Towball Locks

Submitted: Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 00:03
ThreadID: 136207 Views:1665 Replies:9 FollowUps:31
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So, what's the best gadget or lock for a towball to stop others obtaining a freebie?

Thank you in advance

Buying my first van 1st March

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Reply By: Gronk - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 08:00

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 08:00
Take it off and stow it at home or in the rear of the 4wd. Takes all of 10 secs to remove it !
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 10:30

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 10:30
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"Taking it off" also has the advantage of not clobbering your shins (or mine!!!) when walking behind the vehicle.

Removing it has another advantage..... if left constantly in place, some will rust in the housing making them virtually impossible to remove if you ever want to.
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Allan

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Follow Up By: Keith B2 - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 12:59

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 12:59
I can vouch for the rusting in problem. Mine was rusted in when I bought the vehicle second hand. No amount of heat, WD40 or wacks with a 10 pound hammer will get it out. The tow bar is part of the chassis (200 Series) so I'm stuck with it. Maybe a big tree and a snatch strap?
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Follow Up By: RMD - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 13:17

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 13:17
Is this the tow ball OR the tow tongue which people are asking or replying to. Taking the towball off doesn't remove the tow tongue which shins hit.

Keith B2
Don't use WD40 it isn't much good, use diesel fuel and soak it regularly for a while.
I think you will find it will come loose especially if the tow system has a hitch on it. Won't happen overnight but it will happen.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 13:18

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 13:18
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Yes Keith, My son's Hilux had a tongue rusted in when he bought it. He removed the towbar, applied heat with an oxy torch and used a workshop 20t hydraulic press but was unable to budge it.

My Troopy also had one rusted in. Despite forceful efforts, I could not extract it. I finally used an angle grinder to remove the protruding sections of the hollow square tongue then spent several hours with a hacksaw cutting twice longitudinally through the entrapped section and removing the section between the cuts with a cold chisel which allowed the remaining section to be collapsed enough to free. Not something I want to doing again!

I am certain any efforts with a "tree and a snatch strap" would be futile in the above cases.
Besides, if it did come free, can you imagine that object hurtling toward you on the end of a snatch strap?
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Allan

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Follow Up By: Alloy c/t - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 18:13

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 18:13
Alan B , ' clobbering shins ' ?? You'd have a head ache from my Spare tyre before the Towball tongue , FJ cruiser spare tyre sticks out just over 1.5 inches further than the towbar tongue , no need to ever 'remove' ....
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 18:20

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 18:20
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Well thanks for that Alloy. Your towball tongue is at least one that I need not worry about harming my shins, out of approx. 5 million in Australia. lol
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Batt's - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 22:00

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 22:00
Using a tree is how we got my brothers 80 ser towing hitch out some yrs ago soaked in WD40 and a couple of gentle pulls using a wire sling from memory. It just falls out onto the ground.
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Follow Up By: The Bantam - Tuesday, Feb 13, 2018 at 23:00

Tuesday, Feb 13, 2018 at 23:00
Yeh this rusting in, is a real thing

I once baught a second hand tow bar.

It took repeated heating with the oxy flogging with a sledge and finally the 20 tonne press finished the job

No way known it would have come out by snatching it with a tree.

one benifit of being rusted in ...... they don't rattle
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Tuesday, Feb 13, 2018 at 23:05

Tuesday, Feb 13, 2018 at 23:05
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Another benefit too Bantam.... if someone pinches the pin, you can still tow!
Cheers
Allan

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Reply By: Ron A - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 08:10

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 08:10
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Reply By: Member - Bigfish - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 11:36

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 11:36
In Qld it is illegal to have a tow ball and tongue left in situ if not being used at the time. Plenty have been booked in this lovely police state...
AnswerID: 616623

Follow Up By: Iza B - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 14:40

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 14:40
If you find one in a carpark, do them a good deed to save them a fine and take the tongue out... Make sure you leave it on their bonnet so they can see it before they drive off.

