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how to tow an eagle

This forum will archives technical threads that are unique to Eagle Buses. There will be one thread for general comments, but the technical threads will be locked. The intent is to have a repository for detailed technical information that can be of prime importance to an Eagle Bus Owner. New threads can only be created by the forum administrators.
how to tow an eagle
Thu Jan 12, 2017 7:30 pm

I've never had to do it, but if she dies on the road, what should a guy watch for? I know about releasing the axle, but how do we protect the front end? I thought it would be good to have a solid guideline here in the technical archive.

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Re: how to tow an eagle
Thu Jan 12, 2017 9:23 pm

As far as protecting the front, I'd use the tow hook behind the Eagle emblem.
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Location: Litchfield Park, AZ

Re: how to tow an eagle
Fri Jan 13, 2017 11:42 am

It's not really a tow hook. It is for a bar. The tow truck may not have one. If they do, that should prevent the front of the bus from contacting anything.

They'd probably just lift the front. I'd have problems with that, I think unless they lifted it from the tires. Most buses probably don't have the rear bumper clearance for that.

The best way is to lowboy the bus. Not cheap but a lot less chance of tearing something up.
Joe Laird
'78 05
Sioux Falls, SD
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Re: how to tow an eagle
Fri Jan 13, 2017 12:56 pm

Yes. I wouldn't consider trying to lift it from there.

I would use it to flat tow. If the coach needed to be extracted or moved, That's where I would connect. Certain knuckleheads would just wrap a chain around anything they could find underneath.

It happened to me, Door doesn't quite close as tightly as before.
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Re: how to tow an eagle
Sat Jan 14, 2017 5:52 pm

We had to be towed once.
The big rig tow truck placed the life under the tires (cradled by bars front and behind) and lifted the entire front of the bus. No problem with rear clearance.
The drive axles were removed. They had caps to cover the housing/axle holes to prevent oil leakage.
They connected their truck air to the air line behind the Eagle emblem on the front.
We went over a hundred miles this way with no problems.
The big thing I can advise, is make sure you get a well qualified tow service and driver.
1978 05 Eagle with 450HP Cummins ISM / Allison HT740
Started in 1996 and still an in-progress hobby.
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Re: how to tow an eagle
Sun Jan 15, 2017 9:07 pm

Unfortunately, I have more experience here that I care to admit.

Kevin, I used to carry a homemade tow bar that I could use to drag the bus a short distance. The biggest issues involved with that process is that it relies on a good frame structure in the front of the bus and that is an area that is often compromised by leaking windshields. Also, the bus needs to have a driver to steer as it is being pulled. It also assumes the brakes can be aired up or caged. If the engine does not run, steering might be a challenge.

Most folks say that a landroll (sp?) trailer is the way to go. However, most Eagles have a roof raise and that could dictate expensive oversize permits.

Like Bill, our experience(s) have been with tow trucks qualified to tow semis. However, most of those are equipped to lift a semi with a straight front axle. As Bill says, you want one that can lift the wheels.

On our last tow, we discovered that some of the big tow trucks do not have enough reach to get to the front wheels. After the first truck had to give up, we asked the tow insurance company to connect us with the company who would tow the bus. Once I gave them the details, they sent the correct equipment.

Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
'85 Eagle 10 with Series 60 & Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission - not at all fancy, but fully functional
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