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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Discussion Starter #1
After commiserating with an even more antediluvian friend over the way everything gets heavier as you get older I got to wondering if anyone had come up with a P38 friendly version of the tow receiver hitch mount cranes frequently added to pick-up trucks in the USA. Being 64 as of Friday 13 th the lifting'n loading problem is only going to get worse in future so it would be nice to sort something better than trolling the neighbours for assistance.

Although the basic engineering is straightforward it seems to me that the biggest issue will be mounting the tube running sideways across the back of the car and ensuring that the vertical pole carrying the lift proper is sufficiently stable given that there may well be 4 ft or so of overhang betwixt pole and load. Unfortunately 2" receiver hitches are illegal in the UK for vehicles made after 1998 so there is no local expertise to tap into.

I could just hitch the horizontal tube onto the tow ball using a standard fitting but that will provide very little stability. Little more than just connecting crane to car. But it would permit considerable variation of crane position relative to the car which might be handy. I guess a folding tripod affair under the crane would be best along with with a screw jack thingy at the hitch end. Alternatively I could fix a hitchhiking receiver style tube to the rear cross member, sharing some of the tow ball fixings, and do things American style. I think a round tube would be better than square as allowing things to pivot to take out surface variations. Obviously more stable at the crane end. Lots of the You Tube examples make do with a simple foot ( but how big?) although a folding bipod seems more like it to me. Is a jack thing needed at the hitch end?

We can get the simple dipping jib operated by a hydraulic bottle jack on a short rotating post style crane units affordably in the UK. Looks to me as if one of those sat pretty much on top of the horizontal tube ought to work. If so a pole on its base running through the horizontal tube and tripod / bipod thing or direct onto a foot looks the way to go. I can always bolt a winch on top if the simple chain'n hook is too restrictive. Should be enough headroom to work with although I may have to accept dropping things onto the lower tailgate and sliding in.

Thanks in advance for any advice.

Clive
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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771 Posts
The problem I’m seeing, is if it isn’t a fixed item, it would most probably weigh more than anything your lifting, what would the crane/lift be used for, also unless it slid out from under the car your limited to top tailgate open only, unless it’s fixed inside the boot with extending arm.
 

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Clive you have already hit your road block. NAS style receiver hitches are illegal in your neck off the woods. They have alot more versatility, but are clunky and rattle.

OKay.... are they only illegal for towing? Can you use them for accessories like bike racks or luggage trays?
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Just gone through old posts, thought I remembered similar, house hold appliances, I’m afraid we’re all getting old and realising we can’t lift that 150lb washing machine like we used to, I’m sure your like me, I remember sand being in 100lb bags, now it’s 25 kg, and I find them getting heavier, this getting old is no fun at all, lol.
think we’re still gonna have a problem getting around this.
 

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LEGACY VENDOR
1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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4,216 Posts
Silly question - but if you have the swan neck tow bar, then couldn't you make something that fitted into where that attaches?

Mine is removable and has a bolt that goes through it to secure, and at the front where it slots in there's just a notch in the tow bar to line it up...

I know one of my P38's in NZ had an aftermarket tow ball that fitted into the swan neck fitting - it was just a solid hunk of steel with a notch in the end and a hole through it, so it would be secured by the bolt.

Could you not fashion something like that but instead of a towball on the end, have a mounting plate for your lifting device?
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Discussion Starter #6
Funny that Chris mentioned washing machines as shifting my old one was what really bought this to a head. I did think of fitting a wheel chair hoist in the right hand rear corner but it wasn't going to work any sense. Not made to work round our lower tailgates.

£110 on E-Bay gets the UK version of the Harbour Freight compact pickup truck crane https://www.harborfreight.com/12-ton-capacity-pickup-truck-crane-60732.html. Certainly not going inside but the UK version is held together by drilled pins and R clips so disassembly into easy to handle bits is a cinch as is re-assembly onto a receiver hitch mount style set-up.

Alloy box section 2" or thereabouts square will make a light and amply strong crossbar and bipod or tripod support for the hoist end. But stability at the car end remains the $64,000 question. Obviously the American style 2" square receiver allows only minimal wobbling about which must seriously help stability. Fitting a suitable equivalent to the rear cross member isn't that difficult. Could be put off centre so cross tube can be shorter too. But dropping onto the tow ball is more convenient and allows more freedom in positioning the hoist end. If it's going to be stable enough.

Don't want end up with something that folds up on me first time I get ambitious. Now if I'd ever used an American style one I'd have feel for whats going on and be able to get things like hoist support leg angles correct.

Marty, thats a good idea about repurposing the town ball mount but but my tow ball isn't going any where without major effort. Tow ball mount and rear cross member on mine have unusual amounts of corrosion which doesn't help. Really I'd like to come up with a minimal modification system that other folk could easily copy if they wanted one.

Clive
 

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The lift is most probably strong enough, it’s the making it higher as a strip down kit is what I’m wondering, I think the cost of making such a frame will be more than the hoist, also strapping a machine securely is quite a task, there not exactly balanced for lifting, more for staying on the floor, lol
 

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I have fitted an OEM 2" receiver hitch on my 2000 DSE instead of the usual swan neck. I wanted the facility to mount a portable winch either on the front or the back, as well as a removable front towing bracket, and it seemed the best way to go. As far as I am aware the towing bracket is the only thing that has to be type approved in the UK. A hitch is just a hitch.
 
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