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Old 09-20-2017, 01:45 PM   #1
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Let's talk hitch receivers!

Hello all.

My wife and I are heading out from Illinois to Denver in a few weeks to pick up our bus. I'd planned to install a co-pilot seat, then tow our truck behind the bus. I've pretty much got all of the towed-vehicle stuff squared away (mounting plate, surge brake tow bar, wiring). Now the fun part: I'm running into some trouble with the hitch receiver. One RV place wouldn't touch the job (liability reasons) and one freelancer wants $1400 to weld on a Curt receiver. That's a little rich for my blood.

Right now, there's a couple recovery hooks bolted to the frame. Unless I'm missing something, I should be able to remove the recovery hooks and bolt on an adjustable hitch using the same bolt holes. Only modification I can see is that I'll have to drill a hole in the receiver mounting bracket because the bolt spacing is different.

Anyone care to check my thinking on this one? Ideally it would be welded, and it probably will be once I get it home. I just don't have the $1400 and 5 days turnaround time to have it done in Denver.

Pics of back of bus/recovery hooks
https://imgur.com/a/sDXZq


Curt adjustable hitch receiver
https://www.etrailer.com/RV-and-Camp...rt/C13701.html


Thanks, everyone!
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Old 09-20-2017, 06:35 PM   #2
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Hello all.


Right now, there's a couple recovery hooks bolted to the frame. Unless I'm missing something, I should be able to remove the recovery hooks and bolt on an adjustable hitch using the same bolt holes.
Sounds good- watch your heights on the receiver tube. You can get a stronger hitch for same $$. Bolt-in is fine, bus frame is bolted together. measure between rails- mine is like 35"

Still need lights and safety chains.
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Old 09-20-2017, 07:47 PM   #3
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Search Craiglist for a mobile welder in the area you are getting the bus from. Or find a off-road forum. Some of them Jeep boys will do it for a 12 pack.
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Old 09-20-2017, 08:47 PM   #4
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when I picked up my bus, I used a piece of 4 inch by 6 inch angle iron 2 feet long, drilled a hole in the middle of the 6 inch side for the tow ball, 4 holes in the 4 inch side and when I got to the location to get the bus, I held the thing up to the bumper and drilled holes in it and bolted it on. school bus bumpers are pretty thick and I had no problem towing my car home on my tow dolly, no deflection on the bumper at all, had no tail lights though, bluebirds do not have standard truck wiring inthe back
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Old 09-20-2017, 10:20 PM   #5
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Your plan will work and here is the outcome, same way I did mine a 1/2 impact was needed to remove the hooks.
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Old 09-21-2017, 06:31 AM   #6
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Sounds good- watch your heights on the receiver tube. You can get a stronger hitch for same $$. Bolt-in is fine, bus frame is bolted together. measure between rails- mine is like 35"

Still need lights and safety chains.
I had thought about a Class V receiver, but I'm unsure of the distance between the rails (hence the choice of adjustable). Also unsure of the height of the tube. I'll have to have the guy working on the bus measure some of that for me. That Class V you linked would be a great option if everything lines up.

Safety chains are covered, still working on the lights (I'll have to tie into the bus light wiring when I get there). Shouldn't be too difficult.....right?


Quote:
Originally Posted by bigskypc50 View Post
Your plan will work and here is the outcome, same way I did mine a 1/2 impact was needed to remove the hooks.

That's exactly what I wanted to hear. Looks like you might have used the same hitch as I was planning. Were you able to reuse the bolts?
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Old 09-21-2017, 08:16 AM   #7
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Luckily ours already had a hitch welded on, along with some storage boxes. I would think the bolt on would be fine. Then when you get it home have it welded in place.
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