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Unread 06-23-2014, 07:24 AM   #1
dagr8tim
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Trailer Hitch

I need to replace the hitch on my 97 XJ. Currently I have a class III 2" receiver. I'm looking to replace it with something similar.

In my case, I tow a 4x6 utility trailer that weighs about 500 pounds, and cannot think I would ever put more than 1,500 pounds in it for a total weight of 2,000 pounds. I do however want to install a set of D ring brackets that key off of a 2" square tubing draw bar.

I'm trying to figure out if I can get away with the Reese class III or if I should spend the extra money on a Reese class III/IV hitch. I'm not opposed to spending the extra money if it's something that's a better product. But I don't see a point in spending more money for something that is basically the same.

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/re...2cY5_zPwPD_BwE

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/re..._oa6Kq77_D_BwE

I'm not necessarily going to order it from summit, but I figured providing links for the different products on the same site makes comparing easier. I'm also up for any other quality brands that are on par (draw-tight, curt, ect...).

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97 XJ SE - DD/Light Trail Rig - The War Wagon
75 CJ5 with a badly chopped CJ7 Tub - Pandora
96 Land Rover Discovery - Black Dog; possible trail toy
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Unread 06-23-2014, 10:09 AM   #2
Ross
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dagr8tim View Post
I need to replace the hitch on my 97 XJ. Currently I have a class III 2" receiver. I'm looking to replace it with something similar.

In my case, I tow a 4x6 utility trailer that weighs about 500 pounds, and cannot think I would ever put more than 1,500 pounds in it for a total weight of 2,000 pounds. I do however want to install a set of D ring brackets that key off of a 2" square tubing draw bar.

I'm trying to figure out if I can get away with the Reese class III or if I should spend the extra money on a Reese class III/IV hitch. I'm not opposed to spending the extra money if it's something that's a better product. But I don't see a point in spending more money for something that is basically the same.

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/re...2cY5_zPwPD_BwE

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/re..._oa6Kq77_D_BwE

I'm not necessarily going to order it from summit, but I figured providing links for the different products on the same site makes comparing easier. I'm also up for any other quality brands that are on par (draw-tight, curt, ect...).
I would get whichever one will mount the tightest and leave you with the most ground clearance, as long as you are sure it will meet your future needs. I am not sure what the max towing is on your jeep but it would suck to find out that down the line you want to tow something heavier.
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Unread 06-23-2014, 10:18 AM   #3
dagr8tim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ross View Post
I would get whichever one will mount the tightest and leave you with the most ground clearance, as long as you are sure it will meet your future needs. I am not sure what the max towing is on your jeep but it would suck to find out that down the line you want to tow something heavier.
XJ is rated for 5,000 pounds. I'd never consider going near that because it was scary enough towing nearly 2,000 pounds. Class III is also 5,000 pounds, so from a towing standpoint, the cheaper one would work.

My question has to do with the fact that I want to use the trailer hitch as a recovery point and wonder if the more expensive hitch would hold up better. Not sure what they mean by a Class III/IV.

Before I get any flack about using a hitch as a recovery point. I have already upgraded to a set of JCR sill reinforcement plates that use half inch hardware to mount the hitch/gas tank skid. Currently I have 10 half inch bolts holding the gas tank skid to the subframe, and 8 of those bolts go through the trailer hitch.
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97 XJ SE - DD/Light Trail Rig - The War Wagon
75 CJ5 with a badly chopped CJ7 Tub - Pandora
96 Land Rover Discovery - Black Dog; possible trail toy
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Unread 06-23-2014, 10:42 AM   #4
Ross
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dagr8tim View Post
XJ is rated for 5,000 pounds. I'd never consider going near that because it was scary enough towing nearly 2,000 pounds. Class III is also 5,000 pounds, so from a towing standpoint, the cheaper one would work.

My question has to do with the fact that I want to use the trailer hitch as a recovery point and wonder if the more expensive hitch would hold up better. Not sure what they mean by a Class III/IV.

Before I get any flack about using a hitch as a recovery point. I have already upgraded to a set of JCR sill reinforcement plates that use half inch hardware to mount the hitch/gas tank skid. Currently I have 10 half inch bolts holding the gas tank skid to the subframe, and 8 of those bolts go through the trailer hitch.
I had an 01 Grand and towed a 3500lb camper trailer for one summer and it was horrible. I got rid of the Grand with in the rear because it sucked so bad at towing.

The Cherokees are unibody so I suppose any recovery point would be less than ideal when compared to a vehicle that has a full frame. The heavier hitch did seem to have and additional mounting point. That may make it better suited as a recovery point.
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Unread 06-23-2014, 01:29 PM   #5
dagr8tim
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I broke down and emailed Reese and here is the response:

Quote:
Hi Tim.

Actually, they are both the same hitch with the same specs and shipping weight. The 51001 is noticeably less expensive because we only offer a 3 yr warranty as opposed to the lifetime warranty on the 44088.

