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Old 01-20-2013, 12:45 PM   #1
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Default Ratcliff Tow Low

New member looking for info on 1967 Ratcliff Tow Low. Picked up camper on trade, having some troble finding info of any kind. Really the only info I have is some pictures. Camper was being used and towed in up position. The previous owner had some 9/16 bolts thru the frame to hold it up. I replaced sprocket and cables,removed the bolts and after a few hours of cable adjustments(PAIN IN THE BUTT!) she now goes up and down with no problems! my next project is total remodel. There was a small leak and the ceiling was wavy from moisture. the camper sat for 10 years with and only had a small water stain. my question is what material should I use for walls and ceiling ? Also Ive seen that the early hi-lo had surge brakes. The Tow Low has a similar set up but some parts on the tongue seem to be missing . Does anyone have a Photo or diagram of their set up ? Thanks guys any info would help
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Old 01-20-2013, 06:12 PM   #2
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Default Tow-Low

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New member looking for info on 1967 Ratcliff Tow Low. Picked up camper on trade, having some troble finding info of any kind. Really the only info I have is some pictures. Camper was being used and towed in up position. The previous owner had some 9/16 bolts thru the frame to hold it up. I replaced sprocket and cables,removed the bolts and after a few hours of cable adjustments(PAIN IN THE BUTT!) she now goes up and down with no problems! my next project is total remodel. There was a small leak and the ceiling was wavy from moisture. the camper sat for 10 years with and only had a small water stain. my question is what material should I use for walls and ceiling ? Also Ive seen that the early hi-lo had surge brakes. The Tow Low has a similar set up but some parts on the tongue seem to be missing . Does anyone have a Photo or diagram of their set up ? Thanks guys any info would help
Hi westend: The Tow-Low trailer was manufactured by Ratcliff Industries of Juneau Wisconsin in the 60's and early 70's. It was a direct competitor to the Hi-Lo which was made in Butler Ohio. The Tow-Low was generally characterized by the big wheel on the front on the trailer that was used to raise the top. A release and brake then allowed the top to lower. Only in it's last year or two of production did it offer an electric lift. I don't recall the use of hydraulics for the lift system although many were produced with hydraulic brakes. Here is a link to it's patent information. Hope it helps.


MECHANISM FOR RAISING AND LOWERING TELESCOPIC TRAVEL TRAILER - Ratcliff Industries, Inc.

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Old 01-20-2013, 07:05 PM   #3
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The only difference that I can see between mine and the pics is the logo. Mine says( Tow Low) by Ratcliff industries Juneau Wisconsin. The crank up mechanism was very simple to fix,just time consuming. It consist of a big wheel that turns a sprocket that drives a chain to another sprocket and that drives a shaft that runs the length of the trailer. Then 4 cables on the corners just wind around the shaft when cranked,and up she goes. takes maybe 15 seconds . I wonder why people want to put them up permanently,instead of just fix it. new sprocket cost $8.00 and cables $11.00.
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Old 08-05-2014, 11:40 AM   #4
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Hey do you have some info on how to change the cables. I have a tow low and the back cable is broke, so I was going to do both at the same time. Also do you or what did you use to make a seal around the two parts? Thanks! Jon
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Old 08-05-2014, 11:59 AM   #5
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Hey do you have some info on how to change the cables. I have a tow low and the back cable is broke, so I was going to do both at the same time. Also do you or what did you use to make a seal around the two parts? Thanks! Jon
You can do a search for JR Repair or Midget Hilo RV and they will have the bulb seal. Search bulb seal here on the site and it should take you to the right spot to find the links.
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Old 08-05-2014, 12:11 PM   #6
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Where to buy roof seal gasket?
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Old 04-17-2015, 02:27 PM   #7
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I have just located a 72 Tow Low but can only find 4 digits for a VIN and need one that is longer to get it legal. It is in sad shape structurally, but the inside is pretty good yet. Any and all suggestions are more than welcome! Emily
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