Lessons learned - setting up a JL as a TOAD - long read

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Captain Skip

Captain Skip

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I've been reading both yours and the Captains thread. Very informative. I was wondering why you decided to forgo using the blue ox tow bar and go with the brute tow bar system.
I looked at the Brute tow bar system and it comes with the dash monitoring system. Why is it that you bought the stop light switch? I think I am leaning on for sure going with the braking system. I also already have the blue ox tow system and not sure if I want to keep it or go with the Brute system.

Thank you, Jim
I went with the Readybrute because that way I don’t have to deal with a supplemental braking system box sitting on the floor of the driver’s side that has to be removed to drive the JL. The brake system is another $1,000 or so. The Readybrute has the braking system built in and let’s me drive away after unhooking 2 pins, 2 clips and an electric plug. Added the additional brake switch because I wanted the 3rd brake light to function while under tow. The brake light flasher is an extra measure to get the attention of tailgaters.
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fredT

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Hey Fred, So you didn't use your blue ox tow bar that you already had?
Thank you
KTFjammer,

I had a Blue Ox tow bar that went with my CRV Toad when I sold it. (Before I bought my Jeep) As far as the Blue ox base plate that I ordered for the Jeep, I ended up sending that back and getting the Rockjock. The Rockjock looks much more like an OEM part than having the Blue Ox bracket hanging off the front bumper.
 

ktfjammer

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KTFjammer,

I had a Blue Ox tow bar that went with my CRV Toad when I sold it. (Before I bought my Jeep) As far as the Blue ox base plate that I ordered for the Jeep, I ended up sending that back and getting the Rockjock. The Rockjock looks much more like an OEM part than having the Blue Ox bracket hanging off the front bumper.
Thank you so much. Did you have to buy the plug that goes from the MH to your Toad? Also regarding the dash monitoring system. You said you bought the Curt one. Didn't the Readybrute already come with the dash monitoring system? I really like the Rockjock and ordered it. As you and Captain stated, I like how it looks OEM.

Thank you guys. You are a big help.
 

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I was talking to a guy that using his JL as a toad and he was saying that he had to disconnect the battery so that the towing did not add to his odometer mileage. Does that sound right?
 

fredT

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I've been reading both yours and the Captains thread. Very informative. I was wondering why you decided to forgo using the blue ox tow bar and go with the brute tow bar system.
I looked at the Brute tow bar system and it comes with the dash monitoring system. Why is it that you bought the stop light switch? I think I am leaning on for sure going with the braking system. I also already have the blue ox tow system and not sure if I want to keep it or go with the Brute system.

Thank you, Jim
I decided after using the Brake Buddy supplemental brake system in my CRV that I wanted to try something else. The Ready Brute seemed to be the best option for braking since I was able to find one (lightly) used on Marketplace. I also used the Ready Brute breakaway brake. I have a diesel pusher which I could have used the air brake system with the Jeep, but it was far more expensive and more complicated than the Ready Brute. However that was more of a personal choice that anything else. I believe the air brake system is a better smoother system, but towing a Jeep you can hardly tell it’s back there, even when braking without brakes on the Toad. Captain had a great write up in this thread and I consulted with him on several items (see previous posts). Overall I have towed the Jeep over 5000 miles since install with no problems. One side note-make sure you have the tow bars fully extended before adjusting and installing the brake cable (I didn’t have one arm fully extended and ended up dragging the Jeep with brakes slightly applied for about 10 miles from storage facility to home). Heated the brakes and wheels but no damage done other than wearing down the brakes of the Jeep a little. I’d be glad to help you if you had any questions. (Like Captain helped me).
 

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I was talking to a guy that using his JL as a toad and he was saying that he had to disconnect the battery so that the towing did not add to his odometer mileage. Does that sound right?
No. Miles are not added when towing. At least not on a 2020 Wrangler. Wouldn’t add miles anyway since transmission is placed in park when towing with the transfer case placed in neutral.
 

flharleycop

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No. Miles are not added when towing. At least not on a 2020 Wrangler. Wouldn’t add miles anyway since transmission is placed in park when towing with the transfer case placed in neutral.
Thats what I thought but the guy seemed to know what he was talking about, he had several Jeeps that he towed over the years. I didn’t know so I just listened.
 

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I just read on another thread. I have a 2018 Sahara Unlimited with the blind spot and cross traffic sonar with LED lights. They installed a roadmaster wiring harness and it and his blind spot indicator stopped working. Any ideas?
 

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I did more research as I wanted to know how I could avoid having the JL's brake lights override the turn signal from the RV with the wiring harness I added. I learned (from etrailer.com and other members here) that the lights on the JL turn off after a few minutes and are not an issue.
@Captain Skip I don't quite understand this and need a little more explanation. I have everything working now except for this - eTrailer also told me I don't need a relay; what lights on the JL turn off after a few minutes? How do I do a final test to assure that the turn signals work when the brake pedal is depressed?
 
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Captain Skip

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I don't quite understand this and need a little more explanation. I have everything working now except for this - eTrailer also told me I don't need a relay; what lights on the JL turn off after a few minutes? How do I do a final test to assure that the turn signals work when the brake pedal is depressed?
The electrical system on the JL shuts down after a few minutes. What I did to try it was plug everything in and shut the JL off and waited a few minutes. Make sure you leave the driver’s door open - when you open it the electrical system starts up again. After a few minutes press the JL’s brake pedal and if you waited long enough the brake lights won’t come on. Have someone step on the RV brake pedal and signal light on the RV. When the JL brake and signal lights start showing reach in and press the JL brake pedal. The signal light should continue to work.
 
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Captain Skip

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In the first picture I see you have the brake cable go through the Rockjock. Did you drill a hole? It looks like you put some kind of space that is angled. Do you have any pictures where you installed the emergency breakaway switch?
Thank you
Here’s my breakaway switch.
98457628-6468-4F8D-952E-36B050C78D61.jpeg
 

fredT

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Here’s my breakaway switch.
98457628-6468-4F8D-952E-36B050C78D61.jpeg
F2D4A45F-5BD8-4CB1-BA3A-B935AF7F8BB4.jpeg


here is a photo of mine too. The main body of the brake is attached to the frame rail with self tapping screws, while I added an eye bolt to the bumper bracket to hold the end of the cable with a carabiner. I only had a couple hundred miles on the Jeep when this photo was snapped so everything was still clean.
 

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The electrical system on the JL shuts down after a few minutes. What I did to try it was plug everything in and shut the JL off and waited a few minutes. Make sure you leave the driver’s door open - when you open it the electrical system starts up again. After a few minutes press the JL’s brake pedal and if you waited long enough the brake lights won’t come on. Have someone step on the RV brake pedal and signal light on the RV. When the JL brake and signal lights start showing reach in and press the JL brake pedal. The signal light should continue to work.
Thank you! I'll try that in the morning.
 

treesmacker

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If you want to see how long it takes for the power to shut down turn your parking lights on and wait for them to go off.
OK - that works for brake lights and turn signals together. Now I'm not certain about the third brake light. It doesn't seem to be coming on.

Info... I'm using Demco Stay in Play Duo braking system. I've installed four diodes and wiring for the tail/brake/turn signals. It all seems to be working now except for the third brake light. I wonder if I should use something like what is shown in the link below to bring in yellow and green and use only the red out... or would a third brake light flasher do the same conversion?
 
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