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Old 01 March 2019, 10:54   #1
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single handed trailer / towbar hitching tips

So this year I am keeping my boat ashore at Davis boatyard, Poole rather than on the drive at home.

The gravel storage area and weight of the boat will make it impossible to walk the trailer up to the tow bar and hitch up and I need to figure out how best to reverse the car up and attach hitch up to launch.

Anyone used those magnetic sticks with the ball on the end or any other device they recommend? I mostly launch by myself and have already cracked the bumper on my brand new passat once when the trailer rolled too far forward and I couldn't stop it in time!
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Old 01 March 2019, 11:27   #2
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Reverse camera
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Old 01 March 2019, 12:04   #3
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Second that.....reverse camera. You can buy them really cheaply, if you didn't want to go to the trouble of permanently wiring it in you could always just make it temporary and use the cigarette lighter as a power source. May even be worth checking with VW, if it's a new passat you may find the wiring loom is ready for a reversing camera?
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Old 01 March 2019, 14:06   #4
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If itís an estate, one rear seat down, tailgate up and you can eye ball the hitch.
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Old 01 March 2019, 16:25   #5
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You got a winch on the trailer if so take off the strap on the boat and wrap round tow bar pull trailer with winch to tow bar make sure you tie boat up though just in case you could have a bit of plywood cut round the tow bar to protect bumper if needed.
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Old 01 March 2019, 17:23   #6
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front tow bar so much better
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Old 01 March 2019, 17:40   #7
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If boat has a dedicated parking spot on gravel you can set a couple of markers that you can line the car to when you collect and again when dropping trailer.
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Old 02 March 2019, 12:26   #8
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Originally Posted by 69cmw View Post
Reverse camera
3rd that.

With my 2007 Toyota truck I installed it my self. All the wireing was all ready installed at the factory by default even if you didnít order it that way.
Well worth the extra investment.
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Old 02 March 2019, 12:57   #9
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I use the reverse camera to get as close as I can, and then just get out and look a couple of times as needed to reverse the last tiny distance bit by bit.

Was much easier with my previous Defender with a large drop hitch plate, and then I could just gently reverse until the trailer just touched the drop plate, and I'd be good. But like you, having swapped vehicles now, I don't want to dent the rear bumper!
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Old 02 March 2019, 14:01   #10
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I guess I’m lucky. My camera catches the hitch and just wide enough to see horizon for seeing cars and kids The cheap aftermarket license plate ones can be adjusted down.
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Old 02 March 2019, 15:19   #11
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front tow bar so much better


But a bit tricky to drive along the motorway like that! Iím not sure the last six inches are necessarily that much easier on the front anyway unless you can see the hitch.
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Old 10 March 2019, 13:32   #12
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But a bit tricky to drive along the motorway like that! Iím not sure the last six inches are necessarily that much easier on the front anyway unless you can see the hitch.
Or you get a top spec Defender(?). press the "auto hitch" button & let the car get on with it...

.....meanwhile back in the other 99% of the towing world.....

You can get balls on magnetic based poles to give you vision of the hitch & balls' relative positions.

I just use the bow of the boat & the rear wiper hub to line mine up. Its accurate enough to get a "dink" from hitch & ball before the bumper gets involved....
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Old 10 March 2019, 15:34   #13
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A mirrow above the rear door directed to the tow bar does the same trick and was used before the cameras were invented ..
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