Unfortunately today, there are more grubs around than ever before who’d rather take someone else’s gear than buy their own. This includes camper trailers, caravans and boat trailers, and today we take a look at a popular product to prevent this; the Nemesis Wheel Clamp.
When we purchased our new Hybrid Camper, I decided given the expense, I was prepared to spend a chunk of money on keeping it safe in our drive way. The thing is though, is the Nemesis Wheel Clamp actually any good?
We paid for this
Like most of our product reviews, we paid full retail price for this wheel clamp. We’d rather do this and maintain 100% honesty, than be bought or have a conflict of interest when reviewing a product (like many others out there today!).
With that in mind, if its no good, we’d have no issues saying just that.
What’s good about the Nemesis Wheel Clamp?
The Nemesis Wheel clamp is big, fits a variety of wheel sizes and is bright orange, so sticks out like a sore thumb. I like this, as its extremely obvious to anyone going past that the trailer does in fact have some security, and one that looks beefy too. Often something simple that shows the owner has gone to some effort to secure it is enough to deter attempted theft in the first place.
It’s also fairly well designed. I could have easily made something up myself, but getting it to work well would have been another thing. It is heavy enough to be strong, but not too heavy that you can’t move it around. It’s made from material shapes that would make it quite hard to cut in any direction with a cordless grinder, which is easily available to anyone today.
It’s fast to remove, has a decent lock on it and is designed in a way that you’d have a hard time drilling holes into the actual lock. Of course, if you wanted to get it off, you could, but you’d have a hard time doing so.
What’s not good about the Nemesis Wheel Clamp?
If you watch the video, the installation demonstration is smooth as butter (like they all are). They do it in a matter of seconds, and make it look like a peace of cake. It’s not that easy. Well, at least in my experience, there can be a bit of mucking around to get it all to line up, and the larger the tyre, the more likely it is you will need to separate the two pieces to get it on.
Now, I won’t say its a pain, or its frustrating to install, but its definitely not always a 5 second job. I suspect that it could also be made better to suit our wheels, but of course, this product has been designed to suit a wide range of wheels and tyres, which in turn means it wont fit amazingly well on all of them.
I had to remove the fake beadlocks off our rims as it wouldn’t clear properly otherwise. Also, the arm fouls a bit on the drum brakes, and if you do it up too tight, I suspect you could do damage. On the second arm, it does up tight, but again you could easily damage the bearing caps if you were to tighten it too much.
I think it’d be easy to lose the bolt too, and the tool can be used much easier if you use a drill, but overall there isn’t much to complain about. After using it for over a year I’ve got the hang of it, and it rarely frustrates me. I’d rather not have to use it, but we don’t have anywhere else secure to keep the Reconn, so here we are.
What does it cost?
They retail for $260. Obviously if you have to pay freight it will hurt as they are heavy. Also note that they do sell for different prices, and Camec were very expensive when we priced them up.
What tyre sizes does it fit?
One of the benefits of these is that they fit a wide variety of tyres. If the wheel is between 10 and 20 inch, and the tyre size between 145mm and 275mm it will fit. We tried a 285 tyre, and you can’t get it around the tyre.
Would we get one again?
Absolutely. It’s well made, and despite any inconvenience to install it is a great deterrent.
Other anti theft options
No matter what you do, there is no fool proof way to stop someone taking your caravan or camper trailer. All you can do is deter them. We run the Nemesis Wheel Clamp, and the Cruisemaster DO35 hitch lock.
There are lots of hitch locks on the market depending on what hitch you run. However, they can all be overcome by simply unbolting the hitch, and bolting a new one in place. A lot of people tack weld the bottom of the threads, so you can’t undo the bolts for this reason.
Alternatively, anyone can just put the two chains together and put them over the tow ball, and then drive off. Agricultural, and you are likely to damage the vehicle but you will be able to tow the trailer away. This is where a wheel clamp becomes a good option, as you can’t just drag it away.
Of course, a flat tray with a winch will pull anything up and even with a wheel clamp its possible to take a trailer.
There are a number of ways in which you can track your trailer. The cheapest, and easiest is to hide a phone on a cheap sim card plan attached to a charger somewhere in your van, with the find me app.
Then, there are dedicated trackers that you can buy which will do the same thing. Some of them allow you to set boundaries, and if your trailer moved beyond those boundaries you get notified.
Alarm or WITI
Lastly, there are some alarm systems out there that will go off if your trailer is knocked, or moved. A relatively new product on the market is the WITI, which allows you to arm the van when you leave, and if its moved an alarm goes off and the electric brakes come on.
Again, no matter what you do there is going to be someone who could take your pride and joy if they really wanted to. The idea is just to make it hard enough that they walk by and don’t bother. That, and make sure you have a decent insurance policy and are prepared to use it if it all goes wrong.
What do you use to stop people stealing your pride and joy?