AL-KO Pin Coupling: Gear Review

Tim van Duyl — 27 July 2018
Keeping it simple

Fitting an AL-KO Off-Road Pin Coupling is not a difficult process, anyone with basic hand-tool skills can do it. What you need is a good set of spanners, a large shifter, grease and a torque wrench.

Before you start you should make sure you have the right hardware for the job. Having good quality bolts, nuts and washers that you know the torque specs for is essential as is having flat ground and a set of wheel-chocks to stop your trailer moving. AL-KO specifies a minimum requirement of M12 Class 8.8 or ½ inch Grade 5 Bolts.


As you will be disconnecting your handbrake, always ensure your caravan or camper is on level ground and secured from rolling away. Use a good set of chocks to prevent the trailer from moving. 


Remove your old coupling and handbrake backing plate, then clean the surface from dust and debris that might prevent a flush fit of your handbrake backing plate to the trailer. 


Align your new Off-Road Pin Coupling with the backing plate and drop your bolts through making sure there is enough thread exposed to work with your nuts.


Make sure you know in advance what the torque settings are for the bolts you are using. Markings on the bolts relate to the torque they require to work at their best and there are many resources online to check settings. Always pair your bolts with the correct nuts and washers and if in doubt, head to a retailer for advice.


Now is the time to reattach your handbrake and also a good moment to reset the tension using the cable adjuster.


It is important to fill the two grease nipples found on the side of the coupling. Clean off the excess and cover the nipples with the dust boots.


Fitting the pin to your tow-tongue is the same as fitting a ball coupling. Make sure the surfaces are clean and that the spring washer goes under the tongue, between the nut and the tongue then torque the bolt up to the required spec.


Now everything is installed, check the coupling connects to the pin cleanly and easily. The positive latch indicator will pop green signifying you are good to go.


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Matt Fehlberg