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PostPosted: Mon Dec 20, 2010 2:36 am 
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I want to install a tow hitch on my '97 1.3L but would prefer the receiver-type hitch with a removable drawbar (looks cleaner). Does anyone know if these are available for the '95-00 cars?

From my research, the only hitch currently available is the standard ball mount made by Curt. See below:

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:39 am 
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I've been researching this issue for years. Loved it when the hitch shop quoted me seven bills for 2" reciever bolt on assy. (Dude, the fucking car ain't worth the cost of the hitch, but thanks for the kind offer anyway....) Over on geometroforum.com, some guy drags around 700lbs on a regular basis with a floor plan bolt on deally, but it ripped out eventually. He's my kinda guy...
I envision using the rear shock top mounts plus the inner rear lower control arm pivots mounts plus both sides of the spare tire well as a triangulated drill and weld and bolt arrangement that would suffer 200 lb tongue weight plus close to 1000 lbs of total tow weight in a properly designed custom trailer with built in brakes. But that's just me. And no, I don't have a blueprint (yet).

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95 Metro hatch "Tequila lime" all stock
F/S 3Tech economy cam
F/S 90 Metro hatch
F/S 89 Swift GTi body only
F/S 92 Tracker 2 dr rwd stock
93 Sidekick 4 dr 1.9 vw TD, WVO conversion, 6" lift over 33's


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:05 am 
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I found that U-Haul lists a "hitch receiver" for the '95-00 cars (Part# 217423). The generic images show a receiver-type unit like I want where the drawbar is removable. Their price is $149.95 as opposed to the Curt, which is being sold through JC Whitney for only $99.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:52 pm 
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Took your hot lead and researched it at the local uhaul. Found out it's mfg'd by Curt, as are about half their inventory. According to the attached file, it's a primitive design that bolts onto the spare tire well, below and behind, 100 lb tongue weight (theoretical). It takes only a ball, no actual reciever.
There's a guy over on geometroforum that's used one for a long time and he eventually ripped it out of the floor when he jack knifed his custom geo trailer carrying 700 lbs while backing up. Good pics on his thread of the resulting carnage. Probably adequate for what most folks intend to haul behind a geo.

I'm gonna apply the $150 instead towards raw materials and custom design a serious triangulated space frame terminated in a 2" reciever with double the tongue weight capacity. That will accept a 2'x5' aluminum HitchHaul tray that can hold a 100 lb bale of alfalfa that my +200 lb rear sedan springs can handle no problem. I'll use this exercise to reinforce the upper rear strut mounts as an integral part of the hitch attaching points. Imagine the look on their faces at the rental shop when I show up in the geo to drag home the medium size ditch witch on it's own mini trailer. Oh yeah...


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95 Metro hatch "Tequila lime" all stock
F/S 3Tech economy cam
F/S 90 Metro hatch
F/S 89 Swift GTi body only
F/S 92 Tracker 2 dr rwd stock
93 Sidekick 4 dr 1.9 vw TD, WVO conversion, 6" lift over 33's


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 8:20 pm 
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Okay if the U-Haul is in fact the Curt (which I don't doubt), then it will look exactly like the image in my first post. In that case, JC Whitney has the best price on the Curt at $99 - beating out every eBay seller that lists them.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 9:22 pm 
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there's a really good reason why they don't make the hitch even with a 1" receiver and drawbar.

the metro's ability to handle the weight of a trailer is limited by 2 things, the brakes and the strength of the rear stub axles/ spindles. even a 100# tongue weight is hard on the rear axles.

nerys, over at johnny mullet's site had a toe adjuster rod snap as the trailer weight in a turn, or worse, while braking in a turn pushes the rear knuckles back and forth. scary crap to happen while towing even a light trailer.

if the hitch was heavy duty enough to let a novice load up a heavier tongue weight, they'd do it and be a danger on the roads.

my buddy, wagon, was a u-haul hitch professional and i had him check on metro/ swift hitches. i concur that u-haul only has the type you show - a flat, one piece that only accepts a small stem ball. you also need one of their solid state light converters to get to a 4 pin flat pack connector for lighting.

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:13 pm 
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T3 ragtop, concerning the rear spindle strength, the cockpit cargo capacity for both early's and late's is ~ 680 lbs. If approx half that full cargo load sits on the rear axle, that's plus 340 lbs. Leave the rear cockpit empty and add 200 lbs tongue weight on a fabbed 2" reciever with that weight triangulated per my first post. I don't see any additional rear spindle stresses compared to that picture I posted of lil evil carrying a 100 lb bale of alfalfa hay and three fifty pound bags of livestock feed. (where somebody commented the strut mounts would tear out, which never happened either)
Obviously, you need sedan rear springs to get the extra 200lbs of capacity (the trunk on those ugly ass four doors sure does weigh a lot...)