Thank you,

Don Reneaud
So there you have it. I can get the cheaper one for $89 from summit or spend $142 on the same hitch from other retailers.
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75 CJ5 with a badly chopped CJ7 Tub - Pandora
96 Land Rover Discovery - Black Dog; possible trail toy
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Unread 06-23-2014, 03:07 PM   #6
smccollamjr
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Hey Tim! I had a Sure Pull 2" receiver on my XJ. It tucked up pretty tight to my bumper. I pulled close to 5k lbs with it several times and the hitch held up fine. I also used it for recovery with no issues. You can see pics of it in my build thread on JeepinWV.
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Unread 06-24-2014, 06:39 AM   #7
Ross
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dagr8tim View Post
I broke down and emailed Reese and here is the response:



So there you have it. I can get the cheaper one for $89 from summit or spend $142 on the same hitch from other retailers.
Usually both class IIIs and IVs hitches are rated for at least 5k, sometimes a class III less. I am not sure why they consider the more expansive one a class III/IV with the towing rating they advertise. Usually the rule in recovery is at least 1.5 times the weight of the vehicle. Neither hitch meets that standard and I wouldn't be comfortable with them as a recovery point but for light trailers I would be fine with even the less expensive one.

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Unread 06-24-2014, 12:14 PM   #8
dagr8tim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smccollamjr View Post
Hey Tim! I had a Sure Pull 2" receiver on my XJ. It tucked up pretty tight to my bumper. I pulled close to 5k lbs with it several times and the hitch held up fine. I also used it for recovery with no issues. You can see pics of it in my build thread on JeepinWV.
Hey Steve, long time no see. I remember your XJ, and liked it alot. I think I'm going to go for the $89 one and call it a day.

These are the recovery brackets I have on my hitch now that I will be transferring.

http://www.detoursusa.com/c3r.php
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97 XJ SE - DD/Light Trail Rig - The War Wagon
75 CJ5 with a badly chopped CJ7 Tub - Pandora
96 Land Rover Discovery - Black Dog; possible trail toy
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Unread 06-24-2014, 12:36 PM   #9
Ross
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Something to consider is hitches are designed for rolling weight, not dragging that amount of weight out of the mud. I would think about a legit recovery point in addition ( but not attached) to the lesser expensive hitch.
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Unread 06-25-2014, 01:54 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ross View Post
Usually both class IIIs and IVs hitches are rated for at least 5k, sometimes a class III less. I am not sure why they consider the more expansive one a class III/IV with the towing rating they advertise. Usually the rule in recovery is at least 1.5 times the weight of the vehicle. Neither hitch meets that standard and I wouldn't be comfortable with them as a recovery point but for light trailers I would be fine with even the less expensive one.
.


The 5000 pounds is already a WLL (working load limit) meaning that the 5000 pound hitch has a breaking strength in excess of 15000 pounds under DOT rules which require that the WLL be no more than 1/3 the breaking strength. It will actually be more than that because the 5000 pounds is arrived at as a combination of factors, not the least of which is the breaking strength of the parts.

That is why the receiver is the best rear tow point for recovery.


.




And, it makes good common sense because who anchors an add on tow point more securely than a receiver hitch?
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Unread 06-25-2014, 06:37 AM   #11
Ross
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I suppose there really aren’t many options with a uni body and he has installed reinforcement plates. The set up will definitely work for his towing needs. If people are doing it and with no problems I guess it is a decent option.

If you look at the design of a hitch it just seem the side brackets are not going to be as strong as the cross bar where the hitch mounts. I still wouldn't be comfortable with it, esp for side pulls. But that is just me. I had a uni body jeep as a tow vehicle for a year and I wasn’t even comfortable with it as a tow vehicle for well under it rated limit.
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2001 TJ, 33 trxus MTs , W, locked, belly up, some armor.

"If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time." Zig Ziglar
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Unread 07-04-2014, 01:02 AM   #12
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Im having a hard time thinking of a warranty related failure for a hitch.i winder if they would sell you one for $25 with no warranty. Probably a safe item to have without.

For recovery, most points attach with 2 bolts in 1 spot on the frame. The hitch is 4-8 bolts over a much larger area, its better.
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Unread 07-04-2014, 10:14 AM   #13
dagr8tim
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The factory rear recovery hook on an XJ uses 2 of the bolt holes that go through the holes as the receiver and gas tank skid use. I gotta figure if the engineers at Jeep thought that 2 bolts were enough, then my receiver that uses 8 bolts to connect to 1/8" steel renforcement plates on both sides of the subframe should be enough.
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Jeeping - The art of getting dirty & going broke while slowly heading nowhere, and taking all day to do it.

97 XJ SE - DD/Light Trail Rig - The War Wagon
75 CJ5 with a badly chopped CJ7 Tub - Pandora
96 Land Rover Discovery - Black Dog; possible trail toy
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Unread 07-10-2014, 02:51 PM   #14
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I'd say go with the 2inch receiver type, because there a more options for the 2 inch receiver, even though you don't need it based on your trailer weight. In other words you can buy more optional equipment to go in the 2 inch receiver if you choose to do that. Like the rear freight bumper that can help haul gear without a trailer. 2 inch equiment is easier to find in stores also.
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Unread 07-10-2014, 05:06 PM   #15
dagr8tim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbacus View Post
I'd say go with the 2inch receiver type, because there a more options for the 2 inch receiver, even though you don't need it based on your trailer weight. In other words you can buy more optional equipment to go in the 2 inch receiver if you choose to do that. Like the rear freight bumper that can help haul gear without a trailer. 2 inch equiment is easier to find in stores also.
Both I was looking at were Class III hitches with 2" receivers. They were the exact same part, the only difference was the price and the warranty.
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Jeeping - The art of getting dirty & going broke while slowly heading nowhere, and taking all day to do it.

97 XJ SE - DD/Light Trail Rig - The War Wagon
75 CJ5 with a badly chopped CJ7 Tub - Pandora
96 Land Rover Discovery - Black Dog; possible trail toy
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