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factory fitted tow bar lost keys!

Discussion in 'A4/A4 cabriolet/S4 forum(B6 chassis)' started by vorsprung dork, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. vorsprung dork
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    vorsprung dork Member

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    [Feb 8, 2012]
    long story short! went camping with trailer! 2 year old child chucks towbar key away in devon! dont find out till at home in durham! went to audi! could not help because key no. is on key! but tells me it is factory fit westfalia tow bar! go to towbar specialist who orders all 50 westfailia keys! go back to tow bar specialist to find out that my factory fitted tow bar is in fact an alcola towbar! back to audi! who cannot help cause the key no. is on the lost key! tow bar has been locked onto my car now for a year can anybody help because i seem to be banging my head on a brick wall with audi, they just dont care!
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  3. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Feb 8, 2012]
    Have you contacted Alcoa?
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  4. vorsprung dork
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    vorsprung dork Member

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    [Feb 9, 2012]
    no the problem is if you have your key number you can order 1 straight from audi! if you dont you have to find a tow bar specilist that will order all the keys to there buisness adress recorded delivery find which key fits yours and send the rest back to the manufacturer for security resons! my audi dealers have said they are not prepared to do this! i cant seem to find anyone who fits these aftermarket in my area!
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  5. adamss24
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    adamss24 Well-Known Member

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    [Feb 9, 2012]
    You could probably get a locksmith pic the lock on the towbar so it can be removed. I have a similar situation but my towbar is a factory fitted westfalia and has been locked but not on the car- keys missing too ! Don't know what to do though...
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  6. the jammy one
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    the jammy one Member

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    [Feb 9, 2012]
    cant get pic to work :( was gunna pt up one of angle grinder lol not that it help like :)
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2012
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  7. Turkster
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    Turkster Bro.Paul 2.5TDI Quattro Sport

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    [Feb 10, 2012]
    can you take a photo of the said lock and post it ? i will be able to tell you if it can be picked, :hi:
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  8. unitzero
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    unitzero Bagged B7 170 TDI Avant

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    [Feb 10, 2012]
    Should be some kind of identification on or around the tow ball or lock.
    I used to work for Thule and we were always sending keys out to dealers. we never had to send one of each for them to check !
    Might be worth calling the towbar manufacturer, they may be able to help you locate an ID number.
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  9. Turkster
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    Turkster Bro.Paul 2.5TDI Quattro Sport

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    [Feb 10, 2012]
    tip for ya, look up "Bump Key" and the brand of lock that you have on google,
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  10. Turkster
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    Turkster Bro.Paul 2.5TDI Quattro Sport

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  11. vorsprung dork
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    vorsprung dork Member

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    [Feb 10, 2012]
    thanks everyone! let me try and explaine! the key on my tow bar is a for safety you push the bar on lock the key and remove! i use my towbar 4 or 5 times a year for going to the tip or on holiday! so if i got the lock picked it would remove the tow bar but i would not be able to put it back on when i need it(without a locksmith!) so this clearly is not an option! i have thought about selling my 2 year old to a rich american oil tycoon and buying a rs6 but my wife says that is not an option!
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  12. stuhow3361
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    stuhow3361 Member

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    [Feb 14, 2012]
    Got the same problem mate.Bought my Avant with the detachable towbar fitted plus the "correct" keys in the glove box.Tried in vain to turn the lock to get the bar off but no good.Have WD'd and hit the bar to shock it loose but no joy.Also drilled out the lock so it looks like all you do is pull out the big black wheel and turn to remove the bar but it's still on there.I have given up now!!!!!!!
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  13. scott b
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    scott b Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Feb 22, 2012]
    is there no numbers stamped on the actualy barrol on the towbar, i know the witter ones do, as for the make alcoa, ive never heard of them and been doing towbars for years, ive heard of alco but they dont make towbars, if you can take a pic of the lock and bar i might be able to help you
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  14. vorsprung dork
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    vorsprung dork Member

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    [Feb 22, 2012]
    cant take a pic till later but i have been and had a look under the car and there is a stiker on the part that runs behind the bumper! this is how it reads! AL-KO KOBER
    TYP AD469A
    IDENT NR 261521
    BA NR 16015592
    The number stamped on the barrel where the key goes is R164
    THIS IS A FACTORY FIT TOWBAR THE SWANNECK IS ALUMINUM AN HAS THE AUDI RINGS EMBOSSED IN THE CASTING!
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  15. vorsprung dork
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    vorsprung dork Member

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    [Feb 22, 2012]
    I would be over the moon with any help! thanks!!
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  16. adamss24
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    adamss24 Well-Known Member

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    [Feb 23, 2012]
    I've been to dealer with chassis number and the detachable towbar bracket, the dealer told me to contact Westfalia directly ! How good is that ? There is the number 149 stamped on the lock...
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  17. vorsprung dork
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    vorsprung dork Member

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    [Feb 23, 2012]
    audi! why fit extras at a highly inflated price if you wash your hands of your customers once you have made a sale???
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  18. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Feb 23, 2012]
    In etka, it states under 8P & also A4 B6 etc, a person & telephone number to ring for keys, why audi dont tell you this is beyond me.

    Word for word, this is what it states, may not be so anymore & I cant guarantee its for yours, but its still current in etka:

    Key can be purchased from al-ko tel: +49 34328-67-224, email mirko.marle@al-ko.de
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  19. vorsprung dork
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    vorsprung dork Member

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    [Feb 23, 2012]
    thanks will try this tomorrow!
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  20. driveit
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    driveit New Member

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    [Jun 24, 2013]
    Just had exactly the same issue with the red key for our audi a3 westfalia detachable towbar. The key is at the campsite and we dont have the key number. Local trailer company said they would need to arrange for a master key set to be sent to them. We pay postage here and back plus the cost of a new key. Estimated cost £60.
    I had a look at the detachable head. On the otherside to where the key slots in there is a rubber cover. I removed this with a flat head screw driver and found a circlip. Removed this along with a washer and spring. The spindle through the centre had a whole 1cm deep. I got my punch placed it in the hole gave it a wack with my lump hammer and the whole thing moved over as if the key was in and I was pulling from the other side. I turned the handle and out came the towing head.

    Now I just need a new head and key from ebay. You could probably get the whole shaft out and replace it if you cant get the correct towing neck for you car.

    Good luck
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  21. driveit
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    driveit New Member

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    [Jun 24, 2013]
    Further info for westfalia. The shaft locks in via ballbearing. The lock has a pin that extends when you turn the key and pushes the ballbearing up to lock the shaft into the head. When I knocked the shaft from the other side it forced the bearing back into its recess and pushed the whole lock barrel out 5mm I was able to remove the barrel entirely and put the towing neck back together. I just need a replacement barrel and keys from a second hand towing neck now. I would imagine these lock barrels are all the same size. As it goes into the handle it is held in by compression as it gets tighter as it slides in.

    Hope this helps someone in the future
    #20

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