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Old 12-09-2013, 10:35 AM   #1
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Fabricating Your Own Receiver

Anyone built their own receiver? In consideration of my Chrysler 300 S project, I am looking at all ways to accomplish the right receiver to two my 25 Flying Cloud. There are stock receivers that can be modded of course, such as the way Andy T. does it. But then I thought, if I am going to a fabricator/installer, maybe I can have one custom made. I discovered that Reese actually sells "parts" from which a fabricator can build a hitch.
Trailer Hitches - Reese

It doesn't look that difficult for a good welder/fabricator. Any comments?
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Old 12-09-2013, 11:12 AM   #2
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Back in the late 1960's Chrysler cars had unibody construction and somewhere on the net I have seen a factory document to would show custom shops how to fabricate a hitch for uni-body cars.
Do you know anybody into old Mopars with some old shop manuals?
When I was a kid my grandpa owned a late 60's Dodge station wagon that pulled his travel trailer and I vaguely remember a long receiver hitch under the car with heavy steel braces - it came from the factory that way.

This probably doesn't help much but our 2002 Grand Cherokee has a unibody and here is what the hitch looks like. As you can see it has multiple fastening points and looks to be very strong. One item I would add/change is to make the receiver as long as the side rails - weld in a cross brace.

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Old 12-09-2013, 11:46 AM   #3
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It was common to fabricate them in the 70's before all the custom fit hitches became available. Possibly Reese could have some vehicle specific info in their old files.
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Old 12-09-2013, 11:52 AM   #4
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The biggest problem you will have is liability. One of the reasons many of the custom hitch places have gone to the wayside is because of liability. Though they may be able to build it and install it, if you are going down the road, it fails, trailer comes off and kills someone will you or their insurance company cover it (that is if they even have insurance)
Just something to think about,
Enjoy,
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Old 12-09-2013, 12:10 PM   #5
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I doubt liability would be a major concern as things are fabricated everyday in less than ideal conditions "in the field". Welding a hitch together in a shop environment is a piece of cake.
The cookie cutter after market hitches came along because they provided a quick solution for the auto manufacturer and the consumer which is much easier than searching out a competent fabricating shop.
A decent fabricating shop can undoubtedly build a better hitch.
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Old 12-09-2013, 12:54 PM   #6
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crispyboy,

Not saying it's not a piece of cake to do, question becomes, who is responable "if" it fails? My guess, "mstephens" is going to say, "not me" shop xyz built it. The insurance company he has his car insurance with is going to say "not us" since it was a custom product not placed on the car either by the factory or a shop that has insurance for this type of matter. If he takes a hitch from Reese and makes mods to it, their going to say "not us" since you did not use it based on factory specs and install guides.

So, unless the shop that does the work has this type of worked covered under their insurance policy, he could have a mess on his hands. And if you think a hitch won't fail, look at all the Chevy's that had them fail over the past couple years.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...tch-58202.html

Now understand, I personally have two custom hitches myself, one on a 1962 Ford Galaxie and one on a 1968 International Travelall. So I very much understand the process.

Just trying to open eyes to what can happen,

Enjoy,
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Old 12-09-2013, 01:13 PM   #7
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Paul Waddell, the O.P. is most surely aware of this, for what it's worth. I've always considered free legal advice worth what you paid for it.

Help him build a hitch.
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Old 12-09-2013, 01:48 PM   #8
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Back in the 60's my dad had an RV sales business. He outsourced all hitch installs to the local small town gas station / welding shop. Never a problem.

On my Dad's personal TV the welding shop would use the same hitch on any new car my dad would buy. There were a few adjustments needed but more or less worked fine.

These days it is a little more trickier as the vehicles are different in more ways than before. Attachment points are key too.
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Old 12-09-2013, 01:48 PM   #9
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Unless you can find an attorney that is a certified welder, the next best thing would be to seek out a race car/hot rod chassis fabricator. I'm thinking Cat City is probably Cathedral City and there are several good shops in Orange County you might talk to.
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Old 12-09-2013, 02:04 PM   #10
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Any shop worth its salt will have professional liability insurance - i.e. they make a mistake, insurance will pay for it. That's just a basic cost of doing business.

Just find yourself somebody who does custom work. Denis4x4's suggestion sounds like a good one to me.
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Old 12-09-2013, 02:21 PM   #11
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Old 12-09-2013, 02:21 PM   #12
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While driving this am I remembered I had met a fabricating genius at the last rally. He had built some amazing stuff for his RV. I am going to contsct him and see if he could be interested. So I have at lesdt one lead. Yes, OC has several custom car builders. That will be my backup. I assume all custom shop face the same issues of liability when chopping snd sectioning street rods, replacing motors, and rededesigning drive trains.

My final backup will be driving to CanAm
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Old 12-09-2013, 02:41 PM   #13
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For example, I would think this kind of place could do it.

http://www.occarsinc.com/What_we_do.html
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Old 12-09-2013, 03:11 PM   #14
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Curt makes a universal Class V that looks very easy to adapt. Part number 15901. The only mounting difference to the Curt unit for the 300 S are the side plates. I am no genius, but I think even I could dedign a proper side plate tp use this HD receiver. Then add an extension from the back of the draw tube to the rear axle mount and it is done. (always easy on paper! LOL)
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