Q. What trailer/caravan weight can be towed with the 5 tonne Hitch-Ezy coupling?
A. Trailers weighing up to 5 tonne can be towed behind a vehicle weighing up to 8 tonne.
Q. What is the maximum advised draw bar weight?
A. The dynamic testing of Hitch-Ezy was performed with a resting draw bar weight of 500Kg. The coupling withstood a peak down force of 2 tonne applied 2 million times during the dynamic testing.
Q. Can Hitch-Ezy be ordered on any new trailer/caravan?
A. Yes. Hitch-Ezy fully complies with all relevant Australian Design Rules and the Component Registration Number is 47868. We are happy to speak with any trailer manufacturer who is unfamiliar with Hitch-Ezy.
Q. Is retrofitting to existing trailers easy?
A. Yes. See mounting bolt pattern document also on this website. This pattern will align to the 4 and 6 bolt patterns used by most other coupling manufacturers.
Q. Do I have to use all six mounting bolts?
A. No but you must use at least the front and rear pairs of boltholes. When only 4 bolts are used the coupling is de-rated to being suitable for towing up to a maximum of 3.5 tonnes.
Q. My trailer has the coupling mounted between the A-frame members so will Hitch-Ezy fit?
A. The maximum width of the routinely supplied square look Hitch-Ezy’s body is 105mm. There is an optional “Round body” style that is available at no extra cost. The maximum width of this rounded version is 99mm. Technical drawings of both versions can be downloaded from this website.
Q. Can the coupling be mounted on the underside of a drawbar’s coupling mounting plate?
A. Yes. When the body of the coupling is mounted upside down one simply rotates the longitudinal shaft through 180 degrees so that the mouth of the main sleeve is again facing down and able to engage the tow-pillar. There is a mechanical block to rotating the main sleeve through 180 degrees within its yoke.
Q. Which tow-pillar shank diameter should I order?
A. Order the shank diameter that matches the ball-mount hole in your tow-bar tongue or weight distribution head (WDH). A standard 50mm tow ball has a 7/8² (22mm) diameter shank. A 70mm tow ball has a 1.25² (32mm) diameter shank. Also refer to weight distribution hitch questions.
Q. Is any tow bar tongue suitable?
A. The top face of the tow-bar tongue has to be free of any obstruction within a radius of 71mm of the centre of the ball-mount hole. A thin stainless steel plate bearing a label is supplied with each coupling. This plate is bolted into position with the tow-pillar and thereby establishes that there is sufficient clearance around the ball mount hole for the coupling to come to a jack-knife position without hitting other parts of the tow-bar or WDH.
Q. Is a handbrake supplied with every coupling?
A. Yes. Our handbrake is made from marine grade stainless steel and slots under the rear of the coupling’s body. The handbrake folds down below the 120mm maximum height of the engaged coupling.
Q. What is the height of the top of my drawbar relative to the top of my tow-bar’s tongue when they are connected with a Hitch-Ezy coupling?
A. They will be at the exact same level unless the supplied 20mm thick WDH spacer is used. NOTE: Using this spacer on a tow-pillar with a 7/8” diameter shank de-rates the coupling to suitable for towing up to 3.5 tonne. Also refer to weight distribution hitch questions below.
Q. Do mounting bolts come with every coupling?
A. All couplings are supplied with high tensile mounting bolts, appropriate washers and nyloc nuts.
Q. Will opening the barn door or tailgate on my towing vehicle result in it hitting against a fully engaged Hitch-Ezy coupling?
A. The maximum height of the fully engaged coupling is 120mm above the surface on which the tow-pillar is mounted. When the 20mm thick WDH spacer is used the distance is 140mm but mounting the WDH head one hole down on its drop shank can offset this increase.
Q. Does Hitch-Ezy have an anti-theft mechanism?
A. Yes. There is a hole for a padlock below the stainless steel button that has to be pressed before the lid can be rotated to the release position. The supplied dummy tow-pillar can therefore be padlocked inside the coupling to deny hitching up. When hitched up the dummy tow-pillar stores inside the aluminium tow-pillar cover. It is not advisable to travel with the coupling padlocked to the tow-pillar proper as the padlock may clash with a WDH on cornering.
Q. Can Hitch-Ezy be used with a Mitchell Hitch?
A. Yes Hitch-Ezy is fully compatible with the Mitchel Hitch www.mitchhitch.com.au that is specifically designed for Land Rovers and Range Rovers.
