The ball hitch on the back of many pickups and SUVs is for towing a trailer. It is not for rescuing an off-road vehicle that’s stuck. That's the job of a shackle hitch receiver. Here we'll explain what a shackle hitch is and why you should have one in your 4×4 or truck. Then once you're educated we'll review the Heavy Duty Shackle Hitch Receiver from Rhino USA. Individual sections will cover:
Finding that many off-road accessories didn't perform as advertised, they decided they could do better, and so in 2015 they started Rhino USA. Today, the company they founded offers a range of high quality accessories for those serious about enjoying the great outdoors. They offer a number of offroading products, including recovery straps, D Ring Shackles, Motorcycle Accessories and More. Check out their Online Store.
Those pins are debatably fine for towing, if they are the right strength. Grades of bolts basically indicate their hardness and therefore tensile strength. Grade 2 (normal cheap stuff) you can bend a few times and still have a viable bolt for holding a picture on your wall. They're pretty soft. The one thing they don't do well is high tensile forces. The soft steel will either strip the threads or literally pull the fastener apart. Grade 5 bolts add a significant amount of tensile strength but can still take side loads with composure. They will bend a decent amount before breaking. Grade 8 bolts are very high tensile strength. They are best used in applications where their entire load is tension. They don't like to bend. I used to use grade 8 bolts through a chain link to hoist engines until I lost one. I had a grade 8 bolt threaded in the whole way into a head. It didn't bend a bit before shearing off flush with the head. I won't talk about the brand new polished aluminum oil pan or $400 radiator that bit the dust in the process.
There are a number of ways Jeeps get stuck when off-roading. You may drive through a patch of mud you thought was solid but turned out to still be fairly wet. Snowstorms are able to trap Jeeps, or you may even try to drive through a small crack in the road only to get caught on something. Regardless of the reason, you need to get your vehicle out. A shackle hitch is a great investment, and while you are not going to need it all the time, you are able to rest easy knowing it is there.
Nylon Recovery Straps are great for situations where you may need to get a running start and traction all around is not so great. If you are in a situation where both you and the stuck driver are in sand, mud, snow or ice, you will need a running start to gain momentum. Once you have enough momentum and that point hits where the nylon recovery strap stretches out, the momentum should be enough to pop another vehicle out, all without a big JOLT of pull on both vehicles. The downside of nylon recovery straps is if used incorrectly and the nylon snaps, that stretch has to go somewhere. If a nylon strap stretches to hard and too fast, it will backlash at a vehicle or even worse a person’s face. Just make sure to keep vehicles and people clear of the recovery area when pulling someone out.
Another safety note is to weigh down the strap or winch cable, (especially a winch cable.) The reason is that if it was to snap the ends would whip around violently, injuring anyone in their way. A heavy blanket thrown over the strap or cable will do the job. Alternatively, if your recovery accessories come in a handy bag, fill it with something heavy and suspend it from the strap.
I’ve had this 20 ft strap combo for about 10 months now just in case I ever needed it. I was waiting till I actually used it to give it a review. I used it today to pull my brothers lifted f250 with it. The shackle was real heavy duty and easy to take the hitch off and put the shackle in. It gives you that peace of mind that it won’t come off the ball hitch. The Strap is built tough and durable. I do like the double loop ends on the strap because I feel like that’s sturdier than the metal hooks straps. It was actually my first time pulling a vehicle with my truck and the 20 ft strap was actually plenty long for the speeds we went. We had our phones on and constantly communicating so we could be on the same page when breaking. I traveled 3 miles pulling a heavy f250 at no more than about 35-40 mph. The 20 ft strap was plenty room for braking at that speed and enough to give u peace of mind of not feeling like the vehicle your pulling is gonna slam into you. I like the bag to keep everything in. Mine fits perfect underneath the back seats of my ram. Great buy. Pulling my brothers truck one time paid for itself in not having to get a tow truck.