Best Setup for RV Flat Tow

lightsout

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Sorry, but I stand by my thinking on the altitude - thinner air is not very technical, but if you want to go that route, think of a potato chip bag or any other sealed vessel as you go up in altitude - as the air pressure all around the vessel decreases (atmospheric pressure) the air inside the vessel if it's sealed pushes on the walls of the vessel, in essence creating a higher differential. Not only have I never experienced any decrease in performance (recovery rate of the pressure) with the RVi in similar situations, but years ago had the CW unit marketed under Roadmaster, and it too used a pressurized vessel to push a piston out against the brake pedal, and it also performed fine under those conditions.
According to the owner of RVi, that unit is not designed to constantly be pressing on the brake pedal - and if you watch the tablet that indicates when it's pressing the pedal, it does not press constantly even under those type declines. What causes the piston to deploy is the accelerometer sensing a change in acceleration - deceleration in this case - and then it reacts accordingly. Once the vehicle slows, the acceleration must again change - decelerate - for it to sense it and deploy the piston.
Of course, maybe the difference we see is because I am doing this in a DP that has air brakes, so you don't pump the brakes like a lot of people do with gassers - hence I'm not causing that piston to constantly push the pedal so the demand for air is less. I actually found the piston deploying more in stop and go traffic once - but it still was able to keep up with the demand. I'll reserve comment on what you were told - there's other posters on this forum who have been told things by RVi customer svc that contradict what the posters found...

As for the Rubi weight - I have under 100 lbs in accessories added to the weight of 4439 lbs, and with my usual 1/2 to 3/4 tank of fuel I am still under 5K lbs. I don't carry much in the Jeep, so I don't worry about exceeding 5K - but you have a point in that you can quickly add a lot with gear, etc.

Your Diesel is the Game changer you can tow more weight and you have much better braking/speed control on inclines even without TOAD brakes. That is the issue with gassers even in tow mode 6% hill you will reach speeds of 60ish in low tow gear and engine above 5000rpm and then you need to brake to 35mph for the corners it takes a lot of pumping to stay under the 10 second rule to get that speed down with a gasser thus the pump on the RVI working over time to keep up. That is the challenge of these non progressive wireless systems when used in gas coaches that are towing at or over max GCVW. The other issue with the RVI and the Patriot is accelerometer it takes significant force before it really triggers especially if you are on a long down hill in lower gears then trying to gently slow down 30 mph for those corners. While the RVI and the Patriot does fine on the flats not so much under this condition I outlined which is why a wired progressive system is best. You simply cannot beat real progressive electric wired braking PERIOD on any rig wireless has limitations because of the wireless interphase... Again if i was flatland towing I likely would not be having this dialogue the wireless systems are good for that. Even the Blue OX Patrion 3 (their newest) I tried it for 3 weeks before returning it, it like the RVI is NOT progressive which is a challenge for long steep declines.





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Rolling Ragu

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I just picked up a Wrangler for flat tow behind our gasser. I will be right at my limits. The experiences I've had so far don't line up with some of the comments here. We just did an 8k mile trip this last year towing a 3k pound toad across about every mountain range in the US. I was left very impressed with the F53 chassis. I would have enjoyed some improvements, but didn't need them. Fact is, I very rarely used my brakes on long downhill grades. When I did, they worked. Also got an honest 6.9 mpg.

Now, I'm adding about 1500 pounds to what I had on last years trip, but I don't expect that's going to be a game changer. I'm expecting that in worst case, I will have my wife drive the toad through the worst of passes. Not a big deal.

I plan to get a Rockhard bumper to tow from. Already have the ReadyBrute Elite bar. The bumper through bolts and has the reinforcement kit. I just don't want to give up clearance with a base plate.
 

lightsout

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I just picked up a Wrangler for flat tow behind our gasser. I will be right at my limits. The experiences I've had so far don't line up with some of the comments here. We just did an 8k mile trip this last year towing a 3k pound toad across about every mountain range in the US. I was left very impressed with the F53 chassis. I would have enjoyed some improvements, but didn't need them. Fact is, I very rarely used my brakes on long downhill grades. When I did, they worked. Also got an honest 6.9 mpg.

