Grant MacLaren's
1981 18' Century Resorter

Part of the purchase "deal" included a new, custom-built "Trailmaster" trailer for the boat. The trailer was manufactured in Mishawaka, Indiana (1033 East 5th Street Mishawaka, IN 46544 574.259.0329) -- but had not been finished when I arrived to pick up the boat. The seller arranged for me to stay another day; the trailer was delivered a "day late" -- but did not properly fit the boat's hull. The boat and trailer were towed back to the trailer plant, and trailer was modified to perfectly fit the boat's hull.


It's a long story, but I was present when my trailer was in the paint booth the day before it was delivered:

The guide-ons will be removed (sometimes)when the boat is put in the garage. To make them easier to remove, we'll probably replace the bolts with "ball-release" pins (given to me by John S.)
John couldn't find the pins. I've replaced originals with SS bolts and "nyloc" nuts. I've been thinking about shortening the steel uprights, and using Schedule 40 PVC pipe over the shortened uprights when launching and retrieving. (That's the way Jerry does it with his Gar Woods.) Or, next winter ('12-'13) may make carpet-padded wood ones.





Designed and fabricated these "hold down"

Electrical connections on my trailer
There is a "flat five" plug on the trailer. When I towed with my '03 Liberty, I used a round converter plug. After towing the boat home in early June, 2012, and folding the tongue, the butt connector on the white (ground) wire pulled loose. I repaired it as shown in photos. Using tie wraps, I also added strain relief so to avoid this failure the rest of this year. When making the wiring repair I discovered the trailer's blue wire is connected to the surge brake "master cylinder, but don't know its function.

In June of 2012, I sold the Liberty and purchased a 1010 Toyota RAV4 with V-6 and AWD. A Toyota wiring harness was installed, and an "aftermarket" trailer hitch.

(6/13/12) Mark, Picked up a vee belt (for altenator) yesterday, repaired the "too short" ground wire, and read a bit about the blue brake wire. Mine is connected to the surge brake "master cylinder". Phoned the trailer mfg. this a.m. He says power to the trailer's blue wire disengages the brakes. (Later I applied 12v to the wire and heard a "click.")
He said the blue wire should disengage the surge brakes when the backup lights are on. This has never worked on my rig. (I use the mechanical override, with my own "keeper" required. It's a pain.)
Also read where there can be a "pulse protector" on the blue wire -- preventing mis-application of electric brakes when hazard lights are on. (end)




The ball hitch slides into the (white) tongue, actuating the master cylinder. IF the "backup wire" (blue according to the trailer maker, purple according to the U.S. standard) is hot, i.e., if the backup lights are on -- the master cylinder is inactive. (Trailer mfg. says wire colors are not standard between Japanese and USA.)

If none of this works (it doesn't), the trailer maker provides a metal gizmo to fit in slot, preventing the sliding of the hitch in tongue. Problem is, the gizmo falls out, hence my wooden contraption held in place with bungee cords. This is a REAL PAIN, because sometimes, at rest, the hitch has not been fully extended from the tube. and gizmo won't go into slot. I have to chock trailer wheels, "pull" a bit with the car, then insert gizmo (and remember to remove wood, before towing, so brakes will function thereafter.)

Toyota (maker of my 2010 RAV4 tow car) harness does not provide a "backup" wire, so I must add one in future. And, of course, a new coupling plug on car.
I've already decided to add a terminal box on the trailer, and a better cable between car and trailer's terminal box. (The wire from the trailer maker is housed in a slotted tube, hopefully held closed with tie wraps.)



6/19/12 -- phoned trailer maker and actuator maker, but have not found anyone who knows amp draw of "backup solenoid." This from maker of actuator:

On 6/19/12, I measured the following:

Brown wire(s) = all running lights = 0.9 amps
Yellow = left brake light = 0.2 amps
Green = right brake light = 0.2 amps
Blue = "no brakes" "backup" solenoid = 0.7 amps
Both yellow and green = 0.4 amps

Now I wonder how Toyota handles the fuses for the "4 conductor" connection -- i.e., all except the blue wire.
(Mark answered: "Toyota had us add 1 fuse & upgrade 1 fuse when we did the install. (best of my memory)"

I've ordered one of these (72 inches long):
Wesbar Wiring - 20016 - 5-Flat electrical wiring connector

"The 5 way flat trailer connector is most commonly found on boat trailers that have hydraulic brakes. The fifth wire is hooked up to the reverse light circuit on the vehicle which then sends a signal to the hydraulic coupler to disengage the trailer brakes.

"Fifth wire added for surge brake lockout circuit which is becoming more common on today's newer boat trailers.

"5-Flat wiring Connector will still work with most 4-pole trailer connectors."

Misc. thoughts:
With today's developments in bluetooth, keyless entry, etc., one wonders why a complex wiring connection is needed (other than maybe a power conductor and a ground.)
My current boat trailer has surge brakes, so the "blue brake wire" is not needed. And, my hydraulic de-coupler is not actuated electrically so the purple wire is not used, either. (I wish it was needed. I do have the three centered rear marker lights and a few "side markers" not shown here.)




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Another pretty good web page by Grant MacLaren