Tow Bar Extender?

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  • Tow Bar Extender?
  • Trimix

    You may just end up bending the bolts. Try some tow bar shops for ideas. Or trailer shops like Indespension.


    I drive an unnecessarily inappropriate 4×4 with a spare on the rear door.
    Ive just been given a tow-bar mount bike rack

    This might work, if i extend the tow bar with some sort of spacer, gonna need 6″ (at a guess. My imagination has two thick steel plates with the required bolt holes, joined by box or rsj.

    Is this a real thing? google isnt playing nicely.
    Is this a daft idea?


    You can get extensions with matching bolts but nowhere near 6 inch i think.That sort of length would certainly be unsafe for towing but should be ok for a bike rack.


    Good old Halfords do spacers in 1″ and 2″ flavors and long bolts. Ended up with a total of 4 inches to give just enough room for the tailgate to open with the rack tipped. Never did, but wouldn’t of fancied towing with it like that.

    Premier Icon johnikgriff

    I did this last week… I too have an inappropriate 4×4 with a spare wheel on the back (defender in my case).

    I went to my local trailer center and they had spaces and bolts. I used 3 1.5 inch spacers and a tow hitch that has a longer neck. I used a pendle carrier to hall 4 bike to glentress from Chester this weekend.

    Points to note. I still had to take a pedal off the bike closes to the wheel. Also the chap at the center said it is illegal to tow with more than 1 spacer and it was possible that I could get pulled over for having an illiagal tow bar, but he said if I kept (which I do) the pendle bit always attached I should be okay as it’s obviously used as a bike carrier.

    I didn’t bend my bolts with 4 160mm travel bikes,but they did lossen off, bearing in mind I had washers and 2 of us gave them a pretty hard swing to tighten. I just put locking nuts on an it was fine. Just saying keep an eye on them at first.


    If its a removable swan neck style, you may be able to get an extended model for that vehicle. Or a swan neck ball designed for a different vehicle by the same manufacturer but which still fits the receiver.

    But it sounds like you have a flange type, I don’t think I’d want a heavy rack off too many spacers. Once the bolts are tight a lot of the strength comes from the friction between the towbar and towball, by the time you’ve added several spacers and long bolts they are going to flex slightly, and suddenly the bolts become the weight bearing/stressed element and could fail without warning.


    Actually I have thought of a solution, not that cheap though…

    I just sold this:

    Add a 2″ spacer to one of those and you are getting close to 5″ in total I reckon. However, it needs a four hole towball. You can pick up rustier ones for less.


    Age of the bar and vehicle can be an aid. My 110 for example is of an age whereby the modern pain in the whatsit regulations for towbars didn’t exist and therefore can be modified. It wasn’t against any regulations to make your own and thus can be what you want. Now of course I wouldn’t suggest doing anything naughty but if you just managed to have a elderly towbar then it can be any shape you want. Get a bit of 6″ box section welded on.
    Of course it has to be mechanically sound but that’s easy.
    Towbars are very simple and relatively low spec. Improving an older one is dead easy if you can get it welded properly.

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