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Get Unstuck - 11 Items To Keep You Moving

Dodge Ram Pulling Dodge Ram
Ken Brubaker
| Senior Editor, Four Wheeler
Posted July 1, 2013
Photographers: The Manufacturers

Products You Need For The Trail

If you drive your rig off-road, it will eventually get stuck. There’s no debating this, it will happen. Heck, you can even get stuck on-road, like during a blizzard. How you plan for this inevitability will determine how long you will be stuck and the level of drama required to get your rig underway.

As a general rule we build our rigs to lessen the chance of getting stuck, so we improve their ground clearance and we fit ‘em with lockers and aggressive tires. Even with all that, it’s important to incorporate recovery items. To help you determine what recovery items you need and what’s currently available in the aftermarket, we’ve gathered 11 of what we consider to be the most important recovery items and we’ve listed a few sources for each. Which is best for you will be determined by the type of terrain you traverse, what kind of weather conditions you encounter and how much money you’re willing to spend. Those who engage in recreational wheeling with other wheelers may have different needs than those who use their 4x4 as a tool for work and often travel alone.

No matter what your situation, the aftermarket offers some very cool and useful products to help get unstuck.

Winch
When it comes to recovery tools, a winch is probably the most familiar and commonly accepted mandatory item you can install on your rig. Typically offered in both electric and hydraulic, a winch will allow you to drag your rig off of, or out of, just about any type of obstacle. There are a mind boggling number of companies that offer winches. The vast majority of the winches offered are electric powered, and installation can be as easy as bolting the winch to a mount and wiring it up to the battery. There are also a number of entry-level, low-priced winches available, so there are options for every budget.

Here’s a list of some of the winches available with capacities of 6,000 pounds and higher. In some cases these manufacturers may offer more winches, and you can visit the websites listed for more info.

Brand: Badland
Details: Available are 6,000-, 9,000-, and 12,000-pound units. A wireless remote control is also offered.
More info: 800/423-2567, www.harborfreight.com

Brand: Bulldog
Details: Nine winches are available from 6,000- to 15,000-pound capacity, including the 9,300-pound Alpha unit with a limited lifetime warranty.
More info: 623/581-0121, www.bulldogwinch.com

Brand: ComeUp USA
Details: The DV Series is offered in 9,500-, 12,000-, 15,000-, and 18,000-pound capacities. The three Seal Series winches (so named due to their submersible capacities) are rated at 9,500 pounds.
More info: 503/783-6142, www.comeupusa.com

Brand: Dayton
Details: Five winches are available, ranging from 6,000- to 16,500-pound capacity.
More info: 800/GRAINGER, www.grainger.com

Brand: Engo
Details: Electric winches from 6,000- to 16,000-pound capacity. Hydraulic winches in 9,000- and 18,000-pound capacities.
More info: 360/573-0882, www.engousa.com

Brand: Kingone
Details: The TDS line offers twenty winches from 6,500- to 12,000-pound capacity. The KDS line offers eight winches from 8,000- to 12,000-pound capacity.
More info: www.kingonewinch.com

Brand: Kodiak by Quality Gear
Details: The Polar EXT is rated at 8,000 pounds, The Bruin is rated at 9,500 pounds, and The Grizzly is rated at 12,000 pounds.
More info: 888/452-7979, www.kodiakwinch.com

Brand: Mile Marker
Details: Eleven electric winches are offered, ranging from 8,000- to 15,000-pound capacity. Seven hydraulic winches are available from 9,000- to 18,000-pound capacity.
More info: 800/886-8647, www.milemarker.com

Brand: Ramsey
Details: Offering a wide range of winches that include the RE Series, QM Series, REP Series, Patriot Profile Series, Patriot Series, Triple-X, and Patriot UT. Capacities range from 6,000 to 12,000 pounds.
More info: 800/777-2760, www.ramsey.com

Brand: Rough Country
Details: Available are 9,500- and 12,000-pound capacity units. Both are available with steel cable or synthetic rope.
More info: 800/222-7023, www.roughcountry.com

Brand: Rugged Ridge
Details: Four winches are offered in 8,500- or 10,500-pound capacities in both heavy-duty or performance styles.
More info: www.ruggedridge.com

Brand: Smittybilt
Details: Six winches are available in the X20 and XRC product lines and they range from 8,000- to 15,000-pound capacities.
More info: 888/717-5797, www.smittybilt.com

Brand: Summit
Details: Two winches, an 8,000- and 12,000-pound capacity are offered.
More info: 800/230-3030, www.summitracing.com

