Base plates are an integral part of any towing system. These vehicle-specific brackets provide attachment points on your dinghy for your tow bar. Because base plates have to provide a solid, durable connection for towing your vehicle, the reinforced frame brackets must fit your dinghy perfectly. While most tow bars, braking systems and lighting kits can work with almost any vehicle, base plates are always custom fit.
All Blue Ox base plate brackets are designed with two protruding prongs called lugs on the ends of their drawbar arms. These lugs connect to Blue Ox tow bars via lug(s) on the ends of the tow bar arms.
Original-model Blue Ox tow bars were built with a single lug on the end of each arm. This lug slips between the two lugs on the Blue Ox base plates. Once properly positioned, a pin is inserted through all three lugs and secured on one side with a smaller quick pin.
To create a more substantial connection between the tow bar and the base plate bracket, Blue Ox created triple-lug tow bars. The ends of these tow bars have three prongs instead of one so that the two base plate lugs are surrounded, creating a reinforced connection.
After slipping the triple-lug end of your Blue Ox tow bar into the base plate, insert the keeper pin through all five lugs and secure it with the quick pin, just as you would with the single-lug tow bar.
An adapter may be required if your tow bar and base plate kit are from different manufacturers. Roadmaster and Blue Ox products, for example, are not compatible with one another. Most Roadmaster tow bars hook up to the base plates installed on your vehicle via quick-disconnect brackets, which will not work with Blue Ox lug-style base plates
If you have base plates from Blue Ox and a tow bar from another manufacturer, please click here to see a table that will help you determine which adapter best suits your needs
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