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Old 05-01-2012, 02:32 AM   #15
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Barb,
I'm definitely not familiar with your system, but I'm just thinking out loud. Could you just start the car and gently back up until the arms lock in position? I do that all the time.
I do that and one will typically lock, but it usually takes driving straight for at least 100' before they both click in. It could be because the towbar is new enough that the pivot points are still stiff, or that the car is so light (1840#), or more likely both.

Realizing that there is only one place it will lock in (thanks Sarah) has alleviated my concerns about driving with uneven arms. It just can't happen if both are locked.

Thanks Y'all!
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Old 05-01-2012, 03:30 AM   #16
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We now back the toad to lock the arms of the tow bar. If the arms are uneven, turn the steering wheel of the toad away from the shorter arm before you back up. Remember to straighten the wheels before you drive the rig away.

OKMUNKY
I have your same tow bar and I back up the toad exactly as described above. I also try moving the toad forward to double check the lock. This tow bar works like most other tow bars
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Old 05-01-2012, 10:58 AM   #17
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IF one arm is shorter the car will follow off center. If one arm does not LOCK then the car can "Fishtail" a bit, BUT... If it is a case of one arm did not lock, you can have your partner go back to the car and slightly turn the wheels toward the SHORT arm (The one that did not lock) then when it locks release the wheel and let it trail normally.


In practice, what I have done with my Blue Ox when I'm way off center is turn the wheel toward the short arm, then leave it, So far it's locked and tracked every time up till when I junked the car due to other non-related reasons.
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Old 05-01-2012, 07:40 PM   #18
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After I make the tow bar connections I have my spouse back the car just a bit to lock the bars. It is usually easy to see when one of the arms has not locked. I turn the steering wheel of the tow car in the direction it takes to put strain on the unlocked bar and then drive the motor home a few feet forward. I can see the tow car go in the direction it needs to go and the bar is locked in less than a few feet. I get out and check it and then head on the way. This works for me. PLEASe don't tow unless both tow arms are in a locked position.
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Old 05-01-2012, 11:31 PM   #19
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I think (think, think) that the uneven bars are caused by coming into the hook-up at an off-center angle of the car. My hood is almost flat, so I'll put some small object that I have on had in the center as I'm look at it from the front. I put the tow-bar arm straight up and then try to come in at dead-center. One way to test is to have your partner, or get out and do it, extend the bars to their towing position and see where they match up to the close-as-you-can-get position. It should show you which arm will be short when you move in closer to hook-up. If it is off center a lot, just re-position. Positioning for me is difficult at times, and I have one of those tow-bars (Demco) that it should not matter if I'm center or not, but it sometimes does.

Just a thinkin'
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Old 05-02-2012, 01:31 AM   #20
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One reason why the process is more difficult is that I am a solo RVer and everything is still under warranty -- MH and toad -- which makes me a little more paranoid. Lots of stopping and double checking. But hey, I'm retired and if I don't get there today, I just stop and spend the night and start again tomorrow.

I chose the RV lifestyle so I would have more options, so I could travel and still sleep in my own bed every night, so I could avoid lengthly explainations about why my monkey would not be a problem for their hotel and so I could wear jeans and a T-shirt to dinner every night.

So, I'm pretty sure I now have the towbar process figured out, thanks to all of you. On to the next challenge.
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Old 05-10-2012, 10:19 PM   #21
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I have a Readybrute Elite towbar and I back the Jeep up with an appropriate turn of the wheel in order to lock whichever arm is not fully extended. Works well. Usually only needs a gentle tug.
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Old 05-11-2012, 12:33 AM   #22
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Gentle is all I can do with 3 cylinders and 1800# of car. Thanks! Good idea
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Old 05-17-2012, 05:35 PM   #23
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Barb

Do you monitor your toad with a rear camera monitor? Wireless systems can be purchased for a reasonable amount. I have two camera systems installed so I can watch my 6 o'clock position.

Ihave a blue ox system and my Smarty Toad locks in place after I tow it for about 5 feet or less. I see it in my monitor and can feel it lock in place and I still then get out and do a double check on the hitch systems and look in the car to confirm the lock plate is on and the bungee cords are on the steering wheel. (lock plates and bungee cords are a Smart car thing for non Smart owners.) I also put the lights and my emergency flashers as a double-check of the light connection during this ritual I do every time I hookup. This just gives me peice of mind.

I had an unplesant experience with one tow bar coming disconnected on my Malibu while towing a Malibu and that was caused by me not securing a tow pin in position.
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Old 05-17-2012, 05:54 PM   #24
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So the toad will let me know if she's not OK. Good to know! I watch her carefully on the monitor for the first few minutes after starting.
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