaded connectors he supplied are of sufficient breaking strength, but your points about the thread being potential problems has me ready to switch to the ones Paul posted.

I think that Myron's pictures also illustrate why the trailer brakes need to be activated if uncoupling happens. The brakes should pull the trailer away from the tow, tighten the chains, and hopefully then allow them to cradle the coupler well above the pavement -- at least in theory that is!
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Old 01-16-2014, 05:20 PM   #84
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I'm also going to replace the carabieners with clevis hooks. Really like 'em, so thanks, santa, for the tip. Must also shorten my chain slack by probably at least two links, depending on jackknife turn restrictions. Thinking very seriously about not towing any more with the swivel wheel attached, though that decision pains me. Pictures don't lie. As for the brake away cable, it seems to me it's value is strictly for when the two vehicles have completely separated and the trailer is bouncing freely away on it's own. That issue aside, so long as the 7 pin is attached, thinking in a pinch I got brakes that work, so I'm good.
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Old 01-16-2014, 05:43 PM   #85
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This has been a good discussion, with Myron's photos very interesting, and supporting why I take off my wheel and keep the pole all the way up! Chain slack is very important, you only want enough to be able to turn without binding, and I imagine that will be a case-by-case matter. I think I keep mine a little tighter than I see in Myron's #1 photo, but it's hard to tell. I try to keep all three connections (chains, electrical, breakaway) away from each other as much as possible. I personally don't like the idea of weaving the breakaway cable into the others. I've had my electrical connection come loose, and if it were tied into or attached to the breakaway cable, there's a chance the trailer brakes could suddenly be activated even without the tongue coming uncoupled. I think the intention of the breakaway switch is for total separation of vehicle and trailer, i.e., failure of the safety chains. That said, I've been nosing around the web and can't seem to find a definitive answer either way.
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Old 01-16-2014, 06:36 PM   #86
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Just an observation on Myron's use of the caribiner type hooks that Escape provides. I am not sure where I picked this up, I have never visited the Escape factory, but my method of using the chains was to loop the chain through the opening on the vehicle side receiver and then use the caribiner hook to keep it taut and secure. In other words, the caribiner was joining two links of the chain well past the hitch and after going through the receiver. The effect of this is, the weight of the lost trailer was put on the chain, the strongest part of the equation. The caribiner was carrying very little weight and did not require the strength of a link of chain.

In Myron's photos there is enough slack in the chain, loop it through the hitch receiver and now use the carabiner to lock the two lengths of chain.

That said, the clevis hooks I recommended are much easier to use. Installation can be done with a pliers and now is the time you can make adjustments for proper chain length.
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:06 PM   #87
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Also worth noting from Myron's pix is that the jack wheel is facing backwards ( assuming the trailer is moving forward ) and that when an event happens, it may be facing any direction, left, right.

And, the attachments that Thoer pictured are the ones I have on my chains. I don't know what they are called but those are not carabiners, in my mind. I've been using mine for five years and they are a PIA, but I try to remember to keep the threads lubed with white grease.
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:12 PM   #88
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I'd like to expand the conversation to include how to keep the electrical connection from TV to trailer secure. As mentioned, I've had mine come off several times. My buddy dropped his and wore the plug down so far that it needed to be replaced.
I have tried re-usable zap-straps to keep the cap pressed against the plug, but I'm still not satisfied.
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:21 PM   #89
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I tape mine with electrical tape around the plug cover -seems to work.
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:22 PM   #90
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Appears that the connectors Thoer and I are using are called Quick Link.
I found this one on the Rona site ( useless since it doesn't rate it in lbs. breaking strength or anything else ).
I think I'll stick with these because I know when they are closed and they will not accidentally come open.
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