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Towing advice / guidance - 1994 Diesel, stock

Tractionman

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The single and most dangerous thing about towing is novice towers not understanding what regs apply to them and getting the weight/load balance right, therefor putting themselves and others at risk.
One passed here yesterday, Barbarian towing a box trailer, trailer obviously overloaded as tyres well up into wheel arches and the r send so low it caught every bump.
Sometimes applies to not so novice towers too !
 
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essexpete

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Even with a heavy old 80 get the nose weight of trailer right and load trailer over axle/s. Balancing trailers by weight at extremes is dangerous and can set up snaking. Keep the speed sensible. I was a bit gun hoe years ago with an 80 and caravan. Came close to an accident. Never drove as fast again towing.
 

frank rabbets

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Much easier to reverse the trailer if it is wide and you can see it in your mirrors. I have a narrow trailer and by the time I see it it's at 45 degrees to the car. Four yards forward and one yard back!

I laboured on a farm for 2 years when I left school mid 60's. I was given the key to the tractor and told to get on with it. Saw the boss 8 hours later after wrecking half the farm.
 

Tractionman

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Just need to be aware of that wider trailer when going for a gap, - blows the theory out of the water, that if the vehicle goes through, the trailer will.
With narrow/shorter trailers, fix a verticle bright marker pole on one/both rear corners that can be seen in the mirrors, so trailer position is known, especially on reversing.

The longer the trailer, the slower it comes around, giving ample opportunity for correction.
 

Shayne

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Another shout for military trailers which are typically lamedrover width or less , took me forever to find a trailer tent that was narrower than my truck and fit my needs which included (to simplify) 16x8 zero offset wheels , 3"wheel spacers and 285/75 tyres making it overall about the same width as my 80 .
 
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alby79

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Personally, I'd just bite the bullet and buy a bumper from one of the manufactures you listed, rather than try fabricate a spindle for a spare wheel and reinforce the crappy bumper you have etc. Find something fit for purpose and perhaps cheaper in the long run.
 

Shayne

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Trailer balance is just that "balanced" with bias towards the front so it takes a bit of muscle to manually lift your hitch off the tow ball . Its not bout the trailer its about how the towing vehicle handles . An emergency stop with an unbalanced trailer is guaranteed to go pear shaped .

Should be noted here that I am assuming the op is seeking something along the lines of a 750kg braked trailer , which is a whole different ball game to towing say a car on a trailer .
 

Tractionman

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Nose weight, the downward force on the tow bar/ball needs to be considered too, which will have a manufacturers rating on its own, not to be exceeded.
This is not always compatible with maximum weight vehicle can tow and where loaded.
Any excess biased weight to the front is not balanced, and MAY exceed the nose weight.
 

Dave2000

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Unless you have a heavy goods driving licence there is nothing to learn about towing because the size of trailer your talking about just follows your truck , just keep your rear wheel away from the curb when turning right angles . Reversing with a trailer takes practise , some have the knack and some don't but you just have to remember that your steering the trailers hitch rather than your truck .

Trying to keep the mrs happy had me build this My overland camper trailer - [Leaving Land Cruiser Club]

Then one stupid bump on a trip that should never have happened and her anxiety goes through the roof when i hook it up :icon-rolleyes:

Just keep the weight limit down below 7.5 tons easily happens.....oh and don't fit a tachograph, if you do you will definitely need HGV 3. :)

I think the reverse towing is what most people struggle with and clipping the trailer tyres when making tight turns. Borrow some plastic cones and use open car parks to practice. I think everything else has been covered, one thing I would say though is tyres. Trailers can become used like caravans, standing for months at a time and then getting loaded up and hitched, a few miles and one or more tyres fail, the steel banding tends to take a standing 'shape', not normally a problem as the banding 'smooths out' when used. The rubber on the other hand looks good but simply fails. Experience dictates that trailer tyres often don't seem to be built to the same standards or regulations that motor vehicles are? The tyres are prone to cracking, and depending on weight trailers are not subjected to regular MOT's, so tyres are not seen on a regular basis.

EDIT: Just thought of this, manoeuvring in low range is easier with more control however, depending if you have the manual override to the centre differential or not, and of course the surface you are driving on, you may find the tyres and drivetrain under considerable load?

Good luck with this, the family will be happy bunnies as well I am sure.

Regards

Dave
 
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Shayne

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If you can lift it off the tow ball with effort but without giving yourself a hernia then the nose weight is fine or else cars wouldn't have boot space .

With regards to compact and light use of space and all round function i have never found for sale anything better than this


Bit of a faf to set up it seems to me but then my own set up only has 2 loose poles and both are connected at one end so you just click them in .
 
