This post will cover the home building of a military style Medium Tow bar typically used for Deuce and a Halfs.
As with all of my projects, they always start with the research. I always start with generic search engine requests briefly looking through the pictures until I find the technical name of what I was looking for, in this case “Military Medium Duty Tow Bar”. I ended up stumbling across a thread on Steel Soldiers that had a discussion and pictures of this specific topic: Thread ONE and TWO.
Having found the pictures and Military Tow Bar Specs (thanks to Recovry4x4 on Steel Soldiers). I was ready to start laying out parts.
These are still available from government liquidation auctions, but are getting harder to find and more expensive. Also, it often requires a minimum couple hour driving trip to go pick up from whatever military base that you bought it from. So, I decided to build one myself.
This is how “we” hooked up to the towed truck. I am not validating or suggesting that this is the right or only way, if you do the same it is at your own risk. I also had lock washers and nuts for the 3/4″ bolts, but they are not shown in the picture. After our test pull, the first thing we did was go to the tractor supply store and buy some replacement pins for the shackles that have large hairpins on them instead of the weak wire pins shown above. I have done a lot of research and found many people that hook up to the shackles on the towed truck, one of whom does so on the daily basis as his job/hobby is to buy military trucks at auction all over the states and tow them home.
The beauty of having a tow bar for these trucks is that it gives the ability to buy and go pick up disabled military trucks (assuming you have a truck big enough to pull it). Often if they are not listed as running on the government auction sites, they go for significantly less than the ones that are known running. Therefore the investment in the tow bar can pay for itself over and over in the long run.