1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Flat Towing

Discussion in '40- & 55-Series Tech' started by kdink79, Aug 1, 2005.

  1. kdink79

    kdink79

    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    After using the search tool, I plan on flat towing my 40.
    Are there different types of tow bars and if so what type works best with the 40. Do not have the room or money for a trailer at this time.
     
  2. CruisinGA

    CruisinGA

    Messages:
    6,164
    Likes Received:
    13
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    Location:
    Georgia Tech
    Get a solid tow bar, none of the foldup jobbies.

    Smittybuilt sells a very solid one I have been using for 3 years.

    If you have not corrected your caster with 4" of lift, you will need to with shims between the leafs and spring perches.

    Magnetic lights are a good idea- I got a good set at Northern tool.

    bungies on the steering wheel do not do a damn thing.

    If you are running a cruiser t-case, you do not need to remove the rear driveshaft. Check fluid levels, put everything in neutral, and unlock the hubs.

    Mine has towed fine for me at all speeds up to 90 mph.

    I've flat towed my 40 all over GA, NC, and TN. Never had a problem. I can cut neighborhood 90 degree corners without issue.
     
  3. Cdaniel

    Cdaniel Undocumented Mechanic-Not CDAN SILVER Star

    Messages:
    2,580
    Likes Received:
    39
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2004
    Location:
    AZ
    Be aware, unless you have modified your shift gate for the T-case, your front drive shaft becomes directly linked to the the rear driveshaft as soon as you move the lever out of 2H. T-case neutral only disconnects the T-case output shaft from the idler gear. If you run this way be sure the front drive shaft is up to the task.

    It can be real ugly if it comes out at high speed. :doh:
     
  4. dgangle

    dgangle total rice SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,002
    Likes Received:
    13
    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2004
    Location:
    Heart of Dixie
    Excellent information. You speak from experience. I'm not sure about that 90MPH thing. Was alcohol involved? :)
     
  5. John Smith

    John Smith In the garage

    Messages:
    4,187
    Media:
    6
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    233
    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    What you plan on flat towing your cruiser with is also very important. You want something big and heavy(think suburban with load in rear). Trust me, I have been behind someone flat towing and watched the 40 push the tow vehicle's ass end during a mild sweeping turn on the highway.

    Lets just say the sensation the driver felt was not fun. He no longer flat tows and only pulls his on a trailer now.

    While it can be done without incident, things can go wrong fast if you need to stop suddenly.

    Be careful.
     
  6. woody

    woody unhelpful spotter Staff Member Admin

    Messages:
    10,744
    Media:
    317
    Albums:
    8
    Likes Received:
    2,365
    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2002
    Location:
    Toquerville UT
    excellent point....neutral in the stock position is actually 4wd neutral, meaning you've connected the front and rear drivelines together, and only disengaged them from the tranny.

    You want to remove your shifter boot, and look down that opening...you'll see a piece of steel there that gates your t-case action into an L shape. Turn this L into a square opening (hacksaw will do it, or a blue wrench), providing you with both 2wd low range AND 2wd neutral. Use 2WD-N for flat towing purposes, then only your rear axle, d-shaft, and rear bearing on the t-case are turning.

    I flat towed for a few years, only shattered one t-case when something inside the rig fell against the shifter...IMO, pull the rear shaft and be done with it. Towed behind a 1995 3.0 V6 x-cab minitruck, never one issue, but I was VERY defensive. Had it setup so I could u-turn from a standstill, and only had one time where it "pushed" me thru a turn...the 2" of ice and snow on that corner may have effected that...lol
     
  7. spike6901

    spike6901

    Messages:
    167
    Likes Received:
    1
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    Location:
    Houston
    I have had the same questions in my mind. I have a Jeep Liberty with the tow package rated for 5k lbs but have been seriously considering the "safety" of flat towing the 40. I have one of those Drawtite towbars that is rated for 5k lbs as well. If I got a tandem axle trailer, I think it would push the weight above what the Liberty is rated for.

    Do you think that the short wheel base of the Liberty is going to make it downright dangerous to flat tow with?
     
  8. risingsunfj40

    risingsunfj40

    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2005
    Location:
    San Diego
    I keep a tow bar on my 40 for emergency towing. We just towed it a few weekends ago with no problems, and that was through LA traffic. It definatley feels a little different then a trailer, but cruising at 55 in the slow lane it felt fine. But if you already have alignment issue's I wouldn't recoment flat towing ;)
     
  9. dgangle

    dgangle total rice SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,002
    Likes Received:
    13
    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2004
    Location:
    Heart of Dixie
    I have flat towed my 40 locally during the rebuild for paint, exhaust, Rino lining, etc which were done at various places around town. I used my 2000 Tahoe with good success. I used my wife's 5.0L V8 Exloder one time and it was doable, but added a considerably higher pucker factor than the Tahoe. Bigger the tow vehicle the better.

    Also I learned the hard way that having the tow bar horizontal worked better as the 40 wasn't being lifted or pulled into the ground.

    The point made about increased positive caster is important. I'd hate to flat tow a SOA that someone justified in their own mind that a cut and turn of the steering knuckles (and subsequent negative caster) was unnecessary. YMMV.
     
  10. kdink79

    kdink79

    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    Tow V

    I plan on using a Suburban as my tow rig. Have a tub bumber. Do I have to change that?
     
  11. kdink79

    kdink79

    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    Lockers

    Will the rear lockers effect the towing?
     
  12. Poser

    Poser Oh...Durka Durka Durka. s-Moderator Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    20,305
    Media:
    17
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    620
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2003
    Location:
    MN


    Should not be an issue...


    Good luck!


    -Steve
     
  13. Capt. Jim

    Capt. Jim

    Messages:
    2,194
    Likes Received:
    1,705
    Joined:
    May 1, 2005
    Location:
    West Palm Beach, Florida
    Before I bought my trailer, I wired a trailer wiring harness into the brake/running lights on one of my buggies. Ran it up to the front bumper and just plugged it into my tow vehicle when I flat towed.
     
  14. mallred

    mallred

    Messages:
    616
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2004
    I have this also I just spliced into the plug that goes the the brake and taillights, on the back side of the plug and unplug it when I tow this allows you to just have the rear lights, a freind just got another plug and plugs it into the tow bar wire when towing, with it plugged into the fronts it does weird things with the lights. I used it yesterday when I had to pick up a truck and did not have anyone to drive me there. I just threw the tow bar in and off I went. Very handy for quick trips.