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Trailer hitch installation.

Discussion in 'Aerostar Forum' started by Godleydemon, July 29, 2012.

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  1. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    I bought a trailer hitch installation for my van today as I"m going on a long trip to Ohio from Oregon starting on the 2nd of August. I needed the trailer hitch to pull a 5x8 enclosed trailer filled to the brim with tons of stuff. My problem is after assembling the darndable thing (there was a bolt missing and I had to go buy one -.-) then getting it jacked up into place. I can't see how I'm supposed to get the bolts in. My instructions tell me to use this thing piece of wire to maneuver the bolts into place. But I can't get the bolts in the frame because theres no access point for them. I was trying to take off the bumper earlier today to see if there was an access point but figured there has to be an easier way then taking the entire bumper assembly off. Any help is appreciated on this.

    1994 Ford Aerostar XLT
     
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  3. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Welcome to this forum! There are only a few bolts connecting the bumper to the van. Try not to apply pressure in the corners since the corner slide pieces are fragile.
     
  4. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    Well I have removed the two bolts on either side at the bottom of the bumper. But it seems as though something else is holding it in place. I have started to try and remove the outer parts of the bumper on the side of the van. But those too seem like there being held in place by something I cannot see.
     
  5. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    There are more than two bolts connecting the bumper. Check the top area above the bottom bolts.
     
  6. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    Well I mean I removed 4 bolts in total, two on both sides. Sorry for my wording there, I can understand how it could be misunderstood, lol. I'm working on the bumper right now and trying to see if I can get her off of there.
     
  7. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    This diagram was in my Ford software:
    [​IMG]
    The first image was uploaded to the site's photo gallery, but came out small. The attached image is a little larger.
     

    Attached Files:

  8. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    so I tried removing it again and it won't budge. I believe I found two bolts though hidden in the frame with two access holes just big enough for a ratchet that I will begin to remove next.
     
  9. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Do you have the regular size body or the extended body which is 15.4" longer?
     
  10. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    I got the xlt model. I was finally able to remove those two bolts. But the thing still wouldn't budge. My wife, bless her soul came over and started going crazy on the thing. She ripped the rubber off the bumper with her bare hands and found two bolts I had missed on the under side. I removed them and the thing fell off into my lap. Next step, jacking up the hitch and drilling the holes, :D
     
  11. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    so with the bumper off I realized the access hole to the frame is WAY to small to get the bolts in with the brace that the hitch requires. So I've cleaned up and given up for tonight. I'll start on it again tomorrow here. Any ideas on the access to the frame?
     
  12. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    I'm attaching an image to show what I'm talking about.
    [​IMG]
     
  13. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Why can't you drill holes to attach nuts, washers, and bolts?
     
  14. tagnamee

    tagnamee New Member

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    I had the same problem and drilled a couple of clearance holes for the plate to pass through. Had to file a little bit but worked.
     
  15. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    Where exactly did you drill access holes? Because waking up this morning I have renewed strength. I have to get this done today before the trip. But I'm still baffled on how to get these darn things on. The reason I can't just drill and nut everything on. Is because there is no access to the top side of the frame. The bolts have to go INSIDE the frame. But the access hole they have is way to small for that. Argles...
     
  16. tagnamee

    tagnamee New Member

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    I can't remember exactly but I selected a drill bit that was bigger than the thickness of the plate. Think of a slot needing to be cut into the metal. It just so happens that there is a big hole there already. Use a 3/8 or larger drill bit and drill at opposite ends of the large hole. Make sure and start drilling far enough to the outside of the hold so that the drill doesn't walk over. Do the same on the opposite end of the of the big hole. You may need to file a little bit or maybe you can walk the bit over to create the slot. I tried to attach a simple drawing but don't know how to do that. Hope this gives you the correct mental picture. I seem to remember that you need to fish this bolt and plate down the box channel. A guy at a UHAUL showed me a slick way of doing this with no cuss words involved. You need a piece of wire ling enough to go from one hole to the next. This guy used a Delta washerless faucet spring soldered to the end of the wire. The bolt threaded right into the spring, snaked the bolt and plate through the hole/slot and dragged the bolt right into place and through the hole. I've mounted a few hitches to my aerostars and this may or may not be what you are trying to accomplish. Good luck!
     
  17. Godleydemon

    Godleydemon New Member

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    Well I was able to get some access holes by using 3 jigsaw blades, a crow bar, a hammer, 2 bloody knuckles, some burnt skin and a pair of plyers. Theres now a nice sized access hole in the frame UNDER the van on either side. I didn't realize that what I thought was an access hole was actually just a plain hole with another metal plate inside. I used your method with the wire. I actually threaded the bolt onto the wire and was easily able to drop it in place. Thanks for thar ^.-
     






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