Tow Bar vehicle recovery is dangerous!

Herbie

Rendezvous Conspirator
Here's another way to look it it:

I'm sorta willing to have any catastrophic failures launch metal at you or your vehicle, but not at me or mine.

This is one of the reasons I carry both hard and soft shackles, etc. If you've asked me for help, but between the two of us I can't find a way to rig the snatch out that doesn't involve the risk of debris launched in my direction, then my "help" is going to be limited to me lending my comms equipment for you to call for someone better equipped.
 

DaveInDenver

Luddite
Here's another way to look it it:

I'm sorta willing to have any catastrophic failures launch metal at you or your vehicle, but not at me or mine.

This is one of the reasons I carry both hard and soft shackles, etc. If you've asked me for help, but between the two of us I can't find a way to rig the snatch out that doesn't involve the risk of debris launched in my direction, then my "help" is going to be limited to me lending my comms equipment for you to call for someone better equipped.
Help offered has to be up to but not exceed your level of training, experience and trust in equipment (both yours and theirs). I suppose the experience part is key to knowing level of risk, since there's never going to be zero risk. It's a go/no-go assessment. There's got to be times when you're not the appropriate person or truck to do anything other than offer to try calling on ham or in the case of a real issue pushing SOS on an InReach or SPOT maybe.
 

ramblinChet

Well-known member
Although it can be argued that generally a tow ball connection is safe that argument falls flat on it's face since there are many other safer methods just as easily available. Why on earth would anyone consider something potentially life threatening when there are several other better choices available?

I believe one of the points he was making was the fact that catastrophic material failures normally do not occur during one event. It is very common for microscopic fractures to begin internally when voids in the metal are stretched beyond their elastic limits. You might perform ten or one hundred hard pulls and all "seems" well yet the shank of the ball is about to fail. Same with axle shafts - a buddy of mine was going up a rocky hill he had gone up dozens of times and it seemed like no big deal but this time his axle shaft fractured. I showed him where the shaft had actually began to fracture long ago, maybe even years ago. These progressive failures mostly go unnoticed until the final fracture occurs and that's usually at the worst time, lol.

Just do it the safest and best way possible.
 

grizzlyj

Tea pot tester
I asked ARB about front and rear recovery points for a 150 series Landcruiser/Prado. They said they don't sell a rear one and recommend you use the tow bar.
 

4000lbsOfGoat

Well-known member
Pull the receiver pin, remove the draw bar, insert the loop of the strap and then put the pin back so that it catches the loop of the strap.
You might be able to bend the pin, but I doubt it. You will remove the danger of the flying tow ball.
That is great in theory but only works if you have a really large receiver tube or a really small strap...Hopefully we aren't using really small straps 😁

My straps wouldn't fit through my 2" receiver.
 

WOODY2

Adventurer
Not to be Freudian but balls are balls but the size of the shaft will have a larger impact on any failure. I have seen tow balls with 3/4" shafts and others with 1 1/8" shafts. FWIW just because you've seen it done doesn't mean it's safe IMHO.
 
Just to complicate matters, I suppose everyone thinks a pintle hitch would be a good recovery point? What about a combination pintle/ball hitch? What about receiver mounted or bolted?
Also Australia has 99% bolted balls, Europe has the ball and shaft forged as one piece (much as a forged hook?).
Pintle 1.JPGPintle 2.JPGPintle 3.JPGPintle 4.JPGPintle 5.JPGPintle 6.JPGPintle 7.JPG
Pintle 8.JPG
Personally I believe it is all a matter of weight rating and condition check...
 

DaveInDenver

Luddite
Not to be Freudian but balls are balls but the size of the shaft will have a larger impact on any failure. I have seen tow balls with 3/4" shafts and others with 1 1/8" shafts. FWIW just because you've seen it done doesn't mean it's safe IMHO.
A grade-5 3/4" fastener should be a minimum of 25,290 lbf in shear and a 1.125" would be 51,143 lbf. I don't think tow hardware is rated any higher than grade-5. You might be on to something noticing that a tow point isn't always just a tow point.
Just to complicate matters, I suppose everyone thinks a pintle hitch would be a good recovery point? What about a combination pintle/ball hitch? What about receiver mounted or bolted?
Also Australia has 99% bolted balls, Europe has the ball and shaft forged as one piece (much as a forged hook?).

Personally I believe it is all a matter of weight rating and condition check...
Interesting point regards to pintle-ball combo. I don't know but one difference might be that the top arm will support the ball so it doesn't tip into tension and stays more completely in shear? I know many people trust pintle hooks (I would personally) but I don't know that anyone's ever suggested that is founded or misplaced. The gotcha I have mainly revolves around the bolts themselves and the risk of them pulling through the frame member.
 

Joe917

Explorer
I will pull from the pintle if I am able to go forwards, but it is a full pintle not a ball pintle.
I tell whoever I am pulling to be happy with their attachment point because whatever they attach to is coming out!
 

WOODY2

Adventurer
I will pull from the pintle if I am able to go forwards, but it is a full pintle not a ball pintle.
I tell whoever I am pulling to be happy with their attachment point because whatever they attach to is coming out!
Depending on rope/strap ,although it was their attachment point it, it may end up in/on/thru your vehicle.
 
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