Q. Can Hitch-Ezy be used on a torsion bar weight distribution hitch?
A. Yes. Hitch-Ezy does not move the point of articulation back from the WDH’s ball mount hole and therefore does not disturb the geometry that the WDH manufacturer intended.
Q. Why is the tow-pillar height raised with a spacer element when it is mounted on a WDH?
A. The “wings” of a WDH hold the torsion bars and they present an obstruction to down angulation of any coupling at a jack-knife position. Hitch-Ezy pivots at only 32 mm above the surface on which the tow-pillar is mounted while a 50mm tow-ball coupling pivots at 50mm above the surface on which the tow-ball is mounted. To preserve the range of down angulation deemed necessary by the WDH manufacturer we have used a 20mm thick spacer to raise our pivot level to 52mm.
Q. Does the use of the WDH spacer element alter the rated towing capacity of the Hitch-Ezy coupling?
A. Yes and No. The 7/8² shank tow-pillar is de-rated to 3.5 tonne when the spacer is used. The 1.25² shank tow-pillar retains its 5 tonne rating when the spacer is used.
Q. Which WDH systems should I choose?
A. We are not in a position to pass judgement on the quality of WDHs produced by an increasing number of manufacturers. Some are cast and some are fabricated. Some have a 7/8² ball-mount hole, some a 1.25² ball-mount hole and others a 1.25² ball-mount hole with a readily removable flanged reduction sleeve down to 7/8² diameter. If your trailer weighs above 3.5 tonne your options will be limited to WDH’s having 1.25² ball-mount hole.
The maxim that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link applies. You need to take account of your towing vehicle’s rated braked towing capacity (BTC) and the strength of the tow-bar and any WDH.
Lovells Springs offers a 4 tonne BTC upgrade for 200 series Toyota Landcruisers which exclusively uses our 5 tonne Hitch-Ezy as the coupling component of that upgrade.
Q. Can Hitch-Ezy be used with an Andersen Hitch?
A. Yes we produce a special tow-pillar that has an integral tapered lower shaft to suit the Anderson Hitch. Please contact us for details.
Download instructions from this website.
Q. What is the purpose of the thin stainless steel plate that has a label on it?
A. This plate is bolted into position with the tow-pillar and thereby establishes that there is sufficient clearance around the ball mount hole for the coupling to come to a jack-knife position without hitting other parts of the tow-bar or WDH.
Q. Do I always use the 20mm thick spacer that is below the O-ring bearing base washer fitted to the tow-pillar?
A. No. The spacer is for use with WDHs and its use on the 7/8² shank tow-pillar de-rates the coupling to 3.5 tonne.
Q. What is the supplied 6mm thick stainless steel plate with two holes for?
A. It fills in the slot at the rear of the coupling if the supplied handbrake is not used.
Q. What happens if I do not hold the rotating lid in the open position as the sleeve descends on the tow-pillar?
A. The coupling will not be able to descend to full engagement and locking-on will not occur so it is not safe to tow.
The Sticker on the top of the rotating lid reminds you to open the locking mechanism to achieve full engagement.
Q. What can make the rotating lid difficult to turn to the open (release) position?
A. When the locking ball bearings inside the main sleeve are under load it becomes difficult to turn the rotating lid. This will occur in two situations:
i) On engaging if you let the ball bearings weight bear on the head of the tow-pillar prior to rotating the lid or
ii) On disengaging if you wind up the jockey wheel before rotating the lid.
The lid will become easy to turn as soon as you reverse the inappropriate action.
Q. Does Hitch-Ezy automatically lock once it is fully engaged on the tow pillar?
A. Yes. The lid will rotate back to establish primary locking and then the stainless steel button will re-engage the notch in the lid to establish secondary locking.
Q. Will Hitch-Ezy disengage smoothly if there is an odd angle between the towed and the towing vehicles?
Q. Will Hitch-Ezy disengage smoothly if there is residual load between towed and towing vehicles?
A. The geometry of the coupling and tow-pillar guarantees that as the jockey wheel is wound up the coupling will always rise and roll-off in the direction of any residual towing force. The sleeve will never hook under the head of the tow-pillar as occurs with couplings based on a tow-ball.
Q. To connect do I have to use the reverse-in/roll-over coupling technique seen in the video?
A. No. Some people prefer coupling by positioning the mouth of the main sleeve generally over the tow-pillar and then allow it to self align on descent.
Refer to instruction document.
Q. Do I lubricate the tow-pillar?
A. Yes keep the tow-pillar and the top face of the base washer lubricated with high-pressure grease at all times.