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Old 10-14-2020, 07:30 PM   #1
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Slop in tow bar to much?

I was inspecting my towbar today. It's an old Blue Ox Aladdin. I uploaded a video. Does the slop in the video seem excessive? I'm thinking it needs to be loose in that area but not certain. I didn't want to the tighten the nut and cause a bind.


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Old 10-14-2020, 08:47 PM   #2
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Video comes up as " Private " .

How many tow miles on the bar ?
There are nylon pieces that do wear out over time . Blue Ox is at major shows doing service on their units . Last Feb . pricing at Quartzsite was $40 for a minor service and $125 for a major service.

I don't know if they release parts for DIY.
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Old 10-14-2020, 08:54 PM   #3
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They no longer support the old alladin aluminum tow bar.
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Old 10-14-2020, 08:59 PM   #4
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Try this link.

https://youtu.be/AHvCCcjaACA
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Old 10-14-2020, 09:02 PM   #5
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That looks as if there is wear in the aluminum and tightening isn't going to help.
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Old 10-14-2020, 09:10 PM   #6
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That looks as if there is wear in the aluminum and tightening isn't going to help.
Thanks Skip. I'm guessing that slop looks excessive?
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Old 10-14-2020, 09:52 PM   #7
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Thanks Skip. I'm guessing that slop looks excessive?
JMHO: Yes , but if you want to continue, and If as mentioned Blue Ox no longer supports the bar.
I'd be very tempted to remove the tabs and have them drilled out and have bushings installed down to the original bolt size , and with new bolts and lock nuts, nylon shims from the tab to the fork to stop , aluminum to aluminum wear . Roll on.
Alternative is a new bar.

I'll have a quick look for Blue Ox parts , my B-in-L gave me his 10,000# Blue Ox when health forced him to sell his coach ( under 4,000 miles of use) so I have a spare , but my original could use some TLC.

EDIT: Amazon and E trailer show Blue Ox parts by product number . Nylon bushings and lock nut package $32 CD on Amazon .Ca Another project for my winter at home.
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Old 10-14-2020, 11:06 PM   #8
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Well,
This is a choice type thing. I've had slop just like that in one or two of mine and, for a sort of temp remedy, I simply added nylon shims to each side of the tab. You can get them at your local ACE or True Value. Now, that takes care of the side-to-side slop. If, IF there is what I'd call *elongation* type slop, that is, the end moves BACK AND FORTH, as in an egg shaped hole in the tab, well then, it's either time to shi...can the tabs and make new ones which, is for most normal DIY types, is out of the question 'cause not many of us have built in machine shops in our trusty little garages.


Or, again, you'd have to find someone with a machine shop to bore the holes (all of them) to the next size bolt. Then your system is good for several thousand more miles. I always try and salvage something before just chucking it in the round file. If not, time for a new one.
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Old 10-15-2020, 12:40 AM   #9
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Well,
This is a choice type thing. I've had slop just like that in one or two of mine and, for a sort of temp remedy, I simply added nylon shims to each side of the tab. You can get them at your local ACE or True Value. Now, that takes care of the side-to-side slop. If, IF there is what I'd call *elongation* type slop, that is, the end moves BACK AND FORTH, as in an egg shaped hole in the tab, well then, it's either time to shi...can the tabs and make new ones which, is for most normal DIY types, is out of the question 'cause not many of us have built in machine shops in our trusty little garages.


Or, again, you'd have to find someone with a machine shop to bore the holes (all of them) to the next size bolt. Then your system is good for several thousand more miles. I always try and salvage something before just chucking it in the round file. If not, time for a new one.
Scott
I went ahead and ordered the washer kit from Etrailer that Skip found. With towbars running $650 plus I thought it was worth a shot to see if some new hardware would take up some slop. The washers in the kit appear to be flat. I would have thought there would also be some plastic bushings but doesn't appear to be the case.
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Old 10-15-2020, 02:17 PM   #10
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Quote:
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I went ahead and ordered the washer kit from Etrailer that Skip found. With towbars running $650 plus I thought it was worth a shot to see if some new hardware would take up some slop. The washers in the kit appear to be flat. I would have thought there would also be some plastic bushings but doesn't appear to be the case.
I think I know what they'll say, but why not call Blue Ox, ask them to watch your video, while on the phone with them, and see what they say. Maybe they have a solution or offer you a killer deal.
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Old 10-15-2020, 04:40 PM   #11
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I think I know what they'll say, but why not call Blue Ox, ask them to watch your video, while on the phone with them, and see what they say. Maybe they have a solution or offer you a killer deal.
Well nothing to lose and yes we both know what they will say. But it never hurts to ask.
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Old 10-15-2020, 06:01 PM   #12
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I was inspecting my towbar today. It's an old Blue Ox Aladdin. I uploaded a video. Does the slop in the video seem excessive? I'm thinking it needs to be loose in that area but not certain. I didn't want to the tighten the nut and cause a bind.







I had the Blue Ox Alladin on my first dp. In 2000 it broke at the yoke while towing and the toad hit the back of the coach when I stopped. Did about $3k damage to the front of my toad and another $2500 damage to the coach. Blue Ox covered the damage to both vehicles and replaced the tow bar with a heavier rated steel tow bar. (Great company ). The Alladin was rated at 5k and I was towing a 4500 pound suv. I was pushing the limit on the capacity of the bar but I am not sure if that had anything to do with the failure. The tow bar was only three years old when it failed. If you have concerns about the integrity of the bar I would replace it.
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Old 10-15-2020, 06:12 PM   #13
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I had the Blue Ox Alladin on my first dp. In 2000 it broke at the yoke while towing and the toad hit the back of the coach when I stopped. Did about $3k damage to the front of my toad and another $2500 damage to the coach. Blue Ox covered the damage to both vehicles and replaced the tow bar with a heavier rated steel tow bar. (Great company ). The Alladin was rated at 5k and I was towing a 4500 pound suv. I was pushing the limit on the capacity of the bar but I am not sure if that had anything to do with the failure. The tow bar was only three years old when it failed. If you have concerns about the integrity of the bar I would replace it.
Yes I'm concerned. I'll replace. Thanks
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Old 10-15-2020, 10:55 PM   #14
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If you don't get any help from Blue Ox, I really like the Roadmaster Tow bars. My first one I took very good care of it and kept it covered, lubed and polished. It was an aluminum All Terrain.

I went to a larger truck and wanted to put an RZR in the bed. While at an RV rally, I spoke with Roadmaster about an upgrade. They took a look at my four year old tow bar, thought it was in great shape and gave me a big trade in discount.

The one I now have is the 10K Roadmaster Blackhawk. I've had it for more than 7 years and still performs well. Last year, while at Quartzsite, Roadmaster rebuilt it in abut 30 minutes and charged me $100.00. I can't say enough about the quality and longevity of the Roadmaster products.
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