Now, I'm adding about 1500 pounds to what I had on last years trip, but I don't expect that's going to be a game changer. I'm expecting that in worst case, I will have my wife drive the toad through the worst of passes. Not a big deal.

I plan to get a Rockhard bumper to tow from. Already have the ReadyBrute Elite bar. The bumper through bolts and has the reinforcement kit. I just don't want to give up clearance with a base plate.

Should note the Rock Hard Bumper is Tall and actually drops down to the same clearance as the Tow Plate, you gain no clearance with the RH bumper. Still a good setup with the tie in bracket

If you are getting 6.9 with your toad that will change with the wrangler toad, the added 1500lb changes all the shifting points you will be in lower gears and higher RMP's way more often that is where the gas consumption really happens

Going down hill is not an issue with the ready brute unless unless that down hill is steep with 30 mph corners then braking becomes a major challenge. We had 9 pass crossings to the same destination this year and all nine were I calculated fuel consumption at fuel up and it ranged from 4.8-5.0. That added 1500lbs is a game changer for braking and uphill acceleration. At 6% my speed is is 35 mph and screaming at maxed out at 4200 rpm. That same pass without toad I can do 55-60 mph and not max out rpm.

The other issue I had with the ready brute is the wrangler brake pedal has a lot of travel before it really does any significant braking, whereas the travel distance of the ready brute cable has limited engagement of the wrangler brakes before it is maxed out. I started out with the ready-brute I just was not satisfied which is why I then bought the RVI it was not any better the the Ready brake so I returned it after 3 weeks then bought the Patriot 3 brake system, it would shift because of the wranglers stiff suspension and loose the wireless connection, so I would have to stop and reset every 50 miles. I finally went back to the Ready-Brute before I sold the Class A last month. Had I kept it I would have installed the invisibrake system, I talked to 3 dealers that sell all the braking systems mentioned they all recommended the invisibrake for the reasons I outlined. Again if you only occasionally do passes the others are ok but for us it is every trip so braking is a major concern.
 

Rolling Ragu

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Thanks for your input. We all have to find our comfort level and best value in the curve. As you say, you do it on every trip. I do it for 2 months out of each year. I'm anxious to have our first trip so I can speak with experience. Thanks again!
 

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Thanks for your input. We all have to find our comfort level and best value in the curve. As you say, you do it on every trip. I do it for 2 months out of each year. I'm anxious to have our first trip so I can speak with experience. Thanks again!


I am not trying to be argumentive just share my experience as well, the whole braking has been a major issue for us and consideration in part that we tend to cross mountain ranges when we RV whereas braking is the #1 concern and I want to be responsible. We are in Western Washington and have several passes that are steep going east and back, they are mostly long and windy inclines/declines that certainly makes our towing somewhat unique compared to much of the country. I will say that I have no problem even at 6%-8% grades that have no hard turns I can do them without braking at all and let the gearing do the work, it is having to slow from 60-30 every mile or two to make a corner that really test the braking systems. Our main traveled pass I have 5 of them in 6 miles, even our last crossing having the braking dialed in best we could still could smell the brakes 2/3 of the way down.

The ready Brute elite is a great tow bar though. Check the travel of your break pedal that is the main issue I was having with all the braking options as I could not get the Wrangler brakes to initiate enough for any significant braking. I even took the Wrangler in to have that looked at I was told that was typical for Wranglers. Even with the RVI and Patriot wireless systems that both have dashboard manual braking controls with the gain all the way up I would not get the TOAD brakes to lock or even provide any significant slowing. Until you pull with a wired electrical braking system you do not know what you are missing which is why I recommend the Invisibrake.
 

dgreen1069

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I have read almost every thread I can find regarding towing a Wrangler. I just bought a 2020 JLU Rubicon and six days later installed the Mopar Flat Tow wiring harness. I ordered the Maximus-3 Tow Loops and had them sent directly to the manufacturer of the Ready Brute. Today, I called the manufacturer of the Ready Brute and confirmed they have clevises which will work with the Maximus-3 loops. They are sending me a Ready Brute II tow bar with integrated brake, their breakaway brake, and a cover. Hopefully I can get everything installed in the next week or so and can report back here.

