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Old 06-12-2014, 08:16 PM   #1
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Tips for towing a barn find

I am picking up our new project on Monday, a 1961 Tradewind. It has been sitting for pretty much the last 15 years on a farm as the office, guest house, playhouse. Fairly solid and nicely original. I am taking a set of brand new rims and tires with me, have an appointment to have the bearings packed and will be pulling it with my Mercedes ML320 diesel with an Equalizer 6000 hitch. Also have my temp towing lights ready. What kind of tips do people who have pulled a barn/yard find have? We are moving 300 miles across Illinois - long and flat. I know not to go above 80 mph (kidding), but have never pulled something this old, having sat this long, this far.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:26 PM   #2
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bearings/axle

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Originally Posted by beatrix1 View Post
I am picking up our new project on Monday, a 1961 Tradewind. It has been sitting for pretty much the last 15 years on a farm as the office, guest house, playhouse. Fairly solid and nicely original. I am taking a set of brand new rims and tires with me, have an appointment to have the bearings packed and will be pulling it with my Mercedes ML320 diesel with an Equalizer 6000 hitch. Also have my temp towing lights ready. What kind of tips do people who have pulled a barn/yard find have? We are moving 300 miles across Illinois - long and flat. I know not to go above 80 mph (kidding), but have never pulled something this old, having sat this long, this far.
Stopping a few times to check the axle spindles for heat would be indicated here. You sure don't want to shear off a spindle/wheel while towing at highway speeds. Ed
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:29 PM   #3
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Go slowly at first with frequent stops to double check hitch on trailer for structural integrity and lights, as wiring may start to short out as vibration and rubbing damage it.
It's a good idea to have the separate light kit just in case, that you could mount to the back of the trailer and run the harness up to your Merc. I would probably run with them anyway instead of the trailer ones for peace of mind until you could look over the wiring condition.
It certainly looks like you have this well under control, kudos to you for using your God given common sense.

Goodluck and remember she may need some time to get use to moving again, so take easy and arrive alive.
Cheers
Tony
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:43 PM   #4
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Agreed, do the first few miles below 40 mph. Stop, check spindles, tires and hitch (everything actually, my last trailer the blackwater tank fell out a hundred miles from home on its maiden voyage). Have a chase vehicle if possible, with walkie talkies. Be patient, take your time, drive in low traffic hours and roads etc.
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Old 06-13-2014, 08:55 AM   #5
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Also:
  • Top vents and astrodome should be fully closed and either zip tied and/or wired to fixed brackets. Do not trust that lifters will work.
  • Bring cord or rope to tie door knob to entrance door handle in case latch is worn of faulty. This also goes for the refrigerator and all interior cabinets and drawers.
  • Remove any contents from above compartments and place on the floor.
  • Remove all snakes, four and eight legged creatures either alive or dead.
Good Luck!
Gary
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Old 06-13-2014, 09:11 AM   #6
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Rescues are fun. Just use common sense. Tow it like its a 1961 sitting for decades.
Take photos or it never happened!

Best of luck
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Old 06-13-2014, 09:56 AM   #7
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Be nice if the brakes and breakaway switch are hooked up. You will need a good battery in the trailer for the brakes. Should check them for function when the bearings are done. The wire connections corrode.
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Old 06-13-2014, 09:56 AM   #8
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A sign for the back window that reads "towing a 53 year old trailer that has sat for 15 years so back off!" And check the hubs for heat and the front frame for cracks or damage!
Cliff
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Old 06-13-2014, 10:21 AM   #9
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Another sigh in the window requesting any parts that fall off please be returned to me when you next see me pulled over on the side of the road. (Yes you laugh)
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Old 06-13-2014, 11:01 AM   #10
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Check the top

Make sure the AC shroud and everything else on top is secure. Towed my "out in the field by the edge of the woods find" home about a month ago. It's a '67 Overlander that I'm now in the process of gutting and fully renovating. Anyway, about a half mile into my journey on a two lane country road, I went over a small bridge with a rough transition from the road. The trailer bounced hard and exploded rust and rodent debris everywhere! Watched my AC shroud disintegrate as it bounced down the road. Thank goodness I was the only vehicle on the road at the time. The next bump was not so bad.
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Old 06-13-2014, 11:39 AM   #11
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Carry tools for small problems. I always carry a hand drill a hand riveter and rivets. Belly pans are a problem on these recoveries. I carry wire and zip ties too. Don't forget the duct tape.
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Old 06-13-2014, 11:28 PM   #12
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Rolls of Gorilla Tape.
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Old 06-14-2014, 05:24 AM   #13
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I just watched a YouTube bit on a Guy who discovered you can heat layers of Gorilla tape with a torch, then tap and die or machine the stuff. Its up there with JB Weld on the side of the road!
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Old 06-15-2014, 06:51 AM   #14
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One of the mods should make this thread a must read sticky at the top of the portal for people pulling God knows what, out of God knows where.
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