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After doing some searching for this thread: http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?s=&postid=1249849#post1249849

I saw a few posts about crossing straps and chains... I do it, but I never really thought about it. I could see how this could prevent the load from shifting to a side... but I could also see how this could potentially allow the load to flip. Dunno.

If you cross you straps/chains, why do you do it?

Randii
 

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When it comes right down to it, I don't know. I see tow drivers hook up cars alot on flat beds and they never cross the straps. Granted they don't do long distance, but I'm not so sure that if you place your straps properly, there is any need to cross them. Just my .02.
 

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Crossed chains keep the load from shifting sideways under cornering loads and bumps.

Straight chains can allow the load to move sideways and can cause an unstable situation.

I always cross my chains around the axle on the far side of the springs. I start in the rear and try to maintain a 45 degree angle if possible.

Then I drive forward to preload the rear chains and the leave the vehicle in gear when I shut it off.

I then hook up the front chains, again crossed and wrapped around the axle on the far side of the springs. I use load binders to pull the front chains tight.

Then I take a 5' bar and smack the chains in the middle to see if it will relieve any bound links and retighten the binders.

Finally I use a length of wire to tie down the chain binder handles to make sure they don't come loose on the road.

I always check the chains when I stop and I also check the tires, hitch, lights and the wheel hubs to see if any are getting hot.

I do not use straps. When I started towing I used some 10K lb straps with good success. One day I noticed a very small nick in one strap (~1/8"). I thought it wasn't very significant so I started to tighten down the strap and BANG! It broke all the way across! I can't imagine what would have happened if it broke on the road!
 

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I think crossing them is OK...But you got to make sure there is no way for the strap around the axle to slip sideways and loosen, and also be aware of any sharp edges that may cut. The other thing is the trailer mounts. D rings are not as strong with an angled pull so you won't get their full rated strength.

I saw a guy doing this who welded old u-bolts to the back of his axles. Worked pretty good and was real quick to set up, but I like the safety of going all the way around the axle.

Most of the strap sites I looked at recommended 4 straight straps at each axle with the trailer attachment points 3"-4" outbound of the axle attachments. One of them said crossing was OK with the provisions mentioned above.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Any other thoughts?

I guess I can see how sideways motion could be allowed even with tight straps, strung only front-to-back.

Next time I load, I guess I'll cross the front straps, too...

Randii
 

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with properly tensioned straps/chains straight (not crossed) the tires shouldn't scooch across the trailer.

I think it's all preference. there doesn't seem to be only 1 way to do most things.
 

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I agree - there is just no reason to cross your straps if you have the load properly secured to the trailer.
 

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I've never thought to cross my chains.

Up front, I run a chain around the axle, outboard of the springs, and down to a large ring in the front/center of the deck.

One chain per side, "V"-ing in the center, and pulling forward.

I then back up.

In the rear, another chain goes from one rear-corner of the trailer deck over the axle tube, under the pig, and over the other side, then down to the opposite corner, with a load-binder.

I like the binder in the rear, since it's easier to get to. The front has my toolbox and tire-rack in the way.

So both front and rear are bound down with a "V".. the "point" going to the deck up front, and the "point" going to the diff in the back.

Doesn't move around, doesn't sway enough I notice.
 
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