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jbmaine

how snug should the draw bar be?

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Hi all,

 I bought a new vehicle for towing ( and everything else) last fall. It had the towing package and hitch already on it. Today was the first time I put the draw bar ( the part with the ball ) in the hitch. I was surprised that it was such a loose fit. After securing it with the pin I could still wiggle the ball a little. Enough that you can hear it rattle a bit going down the road if you hit a bump ( with out towing anything ). Is this normal or an issue ? On my old vehicle the draw bar was such a tight fit I had to tap it in with a rubber mallet. 

                                                      Thanks

                                                              Jim

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Here's a few options ~ 

https://www.etrailer.com/dept-pg-Hitch_Anti~Rattle.aspx

 

I've not used any of them. 

 

A-Jay

 

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8 minutes ago, A-Jay said:

Here's a few options ~ 

https://www.etrailer.com/dept-pg-Hitch_Anti~Rattle.aspx

 

I've not used any of them. 

 

A-Jay

 

Thanks A-Jay, the rattle doesn't bother me so much as I want to know if the loose fit is normal. There is about 1/16 clearance between the draw bar and the square tube.

                                                            Jim

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I know what you mean - 

I am really not a fan of anything rattling on anything I'm driving.

Makes me a little neurotic. 

:stupid:

A-Jay

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36 minutes ago, A-Jay said:

I know what you mean - 

I am really not a fan of anything rattling on anything I'm driving.

Makes me a little neurotic. 

:stupid:

A-Jay

Ya, hearing a rattle while driving makes me cringe. In this case duct tape around the draw bar will fix it, but I'm worried all the stress will be on the pin.

                              Jim

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I just ran into this. For some reason the new hitches and draw bars do not fit like they used to. I have had at least 5 trucks over the years I  have towed with and my latest truck (a Toyota Tacoma TRD Sport) has the exact same issue. Apparently the hitch manufacturers are making them with more clearance. Mine was so bad the trailer could move around as I took off or slowed down. I thought I forgot to hitch it properly the first time I pulled a trailer.

My solution was to order this.

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01IO2N44E/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

 71enYHPGTeL._SL1500_.jpg

 

I have not used it yet but it was well made and not too expensive at only $14.99.  I will suggest you use some anti corrosion material like Never Seize on the threads so they do not mess up

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2 hours ago, A-Jay said:

Here's a few options ~ 

https://www.etrailer.com/dept-pg-Hitch_Anti~Rattle.aspx

 

I've not used any of them. 

 

A-Jay

 

Thanks for posting this. Just ordered an anti rattle hitch pin. My hitch makes a terrible racket every time I hit a bump in the road.

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Here's a simple fix.  Electrical tape.  A few turns of tape on your hitch will help fill the gap between the receiver and the hitch.  It doesn't need to be a snug fit.  Just enough to make sure the assembly isn't metal on metal.  Apply it at the end of the hitch and around the area of the hitch that is just inside the receiver.

 

But, and this is one of my pet peeves, when you are not towing, remove the hitch from the receiver.  A hitch is a great shin whacker and very painful.  Think of others, and remove the hitch.

 

 

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48 minutes ago, fishnkamp said:

I just ran into this. For some reason the new hitches and draw bars do not fit like they used to. I have had at least 5 trucks over the years I  have towed with and my latest truck (a Toyota Tacoma TRD Sport) has the exact same issue. Apparently the hitch manufacturers are making them with more clearance. Mine was so bad the trailer could move around as I took off or slowed down. I thought I forgot to hitch it properly the first time I pulled a trailer.

My solution was to order this.

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01IO2N44E/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

 71enYHPGTeL._SL1500_.jpg

 

I have not used it yet but it was well made and not too expensive at only $14.99.  I will suggest you use some anti corrosion material like Never Seize on the threads so they do not mess up

Interesting solution...do you have to tighten it up every time you put the hitch in?

 

That'd get old fast.

26 minutes ago, Fishing Rhino said:

But, and this is one of my pet peeves, when you are not towing, remove the hitch from the receiver.  A hitch is a great shin whacker and very painful.  Think of others, and remove the hitch.

It doesn't qualify as a pet peeve for me, but it's just something I've always done.  I towed campers for decades, and leaving that hitch hanging on the back of a truck was just a complete PITA.

 

In addition to whacking my shin, or the shins of others, that great big grease covered ball is a great way to ruin a pair of pants just by touching it as I load something in the back of the vehicle.

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Thanks for the replies everyone. It sounds like a loose fit is not uncommon, and while annoying, not really dangerous.

I'll look into tape and maybe the hitch tightner. As far as wacking my shins, been there done that.

                                            Jim 

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1 hour ago, Fishing Rhino said:

when you are not towing, remove the hitch from the receiver.  

 

This is the law in some states. 

 

I wouldn't be overly concerned with the noise. The small amount of play won't break the hitch pin.

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Simply welded mine in place, stopped the noise & anyone from stealing it.

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The Plano lure box dividers you have no use for make good reciever shims.

Tom

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I use wood shims hammered in from the backside; works like a charm. 

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On 4/8/2018 at 6:38 PM, Fishing Rhino said:

Here's a simple fix.  Electrical tape.  A few turns of tape on your hitch will help fill the gap between the receiver and the hitch.  It doesn't need to be a snug fit.  Just enough to make sure the assembly isn't metal on metal.  Apply it at the end of the hitch and around the area of the hitch that is just inside the receiver.

 

But, and this is one of my pet peeves, when you are not towing, remove the hitch from the receiver.  A hitch is a great shin whacker and very painful.  Think of others, and remove the hitch.

 

 

Yes, please DO remove the hitch when not in use.  My brother (whom I haven't a great history with anyway) backed his truck into a space so the hitch stuck out over the sidewalk and I banged the living Shinola out of my shin.  It's a good thing no women or children were present as what came out of my mouth cannot be repeated.

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Just leave it in the receiver about a year without taking it out.  The rust will probably tighten it up.

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On 4/8/2018 at 3:17 PM, jbmaine said:

Hi all,

 I bought a new vehicle for towing ( and everything else) last fall. It had the towing package and hitch already on it. Today was the first time I put the draw bar ( the part with the ball ) in the hitch. I was surprised that it was such a loose fit. After securing it with the pin I could still wiggle the ball a little. Enough that you can hear it rattle a bit going down the road if you hit a bump ( with out towing anything ). Is this normal or an issue ? On my old vehicle the draw bar was such a tight fit I had to tap it in with a rubber mallet. 

                                                      Thanks

                                                              Jim

Hi Jim!

 

I think this is normal. Every rig I've owned in the last however many years had a hitch and in every case you could wiggle the bar around inside the tube. Not by much, probably 1/16 inch as you mentioned. 

 

 

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