I'm not terribly worried about the amount of braking I get from the system as my coach weighs 28k pounds ready to roll. My GCWR is 41k, so we have plenty of capacity for a toad. If nothing else, it seems the diesel pushers have damn good brakes.
 

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I just got a 2018 Rubicon Unlimited and will be towing it behind my Class A diesel pusher. I will be installing the Maximus 3 tow loops myself. It looks pretty easy. Where did you guys put the break away switch and light harness? I can't wait to get out and use it. Thanks
 

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Florida Bob - not sure I can answer the break-away switch placement question but I will assume there is a variety of alternatives on the font bumper for this. With respect to the light harness, our Cool Tech harness is concealed under the front passenger seat and door sill. This is where the wiring connections are made. The sheathed cable that goes to the front of the Jeep (for the included 6-pin adapter plug) can drop out one of two possible floor drain plugs. Our kit includes a replacement plug with a hole already in it for the cable to pass through. Hope that helps.
 

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I just got a 2018 Rubicon Unlimited and will be towing it behind my Class A diesel pusher. I will be installing the Maximus 3 tow loops myself. It looks pretty easy. Where did you guys put the break away switch and light harness? I can't wait to get out and use it. Thanks
Mopar makes a flat tow harness which gives you a connection on the front bumper to utilize the Jeep’s lights while being towed.

Here is the part number: 82215382AB
Athens, Ga. Jeep had it for $355. The installation was a bit of a pain but nothing the average DIYer can’t handle.
 

CoolTech

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Yes, and our Cool Tech harness is less than 1/2 the price at $159, provides 100% electronic isolation from the Jeep's electronics, and is arguably easier to install than the Mopar harness. It fits all trim levels of the Jeep Wrangler and Gladiator with or without the LED light option.

https://www.cooltechllc.com/2018-je...harness-kit.html#/69-jl_tow_harness_kit-basic

Optionally we have a "deluxe" kit which is the same as our basic kit but includes the RVi Towed Battery charger and Roadmaster's coiled umbilical cord kit. Note that there is no need to have a battery charger for the Jeep if you are just using the lights as all of the power will come from the towing vehicle. However, for those that choose to install an auxiliary braking device - especially the non-permanent kind, the power for those comes from the Jeep itself.
 
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Durango

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Your Diesel is the Game changer you can tow more weight and you have much better braking/speed control on inclines even without TOAD brakes. That is the issue with gassers even in tow mode 6% hill you will reach speeds of 60ish in low tow gear and engine above 5000rpm and then you need to brake to 35mph for the corners it takes a lot of pumping to stay under the 10 second rule to get that speed down with a gasser thus the pump on the RVI working over time to keep up. That is the challenge of these non progressive wireless systems when used in gas coaches that are towing at or over max GCVW. The other issue with the RVI and the Patriot is accelerometer it takes significant force before it really triggers especially if you are on a long down hill in lower gears then trying to gently slow down 30 mph for those corners. While the RVI and the Patriot does fine on the flats not so much under this condition I outlined which is why a wired progressive system is best. You simply cannot beat real progressive electric wired braking PERIOD on any rig wireless has limitations because of the wireless interphase... Again if i was flatland towing I likely would not be having this dialogue the wireless systems are good for that. Even the Blue OX Patrion 3 (their newest) I tried it for 3 weeks before returning it, it like the RVI is NOT progressive which is a challenge for long steep declines.
For the record - RVi's "portable" braking unit IS progressive - it increases the amount of braking dependent upon a few factors, the largest being the amount of deceleration of the towing coach. This is unlike the portable units that sense when the coach's brake lights come on and brake accordingly - they are NOT progressive.

