I just purchased an aluminum boat on a trailer with drum surge brakes. Winter forces me to put the boat away with a 2500lb 35hp 4x4 diesel mower by pulling up my driveway, turning a tight turn at the top, running downhill a little and then backing into the garage.
When backing, the boat just feels a little heaver than I expected and I find myself wondering if the surge brakes are really "free backing" and just how free is free backing.
There is no solenoid but there is a manual cap to turn to lockout the brakes but after stopping on the downhill run the whole mess is compressed enough that the lockout won't engage. There is also a little key I can insert but I would have to insert it before starting downhill for the same reason. I really haven't had the nerve to try it without the brakes enabled and don't think I will.
Is there any way other than cramming my outboard into the garage wall, setting the brake and jacking the trailer to spin a tire backwards to determine if and how much free backing it really is?