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Winching up smart car


jambro

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Can anyone help me? I would like to see pictures of your smart car and what you have going through the tow hooks to winch it up onto the hauler bed. I was told you cannot hook the winch directly to one of the hooks and just pull up, seems like it would cause damage.. I will probably pick up the car when I get to Fla next week, I figure there will be more available there than here in NJ.

If you can't get the pics to post on this site you can send them to my email: Jambro@embarqmail.com

 

Thank you all, Have a merry Christmas.

John

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When I first loaded the smart I used a nylon strap between the tow hooks - not a good idea as the aluminum crash bar behind the bumper cover started to deform. Toterman made me a bar like the one he uses and it works great.

 

Don't have a pic, but it is a piece of hollow bar stock with slots on each end to slip over the tow hook eyes, holes for pins to retain them, and an eye bolted and welded to the center for the winch hook.

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We aligned our winch with the right, front tow hook and elevated it so it was a fairly straight pull. We have always winched our Smart up onto the bed using only the one hook and have not had a problem in three years.

 

I unintentionally stress tested the tow hook one time while unloading the Smart. I backed the Smart onto the ramps and temporarily set the brake. I attached the wench line but forgot to tighten it before releasing the Smart brake. When the wench line snapped tight it broke a weld on the wench arm but didn't bother the tow hook at all.

 

Walkerl

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Ok. To answer your question. Most of us have a bar that attaches to the rear tow hooks. Mine has clearance for the tow hook to pass through and then you attach the winch to the bar.

 

Some buy an after market hook that has threads you can bolt a bar to. And then tow from that.

 

No right or wrong answer. Just personal perferance. Mine tilts with the angle of the Ramps. Others wants a solid mount that cout put stress in angles not good during the loading process.

 

Loading my car tomorrow and will send a photo.

 

JC

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Like said previous can do this a few ways, see pics on what I did. Used a pipe, large washers and two large nuts and bolts. Welded washer and nut inside end of pipe. Easy to set up been using for 5yrs no issues. I have changed the winch pulley arm and other things though last year. See other albums.

 

https://plus.google.com/photos/112516511238375316586/albums/5362503574829080769?banner=pwa

 

Bill

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I use just the one front tow eye and connect the cable with a turning block and winch hook. The turning block is used to slow down the car as it is loading. I am more comfortable with half speed that the turning block gives me than I was with the faster speed without it. I can't seem to get pictures small enough to load on this forum. Merry CHRISTmas and a happy New Year to all. Charlie

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I don't like the hitch setup - as Rocky knows. But it does work if you build it right....

 

Why don't I like it? 1) cost - you have to add the hitch 2) the riser has to be built pretty stout. The amount of flex in some I have seen is pretty scarey. 3) you cannot offset the pull point if you need to. 4) There is a lot of leverage (twist) exerted by the rise on the mount points on the car. Far more than a straight pull from a hitch would give you since the riser has to be pretty tall. I don't know if this is an issue with structure - over time - or not. Perhaps not, since people have been doing it for some time. But it does give me "pause".

 

The only advantage I can see to the hitch method is the fact you clear the bed edge with the cable. And that is not really an issue with the tow eye method....it is easily resolved.

 

Gregg's two piece pulley system is the best out there at the moment. I keep meaning to build one like that. It is easy to handle and works well.

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Don't have a pic, but it is a piece of hollow bar stock with slots on each end to slip over the tow hook eyes, holes for pins to retain them, and an eye bolted and welded to the center for the winch hook.

 

So Dennis, where did you get the tow hook eye bolts?

 

Kent

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"So Dennis, where did you get the tow hook eye bolts?"

 

 

One eye bolt under the passenger carpet. At the time I had a gray market smart, so I had one of my customers in Canada purchase another and send it to me. Now you can probably get one from a Mercedes dealer.

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We aligned our winch with the right, front tow hook and elevated it so it was a fairly straight pull. We have always winched our Smart up onto the bed using only the one hook and have not had a problem in three years.

 

I unintentionally stress tested the tow hook one time while unloading the Smart. I backed the Smart onto the ramps and temporarily set the brake. I attached the wench line but forgot to tighten it before releasing the Smart brake. When the wench line snapped tight it broke a weld on the wench arm but didn't bother the tow hook at all.

 

Walkerl

Google the word wench, you have a winch.

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  • 5 months later...

I went on E Bay and bought the eye bolts for $19.00. They seem to work. I use a piece of round stock, have holes with "farm tractor" lynch pins inserted in the holes at each end of the round stock, (Tractor Supply, Bigger Ace Hardware stores, and every farm tractor place in the country).... and large fender washers at the ends, and welded an eye bolt in the middle for the cable hook. Works great, stores in my tool box with the winch.

 

Bigtrailer

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