Iza
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 16:03

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 16:03
I have had a long hard look & cant find anything that says that it is illegal to leave the tow hitch in the bar.
Iza B, you must like living dangerously if you are removing people’s tow hitches & leaving them on their bonnets. It would be a good way to find out if they do fit “where the sun don’t shine”!

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Follow Up By: 9900Eagle - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 17:51

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 17:51
The only time in QLD it has to be removed when not towing, is when it covers the number plate.

Isa, I don't think I would be pulling anyones tongue or balls if I was you, because that can lead to someone getting hurt
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Follow Up By: Kenell - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 17:57

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 17:57
Perhaps the reference from Iza B relates to those who have towballs that obstruct regn plates when there is nothing being towed. That is pretty much universal I think. I also could not not find any other referral to such a law. When you think about it the practicality of that position doesn't stand up but they are predominantly xxxx drinkers up there so maybe Iza B is correct.
Kenell
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Follow Up By: Member - Bigfish - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 18:02

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 18:02
If you look at the Dept of Transport site it states ..
"Towbars, including tongues must not protrude dangerously or have sharp corners"

. Police have booked drivers (been reported on local news and newspapers) for people having the tow hitch sticking out beyond the car when not in use
(ie..not towing). I know myself and a few neighbours now take the tow hitch out to avoid the attention of cops because of reading about the crackdown. Fishing rod holders on top of bullbars that were not being used were also attracting a fine..once again a dangerous obtrusion above the bullbar. My towbar is about 5mm behind the verticle line of the spare tyre holder. However I have upgraded to a longer tongue and different hitch so it now is about 100mm pass the cars length. I really dont care if people take it out or not. I,m just relaying the news that we had in Cairns about towbars and bullbars. aLSO A FEW PEOPLE ON FACEBOOK WERE WHINGING ABOUT IT AS WELL...SO IT MUST BE 100% FACTUAL.
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Follow Up By: Iza B - Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 16:45

Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 16:45
Just storytelling an incident from where I saw someone remove a lot of bark from both shins when Numpty left a 200 Series with a tongue sticking out about 400mm from the line of the rear bumper. I thought it was the very model of restraint to just leave the tongue and ball on the bonnet rather than leaving it in the back seat, for example. I would have loved to have seen the 200 Series owner come back to discuss the situation with the injured party. Would have had proof positive answer to the question of whether the thing would fit "Where the sun don't shine".

I am sure that the dints and scratches on the bonnet would have polished out.

I have had a suggestion from a lawyer mate of mine (I know he is a lawyer but I know him from school) who has suggested he could be interested in taking the injury claim to court if someone hits their shins on a towbar tongue sticking out into the walkway.

Iza
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Follow Up By: Gramps - Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 17:04

Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 17:04
Maybe the real Numpty was the fool not watching where he was walking LOL . Bet he'll be more careful next time.

As for the lawyer, just bloody ambulance chasers with no morals or ethics. The $ rules.

Regards
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Follow Up By: Kenell - Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 17:09

Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 17:09
Steady on Gramps, lawyers have their place. Its just that no one has dug it yet.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 17:12

Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 17:12
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Now hang on a bit Gramps...... You don't expect a car to have a couple of feet of steel projecting out the back when you step between cars when crossing the road. Your'e more likely got your eyes on approaching traffic.

Read this. It is S.A. but much the same applies everywhere.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: 9900Eagle - Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 18:19

Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 18:19
Bigfish, I was just replying to your original post that stated Towballs and tongues in Qld have to be removed when nothing is attached. That is not correct as I stated unless the tongue or ball covers obstructs the numberplate.

Yes it is correct about the protruding dangerously but I will let the bush lawyers work out what is dangerous.

Iza. As for both shins, it beats me how he didn't learn from the first shin hit, must have turned around so he could walk back into it and equal up the pain.

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Reply By: Bob Y. - Qld - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 13:31

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 13:31
Is this the sort of thing you're chasing?



From what I read this morning it will "protect" your van while coupled to the tow vehicle.

Bob

Seen it all, Done it all.
Can't remember most of it.

