Hitch for the Prius II

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Accessories & Modifications' started by darelldd, Jan 24, 2006.

  1. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    I know that Coastaletech offers the hitch, but I'm less than thrilled with their CS, so I'm looking elsewhere... and came up with this

    Anybody tried this one yet? I see no reason why it wouldn't work. This isn't rocket science! It is even cheaper than the Coastal one.
     
  2. jbarnhart

    jbarnhart New Member

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    Coastaltech has 2-in as well as 1 1/4 as I recall. I'd say "give Dave a chance" as several folks have purchased items from him recently and say they've gotten quick shipping. I'm about to get the 2-in myself for a future bike rack.
     
  3. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    thanks jbarn -

    Yeah, I know Dave has two sizes. I should have mentioned that I'm only interested in the 1.25 size since I've standardized on that ever since getting sedans over trucks.

    Does anybody know Dave well enough to invite him over here, and show that we DO care are are excited about his stuff... but many of us aren't ordering because of his dismal track record?

    The "give him a chance" thing only goes so far. I've asked a few technical via email three weeks ago. I've got nothing back.
     
  4. kim.mpls

    kim.mpls Junior Member

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    I installed the Curt hitch tonight.

    The hardest part was that it was dropped on it's end in shipping by UPS and the end got bent so that the bolt holes were about an inch off. I called the company, they suggested bending it back with leveraged force. I used a sledge to give it a few wacks, and within about 15 minutes and a couple of tweeks, I bolted it on in about 10 minutes. It took me longer to figure out trimming the skirt/shield and getting that back on.

    I had plenty of clearance without jacking the car, and the garage was reasonably warm, so I'm pretty happy to have done the hitch and wiring in a few hours. The Curt hitch came with a drawbar with about a 2" rise (brings it to just the right height).
     
  5. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    My Curt hitch arrived this evening... and I had the same situation of the bent flange. Haven't had a chance to deal with it yet, but I'll take pictures when I get it straightened out and bolted up!
     
  6. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    Kim -

    I just installed my hitch. Trimming the underpan is a bit of a booger, isn't it? Not to mention how it mounts. Could they use more different fasteners? You need a screw driver, a socket and a plug-puller... not to mention just yanking off that other weird one. Consistancy? NOT.

    Question for you though - the supplied bolts were too long for the front-most position. The bolt would bottom on the frame member before tightening. I just re-used one of the tow ring bolts for that, and the new bolt for the rear hole. Did you find this too, or did you just crank that long bolt in there?

    I also found it was plenty easy bolting it up with the car on the floor. Didn't even bother with the ramps.
     
  7. kim.mpls

    kim.mpls Junior Member

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    I'll admit, I looked at the thickness of the tow hook metal, and compared it to the hitch, and decided to reuse the original bolts. They came off clean and the heads where in good shape. And they went on with plenty of room to tighten.

    I did use the kids' foot stool to hold the hitch up into place so I wouldn't have to lift too much. It seemed to work pretty well. The box suggestion earlier tipped me off to having some inanimate help under the car to keep my arms freer for bolting.
     
  8. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    Good to know on the bolts. I'll let hitch-web know. I've used those guys for LOTS of hitches, and they take this info to heart and share it with subsequent buyers. That NOBODY has yet told them about it is kinda sad, though obviously not a show-stopper.

    In the past, I've used a milk crate to hold hitches up, but with this one, I simply lifted one end and could bolt it loosely while I went around to the other end and bolted it into position as well.
     
  9. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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  10. kim.mpls

    kim.mpls Junior Member

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    We went to Chicago with the new hitch & wiring, a small trailer, and home with 2 pocket doors for our victorian home. It towed beautifully all 900 miles, including through the crowded and aggressive traffic of Chicago. Aside from the typical "trailer noises", I hardly knew it was back there. Granted I learned how to drive with a trailer quite a while ago, and am more attentive to accel and braking accordingly. About 3-5 mpg less than usual, but at freeway speeds, 41 mpg with a trailer is pretty delightful (outside air temp averaged about 30' F during most of the towing).
     
  11. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    Man, that's awesome! 41mpg??? Any pictures of your "rig?" I'll hook up my trailer and snap some pictures eventually. My little trailer only weighs about 200 pounds with the sides on... but has a theoretical capacity of 1500 pounds. It'll never see that! :)
     
  12. kim.mpls

    kim.mpls Junior Member

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    No pics yet, but it's pretty simple to imagine. Salsa Red with Harbor Freight 4 x 8 folding trailer with 12" wheels. I did put an LED taillight kit on the trailer for fun and to avoid possibly blowing my fuses unnecessarily.

    I was really surprised and very pleased at how well the Prius towed!
     
  13. joelparks

    joelparks New Member

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    I installed the Curt hitch too, in December . I ordered mine from eTrailer.com and have had good luck with them in the past.
    And guess what? The hitch came with one of the flanges bent! I got a RMA number from eTrailer but then decided I didn't want to eat the shipping and to try straightening it myself. Like Darell I used a forked tree in the yard (and my three year old was curious about what I was doing but he didn't suggest any other trees that needed straightening). I was surprised at how easy it was to straighten, I was expecting it to be a bit stiffer.
    I also bought the Draw-Tite wiring adapter for the Camry and attempted to modify it for the Prius pin-outs. But I didn't get it quite right, and I have yet to get back to it. Brake and Turn signals work correctly but the tail lights don't come on when the headlights do. Most of my trailering has been in the daytime so far...
    My trailer is pretty small too. about the smallest kit trailer, 8" wheels, stake sides, I'll take a picture sometime maybe this weekend. Not at all glamorous.
    By the way I ordered the Curt from eTrailer before I even knew that Coastal had one. Although if I had ordered the Coastal I would have been pissed when it arrived and I found I had to weld safety chain keeper rings to it - I doubt I would have noticed that omission before ordering.
    Oh I almost forgot the other trailer - my new used Sunfish on a Load-rite Lil' Hauler. I'll take pictures of both

    Edit: the wiring adapter parts I got from eTrailer were: 18193 MODULITE ADAPTER (PLUGS INTO 4-POLE) and 18308, T-ONE CONNECTOR. It is the T-One connector that has to be rewired, and luckilly Darell has posted a great write up on how to do it: http://www.darelldd.com/ev/prius_trailer_wiring.htm
    - I just must not have done what he did!
    I had previously ordered the 18187 Modulite Lite Adapter but then studied the instructions and realized that I had more bulbs on my trailers than the 18187 is rated for, so I ordered the 18193 while I was ordering the T-One Connector that I had read about somewhere else on this site in December...
     
  14. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    Amazing what a bit of leverage can do, eh? I actually just used the inertia of the whole thing to bonk the flange straight. I didn't use a forking tree! :)

    I can't guarant-freaking-tee that I wouldn't have known! This is the first I've heard of it. Ah-hah! Another good reason to go with something other than the Coastal product.

    Err. Yeah. Somebody needs to check that! I didn't follow my own instructions, of course. I followed Nate's, and then attempted to write my instructions to match. I checked and re-checked, but that doesn't mean I didn't screw up! I expect somebody to let me know if they find something I indicated incorrectly. And then I'll blame Nate.
     
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