As for brakes, stock geo rear drums are unsafe any time the geo is moving, loaded or unloaded. They suck. Don't tow with them. Ever. I'm upgraded to gti rear discs, braided steel flex lines, and motul 600. Late front vented discs with uprated pads. Works fine. Works real good.

Believe it or not, people, if you're gonna haul big loads in your deluxe farm edition geo, it's the clutch that's gonna be your biggest never ending problem. Solved with cubic dollars: Centerforce dual friction on a billet steel flywheel.

Now my biggest happiness is I never got around to designing/fabricating/installing the buck rogers tow hitch cuz I would have lost it to my biggest sadness which was Lil Evil getting crushed like a beer can on the freeway during rush hour 2 weeks ago. However, when I finish fighting with Geico and drag Lil Evil home from prison and all that demonic possession gets exorcised only to be transplanted into my shiny new $400 95 hatch (Tropical Green for enhanced visibility...) the tow hitch project shall come back up again.

_________________
95 Metro hatch "Tequila lime" all stock
F/S 3Tech economy cam
F/S 90 Metro hatch
F/S 89 Swift GTi body only
F/S 92 Tracker 2 dr rwd stock
93 Sidekick 4 dr 1.9 vw TD, WVO conversion, 6" lift over 33's


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 6:11 pm 
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i hear you. the gt rear knuckles were a good move as the stub axles are straight and thicker as well as adding rear discs. you also need the gt brake proportioning valve. i can spit more than what gets metered to the rear brakes with the stock drum brake valve.

one thing to consider is that the manufacturer's stated weight load places the weight within the confines of the box described by the 4 tires' contact points. the further rearward of the rear axle line, the more effect weight has on the suspension. the ideal geometric loading would be in the center of the wheels in the line between both sides' hubs. the ball location, 2 feet behind that point, increases the shock loading by a good bit. that's why they never made a hitch bigger than the class 1, 100 pound tongue weight. u-haul never wanted to even sell them because of the liability issues but they had too many requests to pass it up. then they made too many of them and now everybody wants to dump them. u-haul had their hitch centers pack them up and send them back so it's rare to find a store that has one on the wall.

i can tell you first hand what happens to the tapered shaft drum brake rear axles when a tree falls on the car. :lol: it bends the axle stubs until the insides of the tires lock into the inner fender on the top. :lol:
Image

i looked at a 3 door that a guy used to build a custom mini-pickup with. he hauled crap on a little utility trailer and bent the rear axles. from the rear it looked like it had the meanest camber ever. i walked away from the machine even though it was well executed and really cool because i just knew the kid had been jumping hills with it like it was a jeep. :twisted:

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd.

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My YouTube Channel
My Photo Gallery
SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 9:41 pm 
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Hmm...

I see a problem with this...

Drum brakes will out load stop discs, Discs will out threshhold drums. For heavy hauling you want big Drums, not Discs.

95-01 Sedan rear drums would stop more than the 89-94 GT rear discs, from a pure weight perspective.

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J. McBean: '98 Suzuki Swift 1.3L 16v SOHC 5sp+ "Mk5" Made in Canada
The Mini Rattler: '94 Suzuki Swift .993L 6v SOHC 5sp+ "Mk3" Made in Canada *The Winter Beater*
B. Berry: '90 Chevrolet Turbo Sprint 1.0L 6v SOHC 5sp+ "Mk2" Made in Japan

I got 18MPG in a 3cyl with a 5 speed manual 4dr, '93 Metro! :yeahyeah


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 8:06 am 
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gamefoo21 wrote:
Drum brakes will out load stop discs, Discs will out threshhold drums.


Well, that's a much easier swap.

What do you think of a '95 1.3L Automatic pulling one of those Chinese Haul-Master folding trailers that Harbor Freight sells complete with a 3/4" plywood base, stake sides and a 200cc dirtbike on it?

http://www.harborfreight.com/automotive-motorcycle/trailer-trailer-accessories/1195-lb-capacity-48-inch-x-96-inch-heavy-duty-foldable-utility-trailer-with-12-inch-wheels-90154.html

A couple of images I found online:

Image

Image


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 8:48 am 
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the little tear drop trailer in your pic might have a 50 pound tongue weight. in all, you might have 360 pounds in a trailer like that. i wouldn't have a second thought about towing one of those with a metro - carefully. don't forget that even a lightweight trailer like that will push the rear end around going downhill or braking.

the good thing about the gt brake swap is more the beefiness of the stub axles than the disc brakes.

the axles on the drum brake cars start at a smaller diameter and have a taper that ends up at the threads with an even smaller shaft. the gt axles are larger in diameter and straight. they also use larger wheel bearings, better suited to handling additional loads.

braking effect is largely the same using either brake type with the discs being more friendly to inspection and maintenance. and don't overlook those toe adjuster bars. they flex and fold bad enough without the forces of a towed trailer. when one breaks, the alignment goes completely wierd and the broken bar can flip around and cause a rear tire blow out. if that happens at highway speeds, chances are that you, the car, and the trailer are going sideways and airborne. :twisted:

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd.

