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flat tow 1990 f250 – Ford Truck Enthusiasts Forums

Senior User

Join Date: Jan 2013

Posts: 100

flat tow 1990 f250


looking into getting a tow bar. how do you hook them to the front of the trucks any pictures on how? where would we inquire the brackets to connect to the tow bar side. Posting Guru

Join Date: Dec 2011

Posts: 1,864

I’m not sure how much help you’re going to find; most people use these trucks to /tow/, not be towed.

The bumper is mounted to the frame in two places; you’d probably just need to fabricate up a couple of brackets, or ask a local welding shop to do it for you. You /might/ be able to hook it to the bumper itself; it’s decent metal, but I’m not sure about the forces involved here.

Are you going to be disconnecting the driveshaft while flat towing it? Or, IIRC, in a 4×4 you can put the t-case in neutral. Apparently, if you just leave the transmission in neutral you may ruin it due to lack of lubrication.

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Vehicle: Tan 88 F250 with a 7.3 IDI and Turbo. Making 248HP[1]!

Senior User

Join Date: Jan 2013

Posts: 100

Quote:

I’m not sure how much help you’re going to find; most people use these trucks to /tow/, not be towed.

The bumper is mounted to the frame in two places; you’d probably just need to fabricate up a couple of brackets, or ask a local welding shop to do it for you. You /might/ be able to hook it to the bumper itself; it’s decent metal, but I’m not sure about the forces involved here. Are you going to be disconnecting the driveshaft while flat towing it? Or, IIRC, in a 4×4 you can put the t-case in neutral. Apparently, if you just leave the transmission in neutral you may ruin it due to lack of lubrication.

id pull the driveshaft. trans is no good anyway, so prob don’t matter. tcase in neutral. need to go 80 miles. harbor freight has a tow bar but no brackets included.

i would get a trailer. flat tow with a tow bar is dangerous.
you will have at least 5,000 lbs with no brakes pushing you down the road and if you have to panic stop you will be screwed.
besides the fact that i would not trust a harbor freight tow bar to pull anything larger than a riding mower across the yard at very low speeds. Senior User

Join Date: Feb 2015

Posts: 220

I also second a trailer. Rent one if you have to. It will be much safer

Posting Guru

Join Date: Dec 2011

Posts: 1,864

Yeah, if this is a one time thing, rent a trailer. Heck, ask your friends and co-workers, see if you can get anyone to help you.

To do it /right/ you’d spend at least as much as a trailer rental; you’ll still need to setup lights and some way to brake the truck(if you have anything smaller than a massive motor home in front). edit: If I had to, I might even hook up a tow strap and have someone pull me home at 40MPH or less.
If I was able to get the engine running, that would be more doable — having assisted brakes and steering is pretty important.
Same with lights, though all you really would need there is a good battery.

I wouldn’t suggest this, though, due to the safety risk. Anything could go wrong; at least if you have someone /inside/ the towed vehicle, they can slam on the brakes or steer around something if needed. By far, the safest option(and the only one I would /recommend/) is a trailer. Hauled one of these trucks with another truck and a two-axle flat bed for a good 60 miles at full speed no issues whatsoever. It’s just not that hard to do if you have a trailer.
Getting it on the trailer may be a pain; a harbor freight winch or come-a-long(“cable winch puller”) would do it, but it will take a while to load.

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Vehicle: Tan 88 F250 with a 7.3 IDI and Turbo. Making 248HP[2]! Flat Tow 1990 F250 - Ford Truck Enthusiasts Forums

Elder User

Join Date: Dec 2003

Posts: 798

I pulled my 77 f150 from Phoenix, AZ to Ford, WA with a harbor freight tow bar.. bolted the brackets on with grade 8 1/2″ bolts through the holes that the bumper bolts to the frame with..

I had a lot of crap in the truck as well.. didn’t have any problems.. The harbor freight bar I have came with the brackets.. instead of using the two 3/8″ bolts I drilled the center of the brackets to use a single 1/2″ bolt…worked fine.. just make sure you use safety chains.. I used 4.. two for the truck to the bar and two for the bar to the towing vehicle..

Senior User

Join Date: Jan 2013

Posts: 100

ok so i have bought a old style tow bar that wraps chains around the bumper as well as the tow vehicle. should be for solid bumpers. i would be driving under 45mph likely. just don’t really want to pay for towing or trailer plus i can pull the jeep with it. has like 8k tow rating. Elder User

Join Date: Dec 2013

Posts: 515

Using a Harbor freight POS like that is like drinking and driving in my book. You might think you’ll be fine but you’re putting a lot of people at risk of damage/injury if it fails. Do it right and buy a trailer, you can pull your jeep on it as well. Posting Guru

Join Date: Dec 2011

Posts: 1,864

Well, at least make sure to use big, heavy safety chains. Use grade-8 bolts to bolt the links together so it /cannot/ come apart on you as you’re driving down the road.

__________________
Vehicle: Tan 88 F250 with a 7.3 IDI and Turbo. Making 248HP[3]!

Senior User

Join Date: Apr 2015

Location: W. of Seattle, Kitsap P. Posts: 213

Quote:

ok so i have bought a old style tow bar that wraps chains around the bumper as well as the tow vehicle. should be for solid bumpers. i would be driving under 45mph likely. just don’t really want to pay for towing or trailer plus i can pull the jeep with it. has like 8k tow rating.

Like an old U-Haul Tow bar? (from the good ol’ days) It does have bumper mounting clamps to go to top and bottom of bumper so it can be adjusted to pull from the horizontal center-line of the bumper rather than pulling force at the top or bottom? and not just chains, right?

1) You can’t rent a trailer from U-Haul that is rated for that load unless you have a class V hitch on your tow vehicle- (nation-wide policy) Option is a privately owned car trailer.

2) Take it very easy because I don’t think that the front bumper mounting brackets are as strong as people might think. They could bend. = My bumper is straight with no signs of abuse but it is tilted slightly so that the ends of the bumper along the fenders are tilted downward, maybe 1/4 to 1/2 inch. In other words the bumper is tilted toward the back. I do think that someone hooked a chain to the bottom of the bumper to pull or drag something heavy and this bent the bumper mounting brackets slightly. That would be from pulling from the bottom of the bumper. I have not had a chance to look at the mounting very closely but I’ll have to fix it accurately later.

I am suggesting not to pull from the bottom of the bumper -Better to have the pulling force in horizontal line with the bumper bolts. Very smooth to take off and very smooth stops and you should be fine – timing the traffic lights so you don’t have to make quick stops. In the past I’ve chosen to do difficult tows at about 3:30 AM on Sunday mornings. Not that yours is much of a difficult tow but less traffic is better.

Here, I am thinking in terms of not bending the front bumper brackets.

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1987 F250 XLT Lariat Super Cab, 2WD, 6.9L non-turbo, C6, Sterling 10.25: 3.55 ratio, Banks Power Pack air cleaner/exhaust ‘Y’ and EGT gauge. No smoke, runs great. Plan to restore to top condition. Needs some typical fixes for 28+ year truck + new seat upholstery and a nice paint job.
http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/93…l#post15597557[4]

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References

  1. ^ 248HP (www.ford-trucks.com)
  2. ^ 248HP (www.ford-trucks.com)
  3. ^ 248HP (www.ford-trucks.com)
  4. ^ http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/93…l#post15597557 (www.ford-trucks.com)



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