1 2
californiamilleghia
californiamilleghia SuperDork
9/16/20 4:43 p.m.

Hi 

How do you tie down your car onto your trailer ?

Do you tie to the chassis , suspension or tires/rims ?

and how do you hook it to the car ?  factory tow hooks , small
strap , tow truck hook  or ?????  or the straps over the wheels ?

How many tie-downs and are they tied nylon straps , ratchet
straps , chain or ?

I would like to do better , right now I have 4 ratchet straps that I normally hook around the suspension , plus a large chain with a couple long bolts ......

Do you cross your  straps in an X , 

and how do you hook to the trailer ?

In gear or out of gear ?

Lastly how do you hook your safety chain ?

I just see so many people towing down the highway with scary tie
downs and no safety chain.....

stay safe so you can race another day......

Patrick (Forum Supporter)
Patrick (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/16/20 4:48 p.m.

Have never used a safety chain but i do use 4-5 straps.  I've found fixed points relative to trailer(wheels, rear axle, lower control arm) are better because they let the car move.  If you tie to body points and the suspension bounces on a bump a strap can easily come off the hook.  In my enclosed trailer i went with e track bolted to the frame and over the tire straps and a couple redundant straps back to the built in recessed tie down hooks welded to the trailer frame

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/16/20 5:02 p.m.

4 nylon ratchet straps for me.  I like to cross them to the opposite side of the trailer.  I use the big 3333-lb truck straps.

Where I hook them honestly depends on how lazy I'm feeling that day and how far I'm going with it.  I prefer using somewhere that eliminates the most movement.  If I'm tying to the frame, I use the longest possible section of strap so that they don't get loose/tight every time the car oscillates.  If I can't do that, I'll try to attach to the outermost part of the suspension.  I used to worry about twisting or torquing the suspension components, but it's their job to handle acceleration and braking anyway.  I just don't overdo it and I haven't had any trouble.

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/16/20 5:08 p.m.

I want to invest in some of those tire/web things that strap the tires down, but they typically attach to E-track or D-rings.  My current trailer doesn't have a decent strong way to positively put either of those where they tie into a frame member.  I'd be attaching them to 2x8 PT pine boards and I'm not cool with that.

It seems like having tire-web tie downs that would suit for any vehicle that might be transported on the trailer, e-track would be the only way, which means a different trailer than what I have.

Patientzero
Patientzero HalfDork
9/16/20 5:12 p.m.

I go through the wheels with Mac's straps.  Fastest and easiest way for me.  It's particularly nice after the trailer has been sitting in the sun all day and you don't have to climb under the car and get 2nd degree burns.

 

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) UberDork
9/16/20 6:25 p.m.
Patientzero said:

I go through the wheels with Mac's straps.  Fastest and easiest way for me.  It's particularly nice after the trailer has been sitting in the sun all day and you don't have to climb under the car and get 2nd degree burns

Yup, through the wheels.  On the rears I do it like that, fronts I actually just hook the axle strap through a spoke, that way the splitter isn't in the way.

 Rears:

Fronts:

wae
wae UltraDork
9/16/20 6:26 p.m.

Oh E36 M3!  You're supposed to tie the car down to the trailer!?  That explains all the honking...

pirate
pirate HalfDork
9/16/20 6:31 p.m.

I go through the front wheels with short webbing with D Rings on both ends. Then use ratchet straps to front tie down points. In rear use same short webbing with D rings around rear axle. Then use ratchet straps to tie down points. I always load car with winch attached to short webbing with D Rings that wraps around frame member. I leave it snug as convenience for unloading and also extra  safety tie down. I bought all tie downs from Summit Racing.

Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter)
Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/16/20 6:35 p.m.

I need to get a set of actual car ratchet straps. Mine are something like 25' long and are a little bit overkill. 
 

I've never been a fan of crossing straps. By adding length to the strap, and angling it more perpendicular to fore-aft motion, it could stretch and allow more movement. Plus, if you do it at both ends there's potential for the car to flip over if things go badly - not that the car would necessarily survive intact regardless, but why complicate things. 
 

I prefer strapping to the suspension if it's robust enough, but on a car like my Miata with high spring rates I strap to the chassis. 

L5wolvesf
L5wolvesf Reader
9/16/20 6:38 p.m.

Tie to the chassis and/or suspension depends on the car, never to tires/rims

 

How many tie-downs – 4 min

 

Ratchet straps and/or chain or depends on the car – never bolts

 

Cross your straps in an X – Yes but depends on the car and trailer

 

How do you hook to the trailer? Depends on the trailer

 

In gear or out of gear? In

 

How do you hook your safety chain? To the receiver loops

Patientzero
Patientzero HalfDork
9/16/20 7:03 p.m.

Many trustworthy sources say you should never X your straps, including Mac's.  There are also demonstrations on Youtube of why you shouldn't.

People say you should also leave the car in neutral with the parking brake set.  I personally leave it in neutral until it's tied down and then put it in gear.(manual trans).

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
9/16/20 7:17 p.m.

In reply to californiamilleghia :

Going on 50 years now. Probably close to 300,000 miles.   I take  four 1 inch straps wrap them once around the knock offs  and bring them back to the start point. Fronts go out in front. Backs go to the back. 
 

First stop I run back to check tension.  Usually  one maybe two clicks.  It's good. 

Absolutely  leave it in neutral.  What's a parking brake?  Race cars don't got nutton like dat. 

dps214
dps214 HalfDork
9/16/20 7:58 p.m.

