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Old 10-11-2012, 02:29 PM   #1
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Fender style towing mirrors - stopping vibration

For my 2001 Tacoma towing a 19 foot Escape I decided to use fender mount towing mirrors. When I installed these as per instructions I noticed a lot of vibrations at road speeds in both mirrors. The three point mounts were rigid enough but the fault lay in the short extension bar which went between the mirror and the three point mounting. I eliminated this piece since I didn't need the extra width to see past the 19 foot Escape, however I found I couldn't adjust the mirrors enough as they fouled the three point mount.
To solve this I made up two short aluminum spacers which bolted between the three point mount and the mirror heads. The part is simple in the extreme, about 2 inches long with tapped holes to it the bolts and mirror mounts. The diameter doesn't matter within reason, mine are 3/4" because I'd some aluminum in stock. If you haven't a shop where you can make up these parts any small machine shop can do the job in minutes.
Problem solved, the vibration at the moderate speeds I tow at are virtually eliminated and I've still enough sideways extension to see past the trailer.
One potential problem with the fender mount style of towing mirror on a Tacoma is that unless you're tall and have the driver's seat back the A pillar blocks a straight view of the driver's side mirror.
I tried to attach a close up image but this is the first time I've done so and it may not work.
Regards,
Alan S
Attached Images
File Type: jpg mirror mods.jpg (304.2 KB, 36 views)
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Old 10-11-2012, 02:37 PM   #2
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Re: Fender style towing mirrors - stopping vibration

Do you find that with the mirror being forward of the traditional mirror location on the door that visibilty is any better/ different?
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Old 10-11-2012, 03:12 PM   #3
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Re: Fender style towing mirrors - stopping vibration

Dmac:
I've not got a great deal of towing experience to draw on and these are the only towing mirrors I've ever used. We picked up the Escape on the 17th September and headed south immediately, the 3,200 miles we did were the only "real" towing I'd done (other than tent trailers with the stock vehicle mirrors). The distracting thing was the two images to look at mirror wise, the stock Tacoma mirrors and beyond them the fender style. It took some time to train myself to look at the more forward ones. Also distracting at first was the two different sized images on the passenger's side, the reduced one on the stock mirror and the "normal" sized one in the fender mirror. They worked fine for me, particularly on freeways where it's nice to see who's coming up to pass in the fast lane and also when traffic is merging from the passenger's side.
The mirrors would have been useless unless I'd made some sort of mod to stop them vibrating.
I also thought I'd take them off when using the truck alone but I never did so and they stayed on the entire trip.
Regards,
Alan S
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Old 10-11-2012, 04:18 PM   #4
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Re: Fender style towing mirrors - stopping vibration

I have gm factory towing mirrors on my yukon the same as the new gm trucks use currently. These mirrors have a fairly large regular mirror and a covex lower smaller mirror, it took my quite a while to get used to the dual image but once I got comfortable and trained to process the dual image they really are nice.
Although thinking about your set up I was just wondering with the auxilary mirror bening further forward if it provided a beter angle of view.
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Old 10-11-2012, 04:52 PM   #5
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Re: Fender style towing mirrors - stopping vibration

Looks like a pretty rugged set-up, who's the manufacturer? Also, doesn't your '01 Tacoma have a plastic fender edge? I gather it's pretty secure on that. I had an '01 Tacoma but can't remember anymore what the fenders looked like. Not sure this would work on my '09, since I definitely have flexible skirts.
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Old 10-11-2012, 06:08 PM   #6
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Re: Fender style towing mirrors - stopping vibration

Santacruzer:
My '01 has plastic flares on the edges of the fenders. I'd to reshape the hooked end of the leg which goes in the wheelwell to a more angular shape, the stock one was curved and only touched on the tip of the hook. The fender mount units were made by CIPA, their model 11750 which I bought from my local autoparts store. They only had one in stock so I'd to get them to order a second one, one of the two was missing some fasteners and I'd to get them to make up the difference. I also found I'd to bend the ends of the two upper legs a bit to make them fit flat against one another.
I was a bit anxious about trapping the ends of the two upper legs under the hood but I see no marking there and didn't notice any distortion of the hood while it was shut.
Alan S
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