(but yes, the Jacobs Brake does a lot of the slowing - in fact, one has to be careful to use the service brakes once in awhile or they tend to glaze over - I use the lesser Jake setting now and then just to use the service brakes too)
 

dgreen1069

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Yes, and our Cool Tech harness is less than 1/2 the price at $159, provides 100% electronic isolation from the Jeep's electronics, and is arguably easier to install than the Mopar harness. It fits all trim levels of the Jeep Wrangler and Gladiator with or without the LED light option.

https://www.cooltechllc.com/2018-je...harness-kit.html#/69-jl_tow_harness_kit-basic

Optionally we have a "deluxe" kit which is the same as our basic kit but includes the RVi Towed Battery charger and Roadmaster's coiled umbilical cord kit. Note that there is no need to have a battery charger for the Jeep if you are just using the lights as all of the power will come from the towing vehicle. However, for those that choose to install an auxiliary braking device - especially the non-permanent kind, the power for those comes from the Jeep itself.
I looked at your kit and was super close to going that direction. I ended up picking the Mopar kit simply because it was theirs and I haven't even made my first payment on the rig yet. You kit does look to be MUCH easier to install and works the same way (only difference is the Mopar kit is automatic vs yours having a switch). I bought the kit before taking delivery of my Jeep. I noticed the rubber floor mats plug into the drain holes in the front floor pans. Does that affect your installation at all?
 

dgreen1069

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Seems like several people have gone with the Maximus-3 tow loops. Is anyone using them with a Roadmaster tow bar? I bought the loops along with a Ready Brute tow bar, but I'm not comfortable with the clevises Ready Brute sent me to use with them. They are designed for 1" pins and the tow loops need 7/8". Ready Brute says it will be fine, but I'd prefer tighter tolerance.

I need to decided whether I use a different baseplate or go with a different tow bar.
 

jeepixel

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Seems like several people have gone with the Maximus-3 tow loops. Is anyone using them with a Roadmaster tow bar? I bought the loops along with a Ready Brute tow bar, but I'm not comfortable with the clevises Ready Brute sent me to use with them. They are designed for 1" pins and the tow loops need 7/8". Ready Brute says it will be fine, but I'd prefer tighter tolerance.

I need to decided whether I use a different baseplate or go with a different tow bar.
I have the Maximus tow loops on my JL and ended up going with a Blue Ox Ascent tow bar, as none of the Roadmaster offerings matched up with the tow loops when I did the install earlier this year. No adapters available at that time to connect the RM to the tow loops. I'm very happy with the BO tow bar, btw. If you get time, read my previous posts along with other folk's experiences regarding the tow loops etc. Be safe out there and have fun!
 

dgreen1069

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I've posted about this a few times now, but my quest to set up my Toad has been more complicated than originally planned. I settled on Maximus-3 tow loops based on recommendations here. Installation wasn't too bad, but it took longer than it should because the directions were for the metal bumper and my Rubicon came with the stock plastic bumper. Here are a few photos:

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After soliciting input and researching tow bars, I decided I wanted the Ready Brute Elite II from NSA. Before I installed the Maximus loops, I sent them to NSA so they could determine if they had clevises that would work. They advised they had clevises in stock which would work, so I bought their system.

Last Wednesday, my tow bar arrived. The clevises were 1/4" wider than the Maximus loops and took 1" pins vs the loops needing 7/8" pins. I wasn't comfortable with the loose tolerances, so I called to see if there were any other options available. They explained that making custom clevises was not a viable option as they make several pieces at a time and were afraid they'd be stuck with unsold inventory. I completely understood their position but needed to figure out what to do.

On Saturday, I ordered a Blue Ox Ascent tow bar and Blue Ox BX88303 clevises. Everything arrived yesterday and the clevises fit perfectly. I was given a Brake Buddy Classic by a friend, so I planned to use that for braking. I had resigned myself to the fact I needed to return my Ready Brute tow bar.

I needed a 12-volt outlet that was hot while the vehicle is turned off. I decided to wire one to the Aux. 3 switch on my dash and made it useable (via UConnect) while the vehicle is off. The install was super easy with the wiring supplied under the glovebox. I used the ground which is hidden under the plastic trim on the door sill of the back seat.

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This morning, I received an email from NSA advising they have received enough inquiries about the tow loops that they are now willing to manufacture the correct clevises and can ship them to me next week.

To make a long story short, I am now in possession of two brand new tow bars and one needs to be returned. I can go with the Blue Ox / Brake Buddy combo or the Ready Brute Elite II. Anybody want to offer their advise on which direction you'd go if you were in the same shoes? I need to decide which direction to go and ship one of these tow bars back.
 

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