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Tractionman

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Nothing to do with boot space or any one persons abilities to lift off tow ball, its all manufacturers figures on safe weight limits for their particular products, which then entail legalities + injury claims to others if equipment fails based on assumptions or guess work.
This is all regardless of train weight, gross weight, unladen weight, axle weight, etc that applies.
Anything involving wrong weights/wrong distribution can induce snaking and jack knifing
Using your theory, if a body builder or the average bloke next door tried to lift the same trailer off the ball, one could easily lift and one couldnt, how is the right weight determined as per manufactures figures ? Nose weight gauges are made so towers can remain inside manufacturers figures and stay safe
There are plenty of tow jockey's to be seen every day that haven't got it right and are dangerous.
Stay safe.
 

Shayne

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Jeez pay a few grand for training and anybody physically fit enough can drive this

1664028632025.png

what your saying is don't buy a laptop unless you've had 7 years secretarial training !
 

Dave2000

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Jeez pay a few grand for training and anybody physically fit enough can drive this

View attachment 326495

what your saying is don't buy a laptop unless you've had 7 years secretarial training !

Whilst I have to agree with @Tractionman comments, which he would have got a good panning for on 'MUD'..... some self righteous ba.....gits on there, but hey.

Unfortunately Shayne your comments I cannot agree with, despite around 30 years experience with computers, I still managed to knock a full cup of coffee into the keyboard of my laptop earlier this week...pffff! :oops: :icon-biggrin:

Regards

Dave
 

Tractionman

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A good panning from MUD eh ? Should I be worried ? Pffff !
What, for stating what anyone towing should know in UK, in the interests of safety. Whats self righteous in that Dave, and based on what ?
If you are correct in your assumptions, and they are just that, on what MUD would do, then anyone on here or elsewhere who gives facts is guilty of being a self righteous ba.....git inc. you?
They have their own rules/regulations in US and elsewhere, so hardly a case for a 'panning', as in the main they would not necessarily be familiar with other countries regs.whereas any towers over here should be. They would just be showing their ignorance.
I'm not perfect, is anyone on here ? but I'm not a hook up and go geezer, and do like to ensure as far as possible, I'm safe and legal, whether driving an artic, wag n drag, or pulling a boys trailer to the tip.
It seems my 33 years group 1, which in turn gave me good experience for towing in general and what is required, was wasted. Bugger !! Back to reading MUD. Haha,
 
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Shayne

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I had no doubt in your qualification Tractionman what i'm pointing out is your pride in them probably makes you unaware that your coming across as pendantic and discouraging .

An admiral despairs when he sees kids with inflatable rafts but human nature is what it is , and some of those kids might grow to be full blown admiral's themselves .

If driving instructors were the best drivers in the world then there would be no driving instructors because they would all be making millions at formula one and the like .

Fear promotes caution and common sense , without it nobody would ever learn to drive , and a bog standard driving licence allows you to tow .

Driving instructors are the most cautious people on the roads for no other reason than they have so much invested in their ability to drive . The chancer going to the tip with an overloaded trailer wouldn't do it if his livelihood were at stake , he has nothing invested .

This thread only exists because the op wants to invest in it legally and sensibly . A canoe is not a battleship .
 

Tractionman

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Shane, If pointing out facts that people should be aware of without dismissing or ignoring them, thinking it is "fine" as with lifting your hitch, and is "pedantic and discouraging", then surely Yourself, Dave, or anyone else who contributes facts is guilty of same ?
Diversions with your considered similarities are not actual facts applying here, however well intentioned.
Your last sentence says it all, with the statement "legally and sensibly", which is what I've been getting at, rather than guessing or ignoring associated issues.
The OP (or anyone else) can then make up their own mind which route they want to go.
 

Tractionman

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Ive seen the one where the caravan cuts in front of the truck before clear, and gets turned over/wrecked. There is some footage elsewhere, that shows more to what happened, with the caravan jockey trying to overtake the truck with a keep left sign looming. Instead of not attempting to overtake, he goes for it, and instead of braking he tries to squeeze between the front of the truck and the sign. Wouldnt have made it even without the caravan.
When the damage is done, he blames the truck driver for not braking and letting him in !!
That last one, red pick up and t/a caravan, is as you rightly point out, clueless, no idea whatsoever at just low speed manouvering in a cul de sac, yet alone on the open road
That scenario and the accompanying clips you show, is the standard of all too many numbnuts we see, day in, day out.
Some results of speed and/or poor loading/weight distribution, enough to scare anyone contemplating towing.
I can't for the life of me understand people like that with no clue, thinking it's easy, especially with the biggest outfits money can buy. There's a lot of them about.
 
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