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Trailer couplers Not all the same.

Frank DeWitt

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
12/17/2019
We all recognize this coupler
but it turns out there are two very different types. The first one makes the nut underneath captive so it can't turn once the coupler is connected to the ball.


And one that is free to turn at any time.


The one that is "free to turn" is held by a nylon-insert lock nut but that's all. It is free to work it's way lose while you are driving. Also, if you have the coupler locked closed, or even locked to your vehicle. all it takes is a socket wrench to remove the nut and un-hitch the trailer.

Unfortunately I have one of these on a welded on coupler.
 

OTTO-Sawyer

Subscriber
Age
57
Last Subscription Date
07/15/2019
Easy Enough to remedy even if the coupling is welded on like yours is.

Either go the Easy Route and buy another coupler to rob the inner parts out of and swap them (then resell the new one with the nylock nut put back in it) or make up a lock plate to capture the nut in the one you already have.

Or take yours apart and cross-drill it for a castle nut & cotter pin. (Won't STOP a Thief, but would at least slow them down and maybe deter them while eliminating the possibility of it loosening while driving).

:salute:
 

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Frank DeWitt

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
12/17/2019
Yes, I have ordered a "Repair kit" that contains all the parts but the coupler body. If that dosn't work I will make a plate. I just wanted to make people aware of what might be under there. The first one I messed with had the locking plate so I assumed they all did.
 

Glenn Ayers

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
02/18/2019
I have NEVER heard of a nylock nut coming loose on a trailer hitch .... have you ?


I think you should be more concerned about your ball nut needing tightened ... sheesh !
 

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Frank DeWitt

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
12/17/2019
I have NEVER heard of a nylock nut coming loose on a trailer hitch .... have you ?

I think you should be more concerned about your ball nut needing tightened ... sheesh !
I personally have not had a nylock nut come lose.

It's a picture from the internet, not mine.

The subject came up when a guy on another forum wrote that his coupler had come off while driving. Investigation showed no nut. When he hooked up he had jumped on the back of his trailer to confirm that it was in fact coupled.
 

DCAmp

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
02/17/2020
I had one with the nylon nut come loose. I changed it for the plate lock type. Be sure to check the weight rating of the coupler and ball you are purchasing. I have seen them from 5000lb. to 10000lbs for almost the same price.
 

Power

Registered
I had one with the nylon nut come loose. I changed it for the plate lock type. Be sure to check the weight rating of the coupler and ball you are purchasing. I have seen them from 5000lb. to 10000lbs for almost the same price.
I have seen it happen!

2 summers ago, as some men in one of our town pickups were driving truck over curb cut to the storage area, the trailer popped off ball, blocking street. The tongue dropped and caught the street side of the concrete curb cut, breaking the safety chains, bending back the jack, and damaging the socket, which was now on the road. I helped chain the trailer up so we could drag it out of the street. We looked for parts, but never found the nut, which probably fell off a few miles back.

I looked at another trailer parked there, and saw only a nylock nut, as per Frank's picture. I was surprised, but when things are competitive bid, guess corners are cut. I told them to suggest to maintenance that they put some weld on nuts and on ball nuts. I said tell them if they ever have to remove ball or hitch lock, air axe will quickly take care of welded nuts.
 

uglyblue66

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
11/07/2018
Something apparently has changed over the years because when i built some trailers in the 90's and early 2000's the couplers I bought said DO NOT WELD to trailer.
Now I see it done all the time. :shrug:
That or some one used the top holes for mounting with bolts. I use the side holes.Another thing I read on the coupler it's self,do not mount by top holes. Well uh, why are they there?
 

Scotty 2

Registered
Over here on small trailers (up to 750kgs all up) these are used. Over that weight rating ones with various brake thingoes are used.
Strong as.
Cheers Scott

 

Sonny Reese

Registered
The bulldog kind don't work for me.--I got tired of fighting to get them closed, and cut them off and tossed them in the junk.--Now have the good style and no more problems.
 
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