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Author Topic: Tow Hitch on a Prevost  (Read 2946 times)
scanzel
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« on: February 20, 2007, 12:44:17 PM »

I am getting ready to add a tow hitch to my 89 Prevost coach and need some info. I need info on where to mount or where not to mount. I contacted Prevost and asked but they were of little help. I will be towing a Jeep Cherokee Sport which is fairly light. Since I do not have the all the tools and welder to build one I will most likely be going to a fabrication shop. A friend has a steel fabrication shop but he will be asking me for some sort of specification. Or does anyone know of a shop in Connecticut, Massachusetts or Rhode Island that does this kind of work. All help is appreciated. Huh
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Steve Canzellarini
Berlin, CT
1989 Prevost XL
H3Jim
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1995 Prevost H3-41, series 60, B500 Allison




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« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2007, 01:06:04 PM »

I had mine done at the Prevost dealer and they were of immense help.  They had a hitch that could be put on at bumper height instead of about 4 inches lower that all the fab shops wanted to do.  that 4" makes a big difference going in and out of parking lots.

Did you talk to the service manager at the New Jersey location?  I think thats the closest one to you.

Although I have a welder, I opted to let the pros do the welding on something that could do seriouos damage if not done properly.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2007, 09:02:40 PM by H3Jim » Logged

Jim Stewart
El Cajon, Ca.  (San Diego area)

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scanzel
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« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2007, 07:40:09 AM »

I called the New Jersey location and explained what I needed and the person answering phones gave me a 1800 number. I called it and talked to a Tommy who had a French accent so I must have called Canada. He stated that the whole engine carriage would have to be changed out because the hitches are incorporated into the engine cradle and they are not just add on's. I really don't think he wanted to be bothered with such a trival thing from my impression. I can probably get one made but wanted to know what it should be mounted to, the chassis rails or the engine cradle? There must be some 80's Prevost owners out there that had a hitch mounted to theirs.
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Steve Canzellarini
Berlin, CT
1989 Prevost XL
H3Jim
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« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2007, 07:56:39 AM »

I talked to the service manager when I had taken the coach in for some routine service.  Having the coach there was a benefit so both of us could see what I had and what needed to be done.  It actually took me several tries.  I talked to him, and then took the coach to several hitch fabricators near where I live.  and then I went back and pressed him again.

On the H coach, the hitch bolts to an extension of the engine cradle.  VIP coaches have this extension, seated coaches like mine do not.  They used the regular Prevost part (a 10,000 lb version) and welded it to the cradle.  If I ever need to have the engine pulled, they will have to cut those welds.  Not really a big deal compared to pulling the engine, and i may neer have to do that.  A replacement cradle with the correct tabs for mine would have been over $3,000 installed.  so this weld idea worked very well. 

I don't think I could have done it, figured out what to do or convinced them to do it over the phone.  In the end they were very helpful and did a great job, but they had not seen or done something like this before. I suspect the same is true for your coach.

I did have to remove the bumper and modify it so the hitch would be accessable.

What seemed to help get the process started was to identify the part number of the hitch that they use when the cradle has the correct tabs on it. And then with the part and the coach there, we stood there and figured out how to make it work.  Again, I liked that hitch because it was higher than the ones the regular fabricators would use.  But your coach may be different.  I'm hoping someone with your model will chime in here....

Although it does not show the inside details, here is a picture of the finished product.  I flipped the bumper upside down so the bevel was at the bottom instead of the top as this worked much better for cutting the notch for the reciever.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2007, 08:06:08 AM by H3Jim » Logged

Jim Stewart
El Cajon, Ca.  (San Diego area)

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« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2007, 08:26:17 AM »

Just a reminder to disconnect all electronics when welding on your coach
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H3Jim
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« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2007, 08:29:43 AM »

on mine, that would be the engine and tranny brain, the ABS system and of course the inverter and all my 24 volt house stuff such as the solar controller and the refrigerator.  a PITA, but better than replaceing stuff afterwards.
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Jim Stewart
El Cajon, Ca.  (San Diego area)

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« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2007, 04:15:58 PM »

My question is why won't Prevost want to help their owners more?  You would think that if you owned one they would bend over backwards to help, hoping to keep you a "proud and happy" customer wanting another one down the road!.  I'm puzzled!  Just how complicated can a hitch be?  You mean to tell me you have to have a part number just to get someone to look at it?      Just utterly amazing!       Huh
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Pat

1982 Prevost LeMirage
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H3Jim
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« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2007, 01:16:32 PM »

I have had great service from Prevost.  While any large shop has its ideosyncracies, I stand by the dealership in Mira Loma, Ca. any day.  Always have the parts I need on hand, excellent at trouble shooting, tracking things down in a minimum of time. 

