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THE BASICS Powered By Docstoc
Part 1, in the last newsletter covered the basics of recovery points, and various
options for good strong recovery points for the back of your Landie.
We covered the rear first, for two reasons:
1. It’s often better to get recovered the way you went in
2. They are easier
Still, I can put it off no longer…


To recap The Basics, what is a recovery point?
It’s a strong point on the chassis of a 4x4 that allows safe winch or rope
It has to be very strong, and therefore you have to think about what you are
doing. A winch recovery will often exert 20,000lbs, of force onto your chassis.

Well Series owners have got it pretty easy. These easily available recovery points
commonly referred to as “D-Rings” (can you guess why?) just bolt on – perfect.
                                          However, Series front dumb-irons rust
                                          with a penchant. It’s not unheard of
                                          for a big recovery to rip large chunks
                                          of chassis off – with possible lethal
                                          consequences. As if pulling a large part
                                          of your truck off wasn’t bad enough,
                                          having it hit you in the back of the head
                                          could really ruin your day.
                                          Again it’s back to the first principles
                                          – use the right bolts (high tensile,
                                          marked “8.8” on the head), and only
                                          into 100% sound metal.
                                          Lightweights      have      a     similar
                                          arrangement, designed to take a
                                          shackle, for their role as air-portable.

      NO!                                 These points ARE NOT SUITABLE FOR
                                          RECOVERY, they are designed to lift
                                          the vehicle upwards, not to pull it out
                                          of a muddy hole. They are likely to
                                          bend or pull out if used for recovery.
                   Defender owners have got it pretty
                   easy too.
                   Lashing eyes, as per the rear, are a
                   “get out of jail free card”. If you bridle
                   them on a nice long bridle, they’ll get
                   you out, but they are likely to bend, so
                   aren’t really suitable for regular use.
                   The easiest upgrade is our friend the
                   JATE ring.
                   They cost about £20 a pair, and bolt
                   through the chassis after removing the
                   lashing eye.
                   They are available from many places
                   including Brooklyn 4x4 (don’t forget
                   your Shire LRC discount!)
                   Both the JATE ring and the lashing eye
                   have one major drawback - they are
                   under the chassis. If you are stuck,
                   chances are the recovery point is
                   buried in water/mud/sand, so unless
                   you’ve had the forethought to attach
                   a rope before getting stuck – you’ll be
                   getting the spade out.
                   So it’s better to get the recovery points
                   onto the bumper.
                   One of my favourite solutions is this
                   military bumper with a central recovery
                   point, shown here on the left.
                   Genuine part JATE rings are also clearly
                   Left: A bridle spreads the load between
                   two recovery points. In this case, D-
                   rings on a Series 3 bumper.

                                                  Continued...                                            25
                                        Adding a winch bumper with recovery
                                        points is a common albeit expensive
                                        Here is a typical installation on a
                                        There is of course no reason why you
                                        can’t add similar hitches or even tow-
                                        balls to a standard bumper. But……
                                        · Keep them in-line with the chassis
                                        rails, and not on the bumper ends.
                                        · Use the proper hi-tensile bolts, nuts
                                        and washers.
                                        · Use backing plates (see the first
                                        · Try and use hitches rated for 3500kgs,
                                        the cheaper ones are often only rated
                                        for 2000kgs
                                        As an alternative – swivelling recovery
                                        eyes are gaining in popularity, but they
                                        aren’t cheap - and be prepared to drill
                                        a big hole, using a small hole saw.

                                        RANGE ROVER / DISCOVERY
                                        There are plenty of options for those
                                        who prefer a bit more civilization to
                                        their driving experience.
                                        The lashing eyes, and JATE rings will
                                        fit equally well, but you may need to
                                        remove or trim the front spoiler
                                        There is now a wide range of
                                        replacement front bumpers available.
                                        Here is a typical one from First Four Off
                                        Road (left).

The recovery points can be seen, just under the bumper.
There is also a wide variety of winch bumpers available too, all of which come
with recovery points built in, or the strength to add them easily.

                                           FREELANDERS, DISCO III’S
                                           AND LATER RANGE ROVERS

                                           Newer vehicles such as Freelanders,
                                           Discovery III’s , P38A’s and the current
                                           Range Rovers all have a built in recovery
                                           Here (left) is the Freelander’s. Easy!


I suggest you take advice from the dealers, specialists and one-make clubs.


This article, just like the first part has concentrated on the existing factory
recovery points or ones you can buy. Many people in the club are capable of
building an excellent recovery point, however an awful lot of people have no idea
what stresses and strains are involved. From a club perspective, it is very difficult
to tell the difference between a strong weld, and one that is just about to fail,
especially when covered in mud and paint.
It used to be common practice to mount a tow-ball horizontally centrally,
especially on racers. This was often welded on. Welded on tow-balls are frowned
upon and banned by many. There really isn’t any excuse, and it should be bolted
on with proper bolts.
Whilst we are on a negative vibe, there really is no excuse for having a NATO
hitch on the front of a vehicle. The damage one could cause in an accident
doesn’t bear thinking about.


So you’ve got front and rear recovery points that are good and safe – excellent.
You’ll keep the Marshalls happy at the next off-road event you attend. Just bear
in mind when you get stuck, attaching the rope or the winch is your job!
If you are in any doubt about your recovery points, just ask one of the committee
members and they will get somebody to take a look at the options for you and
your vehicle. A good source of information on recovery points is:

Andy Marshallsay
Vice Chairman                                                                    27