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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone know what hitch receiver would fit on a 70 El Camino? There is evidence that a receiver was previously installed, but the Auto parts Emporium Guys (i.e... Pep Boys, Kregan, Autozone)do not have info on the 70's. Frame is 41 inches center to center.
 

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As far as I know about hitches, it is now almost impossible to get one for a chevelle after 67/8 up to about 78 or so. I asked my mechanic and he told me to have one welded up by a local steel fitters shop. His, for a 66, ran 300 bucks and is rated at Class III(which s hitch speak for "Manly").

I plan to get mine done up when I get the car back on the road.

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I've been going to get one for my 69 El Camino. You can't find them but I did talk to my local u-haul installation garage and they said they could fabricate one for me for around $200.00 which isn't bad at all. The $300.00 isn't out of line either but if you have one of the U-Haul places near you that specializes in hitches you might try them and see if you can save a few$$$.
 

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I think that the price quote of around $200 is realistic for a simple fabricated hitch set-up.

I fabricated my own for my 64 2-door wagon and it is hidden behind the license plate.

You can check it out (and how I made it) at my web site. (The site is rather old and I didn't know how to make up scans that load quickly. Plus, it's one of those "geocity" sites that likes to have all sorts of "pop-ups". I'm sorry!)

http://www.geocities.com/MotorCity/6539/mph1.html



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Wes. Vann
Technical Reference section
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I like Wes's unit, and I will be needing one soon for my 70 elke as well. If you build it yourself please include pix, it would help all.

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Jim
70 El Camino
77 SS El Camino (wife's)
69 CorV8
Springfield, Oregon
Team Chevelle #284 Gold
ACES #3227
 

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If your towing a light trailer, you may want to consider my El Cheapo meathod. I bought a class I hitch (Reese #71991 - it listed late model Elk's on the box) at Autozone for $40. It consisted of a .25" steel L-shaped piece, a 10" X 3" X .5" steel bar, a reinforcing strap, safety chain bracket, and bolts (throw away the directions). Anyway, the L-shaped (facing up and toward the front of the car) piece slides up between the frame crossmember and the bumper bracket that's behind the license plate (you have to remove/loosen the bumper bracket bolts to get it to fit right). A 1" bolt with square washers runs thru the frame crossmember, L-piece, and bumper bracket. The .5" steel bar bolts directly to the bottom of the L-shaped piece. The reinforcing bar bolts to the bumper *IF* you don't mind drilling 4, .25" holes in the bumper below the license plate...My bumper already has a few work-truck dings and holes drilled in the same area so I didn't hesitate, plus the license plate hides the bolts. A square U-bolt attaches the safety chain bracket to the reinforcing bracket, sandwiching the .5" bar between the two pieces. All you have left to do is put on your new ball, hook up the wiring, and re-attach you license plate using the upper license plate holes. The installation is quick, easy, and places the ball so that it doesn't extend beyond the bumper..Not hidden but semi-slick. Just don't over-load the hitch (2000# load, 200# tounge max). It pulls my little bass boat like a dream.

One more tip...run your trailer light connection (all the wires) up through the rubber wire fitting on the drivers side just behind tire. You have to drill another hole in it, but be careful not to damage the wires currently running through it. You can get to all the wires you need by taking out the access panel on the drivers side (4 screws) in the bed behind the taillight. The driver's and passenger's side tailight wires can all be accessed here, and it's out of the weather. I suggest you solder the wires after you've tested the connections trailer lights. Good luck with whatever you try. Email any specific Q?s you may have.

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68 El Camino...Slow, Much Work Required
98 Z28...Fast, No Work Required
Goodfellow AFB, San Angelo, TX -- Where? That's what I said..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yes I like Wes' hidden hitch also, pretty clever. It would be nice to have a little Mig welder to do those kind projects, but as it stand I have to take all my welding projects over to a friends that builds race cars. Sometime it take a few months between his projcts for him to weld something for me. I have been saving my change to get one, but the one I want is $600. On the 70 El's the bumper would have to be cut then the rear cross menber would have to be cut and right behide that is the gas tank. So a lot of modification would have to be done on an un-cut car... I was kind of hope to just find a receiver that would directly fit. I think what I try is Doug's suggestion and modify the receiver vs the car. I have a Cherokee with a receiver and it is about 2 inches short on each side. My nieghbors full size Chevy truck frame is only 31" center to center, so that's out of the picture. Well, with some creative thinking and a welder I might be able to work something. It might take awhile, but I'll let ya'll know if I come up with something. Thank you for the suggestions




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JR
70 396SS El Camino #'s Matching.
69 396SS Chevelle, project "Street Bruiser"
H-D Ultra Classic E-Glide
I live to own toyz...
 

