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Flat towing... anyone do it??

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Bear Metal Kustoms, Aug 26, 2008.

  1. Bear Metal Kustoms
    Joined: Jul 31, 2004
    Posts: 1,857

    Bear Metal Kustoms
    Alliance Vendor

    I am planning on flat towing my little roadster behnd my 38 plymouth pickup down to Primer Nationals.. Has anyone done this? I plan on removing my driveline for the tow down.. Should I keep the steering wheel from being able to turn or should I just let it be? The car only weighs about 1400 lbs..I am building a tow bar but should it connect to the axle or to the frame? I am running hair pins on a dropped axle... here are pics of both vehicles.. Jason..
     

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  2. Sure it can be done with ease and success. I dont think you have much to worry about, just make sure your tow vehicle has good brakes. I think it will track OK if you don't tie off the wheel.

    I don't think it matters much where you attach it. Please use criss crossed safety chains, just in case it comes free, it wont go into another lane.

    I saw a guy over 4th of July weekend towing a little festiva or similar car with a newer fullsize Ford van.
    The van ended up on its side, little car was sitting on all 4 wheels, and fine.

    Just give yourself enough room to stop. Speed wobbles, floating front ends, and fish tails are not your friends.
     
  3. Bear Metal Kustoms
    Joined: Jul 31, 2004
    Posts: 1,857

    Bear Metal Kustoms
    Alliance Vendor

    I drag lots of trailers.. I even have a car trailer that I tow behind my F-150.. I just thought it would be cooler to run down the 38 with the roadster behind it.. Jason
     
  4. terrarodder
    Joined: Sep 9, 2005
    Posts: 1,101

    terrarodder
    Member
    from EASTERN PA

    You should be fine flat towing, thats all we ever did in the 50's. Let the wheel free and remember you have to stop two cars. give yourself enough room when stopping. Frame mount should work OK. Side note, I was towing my 34 Ford to the drags with my 56 Chevy and a bolt came out of the frame, I went around the corner but the 34 wanted to go straight, big dent in the front fender.
     

  5. GassersGarage
    Joined: Jul 1, 2007
    Posts: 4,728

    GassersGarage
    Member

    50Fraud towed his roadster behind his '34 Pickup all the time. Very cool looking. There are pics of it somewhere.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2008
  6. ZomBrian
    Joined: Jan 24, 2008
    Posts: 1,143

    ZomBrian
    Member
    from in IN

    Like this?

    [​IMG]

    I saw that going to Columbus for Hell On Wheels. Looked like they had a killer time, too!!
     
  7. jangleguy
    Joined: Dec 26, 2004
    Posts: 2,668

    jangleguy
    Member

    That's how I got my car to Bonneville last year. Didn't want to corner (sharp turns, in town), so I locked steering - towed straight then, but wore out a front tire (must not have had steering straight when I locked it) - Doh! I SHOULD have unlocked steering in town. Learn from my mistake and you should be fine.
     
  8. Johnny1290
    Joined: Apr 20, 2006
    Posts: 2,834

    Johnny1290
    Member

    I don't have anything to add except I think the idea is cool!
     
  9. HELLMET
    Joined: Apr 21, 2001
    Posts: 1,606

    HELLMET
    Member

    i'm going to flat tow my roadster with my 55 chevy truck. i'm going to make a tow bar for my roadster out of a model A wish bone and hook it to my front axle via mounts welded to the bottom of it.billy
     
  10. Bear Metal Kustoms
    Joined: Jul 31, 2004
    Posts: 1,857

    Bear Metal Kustoms
    Alliance Vendor

    That is kinda what I had planned.. I thought about drilling two large holes through the axle to bolt my tow plates through. I figure it would hold up.. If not, I can always drop another axle for it.. Jason.
     
  11. shoprat
    Joined: Dec 23, 2006
    Posts: 1,109

    shoprat
    Member Emeritus
    from Orange, CA

    I flat towed my 57 to the races for years. I put brackets under the bumper from
    the frame. Never had a problem.
     
  12. ProEnfo
    Joined: Sep 28, 2005
    Posts: 1,498

    ProEnfo
    Member
    from Motown


    A flat, rubber bungee cord looped around the wheel (bottom spoke works great on a tri-bar) and secured to to seat base will keep it straight and still allow the wheels to track around the corners/curves ...

    CC
     
  13. Cyclone Kevin
    Joined: Apr 15, 2002
    Posts: 4,071

    Cyclone Kevin
    Alliance Vendor

    I've flat towed my blue 34 Cpe from Victorville to Temple City and Home from Muroc when I thought that I hurt its eng. each time with a very short towbar with safety chains and leaving the wheel unlocked.The tow bar was made back in the day just for this type of thing- Good luck with the trip, and thank you for your partricipation in helping save the Broiler,
    CK
     
  14. jangleguy
    Joined: Dec 26, 2004
    Posts: 2,668

    jangleguy
    Member

    Yes, that's exactly what I should have done. NEXT time...
     
  15. ProEnfo
    Joined: Sep 28, 2005
    Posts: 1,498

    ProEnfo
    Member
    from Motown

    This one was just flat-towed to Bonneville from Detroit and back ... I would mount the tow bar to the frame like this....

