[Vwdiesel] Towing a Rabbit Pickup by the Front Bumper mounts?

Roger Brown r.c.brown at ieee.org
Sun Aug 24 13:49:34 PDT 2014

Both my old '81 and current '82 pickups have the steel front bumper brackets instead of 
the shocks like my old Rabbit used to have.  But a tow dolly might still be the best 
option, as you get the front drive wheels off the ground.

On 8/24/2014 1:00 PM, pmdolan1 at sasktel.net wrote:
> Absolutely DO NOT tow by the front bumper with this.  The bumper is mounted on hydraulic 
> "shocks" that are net intended for this kind of load (transverse much worse than 
> longitudinal).  You MIGHT get away with it, but if you don't, it is quite a mess when 
> one lets go.
> The way to do it is make a fitting that is rigid in bending going back to the mounting 
> holes on the frame "accordian" where the bumper absorbers mount.  Weld those two stubs 
> to a tranverse angle or tube to which you can bolt the tow bar adapters.  The 
> pseudo-bumper is critical to prevent the tow bar (that has not cross beam) from putting 
> side loads on the bumper mounting points and adapters.   Put the safety chains SOMEWHERE 
> ELSE - such as around a lower control arm and hope to hell you never have to rely on 
> them (the car will whip and slam hard against them at the limit).
> On Sun, 24 Aug 2014 15:32:15 -0400, Maynard <echomhs at gmail.com> wrote:
> I've just struck a deal on a 1981 Rabbit Pickup Diesel LX. I'm hoping to
>> flat-tow it home using the universal adjustable tow bar I already have. It
>> looks somewhat like this:
>>  <http://www.amazon.com/Universal-Adjustable-Arms-Chains-5000/dp/B005ESZ058/r
>> ef=pd_sbs_auto_6?ie=UTF8
>> <http://www.amazon.com/Universal-Adjustable-Arms-Chains-5000/dp/B005ESZ058/r
>> ef=pd_sbs_auto_6?ie=UTF8&refRID=1R9VK9S0KE340GBZPXQV>
>> &refRID=1R9VK9S0KE340GBZPXQV>
>>  I've used this tow bar before on older vehicles and I'm confident it will
>> get me where I want to go, but I won't have the luxury of fabricating the
>> mounting brackets on-site and I'm not going to have the opportunity to visit
>> the vehicle again prior to picking it up. I know the front bumper is mounted
>> to a pair of bumper mounts using two holes each in the mounts. I think I
>> could mount the tow bar's mounting plates to these bumper mounts, but I
>> neglected to measure the distance between these holes.
>>  Could somebody measure the distance between these bumper mounting holes on
>> their own Rabbit and report to me? (I think it's somewhere around 4"-5", but
>> I need a pretty accurate measure if I want to pre-fab.) It appears that the
>> bumper mounts on this Pickup are solid steel connected to the frame, not the
>> shock-absorbing mounts I had on my 1984 Jetta.
>>  I know I could rent a tow dolly or vehicle trailer, or even call AAA, but
>> none of those options is convenient to my situation.
>>  Any help would be greatly appreciated!
>>  ~Maynard
>> '82 Westy Diesel
>> '86 DoubleCab Diesel
>> '11 Golf TDI
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