I've done it pretty much every way imaginable and never had any real issues with any of them. Straps through the wheels, wheel straps, chassis tie downs - both stock tow hooks and aftermarket add ons. Straps through the wheels tended to loosen up a touch once you started moving but would hold firm after the first re-tightening. Current primary towed car uses four aftermarket tow hooks. Front hooks are located at the front jacking points behind the front wheels so crossing is the only real option. The way the rears are laid out straight is the better option. I prefer crossed but I've done it both ways, a mixture as I just described, and others including a "semi-cross" (from one side, through the wheel, to the other side - trailer tie points were on the side rails of the bed) and a single strap though both wheels (that time we accidentally showed up to buy a car with 3.5 straps..oops). My car doesn't have a great front option so on the occasion it gets towed I use aftermarket hooks on the rear and wheel straps on the front. Usually leave it in gear/on the brake mainly because we have to put the nose of the trailer pretty far up in the air to get the car in. In our open trailer days the straps always seemed to succumb to the elements pretty quickly so we used cheap tractor supply heavy duty straps and replaced them pretty regularly. Since we moved to an enclosed we got a nicer set that are more appropriate lengths for our uses.

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/16/20 8:18 p.m.

I have tire straps- that surround the tire.  On the ramp there's a ring behind the front wheel and ahead of the rear, and then the other end goes to an eye that is on the front and rear of the trailer.

Like this https://www.amazon.com/Hauler-Bonnet-Ratchet-Tie-Down-Single/dp/B004HMW8ES

When I started pulling, I used small ratchets in the suspension, but I prefer the wheel straps.  Keeps the car on it's own suspension, and added to the trailer, I've never had any bouncing issues.

Ranger50
Ranger50 UltimaDork
9/16/20 9:15 p.m.

I do chassis points and if I can disconnect shocks and springs. Cross straps on rear. Your car makes laps/passes as it runs down the road not even turning a wheel. Why prematurely wear everything out?

Tom1200
Tom1200 Dork
9/16/20 9:54 p.m.

On the Formula 500 I use a strap that goes through the roll hoop and tension it with the winch than chain it at the front. At the back I use a ratchet strap through the rear chassis tubes. My small tilt trap doesn't leave much options.

On the Datsun I run a chain to the front tow point and  ratchet straps at the back attached to the traction bars. I cross the strapsnand have done so for the last 30 years.

I do use a chain at the back of both cars fixed to the chassis. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
9/16/20 10:23 p.m.
frenchyd said:


Absolutely  leave it in neutral.  What's a parking brake?  Race cars don't got nutton like dat. 

Ever hear of rally?

The most important thing is to check every time you stop. When I'm towing, I do a full check at every fuel stop. Haven't had a car get away on me yet.

Patientzero
Patientzero HalfDork
9/16/20 10:56 p.m.
Ranger50 said:

 and if I can disconnect shocks and springs.

Say what?

 

Ranger50
Ranger50 UltimaDork
9/16/20 11:22 p.m.

In reply to Patientzero :

I try to have the suspension rigid. In back, I'll put in placeholder "shocks", especially if they are a coilover. Most times I only have the rear axle to throw a loop over and tie down. Up front typically is harder given most everything is a mac strut, but I'll tie down to the chassis up front to avoid the bounce and thereby multiple passes/laps.

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
9/16/20 11:35 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:
frenchyd said:


Absolutely  leave it in neutral.  What's a parking brake?  Race cars don't got nutton like dat. 

Ever hear of rally?

The most important thing is to check every time you stop. When I'm towing, I do a full check at every fuel stop. Haven't had a car get away on me yet.

I did that the first 10 years or so. Then I began to notice nothing ever loosened up once I tightened it after the first stop. 

KyAllroad (Jeremy) (Forum Supporter)
KyAllroad (Jeremy) (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
9/17/20 6:06 a.m.

The Zoomboni in it's enclosed trailer gets tied down through/around lower control arms.  
 

On my buddies open trailer we tie down through the wheels.

Always leave the car in neutral so any motion isn't transmitted through the gears.

The Abomination gets 4 5000 pound straps. One on each corner. The suspension is stiff enough I tie to the chassis. It doesn't move so I leave it in gear. 

I used to cross strap cars. I don't any more. Couple of short videos on why you shouldn't cross strap a car. They are Facebook videos so if you can't see them, that's probably why.

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Ffacebook%2Fvideos%2F1494668444051480%2F&width=500&show_text=false&height=281

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Ffacebook%2Fvideos%2F1495440120640979%2F&width=500&show_text=false&height=281

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
9/17/20 8:54 a.m.
frenchyd said:
Keith Tanner said:
frenchyd said:


Absolutely  leave it in neutral.  What's a parking brake?  Race cars don't got nutton like dat. 

Ever hear of rally?

The most important thing is to check every time you stop. When I'm towing, I do a full check at every fuel stop. Haven't had a car get away on me yet.

I did that the first 10 years or so. Then I began to notice nothing ever loosened up once I tightened it after the first stop. 

You shouldn't find any loose ones, no. The check is for that one time in a decade. It's free and it gives you something to do while the fuel is pumping. 

Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter)
Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
9/17/20 9:32 a.m.
Keith Tanner said:

You shouldn't find any loose ones, no. The check is for that one time in a decade. It's free and it gives you something to do while the fuel is pumping. 

FWIW, I always do a trailer check whenever I stop. Check the straps, visual inspection of the tires, check the hitch and chains, etc. I do the same when towing the travel trailer, minus the straps, of course.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
9/17/20 10:27 a.m.

A walkaround trailer check at a fuel stop let me find a broken suspension point on a trailer more than 4000 miles into a trip - before something went terribly wrong. Just because it wasn't broken for the first five days doesn't mean it wasn't broken for the sixth. Kicking the tires is a legitimate thing!

1 2
Our Preferred Partners
f8hWiR24uUhBZOSoTMuEbaYCrDMttTaEl3cMT7bj1M2gRsCl76aF8OOuHAoealwE