Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Narrandera, NSW
Re: Installing HR 1600kg towpack
All installed and ok, but not without some drama's...
I understand now that the taillights are easily removed. The instructions i have mention 3 screws, but there is only 2. They must be including the 2 screws below the lights. This is why i was confused. Remove the 2 screws, and pull. easy.
The problem i had (other than needing to fabricate a bracket to hold the plug in the std location..) was the bar doesn't really fit right. When installed and the bumper reinstalled, the tailgate hits the top of the bumper, badly. What caused this is the bends made in the beam of the towbar are not in the most ideal location- they could be made another 40-50mm or so toward the centre, and still fit with the profile of the car behind.
Because the bends protrude a few mm, 2 screws on the back of the bumper hit the bar, holding it out and raising the centre section up just enough to cause problems.
my solution, after messing around for a few hrs filing (and sanding drum in a dremmel works great) back i ended up predrilling and putting the screws in at a ~45° angle and cutting the plastic tabs off. This gave enough clearance, but still had the strength to hold the 2 plastic parts of the inside of the bumper together.
Its probably hard to understand without seeing what i mean, but i thought i'd post my findings so people in the future can be prepared for a little surgery.
I did take a few pics, but i haven't checked them as i had trouble trying to focus on the problem in poor light.
Overall, im happy the bumper is sitting correctly again, but i'm not that happy with the general construction of the bar- especially the section that protudes from the car. Its very messy and covered was covered in welding spots and even a small piece of mig wire, then painted over, which most flaked off after handling... in the region most handled.
The fact you have to cut the lower bumper holding screwhole off and the metal standoff where the screw holds directly below the towbar so the tongue fits is average. 1 less screw point to hold the bumper in its correct shape. The ford bar definitely is a lot neater visually.
If anyone would like some more info or for pics, email or pm me.