My hitch was a one off request - they deal mostly with operators and newer coaches, and I am one of a very few in the country that is converting an H3-41. A  seated coach is noticably different from the usual VIP coach used for entertainer or motorhomes. As a special case, they were willing to spend the time with me, but  you must understand, if its not the norm, someone has to figure it out, and really the only way a custom application can get done is to have the parts in front of you.  Thats true of anyone.  I suspect that Scanzel has the same issue, and he really needs to talk to the folks that would actuall be involved in  doing the work. A parts guy from teh factory in Canada doesn't do it.  Even if he has some engineering back ground.
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Jim Stewart
El Cajon, Ca.  (San Diego area)

Travel is more than the seeing of sights, it is a change that goes on, deep  and permanent, in the ideas of living.
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« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2007, 01:39:12 PM »

Scanzel - You need to contact Steve Fesseden - HTH
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« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2007, 01:50:00 PM »

Guys what I see here is a lot of trash talking for no apparent reason! Hitches are not like brain surgery and almost every one has to be custom made if the vehicle didn't call for one originally like mine since it's a converted seated coach as is Jim's! There is very little difference from the H3-40 and the 41.  He did a great job on his and when I bought my coach from a little po-dunk town bus dealer, I requested a hitch to be installed and they did a bang up job! That's two I know of that these people did on H models and even though mine has never towed anything heavy, my friends has towed  a small P/U and now a full size ford van all over the east coast and to my knowledge, has had no problems! If you know a good welder in your area, NOT just a good welder but a "GOOD" welder,  he should be able to design a good hitch and make it so it can pull whatever you desire! I know it can be done if it can be done by those that did mine and my friends! In fact, I know of a guy here locally that can build it from scratch. The last one he did for a friends Eagle turned out better than factory and for $300.00, he couldn't beat it! It only took him 2 1/2 hrs from the time he started and the guy was like a kid in a candy factory when he was done!

Don't bad mouth the factories for what they DON'T usually do. Like how many times have any of you had your hitch in for service. Probably never so why would they know what to do with it? You don't need the factory! You need a FABRICATOR who is generally a very good welder!

If your in Central Florida, I'll hitch you right up no matter what type bus you have and cheap too!

Ace
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Ace Rossi
Lakeland, Fl. 33810
Prevost H3-40
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« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2007, 03:01:19 PM »

I must have missed something where was the trash talking?
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Pat

1982 Prevost LeMirage
8V92TA/HT754

http://prevostlemirage.blogspot.com/
scanzel
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« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2007, 06:13:22 PM »

Thanks for the replies guys. My Prevost is an 89 XL series not an H model. I think my best solution at this time is to contact my friend at his fabrication shop and see what we can come up with.
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Steve Canzellarini
Berlin, CT
1989 Prevost XL
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« Reply #12 on: February 23, 2007, 05:55:14 PM »

Thanks for the replies guys. My Prevost is an 89 XL series not an H model. I think my best solution at this time is to contact my friend at his fabrication shop and see what we can come up with.

Absolutely.  I don't know why anyone would ever try to do anything different than exactly that.  Like Ace said, these hitches are one-off affairs and a good fabricator will know how to do it.  Picking a good fabricator can be a bit of a challenge but spend your time on that, not on trying to figure out how to make the hitch.  Once you pick the fabricator he will do the rest.
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R.J.(Bob) Evans
1981 Prevost 8-92, 10 spd
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« Reply #13 on: February 23, 2007, 11:02:42 PM »

The part number you seek is 011399. It is referanced as a pulley protector with hitch.
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H3Jim
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« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2007, 11:55:51 PM »

Well, I guess.  I went to the two biggest hitch installers in the San Diego area, and both said the only way to do it was to weld a standard hitch on to the frame - and it was 4" lower than what I ended up with.  while its true you can find an "expert" and put your faith in them, I typcially want to know more, and understand what they are doing.  I have found over the years that about half the time, I don't really want to settle for what the "experts" recommend. 

Regarding wahts te best route for Scanzel, probably the first [place to check is the experts in his area.  But just keep in mind that there may be other options if you are not completley sold on their solution.

There sometimes more than one way to skin that cat.  So I  guess our purpose here was to help Scanzel brainstorm a little, and then he can choose the way he wants to do it.  We've probably done that.  Good luck with that
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Jim Stewart
El Cajon, Ca.  (San Diego area)

Travel is more than the seeing of sights, it is a change that goes on, deep  and permanent, in the ideas of living.
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