Receiver pin was missing when I got home - only the clamp held the ball mount!! Major holy cow moment!

Wayne

Administrator
Staff member
I just towed a 26' enclosed trailer about 2,000 miles. The trailer weighed about 8,000 pounds loaded and 3,600 pounds empty. It was loaded for half of the trip and empty the other half. I always use an anti-rattle clamp on the ball mount when I tow.
From the years of towing a 30' Airstream, I found the only way to keep the clamp from loosening was to go overkill and made a super strong clamp from two clamps I bought from Hitchclamp.com. The U-bolt that comes with this clamp will loosen in a few hundred miles, so I put two of them back to back with 5/8" grade 8 bolts. Each bolt, when torqued to spec, has a clamping force of 16,000 pounds.

When I got home and removed the clamp, I noticed the receiver pin was missing!!!! There are a few possibilities; 1) I never put the pin in 2) The pin somehow fell out 3) Someone stole the pin. I am 100% certain I put the pin in, so either it fell out or someone took it out. I have no idea how long the trailer was towed without the pin in the receiver and I am 100% certain that had the clamp not been on the receiver the ball mount would have pulled out. Obviously, if the ball mount would have pulled out, we would have at the very least had a mess. Count your lucky stars.

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Yeah, it could have been really bad!

Thank goodness the clamp held.
 
I use a locking pin to lessen the chance of my bike rack being stolen.

I don't know if the locking pins are as strong as the conventional ones, but if so they might be a good option.

Caveat: My lock on my old one rusted solid, and I had a time grinding it off. I now remove it when it's not in use.
 
I use a locking pin to lessen the chance of my bike rack being stolen.

I don't know if the locking pins are as strong as the conventional ones, but if so they might be a good option.

Caveat: My lock on my old one rusted solid, and I had a time grinding it off. I now remove it when it's not in use.

yeah, with anything lock exposed to the weather best bet is to make sure you open and close it on a regular basis and shoot it with WD or equivalent.
the spare tire carrier on my rig has a big knob , you just unscrew it... I bought the trailer used, so it was already 6 years old
decided to see how the spare tire rack operated and could not remove the tire because the knob was rusted. Good thing I tried at home instead of on the side of the road.. right?

same applies to any padlock out in the weather.. check it and lube it once in awhile or when you really need to unlock it, it wont.
 
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