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Old 07-20-2021, 02:28 PM   #1
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Locking hitch pins for tow bar, yes or no?

I am considering locking hitch pins for my tow bar for piece of mind against theft. My concern is a failure in the locking mechanism and having a pin fall out during travel. I guess the force isnít really on the mechanism but wondered if anyone has experienced an issue with those. Thanks.
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Old 07-20-2021, 02:44 PM   #2
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I'm trying to describe this. My pins which which go into the attachment to the toad, move outward. Therefore I use the head of the pin on the inward side so the the lock part in not stressed. Also use a flat washer if needed to spread the load even more. I suggest not using the type of pin with the bent head.
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Old 07-20-2021, 06:47 PM   #3
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I use locking pins, but my concern is more about people who might think it would be funny to pull or at least flip open the pins while stopped at gas stations, rest stops, etc.


I had an incident that I can't easily explain happen on a trip a couple of years ago (not pulling a TOAD), we had stopped for lunch at a small cattle auction yard cafe in rural east Texas about a hundred miles from home on the first day or our trip, had lunch then got back on the road, within a couple of miles I kept catching a glance of something in my right side mirror, so I pulled off and found that the propane compartment door was unlatched and the door had been flapping (top hinge compartments). Maybe it had not been latched all the way the previous week when I had the propane tank topped off, or maybe while we ate lunch someone decided to mess with it, I don't know. I do know I make it a routine to check all compartments are closed by tugging their retaining clips before each trip as I often leave some of them unlocked while the coach is in storage in its shed.
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Old 07-20-2021, 06:51 PM   #4
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I check all pins and tow bar after every stop before I am ready to leave again. Good habit to get into as it only requires about a minute of time.
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Old 07-20-2021, 07:01 PM   #5
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I have a horror of either the towed or the MH catching on fire and me being unable to unlock the locking pins and watch them both burn. I check the flip pins when I make safety checks several times each day while driving.
Probably just flashing to something I saw a photo of once
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Old 07-20-2021, 07:21 PM   #6
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If either coach or toad were on fire I would most likely let it go.

As for locking pins why not. I do have them for theft deterrence and peace of mind. One key on my keyring in my pocket, one on spare set.
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Old 07-20-2021, 07:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROUGHRIDER3 View Post
I check all pins and tow bar after every stop before I am ready to leave again. Good habit to get into as it only requires about a minute of time.
Me to! A quick walk around takes less than a minute.
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Old 07-20-2021, 07:28 PM   #8
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I have locking pins but I still do a walkaround each time we stop as I don't want any surprises.
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Old 07-20-2021, 08:40 PM   #9
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I check my pins every stop too. and I keep spares.
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Old 07-20-2021, 08:47 PM   #10
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Food for thought: https://youtu.be/S9OxNOQp_Z4
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Old 07-20-2021, 10:41 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KenZ71;5839897[B
]If either coach or toad were on fire I would most likely let it go.[/B]

As for locking pins why not. I do have them for theft deterrence and peace of mind. One key on my keyring in my pocket, one on spare set.
Well,
That is certainly up to you. It's your toad. But, after a career of fighting residential/motorhome/trailer and any other type fires, I've seen plenty of times when a toad has been quickly disconnected and at a very minimum, pushed away to save it. Yes, some motor homes can go up quickly, depending on circumstances. But, I myself, am going to make every effort to break a $50K Jeep AWAY from our coach if and when the time should arise and our coach goes up in flames.

It's everyone's choice in this matter. I have never, ever "locked" our toads to the coach. In the 35+ years of traveling, camping and parking the Amtrak rig, we've never had one single instance of tampering or any other form of concern. I have had one of those flip-over type linch pins fall out and the tow bar then only had one arm attached while the safety cable(s) did the rest of the rescue. From that point on, I use the bobby pin style (for lack of a better term) and, I also use a bungee cord to keep the D-handle big pins pulled inwards if I should have one of the bobby pins fall out or break.
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Old 07-20-2021, 10:47 PM   #12
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This is one of those split arguments, half use locks, half don't. I've been towing a toad since about 2008. Initially, I put locks on the pins, but found them to be a pain to operate and keep clean. So, for the last 11 years I only lock the tow bar in the hitch, the pins are secured with just the pin and spring clip. I've never had anyone tamper with the tow bar. I think when someone finds a pin missing, it's easy to blame someone tampering with it, but most likely human error.

Do whatever makes you comfortable.
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Old 07-20-2021, 10:48 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scbwr View Post
I have locking pins but I still do a walkaround each time we stop as I don't want any surprises.
X2

Lock
Check
Check again Ö as a favor to yourself and all those around you.
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Old 07-21-2021, 10:25 AM   #14
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I worry more about somebody pulling the emergency braking pin. I keep a spare in my toolbox.
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