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Old 08-28-2005, 05:22 PM   #1
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Anyone use safety chains instead of those vinyl-coated cables with your tow bar?
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Old 08-28-2005, 05:22 PM   #2
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Anyone use safety chains instead of those vinyl-coated cables with your tow bar?
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Old 08-29-2005, 12:30 AM   #3
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I had one customer show up with some chains to use when he picked up his jeep we installed a base plate on. The problem with a chain is that they may drag when turning (you will need enough lenght to allow this)as compared to a coiled safety cable. On the road it would not be much of an issue but if you were off road it could get caught on something. Some vehicles are high enough off the ground that this may not be an issue but some might.
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Old 08-29-2005, 02:31 AM   #4
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smlranger, I tow a Grand Cherokee and use safety chains that I made up. They hang about 6" - 8" from the ground.
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Old 08-29-2005, 05:56 AM   #5
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Mike:

I considered the chaing dragging issue but figured I could use a couple of springs to hold them up. My problem with the cables is that, in spite of my trying to keep them from getting under the hitch receiver, they still want to go there. I have had two cases (once with my gasser and more recently with my DP) where my hitch receiver made contact with a driveway entrance. In both cases, one of the cables was pinched and destroyed.
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Old 08-29-2005, 12:14 PM   #6
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I use chains and loop a bungee cord around them and the tow bar to keep them from dragging.
The reason for chains is pure economics. The chains are a BUNCH cheaper than the cables. Chains are easier to deal with when storing than the cables. I just unhook them from the toad and store the Blue Ox, wrap the chains around the body of the tow bar and secure with a bungee. Never have to un-hook them from the MH.
If one is lost, I can replace it for about $10.
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Old 08-29-2005, 03:26 PM   #7
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I like and use chains, for much the same reasons as Doc. I've towed all kinds of trailers and vehicles with chains for many years and have always been pleased wiht their performance.

I don't think dragging them is an issue, anymore than dragging cable would be. Yes, you have to make them the right length for the tow bar, but the cables have their fit and routing problems too. No one size fits all solution works well for every rig and its a lot easier to tailor a chain than a cable with swaged connectors at each end.
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Old 09-09-2005, 07:11 PM   #8
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I would be concerned in the case of a break away the slack in the chains would cause them to fail-snap before the cables would.
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Old 10-19-2005, 11:18 AM   #9
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by doc:
I use chains and loop a bungee cord around them and the tow bar to keep them from dragging.
The reason for chains is pure economics. The chains are a BUNCH cheaper than the cables. Chains are easier to deal with when storing than the cables. I just unhook them from the toad and store the Blue Ox, wrap the chains around the body of the tow bar and secure with a bungee. Never have to un-hook them from the MH.
If one is lost, I can replace it for about $10. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Why would chains drag unless the toad is very close to the ground? All the times I have used chains, if they were dragging, they were too long.

Crossing the chains also helps keep them from dragging.

Just curious.
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Old 10-19-2005, 04:00 PM   #10
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Actually Alvinc, they don't drag with the setup I have now even without the bungee. I do cross them as well. The bungee just holds the sag out of them and keeps the wire from the tow from sagging too low and catching anything. Basically like someone said, "...cause we always did it like that". Other than that, I have no reason except I like the neatness of the way it looks.
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Old 10-22-2005, 06:14 AM   #11
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I use chains because my towbar installer recommended them. Actually it was a lower cost option. He said try it before you buy the cables. I've used chains for 3 years of long trips now with no problems. I cross the chains and wrap them 2 times around the towbar and nothing drags and there is no evident wear problems. I leave them connected at the RV end and wrap them around the towbar when in camp and disconnected. Seems to work pretty good.
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Old 10-22-2005, 02:32 PM   #12
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Iused cables when I towed 4 down. Now I have the car incide of a trailer and it came with chains so that is what I use. When you think of it every trailer manufacturer that I have ever seen supplies their product with chains whether it is an enclosed trailer ,flat bed, horse, landscape, etc. Conversely tow bar manufacturers seems to prefer cables. I guess if they are tested to "X" breaking strength and "X" is what you need vs. "Y" it should not matter safety wise whether you use one or the other. Ken,'04 DSDP...
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Old 10-28-2005, 07:41 AM   #13
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I use chains and have no problems. The cables look as though they wouldn't hold my tow if it comes loose.
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