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GN trailer breakaway device

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  • GN trailer breakaway device

    The little cable that connects the plastic box of my breakaway device to the ?? (part of my question!) is broken, so I am educating myself on how the breakaway works.

    The plastic box of the breakaway device is attached to the GN post. One end of the cable is attached to the plastic box. Where is the correct place to attach the other end of the cable? I have been attaching it to the same metal bars that the safety chains attach to. Is that correct?

    So if my hitch fails, the safety chains keep the trailer attached to the truck. What is supposed to happen then?

    Then breakaway stops the trailer? Or is the breakway only supposed to work if the safety chains fail?

    Does anyone have a personal experience?
    Rest in peace Claudius, we will miss you.

  • #2
    I think you should also have a battery ( in that black box) that powers the emergency brakes ( what the cable goes to) Where it hooks to I am not sure. I have to confess I never even look at that stuff , my husband always does that.

    If your trailer comes unhitched it should then pull that cable which will activate the brakes. I hate to see a trailer held just by safety chains that was going at any speed. I don't know if it works like that for GN, but bumper pulls do.


    • #3
      Sounds right, you should have the cable attached to the chain loops by itself ie not hooked to the safety chains, the cable hooks up separately


      • #4
        We snap our breakaway to a piece of chain that goes thru our extra spare tires under the tool box in the bed of the truck. (The chain is padlocked to the truck to keep the tires from wandering off.) Call me a worry wart but I don't trust the goose neck hitch in the bed of the truck to not stay attached should that trailer want to really come loose for some reason. And if the breakaway is hooked to it, and the whole thing comes apart, it doesn't do me much good. So we hook it to something independent of the hitch.


        • #5
          Originally posted by ToTheNines View Post
          The little cable that connects the plastic box of my breakaway device to the ?? (part of my question!) is broken, so I am educating myself on how the breakaway works.

          The plastic box of the breakaway device is attached to the GN post. One end of the cable is attached to the plastic box. Where is the correct place to attach the other end of the cable? I have been attaching it to the same metal bars that the safety chains attach to. Is that correct?

          So if my hitch fails, the safety chains keep the trailer attached to the truck. What is supposed to happen then?

          Then breakaway stops the trailer? Or is the breakway only supposed to work if the safety chains fail?

          Does anyone have a personal experience?
          The way it should work is:

          The cable should be hooked to one of the same rings you hook the chains to.

          The end of the cable that goes to the trailer should go to a small switch. The cable should hook to a sort of a pin in the bottom of that switch so that when the cable is forcibly pulled, the pin pulls out and that activates the switch. The switch is in the wiring between the little battery under the goose neck, if it is a goose neck, and when this pin is pulled the switch is closed and current feeds from the battery to the brakes, stopping the trailer.

          When everything gets back to normal, you reinsert the pin and the current is no longer locking the brakes.

          It is a safety item that should be checked every time you hook up.

          The battery should be checked occasionally to be sure that it is charged.

          I have looked at some of the newer trailers and they have a little green light that says that the battery is charged.

          My only concern would be how your rings for the chains are mounted. Some I have seen are questionable.

          Those on my new 2012 F350 are the heaviest I have ever seen.

          The point being that if the chains do not break but instead jerk the rings out of the frame, the breakaway brake will not work because the ring to which it is attached got pulled loose.

          If the hitch fails, the chains are supposed to keep the trailer from going off the road and crashing, injuring or killing your horse.

          At that stage of the game, you regular trailer brakes will still be hooked to the truck and you should use normal braking to stop the mess.

          The breakaway brakes or for when the chains breake and the truck is going one way and the trailer is going on its own way.

          I have never had the experience.

          However it takes very little imagination to know that the trailer is going to be sunfishing to the extent that the chains allow. In other words, if you have 12" of slack in the chains, it is likely that the gooseneck part of the hitch will move back and forth 12" or so and that will affect your steering.

          However you have to have some slack in the chains to allow for sharp turns.

          You probably will have a rough ride while stopping, but anything is better than having the trailer go its own way over ditches and through the woods.

          Every time you hook up, double check that latch on the hitch and once a year or so when your truck is in for service, have the mechanic check that the nut on the bottom of the ball is tight and you will never have that experience.

          I have pulled horse trailers since 1949 and the only time I ever came close, and this was pure luck for me, was about 3 years or so ago when I forgot to put the pin back in place on a B&W hitch.

          Very stupid.

          The Ford hitch makes that mistake impossible. Just in time for old feeble minds.


          • #6
            Nice sharing. Thanks for sharing such a knowledge. It will be helpful
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