Towbar Tongue

Just wondering if there is any reason why I should not invert the tongue on my tow hitch ie: instead of coming out and turning down then out it would be put in up the other way so as to come out then up then out again. Need the extra height to line up with caravan hitch. Caravan hitch 550mm from ground when level, vehicle only 460mm when tongue in normal, when turned upside down 550mm from ground to match van. Hope this all makes sense.
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Reply By: kiwi patrol - Sunday, Apr 15, 2012 at 20:10

Sunday, Apr 15, 2012 at 20:10
hi, ive seen tons of people flip the tounge over, and towing serious weight with it. I doubt it makes any difference at all (which way up). The biggest thing to watch out for would be clearance when u drop your tailgate, or open rear doors of the vehicle
AnswerID: 483214

Reply By: Bigfish - Sunday, Apr 15, 2012 at 20:19

Sunday, Apr 15, 2012 at 20:19
Been doing the same with my troopy for years. No issues whatsoever.
Actually I have a spare one already rigged up with another tow hitch just in case I dod need to lower the towing trailer.
AnswerID: 483218

Reply By: Member - Shane D (QLD) - Sunday, Apr 15, 2012 at 20:41

Sunday, Apr 15, 2012 at 20:41
Just check with manufacture, I did read somewhere that some hitches have a different down force rating if tow ball tongue is inverted.

AnswerID: 483219

Follow Up By: Member - Wamuranman - Sunday, Apr 15, 2012 at 20:46

Sunday, Apr 15, 2012 at 20:46
Thats correct - read the manufacturer's plate on the hitch.
Mine definately says NOT to invert it.
Its a genuine Toyota hitch fitted by dealer when new.
FollowupID: 758469

Reply By: Thinkin - Monday, Apr 16, 2012 at 06:00

Monday, Apr 16, 2012 at 06:00
Hello, what type of caravan have you got with a 550mm high tow hitch?

Check under "coupling height" of the (national caravan and recreational towing guide).

It states that( trailers with ATM of up to 3.5 tonnes must comply with Australian Standard 4177-3 and when the coupling and ball are connected to the laden towing vehicle the height to the centre of the towball above the ground shall measure between 350mm and 460mm).

Might pay to check with your van manufacturer if they have got coupling height right.
regards Alpero
AnswerID: 483247

Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Monday, Apr 16, 2012 at 14:54

Monday, Apr 16, 2012 at 14:54
That regulatoin only applies to 50mm balls.

OKA196 Motorhome
FollowupID: 758528

Follow Up By: Thinkin - Monday, Apr 16, 2012 at 22:02

Monday, Apr 16, 2012 at 22:02
Hello Peter,

"That regulation only applies to 50mm balls."

I see I omitted the size of the towball diameter as stated in the "National Caravan and recreational towing guide" only because it dose not mention towball diameter.

Are you suggesting a hitch point could for a towed caravan can be 1000mm from ground level if it dose not have a 50mm towbball. ( that dosen't sound too logical)

Could you inform us where this regulation is spelled out.

I think caravan manufacturers have a bit to answer for if they can't build their hitch points to within towing guides as specified in ( National caravan and receational towing guide)
It's easy to understand that the higher the hitch point is above the ground level and more importantly above the rear axle height of any vehicle that when under full power the inertia of the heavy towed trailer or caravan can result in lessoning of steering control of the towing vehicle.

Regards alpero

FollowupID: 758579

Reply By: Shelto S1 - Monday, Apr 16, 2012 at 08:08

Monday, Apr 16, 2012 at 08:08
Thanks all for the info. I will check towbar manufacturers specs or purchase specific hitch. As for the van it is a full offroad Trakmaster sitting on tandem axle with 16" rims and when standing free and level is 550mm high at the hitch. Will check with manufacturer as to regulations.
Have towed this van for over 5000ks with tongue in normal position and has handled extremely well on all types of roads, very very happy.
AnswerID: 483258

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