Trailer Hitch Receiver (on front)

Joined
Nov 1, 2001
Messages
168
Likes
0
#1
Does anyone know if you can put a trailer hitch receiver on the front of the current generation suburban/tahoe? If so, how difficult/expensive is it to put one on?

Here's why I'm asking. Currently, only one of my kids rides. We get to riding areas with a tahoe and a "motojack rack" (a non-trailer bike hauler that fits into the receiver hitch) that's designed to carry one full sized dirt bike and one mini. I'm about to buy my younger son a bike and I'd like to put the two minis on my motojack rack in front and my bike on a single place motojack rack on the back. I know getting a trailer would be cheaper, but I don't have room for one.

Thanks!
 

smb_racing

Master of None
Joined
Jul 31, 2000
Messages
2,085
Likes
0
#2
it's possible, I know some offroad guys put another receiver on the front and get a winch plate that fits into the receiver so they can winch their vehicle from the front or back with the same unit. As for a motojack on the front I doubt you'd be able to see overtop of the bike as they sit very high, why not just stick the mini's in the back of he tahoe and put the full sized bike on the back?
 

oldguy

Always Broken
Joined
Dec 26, 1999
Messages
9,422
Likes
0
#3
I had a front reciever on my wifes old S-10 blazer. We bolted it on using the bolt holes from the tow hooks on the front. Mainly put it on for a bike rack up front while we were towing the trailer but it came in handy on a couple boat launches and a couple campsites. It had no trouble with 500Lb tongue weights for the short hook ups. Just wasn't very comfortable pushing a camper backwards on the highway tho
 
Joined
Nov 1, 2001
Messages
168
Likes
0
#4
I thought about the height/visibility issue. I think that, with minis (KLX 110s) I'd still be able to see, at least for highway driving (as opposed to parking it at the local mini-mall).

I don't think that the minis would fit in the back of the Tahoe (although I'd love it if I was wrong). Is there anyone out there who's fit one or two minis in the back of a current-generation Tahoe? I can take the third row of seats out, but I need the second row to haul the kids. I guess I could put everything else up on the roof rack. Also, at least with my 2-place motojack rack, I can't open the rear barn doors with the rack in the receiver (even when lowered). Taking the rack--which is pretty heavy is and awkwardly shaped--out of the hitch would add to the hassle factor of going riding.

Finally, anyone have any idea as to where I should look for a front receiver?

Thanks!!
 

HGilliam

Lifetime Sponsor
Joined
Nov 20, 2000
Messages
89
Likes
0
#5
Go find a good welding/fabrication shop and explain what you want to do. They'll be able to fix you up quicker than trying to find a commercial made one.

toolman
 
Joined
Nov 1, 2001
Messages
168
Likes
0
#8
In case anyone in the future seeks similar information, here's what I've learned to date (7-2002).

I contacted Warn's Customer Service Department. They were very helpful (so helpful that Warn would be one of the first places I'd look in connection with any appropriate application). Unfortunately, their front receivers are anticipated mainly as places to mount winches. Accordingly, they don't have weight ratings for them.

Warn did, however, refer me to a company called draw-tite (pretty classy of them to refer me to a competitor when they couldn't help out). I also found a company called hidden-hitch. I'm checking out those products. If I remember, I'll post what I find out.
 
Joined
Jun 7, 2001
Messages
281
Likes
0
#9
hey guys, i work at a hitch and trailer shop....draw-tite and hidden hitch both make spotter hitches(thats what they'r called) for tahoes and suburbans.......the whole package installed shouldnt run more than 200 dollars, but will most likely run in the 170 dollar range depending on your shop........if you jsut buy the hitch dealer cost is around 80 dollars so dont pay more than 120. good luck.
 

smb_racing

Master of None
Joined
Jul 31, 2000
Messages
2,085
Likes
0
#10
seeing as the winch mounts to the front receiver I'd say that it's good for the weight of the vehicle or at least the capacity of the winch. Don't know if that helps or not.
 
Joined
Nov 1, 2001
Messages
168
Likes
0
#11
I asked Warn's customer service folks a similar question. They said that the winch exerts pressure linearly (i.e., in the same direction that the frame rails run), not verticlly. In fact, they said that the hitch is not even rated for the weight of the winch. If I understood it right, this is because the static (or nearly static) loads found when the winch is put on the receiver to do a job is not the same as the loads found when the winch is bouncing along at highway speeds (which, I guess you're not supposed to do). My bike carrier sticks out pretty far from the hitch (more leverage on the hitch), so this is an even bigger problem for my anticipated application.
 

Highbeam

Subscriber
Joined
Jun 13, 2001
Messages
665
Likes
0
#12
It sounds like Warn has designed that spotter hitch to act like a stiff cable. Barely strong enough to hold the winch but strong as heck being pulled. You need a pretty stout receiver to do what you want, at least a class 3 with a 500lb rating.
 

smb_racing

Master of None
Joined
Jul 31, 2000
Messages
2,085
Likes
0
#13
I guess that does make sense, wonder if it could be gusseted at a welding shop to strengthen it yet keep the cost down.
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2000
Messages
163
Likes
0
#14
I have a Warn on the front of my 1990 Suburban. It's beefy as hell. It bolts as securely to the frame as my rear class III does. I'd not hesitate putting 4-500 pounds on it.