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Old 08-04-2005, 08:40 AM   #1
RMccord
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M.O.C. #3727
One final Prodigy controller Question

For those using a prodigy controller I under stand you can disconnect it when towing in reverse for 3 or 5 minutes. This is probably to prevent problems.
One question I had is in reverse is this where the internal magnet wiring might get messed up and cause problems? Shouldn't but I doubt the mfgr's worry to much about such stuff the longer I read about this industry.
I am going to use 8 and B2 for my settings.

For Duramx owners using this controller with the Allison tranny.
How has your success been cresting a climb and letting the tow haul mode control your descent.
I will probably crest and get the unit to about 45-50 depending on the expected grade and let the tranny make the calls on the descent hopefully only needing the brakes very occasionally. I also will probably put the controller in B3 so the trailer leads the truck alot more in the descent saving the truck brakes for a big emergency.
Also how do you modify your settings in rain?

We will be in the ROckies but not crossing some of the more difficult roads but we will be on I-70 from Denver to Moab and that has some good climbs and 160 from Durango east and then north to Denver. I have driven both several years ago and I don't remember much climbing at all on 160 east from Durango but there are some nice climbs on I-70.

Leaving tomorrow afternoon.

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Old 08-04-2005, 09:43 AM   #2
Bill and Ann
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I can remember a few years ago when we were in Az. and going down the big grade heading for Sedona. Those who have been out that way know the road I mean. The rear of the coach is almost touching the front of the truck. Anyway, the sign said use a lower gear. It was a 7 percent grade. I touched the brake, the truck automatically downshifted and held that gear. I touched the brake again and the truck started to downshift all the way to the bottom of the hill. I suppose if I hadn't touched the gas to get going again at the bottom the truck would have probably kept downshifting to a stop. Hope that helps answer your question.
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Old 08-04-2005, 10:15 AM   #3
bholt9b
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You might check your map for Wolf Creek Pass (elev. 10850) east of Pagosa Springs on US160 east of Durango. I have driven it both ways several times. It's is quite a pull. Good roads with a couple of 20 mph curves on the west side with passing lanes. Last year there was construction on the east side with some one way traffic and I would doubt if they have it completed yet. Don't let your speed build up to much going down the east side as you might have to come to a stop about half way down.

bholt9b
2003 Chevy D/A
2000 3280RL
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Old 08-04-2005, 10:45 AM   #4
padredw
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[The signs at Pagosa Springs warned of possible "45 minute delay" in crossing Wolf Creek Pass. This was one reason we turned south there and came out through Chama, NM and on to Santa Fe. That was just a week ago.
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Old 08-04-2005, 01:17 PM   #5
rlwhit
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I have the Duramx/Ally combo. Have learned two ways for downhill travel. Checked with a mech at a Chev dealer (who owns the same unit as I) told me I was OK doing either. Starting downhill in tow/haul mode gently touch the brake. It will downshift. About 2500 rpm @ 60mph. You can step on the brake again and it will hit red line. He told me it was made to take it. I do not like to do that to an engine. So after the first downshift would take it out of tow/haul. Now you can brake all you want. However remember that tranny has a memory. It still may down shift again. The other way is to push in the button until you get the overdrive lockout light. Not in tow/haul and manually put it in another gear. Someone on the forum told us to go down a hill at the speed you went up. Sure saves on brakes and fear factor.
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Old 08-04-2005, 02:20 PM   #6
DavesDmax
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by RMccord

For those using a prodigy controller I under stand you can disconnect it when towing in reverse for 3 or 5 minutes. This is probably to prevent problems.
One question I had is in reverse is this where the internal magnet wiring might get messed up and cause problems? Shouldn't but I doubt the mfgr's worry to much about such stuff the longer I read about this industry.
I am going to use 8 and B2 for my settings.

For Duramx owners using this controller with the Allison tranny.
How has your success been cresting a climb and letting the tow haul mode control your descent.
I will probably crest and get the unit to about 45-50 depending on the expected grade and let the tranny make the calls on the descent hopefully only needing the brakes very occasionally. I also will probably put the controller in B3 so the trailer leads the truck alot more in the descent saving the truck brakes for a big emergency.
Also how do you modify your settings in rain?