    CC
     

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  16. Chuck-o-saurus
    Joined: Feb 22, 2008
    Posts: 34

    Chuck-o-saurus
    Member

    All I have to add . . . make it a long tow bar. It does matter. Shorter tow bars are much more inclined to whip. I've always left the steering wheel loose. With the tire center mounted just behind the king pin center and/or the king pin tilted backwards a bit (assuming you've done one of these), the rolling friction on the tires will inherently keep them straight going down the road. Consider some serious mud flaps or one of those dragging things under the back of an RV.

    And I still have those T doors.
     
  17. do we build cars on this board to be towed around??? drive that thing man!!! dont see the point if it aint broke, & it aint a full race car.
     
  18. Baumi
    Joined: Jan 28, 2003
    Posts: 2,765

    Baumi
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Seems to me like he wants to bring two cars to the show but only has one butt... so what´s wrong with that? You´ve got 2 asses?
     
  19. srosa707
    Joined: Jun 5, 2005
    Posts: 1,573

    srosa707
    Member
    from Sacramento

    I picked up a VW tow bar from a buddy. Im going to modify it for CHristinas modified. Its one of those "Just-in-case" deals. Plus, i just picked up a 64 econoline with a tow package, so im pretty much obligated to do it.
     
  20. Bear Metal Kustoms ...

    You might want to have a gander at the Flat towing, yes or no? thread (click HERE) and/or at the Geoff Miles & Steve Coonan: ROADTRIP! thread (click HERE).
     
  21. They are his cars he can do whatever he wants. I just don't get it thats all. I don't see why someone would pass up the chance to drive a roadster from los osos to Ventura, thats a bitchin drive. Every ride I've ever taken in a roadster has been super memorable, why pass that up? Maybe it doesn't run, or maybe its just another one of those novelty hot rods you cant really drive. If he does tow it up there i hope he parks it next to the purple people eater so they can take turns revving your their engines up every hour. Come on Jason drive that thing! Hasn't one of the main themes of primer nationals always been no trailer queens?
     
  22. 50Fraud
    Joined: May 6, 2001
    Posts: 9,877

    50Fraud
    Member

    Pay attention to getting the tow bar level. It worked well when I towed with the '34, but when I towed with the late model PU (tow bar angled uphill to the hitch) it did some strange and unnerving porpoising (Dave Lindsay photo):

    [​IMG]
     
  23. zibo
    Joined: Mar 17, 2002
    Posts: 2,346

    zibo
    Member
    from dago ca

    He's gotta have a friend he can trust and they can tag team them down ya know.

    Here's my old setup, but the old roadster wasn't running at that time either...
    (and it was a novelty car too!)

    [​IMG]

    TP
     
  24. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 4,129

    Truckedup
    Member

    40 years ago a lot of drag racers flat towed stock type drag cars to the track and back.Many had "tow hubs" so you could bolt freewheeling towing wheels and tires to the back so the rear gears,drivshaft and tranny output shaft didn't rotate.It was better than disconnecting the driveshaft and tying it up out the way.Sometimes when dealing with tight turns the towed vehicle front wheels do funny things and you might need a guy in the towed car to help with steering.
     
  25. gasheat
    Joined: Nov 7, 2005
    Posts: 714

    gasheat
    Member
    from Dallas

    One added suggestion. Remove the windshield or make a wide mudflap of rubber on the tow vehicle. The car being towed catches everything that your tires kick-up.
     
  26. Yup...built a set of tow hubs in '63 (couldn't afford the commercially made ones) for my '56 Chevy Gasser. It had a Hydro-motive trans, and 4:88 gears, so pulling the drive shaft every weekend, just wasn't an option. Pulled it from Maplewood, NJ to Island, Atco, Flemington, Old Bridge, York US 30 and Cecil County, MD. Never a problem.
     
  27. bobw
    Joined: Mar 24, 2006
    Posts: 2,368

    bobw
    Member

    [​IMG]
    I flat towed my Crosley to the strip & back a month ago, behind my S-10. 500 mile round trip. It follows like a little puppy.
     
  28. Bear Metal Kustoms
    Joined: Jul 31, 2004
    Posts: 1,857

    Bear Metal Kustoms
    Alliance Vendor

    Ricky, I am gonna park next to you and REV my engine.....
    It does run. I had it at Santa Maria show.. I want to bring it down to Ventura with me but I have to deliver some wheels to a couple guys and need to bring stuff down with me. So... I need to bring the 38..It's a 1938 Plymouth truck, it's not like I am driving my Honda down with my white T and cuffed jeans...The car just doesn't have enough room in it to even store an extra pair of underwear..Jason.
     
  29. I'll flat tow for short (less than 50 miles) but anything longer I don't like to do it. How about one of those 2-wheeled dollies that rent-a-car places use?

    Bob
     
  30. Bellytanker
    Joined: Aug 18, 2007
    Posts: 124

    Bellytanker
    Member
    from California

    I haven't towed too far (about 45 miles), but it worked great. Standard trans, so just put the shifter in neutral, no restraint on the steering. See ya at the primer nats.
     

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