Brand: Superwinch
Details: Several winches are offered in the Talon Series, Tiger Shark, LP Series, Husky Series, and EP Series, in addition to the X9 and S9000. Capacities range from 8,500 to 18,000 pounds.
More info: 860/928-7787, www.superwinch.com

Brand: T-Max
Details: The Off-Road Series offers 8,500- and 11,000-pound capacity units, the Outback Series offers 9,500- and 12,000-pound units and the Performance Series offers a 9,500-pound unit.
More info: 800/345-8476, www.westinautomotive.com

Brand: Warn
Details: A wide range of winches split into the Premium Series, Ultimate Performance Series, Entry Level Series, and Heavy Weight Series. Capacities range from 6,000 to 16,500 pounds.
More info: 800/543-9276, www.warn.com

Jack
The jack that came with your 4x4 is most likely not designed for use off-road. You need a jack that can be operated in any type of terrain. Whether it’s used to lift a rig to simply change a flat tire or if it’s used to lift a rig to remove an obstruction, a strong workhorse jack is an off-road necessity. Here are some of the off-road-friendly jacks that are available. Some will work well with lifted rigs, too.

Brand: American Power Pull
Details: The 4-ton Power Jack has a low pick up with the lifting nose only 4.5 inches from the base.
More info: 800/707-7855, www.americanpowerpull.com

Brand: Bushranger
Details: The X-Jack is exhaust operated with a lifting capacity of 4,400 pounds. It provides up to 31 inches of vehicle lift.
More info: 866/293-9078, www.arbusa.com

Brand: Central Machinery
Details: This jack has a maximum lift height of 42 inches, a minimum lift height of 6 inches, and a capacity of 7,000 pounds.
More info: 800/423-2567, www.harborfreight.com

Brand: Hi-Lift
Details: The X-Treme jack is available in 48- or 60-inch sizes, the All-Cast (rated at 7,000 pounds capacity) is available in 42-, 48-, and 60-inch heights, and the Cast/Steel jack (also rated at 7,000-pound capacity) is available in 36-, 42-, 48-, and 60-inch heights.
More info: 800/233-2051, www.hi-lift.com

Brand: Radflo
Details: The Hydra-Jac weighs 13 pounds, offers an 18-inch lift range, and can safely hoist loads up to 2,200 pounds. When collapsed it’s a compact 37 inches in length.
More info: 714/965-7828, www.radflo.com

Brand: Smittybilt
Details: The 54-inch Trail Jack has a handle isolator, removable handle, and is rated up to 7,000 pounds.
More info: 888/717-5797, www.smittybilt.com

Brand: Torin
Details: Two Farm Jacks are offered in 48- and 60-inch lengths. Each is rated at 7,000 pounds and has a minimum lift height of approximately 6 inches.
More info: www.torinjacks.com

Recovery Strap
A recovery strap has many uses in an off-road vehicle, including dragging another (or your own) truck out of a mess to pulling a downed tree out of your way. Recovery straps (not to be confused with tow straps, which often are equipped with metal hooks and not open loops) come in a variety of lengths, weight ratings, and construction methods. Many winch manufacturers offer recovery straps in addition to the manufacturers listed below.

Brand: Bubba Rope
Details: Six types of Recovery Rope are available with breaking strengths from 19,000 (20-foot-long, ¾-inch-diameter rope) to 131,500 pounds (30-foot-long, 2-inch-diameter rope).
More info: 877/499-8494, www.bubbarope.com

Brand: Haul Master
Details: Two Heavy-Duty Recovery Straps are available. The 30-foot-long, 3-inch-wide strap is rated to pull stuck objects up to 9,000 pounds and the 20-foot-long, 2-inch-wide strap is rated at 6,000 pounds.
More info: 800/423-2567, www.harborfreight.com

Brand: Keeper
Details: A wide variety of vehicle recovery straps from a 20-foot-long, 2-inch-wide strap with a 7,000-pound max vehicle weight all the way to a 30-foot-long, 6-inch-wide strap rated for a 30,000-pound max vehicle weight.
More info: 800/562-5625, www.hamptonproducts.com

Brand: Mac’s Custom Tie-Downs
Details: Everything from a 20-foot-long, 2-inch-wide unit rated for up to a 3,400-pound vehicle (14,000-pound breaking strength) to a 30- or 20-foot-long, 6-inch-wide strap rated for up to an 11,400-pound vehicle (57,000-pound breaking strength).
More info: 800/666-1586, www.macscustomtiedowns.com

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