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Old 05-10-2020, 08:37 AM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 59
Flat tow equipment

Can someone give me a total newbies guide to flat towing equipment needed?

Assume I have a 40' DP pulling a Jeep Cherokee.

I assume I need a tow bar, a base plate for the jeep and a braking system? Are those the 3 basic things needed?
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Old 05-10-2020, 09:55 AM   #2
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Lights too. If only going out on the weekends then magnetic lights and a 4 wire to 7 wire adapter is fine. Longer trips make a hardwired setup with the toad's original lights easier.

Safety chains or cables are needed. Also. if your rig is not new then go under the tow bar and inspect it for serious rust to make sure it is secure. Usually it is suggested to check the towing capacity but a Jeep will be just fine.

I made a laminated checklist with the car's instructions for towing, the Brake Buddy's instructions and a note to check that the hubs are disengaged (don't ask).

The DW and I can prep for travel in about five minutes with each working on their own section. We then switch areas and inspect the other's area.
33' 2008 National Tropical on a Freightliner chassis.RVM#189
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Old 05-10-2020, 10:02 AM   #3
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You have most of it. Lets start off with the Jeep. You'll need a base plate. Wiring for stop/tail lights. The wiring can be done with magnetic lights, internal wiring using diodes and some companies have a wireless system.

A brake system and there are many on the market ranging from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars. Some work off of air pressure from the air brakes on your coach, others have a motor that pushes the brake pedal via wires or wireless etc etc. And possibly a break away system.

On the motor home end, you'll need the tow bar, safety chains or steel cables, a cable running from your 4 or 7 pin plug to the Jeep and if so inclined a barrier to keep rocks from hitting the Jeep. Roadmaster makes a screen that permanently mounts to the tow bar or others make such a shield that mounts to the car.

The next thing depends on your Jeep. Some vehicles require you to disconnect the battery while others only require pulling fuses and the best of the bunch don't require anything. If you have to pull fuses, then rig up a switch system so all you have to do is flip a switch and there are a bunch of aftermarket products to make disconnecting the battery easy. If you have to disconnect the battery read this: If you have to pull fuses, buy an inline fuse holder such as this: Remove the fuse from the original location and then cut the fuse holder wire. Attach a flat spade terminal to one end of the fuse holder and insert it into one of the metal pinchers that holds the fuse in its location.. Attach another wire to the free end of the fuse holder then to one side of an on/off switch. From the free end of the on/off switch, attach a wire that leads back to the original fuse holder, attach a flat spade terminal to that end and plug it into the free pincher original fuse holder. Obviously the original fuse will go into the 'in line' holder. Mount the switch and you're done.
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Old 05-12-2020, 09:10 PM   #4
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Especially if your braking system needs power to operate, you'll want to include a battery charge line between the coach and Cherokee to keep the Cherokee battery charged.

Ron and Dagmar, Retired
2016 Jayco Greyhawk 29MV.... 2000 Jeep TJ Toad
2009 Mustang GT (DW's DD)...2009 Mustang Bullitt (My Toy)
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Old 05-13-2020, 11:50 PM   #5
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I'm in the process of setting up my 6th toad for towing. I like Roadmaster products and I like to match the tow bar to the base plates. Your Ford F-150 will need at least a 7000 pound tow bar and possibly a 10000 pound tow bar if you intend to ever place any thing in the bed, like a golf cart, RZR, etc.

A 10K Roadmaster tow bar will run about a $1000.00. I'm getting my prices from, one of the best/cheapest websites for tow equipment. I'm currently setting up a 2019 Ford Raptor, similar to your truck. The Roadmaster base plates are about $450.00.

Because of the weight of the truck, I like the Demco Air Force One braking system. It uses the air in your coach to apply the brakes in your truck. It has a "break away" system that applies your brakes, in case your truck separates from your vehicle. I like the AF1 system over the M&G as the M&G doesn't fit all vehicles and can be expensive to move to another vehicle, which it may not fit. I've moved the AF1 between 6 vehicles. Cost about $1300.00 new. There are less expensive "all in one" tow bars and brake systems that I think work well for lighter vehicles, but I'm not a fan of for heavy toads (JMO).

Lastly, you'll need a wiring kit to make your toad lights work with the motor home and the umbilical cord between the MH and the toad. Cost, about a $100.

All these are prices for components only. If you're handy, most can be installed by you. If you're not, you're probably looking at another $1000.00 in labor to install the equipment.
Don & Mary
2019 Newmar Dutch Star 4018 (Freightliner)
2019 Ford Raptor
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