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Old 25 June 2013, 09:38   #1
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Launching towball

Have been looking and pondering. Is there a temporary towball fitting that one can use on any car not fitted with a towbar but merely for launch and recovery, not towing further than 100 yds for craft up to 5.5 ish meters?
Would mean we don't need the guzzlers with us when launching.
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Old 25 June 2013, 10:59   #2
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Have been looking and pondering. Is there a temporary towball fitting that one can use on any car not fitted with a towbar but merely for launch and recovery, not towing further than 100 yds for craft up to 5.5 ish meters?
Would mean we don't need the guzzlers with us when launching.
So the ball end goes on the boat trailer. What does the other end attach to?
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Old 25 June 2013, 11:09   #3
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Towing eye? Most modern cars have one??
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Old 25 June 2013, 11:23   #4
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So the ball end goes on the boat trailer. What does the other end attach to?
That's the thing, don't know. Goes around the spare wheel well? Under the spare wheel? Strapping eye? The thing is this, it needs to be collapsible, temporary, failsafe and noninvasive.
Example, for one reason or another ended up taking Mercedes 240 miles to Cornwall where the SR4 is now ( on her trailer). Merc doesn't have a towbar. Neither does my 1972 Rover 2000 or missy's MGB. Disco does, Freelander does and funnily XJ6 does. But the cars with bars guzzle and sometimes don't fit the plan.
So there we were without a towbar and wanting to launch, not tow, just soft launch off an easy slip in easy water.
Short of Heath Robinson straps across rear seats and a bouncing drawbar I'm looking for a sensible temporary and safe system of doing this.
Ideas?
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Old 25 June 2013, 11:25   #5
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Towing eye? Most modern cars have one??
Indeed most do. Is there a system in existence that can mate a towing eye to a hitch?
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Old 25 June 2013, 11:39   #6
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How about getting a local engineer to make you a screw in mount for a towball that fits into your tow point on the Merc ? You could then bolt a standard towball to it.
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Old 25 June 2013, 11:44   #7
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Are all tow points standard thread? Because if yes then we're cooking.
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Old 25 June 2013, 11:45   #8
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A couple of caravan websites have links to them but none of the links appear to work.
They were also raised on here in what looks like a discussion in 2004.
Issue seems to be that the towing eye is often left handed thread and is not a uniform thread across different car manufacturers.
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Old 25 June 2013, 11:46   #9
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I've considered this before. I reckon one of these screwed into a screw-in towing eye would work:
50mm 500KG Threaded Towball 19mm Diameter for Quad, Tractor, Bumper, 4X4 | eBay
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Old 25 June 2013, 11:49   #10
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Indeed most do. Is there a system in existence that can mate a towing eye to a hitch?
I doubt you'll find a commercially available system as the liability implications would be huge! I think you're into a DIY solution.

I can't see that mounting a towball from a single point would ever be rigid enough. If it's a braked trailer, couldn't you use the jockey wheel to support the drawbar and use a rope through the towing eye of the car?
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