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How Can I Tell If I Have A Stabilizer Hitch


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Dumb question of the day. Can I tell if I have a stabilizer hitch by it having a large handle that closes over the handle like the pic below?

 

qphA0d0.jpg

Edited by Jonno57
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Yes, that is a stabiliser hitch.

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yes that is the stabilizer, it has friction pads in that clamp onto the ball

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Brilliant, cheers. I've never seen a caravan that wasn't 25+ years old that didn't have that secondary handle but I kept reading that not all vans come with a stabilizer hitch. I thought I was maybe missing something.

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Al-Ko hitch stabiliser heads do have two handles, in your picture the second handle, which locks the hitch to the ball, is under the hitchlock fitted.

The large red handle is the friction pad lever which clamps th epads to the ball.

 

Winterhoff hitches only have one handle, which does both jobs.

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If you have a fixed flanged towball you must make sure you have the correct towball for the AL-KO hitch, this is evident by the extended neck below the ball.

gallery_6_1799_8849.jpg

 

You can see the difference in height from the image below, both balls are the same size in reality, the AL-KO one is on the right. gallery_6_1799_58156.jpg

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If you have a fixed flanged towball you must make sure you have the correct towball for the AL-KO hitch, this is evident by the extended neck below the ball.

attachicon.gifgallery_6_1799_8849. jpg

 

You can see the difference in height from the image below, both balls are the same size in reality, the AL-KO one is on the right. attachicon.gifgallery_6_1799_58156. jpg

 

I already have a van with a stabilizer hitch (now that I can identify it!) and it tows fine. I'm assuming then if I change caravans the towball will be fine for any other van.

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I already have a van with a stabilizer hitch (now that I can identify it!) and it tows fine. I'm assuming then if I change caravans the towball will be fine for any other van.

 

If it is a fixed flanged towball and it has the extended neck, or it is a detachable or swan neck then yes it should be OK.

 

The main issue is if it is a fixed flanged towball, it has to have the extended neck to allow for the bulk of the stabiliser as it articulates around the towball, if you have a standard towball in place it can under certain conditions pop the hitch off the ball with the resultant consequences of car and caravan parting company.

 

Is yours a fixed flanged towball, or is it any of the others mentioned?

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It is an Al-Ko AKS 3004 - http://www. al-ko. co. uk/pages/introduction-to-the-aks-3004. html has the manual(s) and maintenance instructions for you to download and keep / print out if desired.

Plus details of the correct towball requirements.

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  • 5 months later...
On 18/08/2017 at 13:24, Rodders53 said:

It is an Al-Ko AKS 3004 - http://www. al-ko. co. uk/pages/introduction-to-the-aks-3004. html has the manual(s) and maintenance instructions for you to download and keep / print out if desired.

Plus details of the correct towball requirements.

Just read this Rodders, it doesn't make a big deal about the ball. You could be forgiven for not picking up on it, the 60 mmm clearance.

Think I've  managed for years with no worries and only had ordinary balls :-)

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You need about 70 mm clearance between the centre of the ball to the bumper to allow for the high head to swivel for a stabiliser hitch .

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A standard non-Alko type ball will fit an Alko stabiliser hitch with no problem and you could carry on doing this for years.

But there is a risk of hitch disconnection. The Alko style ball costs around £13 for a flange type so it surely is not worth the risk for such a small outlay.

Graham

Unless otherwise stated all posts are my personal opinion 

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