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Old 04-05-2021, 01:31 PM   #1
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YJ Toad Questions

My wife and I are considering using our 95 Jeep YJ as a toad. I have a couple questions:

1) It's going to need new tires before put into toad service. How well do the M&S style tires hold up as opposed to a regular street tire?

2) How much potential is there for cosmetic damage to the YJ front end from rocks & other road debris while it's being towed?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-05-2021, 05:55 PM   #2
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There might be slightly more wear on a lug type tire, but no more than if you were driving it. At least I had no noticeable difference towing a Jeep with 35" BFG KM2 tires. After I removed the big mud flap from the coach, I had NO damage to the front of an enclosed trailer. I haven't had the big flap since 2015. If you keep the big stone flap, mount it high enough to avoid flipping stones up into the toad.
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Old 04-06-2021, 11:41 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BT2 Zeke View Post
My wife and I are considering using our 95 Jeep YJ as a toad. I have a couple questions:

1) It's going to need new tires before put into toad service. How well do the M&S style tires hold up as opposed to a regular street tire?

2) How much potential is there for cosmetic damage to the YJ front end from rocks & other road debris while it's being towed?

Thanks in advance.
BT2,
Well Sir, we've owned, built and towed 9 different Jeeps in about 35 years or so and two of them were YJs. YJ's are no different in towing than any Jeep Wrangler. A Jeep is a Jeep. Yes, there are slight differences but, nothing to be concerned over. Your YJ is a '95 so, it will have the 231 transfer case in it that is an aluminum, chain driven version, with a true neutral in it. The rear tail cone of that transfer case houses an oil pump that when towing, provides lubrication to the whole transfer case.

As for damage to the front end of the Jeep from debris and rocks etc when towing, well, you may get a minute amount here and there but, you're gonna be fine. A lot of Diesel pushers came with full length mud/debris flaps across the back and bottom of the coaches. The design of many of those and where they were placed, caused many rock chips in many toads over the years. A very large percentage of us, removed that full length mud flap and for the most part, all rock chips have ceased.

There's a few Jeepers out there that WORRY about tire damage when towing their Jeeps. In the 35-36 years of towing, I've not worried one minute about tire damage or wear when towing because, what those tires go through when using a Jeep as A JEEP, in the outback, is waaaaaaay more severe than any street towing mileage could ever think about doing.

Put your new M&S tires on if those are what you desire, and hook it to the back of the coach and go have fun. Don't over think this. By the way, I've also done all the wiring of the Jeeps tail lights to be used as toad lights when towing. On YJ's, just like CJ's and TJ's, the tail light wiring is right there beside the drivers left calf when he's sitting in the Jeep. It's under the door sill.

I'd ease that wiring loom out from under that door sill and, very carefully, using a 12V test light probe, find the running lights, left and right turn signal wires too. I'd T into each of those with the appropriate wires from the front plug on the jeep. I'd install a Radio Shack (Way back when they were still operating) diode down stream from the T-intersection of the right and left turn signals to keep the signals from the coach, from traveling down stream in the Jeeps wiring harness and up into the steering column.

No, there is no need to install a diode in the running light wire. I liked without a diode because, done that way, it would also light up the parking lights on the front of the Jeep when towing and that would tell me that my wiring was working just fine when I'd glance into my monitor for my rear view camera.

But, if you'd like any info on this, surely ask. I'd wire all my Jeeps up the same exact way, except for the '15 JKUR we have now. It's equipped with different style lighting and wiring than previous models of Jeep Wrangler so, I HAD to use a Hopkins wiring harness on it.

But, all the other Jeeps would cost me about $3.00 to wire them up for towing. And the really good part is, the Jeeps tail lights act the same exact way when towing it, as they do when it's being driven. None of this drilling holes and adding bulbs junk.
Scott
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Old 04-06-2021, 02:28 PM   #4
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All good advice, only thing I can add is close the vent prior to towing. My Alaska trip ended up with a totally dusted YJ interior.
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Old 04-07-2021, 09:06 AM   #5
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Scott (FIRE UP) gave you some sound advice and my Jeep towing experience in flat towing several Jeeps over the past 25+ years and 180k miles has been very similar. All of mine have run oversized tires with lifts and my current Jeep is running 37" tires.

Generally speaking, your tires will wear actually less being flat towed than driving the Jeep because of them not being powered while being towed. However, if you have large offsets on your wheels or running spacers they can scrub on turns more than they should but this would also be the case when driving. I also put a little more air pressure in my tires when towing longer distances to reduce the rolling resistance somewhat but that is not really necessary, it's just me. I also wired my Jeeps in using the actual Jeep taillights as I despise those added lights on toads. I want mine to look stock when being towed or driven and don't want the extra lights to have to contend with or muck up the appearance. It is also nice to see the running lights on the Jeep when viewing through the camera.

As for cosmetics of the Jeep, I am one of those who have elected to keep my rear flap on the coach as I like the looks as well as think they aide in controlling debris as long as they are adjusted properly, emphasis on that last part as I have seen too many way too low and when the coach porpoises down the road the rear flap actually makes contact with the road surface and creates debris flipping up, less so with tag axle coaches however.

One thing I discovered was that I was experiencing a large amount of rock chips on the back of the coach and after much research I found that the tires of the Jeep were actually sending rocks flying forward and contacting the back of the coach, some were even flying back onto the Jeep.

I used a Roadmaster Tow Defender for several years but was still experiencing rock chips until I found the issue. I fabricated a set of removable rock guards that I install on the Jeep when flat-towing that work fantastic and have not had any further issues with rock chips in the past 5 or so years and 30k plus miles.
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Old 04-07-2021, 11:37 AM   #6
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If your coach has good size mud flaps behind the tires your jeep should be fine. It will be dirty with dust blown up from the exhaust blowing dirt up depending on where your exhaust is.
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Old 04-07-2021, 11:40 AM   #7
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Great research zmotorsports.
That front guard looks good.
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Old 04-07-2021, 12:55 PM   #8
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Great research zmotorsports.
That front guard looks good.
Thank you.
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Old 04-13-2021, 10:42 AM   #9
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Thanks!

Sorry this took so long. Things have been hectic around the house. I want to thank all of you for the input. It has helped answer all of the questions I had about towing the YJ.

Thanks again!
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