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Old 07-31-2020, 08:56 PM   #1
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Blue Ox chain stuck

Has anyone else experienced the chains on the Blue Ox sway bars getting stuck/ wedged into the rotating piece of the trailer hitch? Iíve had a really hard time when attempting to get the chain off so I can detach the sway bars. Any advice for what to do when this happens?
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Old 07-31-2020, 09:48 PM   #2
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Yeah they tend to stick. If you give the the chain half a twist that helps. So does a bit of CorrosionX or WD40. The reduction in tension capacity of a slightly twisted chain is negligible.
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Old 07-31-2020, 09:57 PM   #3
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Has anyone else experienced the chains on the Blue Ox sway bars getting stuck/ wedged into the rotating piece of the trailer hitch? Iíve had a really hard time when attempting to get the chain off so I can detach the sway bars. Any advice for what to do when this happens?
I have an Equalizer hitch and if it is the same principle, you need to raise the trailers hitch and truck rear end with your power jack to lessen the tension..
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Old 08-01-2020, 06:35 AM   #4
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The first tensioned link when not twisted, will be perpendicular to the frame and hangs up between the Cam head and the tensioning body. When this happens I give the bar a couple hard kicks to free the chain up a bit. But better is to twist the chain so the link natural position is no longer perpendicular.
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Old 08-01-2020, 09:04 AM   #5
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LAWBC is most likely on the right path...as a dealer, we see it on a regular basis. If you have not raised the tongue jack to it's highest point prior to loosening the chain, you will almost always have an issue with it being "stuck".
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Old 08-01-2020, 09:25 AM   #6
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It sounds like BlueOX and Equalizer could take a page out of Andersen's book and introduce a tensioning system that is threaded on one end and then you could just insert the threaded end into the simple a-frame fixed connection and snug up the nut assembly.

In this day and age, users shouldn't be worried about a tensioning bar flying off and smashing their knuckles or teeth or a window in the tow vehicle!

There are threaded cable ends that can be crimped onto wire rope if this connection needs to move laterally (between the a-frame mount and load bar) or chains too. I deal with this stuff everyday with the work that we do, and the application makes sense to me.

Seems like an easy change to implement IMHO!

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Old 08-01-2020, 09:43 AM   #7
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Has anyone else experienced the chains on the Blue Ox sway bars getting stuck/ wedged into the rotating piece of the trailer hitch? Iíve had a really hard time when attempting to get the chain off so I can detach the sway bars. Any advice for what to do when this happens?
Raise the back of the truck to release all the tension of the spring bars and use a small crow bar to force the ling out.

In 5 years of using the Blue Ox this never happened to me.
I make sure that the chain links are aligned straight up and down.
Also the spring bars must be aligned the same with chain.
Lubricate the rotating head every so often and you should be good to go.
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Old 08-01-2020, 09:48 AM   #8
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When this has happened to me, it has been almost always due to too much tension still remaining on the bar. Lifting the tow vehicle just slightly higher then would allow me to slip the chain off.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:12 AM   #9
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It must be a placement or manufacturing tolerance thing then. Prior to twisting the chain half a turn, this occurred every time, regardless of how high I raised the jack, even to the point of having no tension on the bar, the chain was still jammed between the cam head and the body for my hitch.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:35 AM   #10
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With hitch locked over ball, raising vehicle and trailer to the point rig appears in driving trim—or slightly higher—sway bars are relatively easy to attach, and when ready to unhitch, relatively easy to detach. No kicking . . . no prybars . . . no bloody knuckles.
When attaching sway bars, chains should be “relaxed” with no more than a quarter turn to make capture slot. A long-handled BOX wrench is the tool of choice. Hang on tightly throughout attaching/detaching operations as considerable energy resides in those sway bars, or will once you get started.
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Old 08-01-2020, 11:23 AM   #11
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My experience with both Equalizer and Blue Ox is the tension bars are difficult to impossible to remove until the tongue is jacked up to relieve tension on them. It has to be that way or there would insufficient tension on the bars to provide weight distribution and sway control.

