- This topic has 23 replies, 10 voices, and was last updated by Ken B.
August 2, 2010 at 7:24 am #12532
Is it possible to tow an Anglia with a A Frame? If so, where would be the best place to connect it?
Terry.August 2, 2010 at 7:52 am #24021
The first answer is yes, it’s possible. I’d imagine the place to attach it would be the track control arms, but as I’ve never tried it, am open to correction.August 2, 2010 at 8:20 am #24022
I looked at the TCA’s, but I thought they might be a bit weak to tow by. I don’t know if the engine crossmember might be better, but might be a bit to high. Any advice would be welcome.
TerryAugust 2, 2010 at 12:14 pm #24024
Yes you can as I used to do it when I did recovery work and from the TCA’s. But…….
Technically they are illegal for anything other than recovery of a broken down road legal car. Before we all get into a long debate over who uses them etc…
This is a letter I got from VOSA some years back, which is a standard letter on the subject and i think is the same one as in the above link.
The Vosa reply
When an “A” frame is attached to a vehicle (e.g. a motor car) and towed by a motor vehicle (e.g. motorhome) we believe the “A” frame and car become a single unit and as such are classified in legislation as a trailer. As a consequence the car and A-frame are required to meet the technical requirements for trailers when used on the road in Great Britain. These requirements are contained within the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986 (SI 1986/1078) as amended (C&U) and the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations 1989 (SI 1989/1796) as amended (RVLR).
Trailers having a combined axle mass not exceeding 750kg are not required to have brakes fitted. However, if the trailer (regardless of mass) is fitted with a braking system, then all brakes in that system must operate correctly. The regulations do not include design constraints on how this should be achieved but, for example, it could be met by direct linking of the trailer brakes to the brake system of the towing vehicle or by automatic inertia (overrun) operation via the towing hitch. Inertia systems can only be used for trailers with a maximum combined axle mass of 3500kg.
Regulations 15 and 16 set out the braking requirements – including minimum braking efficiencies for trailer brakes. Subject to certain age exemptions, the regulation requires the braking system to comply with the construction, fitting and performance requirements of European Community Directive 71/320/EEC along with its various amending Directives. The most recent consolidated directive is 98/12/EC. Alternatively the braking system can comply with the corresponding UNECE Regulation No.13.09.
In addition, C&U Regulation 18 requires the braking system to be maintained in good and efficient working order. If the brakes of the towing vehicle do not directly operate the trailer brakes the use of an inertia (overrun) system is acceptable. If the trailer braking system has power assistance (i.e. servo or full power) it is likely that this assistance will be required while in motion to meet the required braking efficiencies. This is because once the vacuum reservoir is depleted it is possible that the brakes will not meet the braking efficiency. To prevent the trailer being used illegally a remote vacuum pump, powered from the tow vehicle, could be installed to recharge the reservoir, alternatively a source could be made available from the tow vehicle. From 1 October 1988 the inertia braking system was required to allow the trailer to be reversed by the towing vehicle without imposing a sustained drag and such devices used for this purpose must engage and disengage automatically. This will be very difficult to achieve on an “A” frame using an inertia (overrun) device.
Other provisions from Regulation 15 and Regulation 86A of C&U require the fitting and use of a secondary coupling system in which the trailer is stopped automatically if the main coupling separates whilst the combination is in motion. Alternatively, in the case of trailers up to a maximum mass of 1500kg, the drawbar must be prevented from touching the ground and the trailer able to retain some residual steering.
Whilst being towed, trailers are subject to the relevant requirements given in RVLR, including the use of triangular red reflectors. There would be further requirements for the display of the appropriate number plate, etc.
The use of “dollies” is intended for the recovery of broken down vehicles, not for the transportation of a vehicle from “A” to “B”. Under Regulation 83 of C&U a motor car is permitted to tow two trailers when one of them is a towing implement and the other is secured to and either rests on or is suspended from the implement. Therefore as a trailer if the maximum laden weight of the dolly exceeds 750 kg it must be fitted with operational brakes, additionally the brakes on the wheels of the second trailer (the towed car) must work and meet the specified requirements. Again this would be very difficult for the rear brakes of a motor car, on their own, to meet the 50% braking efficiency required for a trailer. The dolly would also be required by Regulation 22 of C&U to be fitted with suspension. Regulations 19 and 22 in C&U permit a broken down vehicle to be recovered without complying with these requirements. However, there is further legislation under the Road Traffic Act that introduces a limitation on the maximum speed that the combination can be driven; this is 40mph on motorways and 20mph on other roads.
