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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys, question for you all! I have a 1998 735i that I want to fit a detachable towbar onto, I've got hold of one off a '97 750i but what I could do with is a diagram of said towbar to make sure that I have all the bits I need... Apparently it was a factory fitted from new jobbie, it looks like it's just a shaped plate that bolts onto the chassis behind the bumper, I know I need to cut the bumper & buy a cut out cover (£21 from Coopers Norwich, not bad :) ) & that they plug into the loom behind the rear lights but are there any more brackets/strengthening arms that should go on it? Also, I think it's s'posed to have a relay fitted for the check light control, any ideas where this goes & what it looks like? :confused any help gratefully received! :D
 

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There may not look much to it but its not a quick job, although fairly straightforward. Those side arms are much longer than they look in the realoem diagram, and reach right down each side of the spare wheel well. It is necessary to lower both exhausts, and corrosion of some of these clamps, may mean replacement, including the heatshields.

If you remove the boot mat, and the front half the plastic that surrounds the wheel well, and look along the same rail where the jack is mounted, you will find a set of 2 pre marked holes on each side under the plastic, being the mounting points for the side arms mentioned above, so need to guess or measure, BMW have done it for you. Its a similar story for the big section behind the bumper, which you will have to remove completely. Again there are 4 holes pre-marked. And finally, with the bumper off, you will find that this too has a pre-marked cut line for the BMW cover moulding. A word of caution on this-the sytem is designed to utilise a 13 pin socket, so don't let anyone talk you into using old style twin sockets, as this would leave a huge cut-out in the skirt which won't be covered by the special BMW cover. For a good cover fit, you must spend time cutting, filing, and chamfering the skirt-there's no 2nd chance!

If the system is all BMW, then there is/was a trailer module.However, my 2 units were supplied by:

http://www.rydertowing.co.uk/default.aspx

-although mine have been superceded, there is a downloadable pdf catalogue. The very least you will need is a bulb bypass relay (plus a caravan relay if that's your purpose). My Ryder units have been in 2 E38s over 7 years, without problem.
 

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Thanks guys :thumbsup Sorry I was so long in replying, been parking up late in the wagon so couldn't be bothered with the 'pooter! Don't have to be up early tomorrow for a change so catching up :) Looking at the diagram I don't think I have the arms that go forward, hope I can get them from somewhere at a reasonable price! Reckon I'll need to change the plug on the trailer tent then....
 

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You might as well change the plug as 13 pin is now the norm, and is more secure arrangement due to the push and twist feature.
 

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Just had a look at the towbar, the arms that go forward from the towbar are definately missing :frown Anyone know where I can get some? Luckily they're bolt on, not welded on! Went to the BMW dealers & they don't list them as a seperate item, I need them fairly sharpish so any help gratefully received :thumbsup
 

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Thanks chrisn, I tried e-mailing Bosel but no reply :frown Spoke to a not very helpful bloke at a towbar centre & he reckoned they wouldn't sell parts due to the chance of litigation in the event of an accident, dontcha just love the litigation culture? :mad Is there anyone here who has these parts for sale? Failing that, if I can get the parts to use as a pattern I could get them made, favorite would be if someone had said parts & could copy & make them for me, I don't expect freebies :) I can't post in the wanted section coz I don't have enough posts yet, can anyone help? Really need to get it fitted!
 

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Now you are stepping onto dodgy ground. Towbars now have to have Type approval since Aug 1998 so you could theoretically find yourself without insurance cover in the event of accident with home made towbar parts....
 

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I know what you mean but I may not have a choice, I've a couple of mates who are running their own engineering businesses so I don't have to worry about the quality of the work! Ideally I'd like to find the proper parts though but not having a lot of luck at the moment :frown
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi Chrisn, had a word with my mate & he's going to make the parts, he's a professional engineer with his own company & knowing him the bits will be stronger than the bosel ones anyway! Just noticed that your car is the same as the one the towbar came off except it was a '97 model! I think we'll be using 8mm thick steel so it'll be overengineered if anything, Forth bridge anyone...? :lol
 
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