To attach the bars (or the chains attached the bars on the Blue Ox) the higher the tongue is the easier it is to attach them.



I always keep my body parts away from the bars when attaching or removing them just in case something breaks and tries to break a body part.
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Old 08-01-2020, 11:25 AM   #12
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silicon spray

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Has anyone else experienced the chains on the Blue Ox sway bars getting stuck/ wedged into the rotating piece of the trailer hitch? Iíve had a really hard time when attempting to get the chain off so I can detach the sway bars. Any advice for what to do when this happens?
Try a little silicon spray. We use it on the hitch, all the locks, and on the BO system. Works well and doesn't collect dirt.
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Old 08-01-2020, 12:13 PM   #13
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I don't get why so many are having problems with the BO system.
When I want to remove,the chains. I simply raise the tongue and TV high enough to relieve the tension. Unlock the tensioning device and rotate it.
The chains simply fall out of the slot.
Never once have I had a jam problem. Been using the BO for 5+ years traveling over 40,000 miles.
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Old 08-01-2020, 01:44 PM   #14
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That’s not the issue. The chain on a BO can literally get caught inside the cam mechanism of specific hitches. Some do, others don’t. I suspected at some point BO went to a chain slightly larger. Or the mechanism tolerances are too close. Doesn’t matter how much you.jack up the tongue. I actually ditched /sold the BO but maybe twisting the chain will work.
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Old 08-01-2020, 02:37 PM   #15
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Exactly Wolfwhistle, thank-you, it's what I was saying. Apparently many are so anxious to type, they don't bother to read and absorb what has already been said....

And twisting the chain does work!
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Old 08-01-2020, 03:53 PM   #16
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Exactly Wolfwhistle, thank-you, it's what I was saying. Apparently many are so anxious to type, they don't bother to read and absorb what has already been said....

And twisting the chain does work!
Although apparently an anxious typer, I have never had a problem getting the chain out unless the tongue wasn't jacked enough. Depending on which link you are using, the chain may or may not be twisted and it is possible the link I use also twists the chain (I think it is the 8th one from the end). Each link is at a 90˚ angle to the one before and after. If half the links test chain that would explain why some have a problem and some don't.
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Old 08-01-2020, 05:10 PM   #17
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I have been using blue ox since 2007 and I've never had this happen to me.
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Old 08-01-2020, 07:07 PM   #18
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You may be right Gene. Perhaps for many, the 1/4 twist difference between use of an even or odd number of links accounts for those who don't experience this issue. In my case, I experience the same binding of the first link just below the link held in the slot in either case. With eight links, binding is a bit less frequent and it has a 1/4 twist, but when I twist it an extra 180 degrees I have no issue, same with nine links and just half a twist.
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Old 08-01-2020, 07:27 PM   #19
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We need to get our measuring devices out. I noticed the older Blue Ox hitches in use aren't having a stuck chain problem. It is possible Blue Ox changed their chain supplier and the chain links are got a bit wider? We need to check the width of the chain links and the space between the plates of the rotary pick up.

If there were a good 2" between the two plates in the rotary pull up mechanism the chain could not bind. If the chain links were only 1/2" wide, the chain could not bind in the current Blue Ox rotary pull up.

I think I will experiment with my new Blue Ox Sway Pro and see where the links might be binding in there. I should be able to pass any link in the chain between the plates of the rotary pull up with good clearance.

Blue Ox is pretty insistent that the chain is directly on center and in line with the center "hex" on the rotary pull up. If the chain is not vertical, then maybe that causes some binding somewhere for some reason.

It is very true that the tension needs to be removed from the spring bars with the tongue jack. I lift until my sway bars are straight and the chain wiggles some. No tension, easy and safe unwind of the chain from the rotary pick up.

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Old 08-01-2020, 09:28 PM   #20
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The only time I've seen the issue is when the chains are not exactly vertical. Never had an issue in the 4 years I've been using BO.
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