We do not supply copies of legislation but I have included some information on various sources where they can be obtained. If you would like to purchase printed copies of Statutory Instruments these are available from TSO:
The Stationery Office Tel: 0870 600 5522
PO Box 29 Fax: 0870 600 5533
St Crispins e-mail: [email protected]
Duke Street online ordering: http://www.tso.co.uk/bookshop
Norwich NR3 1GN
Alternatively you can consult “The Encyclopaedia of Road Traffic Law and Practice” published by Sweet and Maxwell. This publication is updated regularly and is available in most city reference libraries.
EU Directives can be found at:
UN-ECE Regulations can be found at: http://www.unece.org/trans/main/wp29/wp29regs.html
From the above I hope it is clear that we believe the use of “A” frames to tow cars behind other vehicles is legal provided the braking and lighting requirements are met. However, while this is our understanding of the meaning of the Regulations, it is only the Courts which can reach a definitive interpretation of the law.
Your licence your choice at the end of the day.
They are banned in most European countries by the way just in case you were thinking of going abroad!!August 2, 2010 at 1:52 pm #24025
Its only to get my vehicle to a workshop for an engine out job. I was more concerned about causing any damage to the tca’s, but as you say you have used them in the past, thats good enough for me.
TerryAugust 9, 2010 at 2:05 pm #24054
I towed my estate to the paint shop and back with one.
Attached to the tca’s
Local plod probably wouldn’t know if it was legal or not. :lol:
I connected the estate rear lights up to the tow car and had a magnetic on tow sign on the back etc, keep it sensible and you will probably be okAugust 22, 2010 at 2:38 am #24113
The way I’ve towed my Anglia is to remove the bumper and center brackets and replace it with a 1/4″ thick bar about the size of the bumper c/brackets. Use the same bracket bolts after drilling the bar. Attach the A-frame to the bars.
PeteSeptember 20, 2010 at 8:01 am #24233
Thsi poor chap broke down on saturday half a mile from the show ground near Shaftesbury. No other option really. It was an Austin 10 or 12 or something similar…. No bother!September 20, 2010 at 8:42 am #24234
Looks more like an FX3 taxi to me. Presumably when you used to use them, you were too p***ed to notice!September 20, 2010 at 10:49 am #24236
Yes Jim, it was an FX3, and I don’t remember them because I landed on this planet in 1971……. :lol:September 20, 2010 at 1:19 pm #24238
Hey Jason – the verdict is still out as to whether you’ve ever landed on this planet! :lol: or indeed ever sobered up!!!!!
:lol: :lol: :lol:October 9, 2010 at 3:45 pm #24348
I’ve towed Anglias many times using A frames attached to the track control arms without any problems.
I now have a braked A frame which operates the vehicle brakes via the overrun coupling. I’ve towed Anglias with and without the braking system.
Neither have caused problems but obviously the braked kit tows better. I usually tow with a Discovery, Range Rover or LWB Land Rover so the drawing vehicle weighs twice as much as the Anglia – which helps!October 10, 2010 at 1:03 am #24350
Well in 2014 dollies and A frames will all be outlawed apparently under new EU rules here that most of Europe already have, so that will be the end of them.October 10, 2010 at 8:52 am #24351
They probably will be Ken. They don’t comply with eu regs as they don’t have auto-reversing brakes.November 8, 2010 at 8:48 pm #24522
This is an interesting subject! I have towed Anglias, Cortinas and Consul Capris for hundreds of miles. I bought two of my Anglias to the Beulieu 50th anniversary with them. Picked up a 107 in North Wales and towed it to London, even picked up a left hand drive 106 Estate in France with one. I asked advice from guys on the French Ford Forum, and it prompted a huge debate. As has been said, it is believed to be ilegal, but it seems people interpret the law differently. Users of French motorways will often see motorhomes pulling a small car on a type of A frame. The motorhomes I saw this summer were mostly from Holland – but they are in the E U, so what’s the truth? Certainly I received no hassel in France.
In the UK I was stoppped on the M25 by police, but only to advise me that smoke was evident from a binding rear brake. (whoops!)
I would advise the following, (most just common sense) Make sure the towed vehicle’s brakes are free and handbrake is off!! As soon as it is safe to do so use your brakes to work out your reduced stopping distance. Leave a sensible distance between you and the car in front. Brake gently. Know where you are going!! Reversing, certainly with the older AA & RAC type recovery A frames is not practical. Lastly, and most importantly, make sure it is correctly fitted. With the older style ones with chain fixings, it is the chain that pulls the car, the TCA’s rest against the hooks of the A frame. Fix the wrong way and the first time you brake the towed car will ride over the frame and catch you up!! Not very funny, and iv’e seen it happen!
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