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Demco Dominator Non-Binding Tow Bar Review

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Review of the Demco Dominator Non-Binding Tow Bar

Hi there flat towers. Today we're going to be taking a look at Demco's dominator tow bar. The dominator is Demco's flagship tow bar. It is because it's the lightweight tow bar due to its aluminum design. Most of your tow bars are going to be pretty heavy, getting close to 40 or 50 pounds. This one here only weighs in at about 30 pounds, so it is still kind of heavy, but in comparison with the other ones it's a lot lighter and since you're going to have to lift these arms up and hook them in each time, that little bit of weight reduction really goes a long way.

And what I like that Demco has that the other competitors don't is that it has bushings inside of all of its pivot points that holds the arm in place. So you can see here the arms all the way down. But if I lift it up, it stays up and the other tow bars out there aren't going to do this for you. They're going to just drop right down.Now I do already have one side already hooked in, but on the tow bars where you've got one side hooked in and the other side wants to drop down, it's wanting to get itself almost into a bind due to that. But with the arm holding itself up.

All I have to do is slide it out, line it up and twist it in place. This way you're not working when you're getting your tow bar installed. We're just simply making the connection. And I found here at etrailer that when I'm going over these setups with our customers, one of the things they always say to me is, "Man, is this tow bar always this heavy Is it always going to be this difficult to hook it up due to how heavy it is to lift these arms up" So that's why I've been recommending Demco' dominator here due to the fact that it holds itself up. Our customers aren't fighting themselves anymore.Your tow bars one of five main components you'll need when flat towing your vehicle behind your motor home.

The tow bars the main connection that attaches the vehicle to your motor home. In addition to your tow bar, you'll also need your base plate, which is the connection point that's installed on your vehicle. You'll need your safety cables, which is a supplemental connection in addition to your tow bar. But thankfully our Demco dominator here comes with safety cables included with them, so we don't have to worry about that. But we'll also need our diode wiring, which is the components that will take the signals from our motor home, send them to the lights at the back of our vehicle so people behind us will know our intentions when going down the road.

