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Old 12-08-2013, 12:11 PM   #1
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Blue Ox Safety Cables For Base Plates

I got a Blue Ox base plate for a new toad. I was surprised to see it had cables to attach to the base plate and the toad frame. Is this now common to all base plate mfgs.?

I have never seen or put cables from the tow vehicle's hitch to it's frame.

Does anyone put them on? Are the base plates made so cheaply that they expect them to fail and need to provide a backup?
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Old 12-08-2013, 12:15 PM   #2
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My base plate came with those in 2009. I don't know why they started to do this but liked the idea of having them on.
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Old 12-08-2013, 12:16 PM   #3
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My blue ox came with them. I put them on I also used grade 8 bolts. Better safe then sorry.

When I was in LD in Fl last year a guy came in with a car that was used as a toad had pulled the front end off the car base plate and all was gone. He had safety cables so it stayed with his coach.
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Old 12-08-2013, 12:20 PM   #4
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It's not that the baseplates are made cheaply, it's the toad's frame that is not that strong up front.

The front end is designed to crumple in an accident so the cables are a back up in case of mounting point failure.
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Old 12-08-2013, 03:40 PM   #5
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Cables on base plates to vehicle frame??

Seriously? Mine came with them. As far as I am concerned it's over the top liability protection due to the legal profession lawsuits blaming accidents on anything and everything.
If the 8 bolts fall off the baseplate in the first place I would be worried about more than this.
Ever seen a trailer hitch backed up with these? No difference at all.
Perhaps they should be installed on vehicle axles just in case they fall off.
Maybe I should tie down my 5th wheel hitch to the truck frame, to the trailer itself etc etc etc.
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Old 12-08-2013, 03:53 PM   #6
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My baseplate install also came with safety cables and YES I use them !!

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Old 12-08-2013, 06:57 PM   #7
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For a while Blue Ox was stating in their instructions that they should be used, but they were not including them. In fact, when I had a custom hitch made at Blue Ox for our 2004 Hyundai and installed by the factory, but they didn't use the any chains or cables. Later base plates came with them in the package. Unfortunately, when a great many installers get the package, the safety cables somehow get "lost" during the installation.

As far as them not being on the motor home hitch, they should be there too. We had a good friend that lost a toad on the way down from Alaska when the bolted on part of the MH hitch broke the MH frame and separated. He found out about the problem when his toad passed him on a downhill run and went into the woods.

Since I do my own maintenance on our rig, I take special care to do a complete and thorough inspection of the frame mounted hitch each maintenance cycle. Anyone else check that area?
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Old 12-08-2013, 07:17 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pigman1 View Post
Since I do my own maintenance on our rig, I take special care to do a complete and thorough inspection of the frame mounted hitch each maintenance cycle. Anyone else check that area?
I do and also check baseplate and rock guard!
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Old 12-08-2013, 07:35 PM   #9
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I recall extra cables when I had a Blue Ox base plate put on my Smart Car. Now that is like wearing a belt and braces and carrying a rope in your pocket just in case. Anyway, the cables were installed in addition to bolting the base plate with solid high grade bolts right to the tridon steel stucture using Red Loctite on the threads. That is a solid connection for an 1850lb toad that is unlikley to ever come off unless one uses a torch. Of course I use heavy duty safety cables from the MH to the toad so that baby is secure and I don't see how it could get away, nonetheless, I also put the readybrake breakaway on to cover all the bases I could.
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Old 12-08-2013, 08:26 PM   #10
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In a lot of states, they mandate that safety chains(or cables) be attached between the base plate and the hitch, and also between the base plate and the towed vehicle frame. There have been significant accidents from improper tiedowns and this is just one of the results. Also another way for states to reap additional revenue for those that fail to follow the laws.
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Old 12-09-2013, 05:59 AM   #11
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IF YOUR BLUE OX BASEPLATE INCLUDES PERMANENT SAFETY CABLES THAT GO BETWEEN THE BASEPLATE AND THE TOWED VEHICLE FRAME, USE THEM!!!

When we bought a Blue Ox baseplate for our Saturn Vue back in 2006, it didn't come with the permanently-mounted safety cable that go from the baseplate to the vehicle frame. The photo below shows what can happen if the baseplate fails and you don't have the cables.



The welds on the baseplate failed. Actually it was the steel adjacent to the welds that fatigued. The baseplate pulled the whole front of the car off when it let go. Fortunately, we were going very slow and the car drifted to a stop within a few feet and didn't hit anything.

I don't know when Blue Ox started including the permanent safety cables with their baseplates. The replacement we got for the Saturn in 2010 didn't have them, but the one we got last year for our new Equinox did include the cables.

Oh yeah, one other thing. Make sure the breakaway switch for your toad braking system is attached to the toad's frame, not to the bodywork.
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Old 12-09-2013, 08:16 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Franka548 View Post
In a lot of states, they mandate that safety chains(or cables) be attached between the base plate and the hitch, and also between the base plate and the towed vehicle frame.
I am from Kansas. Show me those mandates for a lot of states or even 1.
I want to see the mandate for the base plate to the towed vehicle frame.
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Old 12-09-2013, 10:49 AM   #13
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So that's what those cables are for. When I purchased my used 2008 Wrangler it already had the blue ox plate installed. I thought those installed cables was where the previous owner stored his safety cables for the rig to the toad. Luckily, I had my own cables and left the ones on the jeep. I was getting ready to take them off because of the Rattle they made while driving. I read this thread just in time.
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Old 12-09-2013, 03:28 PM   #14
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Cables??

As I stated previously I cannot understand why one would need these cables between the baseplate and the frame of the toad. HAs there ever been a class 1,2 or 3 hitch that required these attachments to the frame? Not that I have ever seen.
I definitely agree with the safety chains from the hitch to the vehicle because there are people who forget to latch the ball clip down securely.

Can't imagine a properly installed base plate falling off unless the toad's frame was rusted out completely but then the cables would not do much good either.

To me it's overkill to the 9th degree.
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