My Turbo3 Project
My Cardomain Page -Ol' Blue
My YouTube Channel
My Photo Gallery
SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 25, 2010 1:29 am 
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Excellent argument in favor of heim rod end rear toe bars. Sold. The stock stuff is such junk anyway, all we really needed was an excuse to carve off the money and do it. Now, who's gonna be the first to get a pic of a 2 door hatch towing a 16 ft Airstream "sausage dog" travel trailer at 70 mph to silence the naysayers? As soon as the lime green 95 is "right", I'll hook up our 32 ft class C and drag that bitch on camera, much to everybody's dismay and disapproval....Game on, boys...

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95 Metro hatch "Tequila lime" all stock
F/S 3Tech economy cam
F/S 90 Metro hatch
F/S 89 Swift GTi body only
F/S 92 Tracker 2 dr rwd stock
93 Sidekick 4 dr 1.9 vw TD, WVO conversion, 6" lift over 33's


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:35 pm 
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Just equip the trailer with power brakes, it'll stop the car too!

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2011 10:25 am 
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Howdy. New member here. Here's mine. Went to a junkyard and got a receiver off a jeep (I think) then used a torch and a welder to modify it to fit the Sprint. Never even thought for a moment about any potential problems with towing light loads (except the clutch of course). I've towed this trailer quite often. One time went from Hampton Va to Wilmington NC and back with no problem-- on the interstates. Maybe I've been lucky. Hard as heck to get up those hills though and going through the bridge tunnels is scary as is merging on the highway :shock: .

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Last edited by booze_talkin on Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:04 pm 
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Almost too funny, a 2" receiver hitch, normally rated for at least 5,000 lbs, on a Metro! Also funny that the question of U-Haul's liability came up, but not the Metro owner's liability towing a trailer.

Under large yellow CAUTION boxes in the Loading Your Vehicle section, my 2000 Metro Owner's Manual states: "Your vehicle is neither designed nor intended to tow a trailer." which may raise certain legal issues. Should an accident occur while towing a trailer couldn't this warning give an insurance company a way out of covering claims? Do older cars have specified maximum trailer weight?

From my understanding of trailer towing accidents, w/vehicles that list maximum trailer weights, insurance companies have avoided paying certain claims just b/c published maximum load specs were exceeded. A serious accident can get very expensive, both injured party & insurance company may see fault in towing a trailer after manufacturer warns "Your vehicle is neither designed nor intended to tow a trailer." & IMHO they could be justified. Much would depend on how trailering contributed to loss, how decrepid the tow rig & how flagrant the overload. Not sure if never owning or reading an Owner's Manual is a good excuse, or how trailering laws vary by state/time.

That said, used to happily tow a small 14'/15 hp boat on trialer, loaded w/camping gear, or utility trailer, behind a SAAB 3 banger. The SAAB is heavier, geared lower & has less power than '98 Metro 3 banger. Of course way back then insurance, liability & litigation wasn't what it is today. Obviously a Metro 3 banger could easily trailer a roll of hay & a few bags of feed, especially short distance at lower speed. No matter how much I like driving a Metro locally, I still don't like driving it on I-75.

Having had the Metro's huge rear bumper off & all the panels out of trunk, I will say I don't like the J.C. Whitney hitch shown. There's little enough to bolt to & the hitch doesn't try hard. Better to design/build a stronger homemade hitch. A '67 SAAB manual has trailer weight & dealers sold hitches. Welded up & bolted on my own, it was much stronger & better looking. Moved it to a SAAB V4 & made another hitch for SAAB Sonett, which was the easiest to back up of any vehicle I ever towed with.

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2000 Chevy Metro 3 cylinder 5 speed 3 door hatch
1998 Chevy Metro 3 cylinder 5 speed 3 door hatch
1998 Chevy Lumina APV
1998 Ford F-150 4X4 XLT
1992 Ford E-150 Club Wagon Chateau
1991 SAAB 900S 5 speed
1987 SAAB 900 Turbo SPG
1985 SAAB 900 Turbo SPG
1974 SAAB Sonett III
1971 SAAB 96 modified to 1980 specs
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:12 pm 
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Well, there are more reasons to have a hitch than just towing. I use mine for one of those bicycle carriers that fit into the receiver. Mines not 2" BTW. It's also good for using one of those rack type carriers like hitch-haul-- works great with that for a cooler or I use it for hauling firewood when I go camping.

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