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Thoughts: I posted some pics so you can see the workmanship as well as the fit on my Tacoma. This is not tubed metal; it's casted and is solid (weighs about 9lbs). D-Ring fits perfectly within the block... no wiggle yet can freely spin. No paint chips either. Cannot wait to write a follow-up after my first use and am confident this will be a vital piece of my recovery kit for a long time.


First question I had was if it was square tube or a solid chunk.. it is definitely a solid chunk of steel. This thing has some heft to it, which is a good feeling. I have a 3/4 avalanche that’s heavy. I used this thing right away. First day I watched a heavy loaded military hummer go in the ditch and get stuck, and they let me pull them out. I was right there, so they hadn’t called it in yet.
Their yields are 92 ksi and 130 ksi, so a hitch pin would be 27,600 lbf and 39,000 lbf before leaving their elastic region. Where the difference in grade 5 and 8 comes in is that grade 5 has min tensile yield of 120 ksi and grade 8 150 ksi, so each could potentially fail at 40,000 lbf or 50,000 lbf respectively, so obviously there is a broader region where a grade 5 bolt would bend (from 92 to 120 ksi) compared to a grade 8 (from 130 to 150 ksi). But notice that the grade 5 bolt fails before the grade 8 even hits its elastic limit.
Assume the whole bar is well attached to the frame rails at each side (otherwise, it's definitely not good for a snatch recovery!). There is a huge difference between pulling on the receiver mount in the middle of the cross-bar, and pulling with a long harness attached to both ends. The direct receiver-mount pull will tend to bend the cross bar outwards, and pull the frame rails in towards each other (with a lot of leverage, on top of the many tons of force imparted by a snatch recovery).
I looked at several similar items before purchasing this one. Where the d-ring bolt goes thru, a couple of other brands had thin "ears" welded to the end of the mount. Not being a believer in factory claims of tow ratings, these didn't have the look of strength they claimed. This hitch appears to be milled from a solid piece of steel. If it indeed is 2 pieces welded together, they did an outstanding job in doing so. Unless I need to use a ball-mount hitch, I plan to leave this mounted in the receiver. To that end, I put some Loctite on the bolt before screwing it into the shackle, and then added a small cable tie from the bolt eye to the shackle. Barring a determined shackle thief, it should always be there if I need it. I can't imagine backing into something that would harm this hitch. The only complaint I have is how loose the mount is in the receiver. Several wrappings of duct tape just in front of the hitch pin hole quieted the rattle. A more snug fit would have earned 5 stars.
We don’t care what great-grandad told you about looping a tow strap over your 2-inch ball for towing situations. It’s incredibly unsafe, and people have literally died trying to do that. When you pull on a tow strap, it stretches – considerably more than you would ever think. This is intentional & by design, but when you are hooked onto an open hook like this you are begging for trouble. By using Vault Cargo Management’s shackle hitch receiver you now have a closed system. This ensures that the tow strap can’t slip off and go anywhere, protecting both yourself & the people around you.
He's talking about the towing rating of the truck. The hitch is what it is. If you have the Toyota tow package (at least on my 2008) you got a class IV hitch, which is rated to 10,000 lbs towing, 1,000 tongue weight. That's because the truck is rated to tow 6,500 lbs. So they couldn't use a class III hitch, which is rated to 6,000 lbs, 600 tongue weight.
There's no guarantee that the hitch rating is the same as the truck's tow rating. The base truck is rated for 3,500 lbs so it's possible someone puts on even as low as a class II hitch, which is 3,500 lbs rated. So you just have to know what everything is designed for. I'm not sure you can say the tow point could actually handle 10,000 lbs. Perhaps it's the frame that gives up at 6,500 lbs so trying to use 10,000 lbs in the hitch would mean the hitch itself would stay intact but pull the frame apart. It's maybe due to brakes, not exceeding the weight of the truck itself too much, stability. But that's all speculation. All you can say is you know 6,500 lbs is fine.

Love this receiver, gives you another attachment point that you can count on. This is my main recovery point, and whenever I am in the trails I already have this attached with a D ring to my recovery strap. I used multiple times and is one of the strongest points to attach to. This also gives you the option to hook up just when you need it, and if you have other vehicles with a class 3 hitch you can transfer to any of them. This is a must if if have vehicles or equipment that could get stuck. No only that, but this is a fraction of the cost of purchasing a custom bumper with recovery attachment points.
I bought this gear and a tow strap from Rhino USA after watching multiple winter YouTube clips of trucks helping folks out of ditches on the east coast. Figured it would come in handy sooner or later. Turned out much sooner. On the start of my drive from Homer AK to Anchorage AK I drove past a van in the ditch with a bunch of kids trying to push it out. Another SUV tried pulling them out with a rope but only managed to entrench her tires more. I asked the gentleman if I could give it a try since I had gear and a truck. I attached the hitch receiver, tow strap and hook and pulled her out without much hassle. Thankful I bought this gear and hope to lend a hand to folks in the future.
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