Nato Hitch for Penman Military Trailer Issue

Rich_T

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Hi all, I'm hoping that someone can help with how to fit a nato hitch to a Colorado. The issue I'm having is in finding a adjustable height plate that is both compatible with the OEM tow bar and a nato hitch due to the hole diameter and hole pitches being different on a nato hitch to a standard tow bar. I need it to be height adjustable / removable due to the towing height of the trailer & not being able to open the rear door with something permanently attached... Does anyone have any experience with this? I haven't purchased the Penman trailer yet (due to be delivered tomorrow), so if it is a no go I may have to cancel the order. Thoughts?
 

Chris

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I have had to make a plate for mine. I've two vehicle with the NATO hitch and I found that it was simpler to just make a drop plate with the correct sets of two holes.

Like this. I have different plates for different hitches and trailers. This is a 50mm receiver actually but I used the bolts instead.
screenshot-2020-07-02-at-11-45-02-jpg.166762
 

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Rich_T

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Hi Chris, Many thanks for the reply... I was hoping that you in particular wood reply as I found an old post of yours where you were talking about this... The problem I have, is in that I need a riser plate & I think it will foul with the rear door. The tow hitch height is 700mm plus on the Penman trailer & the height to the bottom of the rear door door on the 95 series is 700mm when unladen...
 

Chris

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Hmm put a piccy up so we can.
Where in the UK are you?
 
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Rich_T

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Difficult to see from the picture with the bash plate in the way, but the tow bar has 4 holes... The bottom two being 460mm from ground level. I'm in Devon.
 

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Rich_T

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Do you think that this would work (link below). Hole size is a lot larger than that of the nato hitch though & I think the hole centers are different? I'm not sure if it would give the height, but it's the only adjustable plate that I have found that allows for the hitch plate to be moved above the fixed plate. Everything else that I've seen would mean that the fixed plate would foul with opening of the door in order to achieve the correct towing height...

3.5 Ton Twin Pin Adjustable Height Coupling Tow Hitch - [Leaving Land Cruiser Club]
 

Chris

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That's just a copy of the old Dixon Bate hitch. When you say you need to be able to open the swing out back door, do you mean it fouls on the trailer itself or on the tow hitch. I've had two Colorados with tow hitches and don't recall ever having any issues other than the door hitting the trailer if I parked at the wrong angle
 

Rich_T

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What I mean is that in order to gain the required height for towing the Penman trailer... a fixed plate attached to the tow bar will have to rise above the top of the bumper, therefore permanently fouling with the door. I haven't been able to find an adjustable plate other than the one from Roughtrax that allows for the floating / adjustable plate to rise above the fixed plate that attaches to the tow bar... I've just done some calculations & the Roughtrax one won't give me the required height either.... Urrrr,
 

Rich_T

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Chris, I think I'm going to have to give up on this one.... I must admit the Penman is rather heavy at 620kg unladen... Do you have any recommendations on an alternative trailer available in this country that will be suitable to turn into a camper trailer for off road over landing adventures?
 

Lorin

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Both Penman and Sankey are a heavy trailer to start with but in the UK there really aren’t any other viable options unless you can find an off-road trailer that has been brought in from somewhere else - and they are rare.

One thing I’d strongly suggest is having a really good think about what sort of terrain you’ll actually want to tow your trailer over and for how long. Just how strong does it really need to be? You may be better with a standard trailer and have it modified for a bit of off-road - some extra bracing, bigger wheels/tyres, better shocks etc.

Otherwise you could consider having the penman modified and/or modifying your 90 with bigger lift and tyres.....
 

Chris

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There is a facebook group dedicated to overland, adventure trailers and there's a fef for sale. I understand the issue now. 700 mm is far too high really. Remember that you should really be nose down a little so that would look more like 650mm but that's still very high.
 

SteveJB

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I have a US M416 trailer that has been modified for my use as an off road camping trailer I have removed the nato hitch as was way too heavy if you want the penmam trailer you could do the same im using an indespension towing eye
 

Rich_T

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Many thanks, for the replies guys... Very much appreciated. It has been a very frustrating day for me trying to come up with a solution. One good thing has come out of it though... It has got me participating on this forum & interacting with you very friendly helpful chaps. I'm not normally one to post, probably the last time I did was over 15 years ago when I belonged to the Toyota Gt4 Celica Club. I've been struggling along alone for over a year now restoring our 95 (with a lot of help from reading past posts on here). All but there now... I will have to post up some pics in due course. You chaps have given me a lot to think about with regards to the trailer... but for now I've come to the conclusion to not take a chance on buying the Penman. I will look into that Facebook group Chris.
 

Shayne

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1593714984102.png


I later found a better tow bar for the 90 at Roughtrax

1593715146730.png
 

Shayne

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Its 4 bolts if i do have to tow a normal trailer but i don't do that often .

1593727289122.png
 

AndyCook

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I’ve got a Sankey trailer, and they’ve like to be towed nose down. I’m sure penman the same
 

stumog

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I had a dixon bate drop slide on my95 it just cleared the rear door
 
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