towing with a tow bar

Discussion in 'Tow & Trailer' started by Kain, Jan 17, 2019.

  1. Kain

    Kain 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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  2. red EOD

    red EOD 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Tow rig MUST be at least the same weight, heavier is much better so it can control the towed vehicle. There's no braking from the towed vehicle or weight transfer to the tow rig either.

    Doesn't save much wear on the towed vehicle and need to either disconnect the rear driveshaft from the axle or pull the axle shafts unless you consider the tcase disposable (doesn't get lubed correctly).

    It's a step above using a tow strap with a buddy in the towed vehicle, but that's it.
     
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  3. Kain

    Kain 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    was told you could tow a k5 like this ,just put tcase in neutral(np205) guess they were wrong....
     
  4. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    One big problem with this is a lot of states (and provinces) have laws regarding trailer brakes. It's common to have trailer brakes required at anything above 3500 lbs. Clearly you're not going to be able to hook up any sort of braking system, and a vehicle towed with a tow bar is considered a trailer. I bought a K5 in Texas many years ago. It was stripped down a fair bit, and I did tow it 2500 miles back to BC with no problems. However, as soon as I crossed into Canada I needed a permit and had to pull into the highway scale. They saw the Blazer I was towing weighed over 3500 lbs and ended my trip for me 15 miles from home.

    I could have been pulled over anywhere along the way and ended up with the same...
     
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  5. Kain

    Kain 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    so get a trailer
     
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  6. Blazooki

    Blazooki Five-O Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    yes..or buy a vw baja and flat tow that
     
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  7. ktmoutfront

    ktmoutfront My calendar is here. Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    My dad towed his grand wagoneer all over the country that way. Added a surge brake to the hitch and put small hydraulic quick disconnects to the rear brakes.
     
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  8. red EOD

    red EOD 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Sometimes get lucky and sometimes not. Question is would you rather :
    A. Gamble it, go with the towbar and neutral. About 50/50 odds.
    B. Towbar and hope the towed vehicle behaves once the rear driveshaft is disconnected. (I nearly jacknifed doing this before, pushed off the road another)
    C. Either bum a trailer or rent one for about the same price as the tow bar and not have to worry about it.
     
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  9. JoshHefnerX

    JoshHefnerX 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    I know w/ federal law 2 or more axles or 3500+ you're supposed to have brakes on at least one of the axles - at least that's with trailers. K5's are quite a bit heavier than that, and you'd want a substantial tow rig w/ good brakes to stop one of those on top of your tow vehicle.
     
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  10. imiceman44

    imiceman44 Hoarder extraordinaire Premium Member

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    I did tow my k5 with the crew cab for a couple of years that way.
    It was a manual and I put it in neutral in both the transmission and tcase.
    Towed only in California since I know in Nevada you're required to have brakes on towed vehicles .
    It was fine but a tow dolly with brakes is better and safer.
    Trailer is best and in my opinion having a reliable truck and driving it like you paid for it is better than towing.
     
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  11. longbedder

    longbedder 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    I've flat-towed other trucks with a 3/4-ton Suburban (including a few K5s). They all did fine. I also used that same tow bar to tow another Suburban from California to Wisconsin. It was an uneventful trip, both mechanically and with Johnny Law. To answer your sub-question, I attached the towbar brackets with one bolt through the frame at the bumper mount and had a 1/4" backing plate for each of the other bolts.

    It was more risk than a trailer, but I didn't have a trailer then and I knowingly accepted that risk.

    If you're towing your K5 for wheeling and could get significant trail damage, that's a whole nuther question. If it won't roll, it won't tow on a bar.
     
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