Former bumper pull trailer owner, just purchased a 33' Coachmen Mirada Class A motorhome and am planning on towing my 2004 Jeep Wrangler. I'm looking for advice on towbars such as what brand(s) to look at. And advice on actually towing it (do i have to remove the driveshaft for example). I know that info is on here but there is a ton of it so i'm hoping you long timers might have links to the best articles out there. Thanks.
* This post was
edited 01/22/13 03:13pm by aw2055989 *
Wranglers are great toads, just put the transmission in gear(stick)/park(auto) and the transfer case in neutral, hook it up and go.
As to tow bars, I use a Falcon 2 as it came with the coach and an Even Brake for towed brakes, I'd rather have the Ready Brake combined braking system and tow bar after a year with the Even Brake's phantom braking and air leaks, and fighting to get the Falcon 2 to release on uneven surfaces, the off road version doesn't have the hard to release issue.
Enjoy your new rig!
'99 Alpine 36SDS/8.3 ISC 330 Cummins
'05 Lance 845
'06 Super duty SC/SB 6.0
Upgrades include: StabilLoads, Air Bags & Timbrens,Swaybars
Usually towing an '01 Wrangler, lifted/locked on 35"s or a mildly built '98 Cherokee on 33"s (only one locker)
The instructions for towing your '06 Jeep are in the Owners Manual.
I hook the towbar to the motorhome FIRST, so that the Jeep won't roll away when the transfer case is put in Neutral, and I never have to set the parking brake(too easy to forget it). Anyway:
Hook towbar to motorhome
Put transfer case in Neutral
Put automatic transmission in Park or manual in 6th gear
Put ignition switch in "OFF, Not Locked" position. Do not try to remove key.
Hook up lights
Hook up safety chains
Ready to go.
I use an inexpensive adjustable width, fixed arm, A-frame towbar by Reese. the last time I looked they were $165 at Walmart. It ain't fancy, there is no prestige in owning one, but it works. I have had this same towbar on several Jeeps over the years, bolted to the front bumpers. I have had it on both stock and custom bumpers. No trouble.
If I were just starting out, though, I would definitely look at the ReadyBrute integrated towbar/braking system that is available from Night Shift Auto (NSA).
It is, IMO, absolutely the best "bang for the buck" that is available!
NOTE: I receive absolutely no remuneration from making that recommendation. I merely think it is a great product!
There are various ways of hooking up tailights and turn signals, from diodes to installing extra bulb sockets and bulbs in the tailights, to switches or trailer connectors to using magnetic lights, to getting custom plug-n-play wiring harnesses. Do a search, you should find lots of reading.
CM1, USN (RET)
2002 Fleetwood Southwind 32V, Ford V10
Daily Driver: '06 PT Cruiser Turbo
Toy: 1999 Dodge QC SWB, Cummins, 5 speed, 4X4
Other toys: a pair of Kawasaki Brute Force 750 ATVs and a boat.
"When seconds count, help is only minutes away!"
and fighting to get the Falcon 2 to release on uneven surfaces, the off road version doesn't have the hard to release issue.
When I go to unhook my falcon 2 on uneven surfaces, I start the car and - with a soft foot on the gas pedal and on the brake - I push the car just a schmidge into the tow bar (with the foot still on the brake), then I put the car in Park and set the emergency brake (before I release the brake pedal).
Then I use the Falcon 2's breaker bar to pop the release on the arms. What I have found to work the best with the Falcon 2 for hooking up the arms is to extend both arms and rest them on the crossbar between the base plates, hook up 1 arm then do the other arm. When unhooking - unhook 1 arm, extend it and rest it on the crossbar, then unhook the other arm. This way you're not fighting against the other arm of the tow bar while working with the one in your hands.
2005 Cruise America 28R (Four Winds 28R) on a 2004 Ford E450 SD 6.8L V10 4R100
2009 smart fortwo Passion with Roadmaster "Falcon 2" towbar & tail light kit - pictures
I used the "Blue Ox" brand of tow bar. Worked very well without any problems. When the dealer installed the tow bar hook up onto the jeep he also installed hookups for the lights.
Your jeep owners man. will explain how to hook up and what leavers have to be where. The main thing I found was you have to leave the key in the ing. so the tires do not lock up. I had to end up putting a sign on the dash of the MH reminding me to do that.
We have a forum dedicated to towing vehicles behind motorhomes called the Dinghy Towing forum. I think you will have additional responses from the experienced members who frequent that forum so I am going to move your thread there. Good luck.
Do a search on Ready Brake. Their combined towbar and braking system is the gold standard (and also lowest cost).
X2 I am a mechanical engineer and I think the Ready Brake is the most simple and best designed tow bar/brake system on the market. Best value for your money and if you have any mechanical ability at all, you may be able to install it yourself. Wishing the best with whatever you decide.