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In regards to the welder that I used, it's a Miller MM130 with argon/co2 bottle. It runs on 110 (and not 220).

The reason that I'm saying this is that in doing the welding of the bracket to the frame, it was marginal in capacity. If the contact between the frame and the bracket wasn't as long as it is, I'd recommend that you take it to a shop and have that section welded!


Do you guys feel that the page should be transfered to the "technical reference" section? (I originally put it on my own page due to thinking that there would be only limited interest) I'd re-do the scans so that they load faster!!!!!

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Wes. Vann
Technical Reference section
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I think this information would be good to save for future posterity. Especially since trailer hitches aren't readily available for these older cars anymore. Very ingenious. I've seen the hidden hitch idea on a few late model chev pickups with a rolled rear pan instead of the bumper, very trick! But I wouldn't have thought to try and do that on an el camino.

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Steve

72 Chevelle SS402/4sp
 

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I'm working on figuring out a hitch solution for my 67. U-Haul wouldn't help me so now I'm trying to gifure out what to do.

I used to have a 67 LeMans that I put a hitch on (I'm betting the frames are very similar). I went to a junkyard and found a hitch that was wider that what I needed. Bought it for $5. Took it home, cut out what I didn't need, took it to Midas and they welded it back together for another $5. It wasn't the prettiest thing in the world but it wasn't bad - especially for $10! The hardened bolts and wiring cost more than the hitch. I think the hitch was on some 70's station wagon.

Anyway...good luck...

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Rick Sutter
Member #383
'67 SS 396
San Antonio, TX
www.sutternet.com/chevelle.asp
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thank you all for the replies... I did some more measuring on my 70 El and it turns out that the cross member behind the bumper is about 4 inches and the drop is 3 inches inches from the cross member to the bumper.
It is possible to "SQUEEZE" a custom made hitch in there but it will be close. The thing I'm worried about is the cutting to make a hidden hitch.
Wes, your web page with the hidden bumper came right up. It wasn't slow to load. Although it would be nice if you could update the Wagon and El Camino pages at Chevelles.com. Been seeing the same cars on there for two years now.
Wes, I was considering the Miller line of welders also... My buddy has one that he uses for building race cars. I have helped him back-half four cars now and front-halfed his own 8 sec NOVA. This welder is really easy to use. His Miller welder realy does a great job on mild steel up to 1/4". Penatraition on thicker metals can be achieved but the higher settings trips the circuit breaker in house. My friend was also telling me that the Miller has a better voltage regulator circuit card in that the other brands. And he proved it because he has three other welder under his bench with bad circuit cards. He said the replacement card cost as much as the welder did. It is one of those live and learn deals.
Yes I think you should post your hidden hitch web page. I'm sure this won't be the last time someone inquires about a hitch for their classic Chevy.
Speaking of Wagons I am interest in buying a '70 Chevelle Wagon. If anyone has info on a '70 Chevelle Wagon for sale in the So. Cal area, email me at [email protected] or post it here.

Thank you


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JR
70 396SS El Camino #'s Matching.
69 396SS Chevelle, project "Street Bruiser"
H-D Ultra Classic E-Glide
I live to own toyz...
 

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SS69ELKY;

I may have worded the comment about the Miller welder wrong!!!!

I'm VERY happy with the unit and would buy another if I had to! (it's worked flawlessly for the past 3 years!)

What I was trying to say is that a unit that runs off 110 has limitations and I was a little worried about it.

Due to the fact that this web is open to everybody, it's always best to be carefull about recommendations where safety comes into play.

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Wes. Vann
Technical Reference section
Gold Member #5
 

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Try this netsite, it searches several hitch manufacturers listings for hitches; http://www.hitch-web.com/products.asp?mode=vehonly

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Make it look the way you like it, forget what the other guys say!
 
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