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I have a winnebago vista 35f and recently purchased a 2019 GMC Acadia AWD 3.6L as a toad vehicle.  Any recommendations on hardware for this setup?  I'm considering NSA RV Ready Brute Elite II for tow bar and brake system.  They offer a "complete kit", including base plate. Does anyone have experience with this setup?  

I'm a newbie to dinghy towing so any help is appreciated.

 

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mikemontg. Welcome to the Forum!

As for the NSA, never heard off it.

Most common is, Roadmaster, Blue Ox and Delco.

First you need to know the weight off the GMC, then how much can the Vista when fully loaded for travel, tow?  I did not know that a AWD can be towed 4 wheels down!  I have seen way to many WB Vistas tow too heavy a vehicle.

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Mike,

Welcome to the Forum.

Congratulations on the new tow vehicle. There are several good manufacturers of tow bars on the market. My self, I prefer the Blue Ox and M&G braking system. I have no experience with the NSA components. Here is the information from FMCA Towing Guide for the 2019 GMC

  GMC MODEL TRANSMISSION-AUTO-MANUAL--DRIVE CONFIGURATION--SPEED/DISTANCE LIMITS--APPROX CURB WEIGHT--TOTAL LENGTH

Acadia 3.6-liter1,2,4                       Yes N/A                  All-wheel drive                      65 mph/None                                4,207 lbs.                               193.6 in.

Acadia 3.6-liter1,2,4                       Yes N/A                 Front-wheel drive                 65 mph/None                                4,031 lbs.                               193.6 in.

Canyon1,3                                         Yes No                    Four-wheel drive                   None                                                 4,140 lbs.                                212.4 in.

Sierra 15001,3                                 Yes N/A                  Four-wheel drive                   None                                                  4,738 lbs.                               210.8 in.

Sierra 2500HD/3500HD1,3        Yes N/A                  Four-wheel drive                   None                                                 6,382 lbs.                                230.0 in.

Yukon1,3                                           Yes N/A                   Four-wheel drive                   None                                                 5,743 lbs.                                203.9 in.

Yukon XL1,3                                    Yes N/A                   Four-wheel drive                   None                                                 5,965 lbs.                                224.4 in.

¹ Use of a shield mounted in front of the vehicle grille could restrict airflow and cause damage to the transmission. ² Before flat towing, be sure the transmission fluid is at the proper level. The vehicle should be run at the beginning of each day and at each RV fuel stop for about five minutes. ³ Only vehicles that have a two-speed transfer case with a Neutral and a four-wheel-drive low setting can be towed four wheels down. Disconnect the negative battery cable and secure the nut and bolt. Cover the negative battery post with nonconductive material to prevent contact with the negative battery terminal. ⁴ Once the destination has been reached, start the engine and let it idle for more than three minutes before driving the vehicle

Good Luck and happy travels

Herman

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4,207 lbs is a lot of weight.  You probably have a 5,000 lb hitch, but that is no guarantee that you can tow 5,000 lbs. look on the rear axle it will have a stamp in kilos or pounds telling you what it's rated for.  That would include weight of coach in rear when loaded, so if you weigh your coach, when ready for travel, then subtract from axle stamp and it will give you what weight you can tow max! Nothing allowed for safety...

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I've had NSA's ReadyBrake for longer than I can remember (I'm thinking I've had it since sometime in the 80's).  They're a good company and have been around quite awhile.  If I had purchased everything (towbar and brake system) I'd have the system you're looking at.  After researching brake systems extensively, I went with the ReadyBrake because it's fully proportional, easy and quick to connect and disconnect, doesn't require any power and there's no "box'  to install/remove.  With an LED on my dash connected directly to the brake light switch in the towed, I know when the cable is pulling on the brakes on the towed.  It's met my requirements completely.  I've seen the NSA towbar and it looks very nice.  I've never heard anyone with any complaints about it.  I would hesitate to go with the system you're looking at.  Be sure to follow the instructions in your towed's owner's manual while towing it.

I've got the ReadyBrake, the brake-away system and the LED for the dash and wouldn't change if someone gave me an active breaking system which in fact they did (and it's still sitting in the box they gave it to me in - they had someone remove it from their towed when their camping days were over).  

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Moonwink, thanks. I looked it up and learned something new...not everyone has Air Brakes.

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1 hour ago, Moonwink said:

After researching brake systems extensively, I went with the ReadyBrake because it's fully proportional, easy and quick to connect and disconnect, doesn't require any power and there's no "box'  to install/remove.

Great research! All of those very reasons are extremely important to us as well. Its shocking how many systems are not fully proportional.

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I have used the NSA Ready Brake on my toad (03 Dodge Dakota Ext Cab ) for nine years. I also have the indicator lamp on the MH dash that shows when the brakes on the toad are applied.  It't a simple foolproof system.  The system is basically a surge brake that mechanically pulls a cable that is attached to the toad brake pedal .

Jim

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I figured most folks would be familiar with the way the ReadyBrake system worked but in case you're not, here's a link to a page with an animated gif about 1/2 way down the page that shows just how it works.  In short, the harder the towed pushed against the MH, the harder the ReadyBrake pulls on the cable attached to the towed's brake pedal.  Very simple and it works great for me.  (If your browser doesn't show the gif (like mine) try a different one.)

How Does The Ready Brake Work?

https://www.readybrake.com/store/p1/ReadyBrake™_Towed_Vehicle_Supplemental_Brake_System_(2"_Receiver_Style).html

When you brake while towing a vehicle behind an RV, stopping distance is increased due to the weight of the vehicle and it's momentum pushing against the RV.  The ReadyBrake uses this energy to compress a shock and spring inside it which allows an actuator arm to move forward, pulling down your towed vehicle brake pedal with an attached cable.  It takes a few hundred pounds of pressure to activate the ReadyBrake, so the towed vehicle will follow the RV down a steep mountain grade only applying brakes when you do.  After initial install, only an adjustable sling cable is used to connect or disconnect the ReadyBrake.  We recommend leaving about 2 inches of slack in the adjustable sling cable to keep the brake from activating while going over dips like at a gas station.  When the RV comes to a complete stop the ReadyBrake actuator arm stays in the forward position continuing to hold the towed vehicle brake pedal down until the RV moves forward a couple of inches to disengage it.  Use of the ReadyBrake can decrease stopping distance by upwards of 30%.

Edited by Moonwink

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Thanks everyone for your all of your research and experiences.  I'm going order the Ready Brute equipment.  I'll try to remember to provide some feedback on the forum after I've installed it.  

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