Why?

The mind behind Protect-A-Hitch: Rex Gretton

Protect-A-Hitch was designed, developed and tested in order to solve the problem every trailer, horse float or caravan owner faces.

How many bumps and potholes does a trailer find and reflect to the towing vehicle, even on a short trip? And how can the trailer (and tow vehicle) be protected from the rough ride caused by them?

In our case, we had an even bigger dilemma: protecting the drawbar of our camper trailer while towing it to Old Machinery Events behind our (bouncy) classic restored Chamberlain tractor.

A prototype design was drawn up and built. We integrated it into the camper’s drawbar while refurbishing it, and noted a massive improvement in the handling of the camper. You could see, and feel the difference! This was behind the tractor. But a bonus was noted when towing behind a standard car or utility. The usual bumps, pushing and shoving from behind, simply wasn’t there any more. Towing a trailer was never going to be the same.

We upgraded the camper trailer in due course and immediately wanted to carry out a similar modification to the drawbar. But with a perfectly good A-frame in no need of refurbishment, why cut it up? A new design was required, which could bolt on where possible and keep welding to a minimum. The hitch modification could be removed and relocated to our next camper or caravan that way.

This was done using 3D modelling software, keeping the assembly within our constraints and predicting exactly how the new design would behave.

When the modification was so easily fitted to the new camper, it was obvious that others may benefit from such a system. For peace of mind, we took the 3D files and newly assembled camper to mechanical engineers and got the design certified to the relevant Australian Standards for trailers up to 1.5 tonnes mass.

The change is noticeable at once. Hardly any bucking and shoving from the camper transferred to the tow vehicle. A much improved ride quality. And best of all, we now aren’t as fatigued when we arrive at our destinations.

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