And lastly, you'll need your supplemental braking system, which will apply the brake pedal in our vehicle using the existing brakes to help it come to a safe stop inaudible 00:02:18 behind our motor home. Taking all that extra work off of the brakes on our motor home.When purchasing a tow bar, the weight of the tow bar and how easy it is to get connected is one of the biggest things. But the next biggest thing is going to be how you get it disconnected and the major thing you want to look for in your tow bar is to ensure that is a nonbinding tow bar. The levers that are found here on the arms will release the arms so that way you can get it disconnected. Currently our arm is locked in and you'll see here we're going to try and take our components apart and it's pretty difficult to get it to twist. If we release it here you can see now how easy it is to get this to twist. Now I was able to twist it before releasing it, but I had to put a lot of effort into it. Depending on how un-level your vehicle and your motor home are, it could be significantly tighter to where you won't even be able to twist it at all.But once you pop that loose, you get that freedom in your arm and now you can easily twist it and slide that out. With a binding tow bar, you wouldn't have the release levers that you see here. There are some models that do have buttons. The problem with the models that had the buttons, they're not truly nonbinding because the button is so difficult to press to get the arm to release. In most cases that if it is bound up, you're not going to be able to press that button without the assistance of additional tools. So if you don't have those tools available at your disposal to help you get those tow bars disconnected, you'd have to take your motor home and your vehicle and reposition those multiple times until you got it into a spot where you we're able to get that tow bar off.And with nonbinding tow bars like our Demco dominator here, it's as simple as pressing down the lever. Your dominator tow bar is going to come with a tab end like this installed on it. And this is designed to work with Demco's tab base plates. Demco also has tab-less base plates that you see here and they do use a different end here, but what's nice about these tab-less base plates is it comes with the end that you'll install on your tow bar to get that connection made. Demco's made it easy to get these swapped out by providing the hardware that you need there so you can easily swap these out to different sizes if you've got multiple vehicles that have different base plates. Our dominator will have a gross towing capacity of 7,500 pounds and that's going to be more than enough for most of the vehicles out there that you're going to flat tow with the exception for some of your larger trucks that people are flat towing now.If you need a higher weight capacity than 7,500 pounds, I'd recommend Demco's excali-bar III. That one has a maximum rating of 10,500 pounds. If you wanted a more entry level tow bar and you don't need the full 7500, 6,000 pounds is going to be plenty for most of your smaller vehicles. You could go with Demco's commander 2, which offers 6,000 pounds. It's still a nonbinding tow bar. It doesn't quite have all the features of our dominator here because it's not lightweight aluminum so it is going to be heavier but it will be acceptable for those smaller vehicles. When setting your vehicle up to flat tow. Another thing you want to keep in mind is the distance that your receiver sits off the ground and the distance your base plate sits off the ground. Because when you're flat-towing you want to have a level plain on your tow bar here.See how we have it nice and level. Our tow bar is not way up here or down here. We've got nice even arms. To help you achieve a nice level plane. The tow bar has a one and a half inch rise or drop. We've currently got it in the rise position. But if you wanted to you could swap the shank here over in the unit to put it in the drop position. This is nice because a lot of motor homes are typically not the same as your vehicle in your base plate so you usually have to adjust for this and you used to have to buy a high/low adapter in order to achieve this. But since this is now built into the tow bar head assembly, we don't need to purchase those expensive additional components. You'll see two bolts located here, there's one on this side and the same bolt is going to be on the other side and we have a pivot that actually occurs on our head here.This pivot has three inches of movement up and down to allow us to further assist to get this nice and level. Now when setting it up you want to be as level as possible but it doesn't have to be perfect. The rule of thumb is that you want to be within three inches plus or minus on your motor home and your vehicle. So as long as the measurement here is within three inches of the measurement here, we're good to go. The length of our arm when fully retracted from the center of our hitch pin hole to the edge is going to measure about 39 and 1/4 inches. With the arm fully extended from the center of our hitch pin hole to the edge of the arm, it's going to measure 51 and 3/4 inches. You do want to keep in mind that the shank of your tow bar does have two hitch pin holes.You'll have one closer to the head assembly and one closer to the receiver. The measurements we just gave you are for the hole that's closer to the receiver. Some other quality of life features Demco's provided for us is a cable management bar located here on the side of our arm. This is nice to keep everything up off the road so you don't have any of your cables potentially bouncing up and down and hitting the pavement. This will extend the life of your components and it also just gives it a cleaner look, keeping everything nice and neat. You simply slide your coiled cables over the bar here and they're held in place with the included pin. We already mentioned that our safety cables come with our tow bar but I like the way that they've incorporated clips into it to keep those up off the road as well.This gives it a cleaner look and will also extend the life of these cables because they're not going to be bouncing around down near the road. Another thing I like is that this tow bar is self aligning so you just drive your vehicle up to the back, hook it up, place it into tow mode and then drive off. You can see here that as our motor home pulls away, the arms extend, lock into place and the motor home aligns itself directly behind us without us having to do anything. Another thing that I like about this over a tow dolly is the way that it tracks behind your motor home. It's going to track more naturally and follow closely behind your motor home so you don't have to worry about taking those turns too sharp or too loose and the vehicle hopping off the side of the road with your tow dolly, your tow dolly is going to be wider than your vehicle so you've got that additional width added on and then it tracks behind your motor home more like a trailer so it doesn't follow as closely cause the wheels don't turn like they do in your vehicle.Additionally with a tow dolly, you're now at your campsite and you want to use your vehicle, but you've got this two dolly you got to do something with. You either have to leave it on the back of your motor home where it's just taking up space or haul it somewhere on your campsite where it's still going to be taking up space. And then when you get home, you still have to figure out what you're going to do with it there. Whether you're going to leave it in your garage, sacrifice precious car space. Are you going to store it in a barn where it could potentially lead to rust or corrosion in the futureWith our flat tow setup here, all of our components that are on the vehicle stay on the vehicle and the only thing you really have to worry about storing is your tow bar here, but since it has a storage position, you could easily leave it at the back of your motor home and it almost takes up no real estate when it's back there. Speaking of our storage position, it's really easy to get it in the storage position. We've gone ahead and disconnected. You'll see the small tab located here on top at the back of the arm. It's going to lock into the red holder right there. Now you can't just push it over, you'll see that it hits, so you'll want to lift up on the arms first. That'll allow it to clear, push it over, and then you can just drop it back down and it locks into place. You can store both arms on the same side or store them on opposite sides. I prefer to store them on the opposite sides. Just cause it's easier to see your pins lining up.And what I like about the storage position on this tow bar in comparison with others is the way the cables all stay up off the ground. I mean you can throw your hand under there, you're good to go. The rod where you store your cables makes a great location to keep all that stuff up. There are other tow bars out there that have cable management channels that run down the arms and those are great when you've got it hooked up. They keep it off the road, they look awesome but when you put it in a storage mode, the channels just holding it there and then the ends just kind of flopped down and they want to drag on the ground. You can fold them over and try to tie him up, but a lot of times they want to just fall down without you using something to actually physically hold them in place.This little clip in bar here does the job for you. Now if you plan on leaving your tow bar stored at the back of your motor home for an extended period of time, I'd recommend picking up Demco's tow bar cover. The one thing I will say is when you're using the tow bar cover, you can't have the arms stored one on one side, one on the other. They both have to be stored on the same side for the cover to fit. Now when you're ready to hook up, slide your tow bar into the receiver of your motor home. You have two holes here so you can set the distance that you want your tow bar to stick out of the receiver. We're going to use the first hole to make it a little bit longer. Just line that up and then we'll use the included pin and clip to secure our tow bar to the receiver.You can then hook up your safety cables to your motor home. You want to make sure you cross those so the arms are going to connect to your driver's side. You want to make sure you connect that safety chain loop to the passenger side on your motor home's hitch. And we're going to do vice versa for the other arm. This will create a cradle underneath, so in the event of a catastrophic disconnect, this will keep our components up off the pavement and keep it from digging in. Here you can see the connection point that we've installed onto our dominator tow bar. This comes with your base plate and it will quick connect right into your base plate. Now if you're not using a Demco base plate, you may need to purchase adapters which we have available here at that can match up to any of the other base plate manufacturers there such as Blue Ox or Roadmaster.To connect your tow bar you'll lift up the arm, slide the end into your base plate, and then just give it a twist. You'll feel that it will slide in. Once you've got it all the way in, continue twisting it again until the hole in your shaft here matches up with the holes on the sides of your base plate. You'll then secure it in place using the included pins that come with your base plate. We're going to hook up the other side the exact same way. We'll then hook our safety cables up to out connection point there on our base plate. Once you've got your tow bar fully connected, you'll notice that two of the bolts are going to come loose right out of the box. This is so you can adjust the tilt on the head to make it level.Once you've got it level, you'll want to tighten those down and torque them to specifications found in your instructions. An easy way to help you get this level is you could hook your tow bar up and then pull your motor home forward a little bit until it locks in place. And that'll auto level your head for you. Then you just torque it down afterwards. And that completes our look at Demco's dominator tow bar.

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