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O/T Question on Towing Hitch Setup

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by GBatch_25, Mar 24, 2011.

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  1. GBatch_25

    GBatch_25 Active Member

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    I have a Yukon XL that I'll occasionally use to tow a small storage trailer, no more than 3-4,000 lbs. After measuring things, I went out and bought the correct height Reese draw bar and a 2" ball. They are sold separately and so I have to attach the ball to the draw bar using the very large hex nut. I don't have a box wrench large enough to fit the nut nor do I have a vise. I am thinking I can borrow a wrench, slide the draw bar into the hitch and secure it with the pin and then tighten the nut.

    Here are my questions:

    1. Sound like it would work?

    2. Do I worry about torquing the nut?

    3. Should I use loc-tite on the threads?

    Any and all useful advice appreciated.

    Gene Batchelar
    Wheaton, IL
     
  2. Pull & Mark

    Pull & Mark Well-Known Member

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    Gene all you need is a 18-24 inch plumbers wrench. Like the pipefitters have with the jaw that goes up and down on the top of the wrench. Worked great for me and I used the hitch on the truch to keep it from moving around. Mine can with a very large split ring washer to keep it tight. Good Luck and Break-em all. Jeff
     
  3. GBatch_25

    GBatch_25 Active Member

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    Thx Jeff:
    Forgot to mention I did get the split ring washer.

    Gene Batchelar
    Wheaton, IL
     
  4. BL350

    BL350 TS Member

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    Dear Gene,
    In the Walmart Trailer Hitch section, you will find very reasonably priced long pattern box wrenchs that fit your hitch ball. (about 2 ft. long) Use one of these wrench's and be sure and use the lock washer under the nut, not the hitch ball. And as several have said...Tighten the nut with the hitch installed on the vehicle. I would not use Loctite thread locker on the hitch ball threads. I would put two drops of oil on the threads before assembly. And be sure and apply as much torque as you can to the wrench. If you do use Loctite thread locker, later disassembly will require copious amounts of heat and a three foot plus length wrench. AND BE SURE THAT the ball and the trailer coupler are the same size.....otherwise death and destruction may occur!
    Happy Trailering....Jet Boat Bill
     
  5. GBatch_25

    GBatch_25 Active Member

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    Bill:
    I'll check out WalMart tomorrow.
    I was kind of iffy on the LocTite. Thx for your thoughts.

    Gene Batchelar
    Wheaton, IL
     
  6. Harv Shell

    Harv Shell TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    Jeff has it right Gene, pipe wrench until the lock washer is flat. You don't even have to hold the ball end, it will hardly move. I just did one today, FYI. Harv
     
  7. GBatch_25

    GBatch_25 Active Member

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    Thx, Harv. I'm on it tomorrow.
    Gene
     
  8. Bruce Specht

    Bruce Specht Well-Known Member

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    Gene, tighten with a pipe wrench till the split washer starts to flatten. In the hitch is fine.
     
  9. shooterIII

    shooterIII Member

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    Tighten as described, also a large crescent wrench will work, but be sure it is big enough and use anti-seize grease on the threads or you will have an awful time getting the nut off after a couple years. DO NOT USE LOCK TITE.
     
  10. Patrick Haskins

    Patrick Haskins Member

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    Gene,
    After doing the above and using the hitch to tow a time or two, make sure you retighten the nut. They do come loose.
    Pat Haskins
     
  11. primed

    primed Well-Known Member

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    Or you can pick up a 1 1/2 inch socket with 1/2" drive from Snap-On for about $40.00 or from Tools and More for about $6.00 and use a ratchet, breaker bar or impact wrench.

    Bob
     
  12. Hawk46

    Hawk46 TS Member

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    Should go without saying, but before you do your cranking be sure your slide bar has the proper amount of drop to put your trailer at level when resting on the ball. It will tow much better and more safely.

    Dave
     
  13. GBatch_25

    GBatch_25 Active Member

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    Thanks folks. I knew I'd get the correct advice here.
    Gene
     
  14. Chango2

    Chango2 Active Member

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    Some of the newer drawbars (where the ball attaches) are milled in a hex pattern so the ball won't turn even when tightened by one wrench on the lower nut. Kinda slick. I generally keep my trusty dedicated box wrench (sold at auto parts stores) to tighten hitch balls. I have maybe three hitches for different purposes...utility trailer to travel trailer. Make sure there is adequate tongue weight so you don't get trailer sway. Also, make sure the hitch ball is of appropriate quality; some of the import hitch balls are really junky and not rated so highly. Get a good old USA made hitch ball.
     
  15. noknock1

    noknock1 Active Member

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    I have 3 different hitchs with one being a shank with trunnion head for a reese strait-line weight distribution system. I use plubmers wrench after it is set and adjusted. put the hitch into the receiver and crank it down. Pull it a few times and put some miles on it. Re-tighten, then I take a pen tip sharpie and color approx. three groves of the threads immediately/ up against the underneath side of the nut.

    Next time I put on the hitches, etc, I check to see sharpie marks and know with out putting a wrench to the nut that it is still tight.
     
  16. slic lee

    slic lee Active Member

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    Go to a U-Haul with everything, they sell everything and have equipment to tighten ball to hitch, $5 will do it, Lee who does that
     
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