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AnswerID: 616627

Follow Up By: 9900Eagle - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 17:40

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 17:40
Bob, just something on the side. The day before Christmas I stopped to help an owner driver that had his fridge pan sitting on it's nose in a gully. He had parked up for a few hours kip and on departure all 20 metres of it, off came the pan. Some a-hole had opened the turntable jaws.

All his electrics and air were ripped out, both mudguards ripped off, damage to the pan, 24t in the pan to be delivered and no heavy cranes running because of Xmas.

He wished he had a jaw open alarm fitted and would get one when the mess was sorted.

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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 21:35

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 21:35
Finally, some-one who knows what I'm talking about, thank you very much.

Maybe I should have re-worded it better, but thats exactly what I was asking for

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Follow Up By: Gronk - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 22:49

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 22:49
Umm, you were asking for what ??? Maybe you should have reworded it better, but it was nothing like you asked for in the 1st place ??
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Reply By: Frank P (NSW) - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 14:04

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 14:04
OBW,

Replies so far suggest some doubt as to your question.

Do you want to protect the towball itself from being knocked off?

Or the tongue and towball assembly?

Or the van from being uncoupled and towed away?

Cheers
AnswerID: 616632

Follow Up By: b1b - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 14:52

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 14:52
Gday Frank - i'm guessing that van being uncoupled from tow vehicle and towed away or simply being being towed away when unattended with no vehicle attached.
bb
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 14:58

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 14:58
Hi bb,

Yes, that's most likely, I suppose, but the OP's question didn't really say it. With a bit of luck, within the spread of answers there will be one that gives the Outback Wanderers the info they seek.
Cheers
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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 21:41

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 21:41
What b1b said, I thought I made it plain, to stop others from stealing my van when I was out touring

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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 21:43

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 21:43
Thanks Frank, I should have worded it more simpler, to stop thieves hooking up my van whilst I was away touring

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Follow Up By: Gronk - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 22:58

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 22:58
Umm, you could have worded it more simpler.....you said the towball, not the van ??

It does and can happen, but very unlikely, make sure your insurance is up to date and if still worried, buy a very heavy chain and a BIG padlock and put it around one wheel..
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Reply By: Shaker - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 19:58

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 19:58
It would Ben good if then OP got back to the thread & confirmed what in fact he is trying to protect.
If it is only the tow ball, then he will never sleep when gets his caravan.

"Jesus loves you"
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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 21:39

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 21:39
Sorry about that, lightning hit a sub-station, internet down for 12 hours

I want a device to attatch to the caravans coupling to stop thieves from hooking up and driving away with my van

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Follow Up By: Dean K3 - Wednesday, Feb 07, 2018 at 17:13

Wednesday, Feb 07, 2018 at 17:13
Think out side the square abit every trailer lock for the ball I have seen can be removed one way or another - the alternative is a wheelclamp/ lock as used by the local rangers to prevent a illegally parked vehicle from being driven away.

anybody who witnesses a caravan being rigged up and lifted up by a crane onto a falt bed would be very attentive to the situation and hopefully recording or reportig to police
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Reply By: Batt's - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 22:16

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 22:16
The lock over the tow ball and van coupling is a good idea but you still need to lock the pin if you have a removable tow bar hitch like the hayman reese type. I drilled my pin out and fitted a padlock in place of the clip and stuck some insulation tape around the key hole area to help reduce some of the dust getting in..
AnswerID: 616640

Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 23:47

Saturday, Feb 03, 2018 at 23:47
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Batt's, padlocks are a waste of time since bolt cutters became available.

Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Batt's - Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 23:19

Sunday, Feb 04, 2018 at 23:19
Probably but it would slow them down a bit especially hardened steel. Sometimes a visual deterrent is enough as well.
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Reply By: Malcom M - Monday, Feb 05, 2018 at 06:25

Monday, Feb 05, 2018 at 06:25
Has to be part of a larger solution.
A hitch lock simply means the thief puts a shackle through the chains and loops them over the tow ball. Your rig can still be easily and quickly dragged away.
AnswerID: 616674

Reply By: Marmite - Monday, Feb 19, 2018 at 12:05

Monday, Feb 19, 2018 at 12:05
What did you decide on? I'm looking too.
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