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Demco Classic Base Plate Kit Installation - 2018 Ram 1500

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How to Install the Demco Classic Base Plate Kit on a 2018 Ram 1500


Rob here at etrailer.com, and today we're going to be taking a look at the Demco Classic Base Plate Kit on our 2018 Ram 1500. Now, our base plate is going to attach directly to our Ram's frame so we have a solid connection point for our tow bar to hook up to and we can safely flat tow it down the road.Our Demco Classic Base Plate is going to have permanently-mounted fixed arms. We can see them sticking out past the bumper right here. Now, a lot of other base plates on the market do have removable arms, so they're going to have a lot cleaner of a look when we're not towing, but one thing to keep in mind with those, is we are going to have to find a spot to store the arms for when we're not towing our Ram.Our Demco Base Plate is going to work with all Demco tow bars as well as other manufacturers' tow bars with an adapter that is sold separately. Whenever you go to hook up your tow bar, it's going to be extremely simple. We'll just slide it in place, line up the pin holes, put in our pin, and finally secure it down.Right here on the outside of where an attachment point is, we're going to have our safety cable attachment point.

You see even with some really large hooks, we're going to have a really easy time hooking them up and unhooking them.Whenever you're towing your Ram, you want to make sure that your tow bar is nice and level and as flat as possible. We want to make sure that our connection point in our Ram here is no more than three inches higher or lower than the connection point to our motor home. Our base plate connection point is right at 17 1/2 inches on our Ram. So now would be a good time to go to your motor home and you're going to measure from the ground to the inside top edge of the receiver tube opening. Now if it doesn't fall within that three inch difference you are going to need to pick up a high/low adapter and you're going to find that here at etrailer.com.

Now keep in mind that's only going to be one component you need for a complete safe flat tow setup. For a complete setup you're going to need a base plate, a tow bar, tow bar wiring, a braking system and finally safety cables.As far as the installation goes on our Demco Base Plate it is going to be really straight forward. It's not going to require any kind of cutting or drilling or any modification to our Ram. You can see that it's going to replace our factory tow hooks. And if your Ram doesn't have any tow hooks it's going to go where they would be.

But now that we've seen what our base plate looks like and we've gone over some of the features let's get it installed together.To begin our installation we want to come to the very front of our Ram. Now I do want to mention on our specific model here we do not have tow hooks. If you do that's okay. But we're going to need to remove the tow hooks. And in our case since they're not there we're just going to have to remove some hardware.

So we're going to move underneath behind the bumper here.So behind our bumper we're going to find our frame rail here and our frame rail is going to be attached to our bumper on each side using three nuts. We'll have two on the bottom here and then there's going to be one on the top, but on the outside of the frame rail. We need to remove three of these nuts. So I want to grab an 18 millimeter socket and we'll pull those off. And the nut that's on the very top you may need to use a hand ratchet to get it loose because if there's limited space because of all the body mounts and frame rails are in the way. Once all the nuts are removed off the bumper beam here we're going to hold on to them because we are going to be reusing them. We'll move just to the inside towards the center. This is that plastic cover that our tow hooks would be coming through. So we're going to remove these two bolts on the center. And then we'll move to the other side. We'll have two more just like it. We'll grab a 10 millimeter socket and pull all four bolts out. With all the hardware removed you want to grab the plastic section and try and slide it towards the center, kind of work it out until we have that large opening right here.At this point we can grab one of our brackets. And since we're on the passenger side we want to grab the passenger bracket. They are labeled, but in case the sticker come off or it's not on there, the two tabs here that have that single hole going through each one, that's going to be where tow bar hooks into the base plate. So we want that facing forward. Well if that's facing forward we want the long skinny tab to be on the outside of the vehicle. That way we know it's going to be the passenger side one. So we'll take our bracket and we'll move underneath and we can get it in place.So before we put our bracket in place we look towards the passenger side on the outside of our frame rail here. Right above this bolt we're going to have this little tab that's kind of sticking out. We want that to fit flat against the frame so you can take a hammer, a chisel, whatever you have available and we just want to tap it until it's nice and flat. But you want to be extremely careful not to damage the bolt here. Now we're going to take a flat washer and we'll slide it over the studs that are on our frame rail here. Go over each one. We'll come back and put a little bit of Loctite on all the threads. You don't need a whole lot just a little bit so it goes onto the threads and the nut will engage that. We can grab our base plate and you just kind of want to work around all the brackets, swing it in place here. Make sure that it sits over the top of each one of the studs. We'll take the factory hardware that we removed and we're just going to loosely install it hand tight for right now.At this point we're going to grab our rear bracket. You'll notice one end is going to have a rounded section and one will have a little step to it. This section of the step with the two holes needs to go towards the front. And if we look at our base plate bracket we'll notice we're going to have two holes. So we're going to have it sitting just like this once we install it, but we need to get our hardware ready first. So we'll grab a 3/8 bolt out of our kit. We'll follow up the bolt with a split lock washer and then a flat washer. And just like all the other bolts we're going to put a little bit of Loctite on the threads. We'll go through one of the holes in our bracket. We're going to line it up, the holes in our base plate. And for right now we're just going to get it in hand tight just so it'll hold itself and we don't have to worry about it falling off. It's going to be the same combination of hardware for that front hole as well.And for the final rear hole here we're going to take the long bolt from our kit. Again I put the blue Loctite on there. We're going to line it up with the hole in the frame. We want to go all the way through to the bolts coming out on the other side. Now on the other side of our bolt we'll take a flat washer, slide it on. Follow that up with a split lock washer and then finally, secure it down with a hex nut. Now that we have this side loosely in place we're going to repeat that entire process over on the driver's side.Now that we have both sides loosely in place you'll notice that our base plate is most likely sitting at the very bottom of the opening where our tow hook was. Now that's all right, but we want to try to center it as much as we can. And the bracket on the back is slotted so we should just be able to kind of lift up on it, push up as high as we can and then I'm just going to reach behind the bumper here and snug those bolts down by hand so hopefully it doesn't move anymore and it'll hold that position. I'm going to go and do the same thing on the other side so we can try and get it as close to center as possible.Now that we have each side of our base plate positioned properly I'm going to came back with that 18 millimeter socket and I'm going to tighten up the nuts holding everything in place first. Now for our bolts that are on our bracket here I'm going to use a 16 millimeter socket and a 16 millimeter wrench to hold the nut so I can tighten everything up.With all the hardware snugged down I'm going to come back with a torque wrench and we're going to torque all of it down to the specified amount in the instructions. You just want to make sure you go back through and torque all your hardware down. Once you have everything torqued down that'll finish up your installation and look at the Demco Classic Base Plate on our 2018 Ram 1500.


Info for this part was:

Employee Joshua S
Video Edited:
Joshua S
Employee Robert C
Test Fit:
Robert C
Employee Michael B
Video by:
Michael B

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