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UK Caravanning (uk.rec.caravanning) A forum for the discussion of caravanning undertaken by residents of the United Kingdom, whether in the UK or abroad. It encourages the interchange of views on the merits of models of caravan, makes of tow car, accessories, caravan sites, caravan clubs, and other related topics. The term caravan is to include trailer vans, motor caravans and trailer tents.

Tow ball spacers



 
 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old July 18th 04, 07:08 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
arthur norman
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 43
Default Tow ball spacers

Does any one know if a11/2" spacer is legal or safe? I have just bought a
new bailey van fitted withe a alko 2400 stabilizer but I have a bit of
trouble hitching up to my Landrover Freelander due to the spare wheel .A
1.5" Spacer would solve my problem. Thanks in advance for any advice.


Ads
  #2 (permalink)  
Old July 18th 04, 08:20 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Hitch Lock
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 692
Default Tow ball spacers

In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
arthur norman wrote:

Does any one know if a11/2" spacer is legal or safe? I have just
bought a new bailey van fitted withe a alko 2400 stabilizer but I
have a bit of trouble hitching up to my Landrover Freelander due to
the spare wheel .A
1.5" Spacer would solve my problem. Thanks in advance for any advice.


Assuming your vehicle is post-1998, it must be fitted with a towbar which
has been approved to EU standards - after having been fatigue tested with
certain loads applied.

Fitting spacers changes the way in which forces and torques from the caravan
hitch are applied to the towbar. If the towbar has been tested with a
similar spacer fitted, it's ok. If it hasn't, it would be illegal to fit the
spacer. You need to consult the towbar manufacturer or supplier.
--
Cheers,
Hitch Lock
______
Please reply to newsgroup. Reply address is invalid.


  #3 (permalink)  
Old July 18th 04, 08:35 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
John Allan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 26
Default Tow ball spacers

In article , "arthur norman"
wrote:

Does any one know if a11/2" spacer is legal or safe? I have just bought a
new bailey van fitted withe a alko 2400 stabilizer but I have a bit of
trouble hitching up to my Landrover Freelander due to the spare wheel .A
1.5" Spacer would solve my problem. Thanks in advance for any advice.


I cannot give you a legal reply but I have used these type of spacers in the
past, even a 2" one and found them perfectly safe in use. If they are still
available through caravan accessory shops then I suppose they would be
legal.

--
John Allan


  #4 (permalink)  
Old July 18th 04, 08:56 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
George Hendry
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 67
Default Tow ball spacers

In message , John
Allan writes
In article , "arthur norman"
wrote:

Does any one know if a11/2" spacer is legal or safe? I have just bought a
new bailey van fitted withe a alko 2400 stabilizer but I have a bit of
trouble hitching up to my Landrover Freelander due to the spare wheel .A
1.5" Spacer would solve my problem. Thanks in advance for any advice.


I cannot give you a legal reply but I have used these type of spacers in the
past, even a 2" one and found them perfectly safe in use. If they are still
available through caravan accessory shops then I suppose they would be
legal.


It depends on if your towbar is type approved. (If your vehicle is S reg
or later it must have a type approved bar fitted to be legal).

If it is then to keep the type approval valid the towbar must have been
tested with the spacer during the type approval procedure to be legal.
If it has not been so tested, then it is most definitely not legal with
resulting consequences should you have a problem.
--
George Hendry
  #5 (permalink)  
Old July 18th 04, 09:34 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Richard Murphy
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 39
Default Tow ball spacers

Doesn't this pose another interesting question?

I have my towbar, type approved fitted to an 02 vehicle.

I also have a bike carrier fitted - the mounting plate goes between the
towball and the bracket, and is a thick steel plate. And I also have one of
those bumper shield things, which is maybe 1/8 inch thick.

And of course the mounting plate for the sockets.

When you add 'em all up you get about 1/2" "Spacing"


"George Hendry" wrote in message
...
In message , John
Allan writes
In article , "arthur norman"
wrote:

Does any one know if a11/2" spacer is legal or safe? I have just bought

a
new bailey van fitted withe a alko 2400 stabilizer but I have a bit of
trouble hitching up to my Landrover Freelander due to the spare wheel

..A
1.5" Spacer would solve my problem. Thanks in advance for any advice.


I cannot give you a legal reply but I have used these type of spacers in

the
past, even a 2" one and found them perfectly safe in use. If they are

still
available through caravan accessory shops then I suppose they would be
legal.


It depends on if your towbar is type approved. (If your vehicle is S reg
or later it must have a type approved bar fitted to be legal).

