Evenbrake vs BrakeMaster

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Ray D

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Jun 4, 2006
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1,963
Location
Boise, Idaho
See http://www.roadmasterinc.com/products/braking/index.html

These two systems are manufactured by RoadMaster Inc. Systems similar to both of these are manufactured by competing companies.  I am interested in opinions on the ease and convenience of use, of these two types of systems. I?m asking for subjective opinions, of course, and I know they will differ. That?s fine. I want differing opinions! (If safety or performance of one or the other is compromised, I am interested in that, as well)

The primary difference in these two units is the ?volume? of stuff one has to move, to go from ?toad to road? as the manufacturer puts it.

In the case of the EvenBrake model, one moves a box that contains the entire braking system. That includes the compressor and the regulator. I have lifted the box and it is well within my limits. It?s 15 - maybe 20 lbs. I can do it, fairly easily.

The BrakeMaster model only has an air cylinder/piston, to move. Not even a hand full! The air compressor and the regulator are positioned, permanently, in the coach, not on board the toad. It is touted as much more convenient, since the only thing to move is the air cylinder. I think I could store it in the pocket, in the drivers side door! (Storage space is not an issue. None of our basement bays is more than half full, and half of them are empty.) (The toad, with two people, two scooters, two dogs and a loading ramp on the roof rack is about maxed out!)

Having read the company?s brochure, talked to the salesman and read the on-line info, I cannot discern any other material difference.

Well, maybe I can discern one other material difference. Ummmm, the BrakeMaster model costs $1,000 more! Now, that in my mind, is material!

I can choose between potential ?regrets.?

If I buy the box, will I forever more regret that I could have saved the effort of moving it, each time I hook up or unhook. Will I grump, ?for only a thousand dollars, I could be moving the equivalent of a portable bicycle hand pump, instead??

OR

Do I buy the piston and think, ?Idiot! You payed a thousand dollars more, just to move this, instead of a light weight box??

Is less worth more? Is the little pump worth an extra grand?

Am I missing something?

Ray D.
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,833
Ray,

Check out the illustrated article on Auxiliary (toad) braking systems in our library that compares several different options. I previously owned a BrakePro manufactured by Roadmaster and it was a piece of junk. I returned it after I had the M&G system installed and haven't looked back. Roadmaster subsequently came out with the EvenBrake as a replacement for the BrakePro, but I have no experience with it.  *

Does your coach have a diesel or gas engine?
 

Ray D

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Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Posts
1,963
Location
Boise, Idaho
Our coach is a 2005 Damon Challenger, gas powered, Workhorse. I'm pretty sure it has hydrolic brakes, though I didn't check that, for this post.

I have looked at the M&G, and have their website marked "favorite." I certainly have not written it off. I would need to have it installed, professionally. I do like it, but my WAG suggests that the installation is spendy. No dealers, here, handle it although they would probably install it.

According to M&G website, the price would be $1,155 for the system and the brakeaway option, plus shipping and installation.

Is this something that my Workhorse chassis dealer might do? They sell and maintain both the coach chassis and the Suzuki toad. Would I want a Workhorse dealer doing that, as opposed to a RV dealership? I wouldn't want them working on my microwave, but the braking system seems to me, might be right up their alley.

Ray D.
 

Tom

Administrator
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Posts
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Ray,

M&G has instructions on their web site for installation. It's something that anyone handy with a few tools can do, so it should be a piece of cake for a mechanic to do.

The reason I asked about diesel or gas is that a diesel has on-board air and that makes installation much simpler.

Note that there's nothing wrong with the box-on-the-floor systems, except for the BrakePro that IMO had a design issue.
 

Ray D

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Posts
1,963
Location
Boise, Idaho
I really appreciate all the responses. It's quite helpful. I'll let my brain, such as it is, work on the issue. Got plenty of time.

BTW, I also got a PM from a member, with more detailed info and a good recommendation. I tried to reply. Message said I'm not allowed to send PMs! Gotta be age discrimination!  ::)  ;D

So, how come I'm not allowed to send PMs?  ???

Ray D
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,833
Ray,

This auxiliary brake topic reminds me I need to add some stuff to the library file. e.g. I was recently made aware of 'Air Force One' offered by SMI, so I stopped by a demo booth here at the Orlando rally a few days ago to learn more about it. I try to mention/describe different products when I post a file like that in our library, but don't feel comfortable talking about a product I know little or nothing about.

Let us know which route you decide to take on the brake issue and, later, let us know about your experience with it. Human nature biases us towards something we own/use, especially if we've had good experience with it, but we all learn from the experiences of others.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
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Feb 2, 2005
Posts
74,329
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
Ray,
I recently purchased and installed a Brakemaster.  I chose Brakemaster for the simple reason that the used coach we bought already had the coach half of the air system installed.  It's a good system, but I might have bought something different if it were not for the pre-existing components.

The entire price was a little over $400 from an online discount supplier. Yours would be more expensive because you would need the optional air compressor installed, since your coach does not have its own air system. Installation would be extra as well, though the toad part is easy and the coach part is also well within do-it-yourself capabilities.

There are several systems that work well and do not have any parts to put in/take out for each use.  SMI Air Force One (AFO) is one, the Unified Tow Brake is another, as is the M&G previously mentioned by others. All of them need an air supply (like the M&G & Brakemaster).  The  Unified Tow Brake is now the recommended toad brake by Monaco & Workhorse and new chassis from both of them are pre-fitted for it.

A Brake Buddy (and similar designs) carry their air supply with them in the box that you stick in the toad each time you use it.

All are pretty trivial to put in when ready to hit the road, so the "effort" involved is not much of an issue.

I see no advantage to having Workhorse service center installing any of these. The chassis systems are not modified and the connection to the chassis brake system is typically just a wire or an air supply connector. Any handy person can easily do the installation - they are designed for DIY and come with detailed instructions and pictures.
 
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