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U.S. Receiver Hitch

I previously had a normal UK tow bar fitted, mainly to carry my motorbike rack. However, I wanted a better motorbike rack (so I could put the bike on/off by myself) and these were only available in the U.S. for U.S. receiver hitches. So I decided to get myself a hitch from the U.S. so I could get another rack. Another reason for replacing my tow bar was the tow bar plate sat quite low to the ground and it does hit the ground now and again when off-roading.

I got the Hidden Hitch model 87508 from Hitches4Less in the U.S. Delivery to the UK was about £60 and then I paid import duties/taxes of about £36. Total cost to me including all that was £240. Note that when you import from abroad usually the courier will get the item through customs then charge you tax/duties plus their "admin fee" (usually around £10) upon delivery.

Tools/Equipment Needed for Receiver Hitch Fitting

  • Socket set & spanners
  • Torque wrench (if you want to ensure you torque all the bolts correctly)
  • Decent drill & 1/2 inch drill bit.

The receiver comes with instructions, so I won't go into any detail on fitting.

Basically you have two main brackets to mount on each side of the frame along with some other spacers/brackets to allow these to fit on the frame.

Once the brackets and hitch is roughly in place you need to drill an extra hole in the frame each side for the final bolt, then do up all the bolts properly.

Although the site where I bought it stated that the hitch was suitable for use with an under slung 31x10.5xR15 spare wheel this is incorrect! The pic on the right shows the hitch with a standard size spare wheel - a 31" spare will NOT fit.

 
     

 

This picture shows the tow ball mount I got (with a 2" drop). The ball mount (or whatever you put into the hitch) is fixed with a single pin (no messing with nuts & bolts).

I also got a receiver cover (to stop mud getting into the hitch when off-road) and a locking pin (to stop someone nicking your tow ball).

Unfortunately I was supplied the incorrect tow ball so it did not fit the tow ball mount - I will have to drill-out the mount or something.

 
     
The final result. Compared with my old tow bar the receiver hitch gives just over 2 inches of extra ground clearance as it sits higher up. The old tow bar was 15" from ground to the bottom of the plate and the new hitch is just over 17 inches. This should mean no more catching it on the ground while off-roading (which was one of the reasons I went to all the trouble of getting a hitch from the U.S.)

Disclaimer

I have taken a lot of time to ensure the information above is correct, but please remember vehicle manufacturers make alterations and design changes during the production run of a vehicle. No liability can be accepted for loss, damage or injury caused by any errors in, or omissions from, the information given above.

If you think any information is incorrect, confusing, misleading or incomplete, please feel free to contact me.


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