If it is then to keep the type approval valid the towbar must have been
tested with the spacer during the type approval procedure to be legal.
If it has not been so tested, then it is most definitely not legal with
resulting consequences should you have a problem.
--
George Hendry



  #6 (permalink)  
Old July 19th 04, 09:28 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Hitch Lock
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 692
Default Tow ball spacers

In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
Paul wrote:

When you add 'em all up you get about 1/2" "Spacing"


"George Hendry" wrote in message


My Pendle bike rack bracket adds a 2" spacer. It is advertised as
usable when towing, comes with two longer bolts. If the weight of
the bikes plus the nose weight of the van do not exceed the downward
capacity of the bar does it matter? (Yes I know there is now an
extra leverage but I'm talking reality here, high tensile bolts etc)
The only thing is it does mean the nose weight of the van has to be
light which may upset the stability but in reality, for me it works
ok with two kids bikes fitted.

Paul


Moving the centre of the ball by 2" could make a significant difference to
the forces and moments applied to the towbar and to the vehicle mounting
points.

In reality, it ain't going to break unless the design was very marginal -
but it's still illegal if spacers were not included when the type approval
tests were done. As I said in an earlier post, you need to consult the
towbar manufacturer to find out what was allowed for in the test.

For example, my towbar allows the use of a dropper plate - but *not* a
raiser plate.

--
Cheers,
Hitch Lock
______
Please reply to newsgroup. Reply address is invalid.


  #7 (permalink)  
Old July 19th 04, 09:28 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Hitch Lock
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 692
Default Tow ball spacers

In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
Paul wrote:

When you add 'em all up you get about 1/2" "Spacing"


"George Hendry" wrote in message


My Pendle bike rack bracket adds a 2" spacer. It is advertised as
usable when towing, comes with two longer bolts. If the weight of
the bikes plus the nose weight of the van do not exceed the downward
capacity of the bar does it matter? (Yes I know there is now an
extra leverage but I'm talking reality here, high tensile bolts etc)
The only thing is it does mean the nose weight of the van has to be
light which may upset the stability but in reality, for me it works
ok with two kids bikes fitted.

Paul


Moving the centre of the ball by 2" could make a significant difference to
the forces and moments applied to the towbar and to the vehicle mounting
points.

In reality, it ain't going to break unless the design was very marginal -
but it's still illegal if spacers were not included when the type approval
tests were done. As I said in an earlier post, you need to consult the
towbar manufacturer to find out what was allowed for in the test.

For example, my towbar allows the use of a dropper plate - but *not* a
raiser plate.

--
Cheers,
Hitch Lock
______
Please reply to newsgroup. Reply address is invalid.


  #8 (permalink)  
Old July 19th 04, 10:01 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Paul
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 96
Default Tow ball spacers


When you add 'em all up you get about 1/2" "Spacing"


"George Hendry" wrote in message


My Pendle bike rack bracket adds a 2" spacer. It is advertised as usable
when towing, comes with two longer bolts. If the weight of the bikes plus
the nose weight of the van do not exceed the downward capacity of the bar
does it matter? (Yes I know there is now an extra leverage but I'm talking
reality here, high tensile bolts etc) The only thing is it does mean the
nose weight of the van has to be light which may upset the stability but in
reality, for me it works ok with two kids bikes fitted.

Paul




  #9 (permalink)  
Old July 19th 04, 10:01 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Paul
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 96
Default Tow ball spacers


When you add 'em all up you get about 1/2" "Spacing"


"George Hendry" wrote in message


My Pendle bike rack bracket adds a 2" spacer. It is advertised as usable
when towing, comes with two longer bolts. If the weight of the bikes plus
the nose weight of the van do not exceed the downward capacity of the bar
does it matter? (Yes I know there is now an extra leverage but I'm talking
reality here, high tensile bolts etc) The only thing is it does mean the
nose weight of the van has to be light which may upset the stability but in
reality, for me it works ok with two kids bikes fitted.

Paul




  #10 (permalink)  
Old July 19th 04, 06:59 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Tony Maris
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 161
Default Tow ball spacers

Hi Paul,

Pendle do a modified plate to attach to the towbar, which adds no more than
about 8mm. Personally, I would say the extra thickness DOES matter,
regardless of the Type Approval Regulations. We have had an 8.8 high
tensile 16mm bolt shear, on our Landrover Commercial...........

Regards

--
Tony M
Towbars & Trailers
Chesterfield
Specialists in Towing Equipment
NTTA Council Member
http://www.towitall.co.uk
QSA accredited for Towbars and Trailers



"Paul" wrote in message
...

My Pendle bike rack bracket adds a 2" spacer. It is advertised as usable
when towing, comes with two longer bolts. If the weight of the bikes plus
the nose weight of the van do not exceed the downward capacity of the bar
does it matter? (Yes I know there is now an extra leverage but I'm

talking
reality here, high tensile bolts etc) The only thing is it does mean the
nose weight of the van has to be light which may upset the stability but

in
reality, for me it works ok with two kids bikes fitted.

Paul






 



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