We will be in the ROckies but not crossing some of the more difficult roads but we will be on I-70 from Denver to Moab and that has some good climbs and 160 from Durango east and then north to Denver. I have driven both several years ago and I don't remember much climbing at all on 160 east from Durango but there are some nice climbs on I-70.
Leaving tomorrow afternoon.
I pull with the prodigy and a Dmax/Ally CC long bed.

As far as your question about reverse? I don't really understand why you would want to, but you don't have to disconnect it at all. I never have. But if you have to, it certainly won't hurt the controller.

As far as grade braking in the mountains, I can only relay my experiences crossing the eastern ones, (I did the Rockies in a car, doesn't count). The grade braking feature works as advertised. If the hill is steep, then I put the tranny into T/H mode and let it take care of the rest. Remember, you are just have to push the "I believe" button when I tell you that the real red-line on a Dmax is 4800 RPM's when in grade braking mode. The computer won't let you granade the engine and unless you've modified the governor setpoint, it you keep you foot mashed down going up a hill, the engine will not go higher than 3200 RPM's. From 3200-4800 RPM's is where the Engine braking is allowed to operate only. This will not hurt your engine.

When I went from Ohio to Hilton Head SC last year, we towed from Ohio to Virgina in the Rain. I never changed the settings on the Prodigy at all. If you set it correctly the first time and you are used to how the rig performs, then you will not even worry about whether the trailer is braking appropriately or not. When I towed our TT with our Grand Cherokee, I found the boost settings kind of annoying rather than helping. I like smooth seamless braking and the boost setting where just too unpredictable for me.
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Old 08-04-2005, 03:59 PM   #7
Montana_4221
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I agree with DavesDmax I have never disconnected for reverse. I figure I need trailer brakes when backing too. I guess they work in reverse,I've never given it much thought. And I have never adjusted the controller since the initial setup and it always worked great pulling the Savoy. I suppose it will need fine tuning when the new Montana gets here, but I'm looking forward to similar results pulling the Montana. I've heard others talk about better controllers but the Prodigy is good for the money.
Good luck and happy camping
Michael
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Old 08-05-2005, 02:43 PM   #8
sreigle
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Bob, I'm not sure whether you are saying disconnect while you back up then don't reconnect for 3 to 5 minutes or if you are saying you will be backing for 3 to 5 minutes (a very long ways to back up). We used to have the Prodigy. It works the brakes in reverse, too. One of the few controllers to do that. I never disconnected it for any reason until ready to unhitch.

I also used Boost 3 but did so because of weight. All the boost does is to generate additional braking power upon INITIAL application of the brakes, to help you get started braking. It has nothing to do with the timing of brake application. At least that was my understanding. I used 3 because our fifth weighed over 14k pounds. The manual says to base the boost setting on the relationship of weight of TV to weight of trailer.

Also, I'd recommend you test the brakes at lower settings than 8, then settle on the one you are satisfied with. That might be 8 or something less. I used 8 on mine for a year, then had the brakes checked. The dealer's service manager, a guy I trust, told me I had the brakes cranked down too much and to back it off. We had stress cracks in the brake linings from the heat and also the magnets were severely worn, almost to the point where they would not allow the brakes to release after application. I experimented a bit and settled for 6.8. That seemed to stop just as well on our setup. Your setting may differ, of course.

We've towed I70 over the Rockies in Colorado but from the other direction, which includes that 2x mile grade up Vail pass and to the Eisenhower tunnel as well as all the other grades. Our FW weighs 14,360 lbs. I think you'll find your truck does very well.

Have a nice trip and drive safe.
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Old 08-05-2005, 03:11 PM   #9
William H. Collier
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According to the quick reference guide the "boost" and "Hold" feature can be disabled for backing by holding the boost button down for 5 seconds. Is says this will disable it for a period of 3 minutes.
Bill
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Old 08-06-2005, 01:04 PM   #10
sreigle
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Now I understand. Thanks, Bill!
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Old 08-08-2005, 12:10 PM   #11
ols1932
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by RMccord

Also how do you modify your settings in rain?
I don't change my settings whether dry or wet.
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