soon as we travel off bitumen roads the threat of stone damage
to vehicle and trailer increases significantly.
can put in place all sorts of protection measures but just how
effective are they, the ultimate would be to bubble wrap your
vehicle in the garage and stay home. None of us want that so
where do we start and what can we control, effectively.
problem starts when the rubber leaves the road taking with it
stones often quite large and the throwing them away not just at
your mud flap but often in all directions. Most of us fit stone
guards to the front of our trailer and this helps to protect the
trailer from our stones although they are sometimes deflected
back onto the back of our vehicle.
preparation for our next “out back” trip I decided to move
closer to the source of the stone problem and the following is
what I came up with.
full width (almost) flap for the back of the tow vehicle. I
wanted it to be easy to fit and remove without drilling or
welding the vehicle or tow bar.
answer was to use purpose made U bots to hold the assembly to
the tow bar.
The materials for the support assembly: 25 x 25 x 1.6 steel
tube, 32 x 4 flat steel, 10mm round rod, 25 x 3 flat aluminium
bar (I couldn’t get steel locally).
flap is rubber matting from that rubber supplier it is about
10mm thick with 15mm holes, which I trust, will let some of the
air through and stop most stones.
Patrol is fitted with a standard Nissan tow bar, this is a 75 x
75 mm cross member with end brackets to the chassis. I found
that the end brackets project about 8mm below the bottom face of
the cross member therefore I used some short lengths of 10mm rod
as spacers to clear the ends.
also found it necessary to fit an extra piece of stiffening
across the cut-out for the engine exhaust.
fitting I used an extra (lock) nut to cover the exposed thread
and protect the thread from stone damage.
next step now is the field testing, scheduled to start in 18