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Old 04-23-2015, 03:25 PM   #1
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Alaska, Full Rear Flap - On or Off?

We'll be taking a 3 month tour to Alaska this summer and after hearing stories of some taking their full length gravel gaurd (or whatever you call it) off their coach, I'm on the fence as to whether I should remove mine for the trip or leave it alone.
I've traveled quite a few miles with it intact towing my Chevy Malibu with little to no real damage other than some rock dings and a few windshield pits.
For those who have done the Alaska adventure, would you recommend taking the flap off? The Malibu sits very low to the ground, and I can't decide whether this would help or hurt.
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Old 04-23-2015, 03:32 PM   #2
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We drove to AK in 2012 with rock guard on, had a windshild cover for the toad, but going thru a short section of new chip and seal on the road, going very slowly had many rock chips on front of toad. Can't say if taking it off would have helped or not. Not one chip on the MH the entire trip.
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Old 04-23-2015, 04:55 PM   #3
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We went in 2010 didn't think we was on that much gravel roads in2004kountry star towing 2001jeep had the full Newman flap got home replace windshield grill bumper cover both headlights repaint hood not a chip on rv
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Old 04-23-2015, 06:13 PM   #4
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What are the reasons for taking it off?
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Old 04-23-2015, 06:17 PM   #5
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We made the trip in 2012 pulling a Pontiac Grand Prix as a toad. My Dynasty had the full width mud flap and we also had a Protect-A-Tow. No damage to the Pontiac. I would think that the flap would be a detriment if there wasn't adequate road clearance.
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Old 04-23-2015, 06:24 PM   #6
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If it is a rear hanger, near the rear bumper, take it off. It creates a vacuum and lifts rocks, I do mean rocks, right up to windshield height and the toad smacks them. Another option is rear wheel mud flaps, right behind the wheels and just above the ground. Then under the coach mount a steel bar going the width from flap to flap. Install 2 pieces of rubber on the bar going from flap to flap, closing the gap, and about 2 or 3 inches above the road surface. This causes the vacuum to occur under the coach so the rocks don't fly up and they seem to roll off to the sides and be harmless. I do get dirt and grit but no rocks.My coach has this setup and I tow my toads unprotected with no damage to paint or windshield. About 50,000 miles so far. Previous owner never mentioned their experience.
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Old 04-23-2015, 10:09 PM   #7
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I too plan this trip and read a lot about the question.
In my case, I decided I would not tow a youyou.

If you keep your bumper mud flap, makes sure it is 7-8 above ground. Otherwise, as a previous poster mentionned, it is advisable to use the mud flaps directly behind the wheels.
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Old 04-23-2015, 10:51 PM   #8
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Did the trip last year towing a GEO Tracker left the big flap on thought it was high enough off the ground as not to cause problems but the first section of new chip and seal construction we came to broke both headlights out of the GEO and covered the hood with gravel. Took the flap off and no more problems the rest of the trip
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Old 04-24-2015, 09:24 AM   #9
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We are in the 'lower 48' after leaving our home in Alaska. I leave the full length mud flap in place, but I also have a Kar Kard II between the MH and toad (1999 dodge Durango). I would also think that depending on what protection one has on the bottom, under the engine, might help determine weather or not to leave the mud flap in place. As far as the road its self goes, it is not too bad, except between Burwash Landing and Beaver Creek. Slow down and take your time through this area. We will be heading back that direction late May and will attempt to post any updates on the road conditions.
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Old 04-24-2015, 09:39 AM   #10
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Hi,

We traveled to AK and back with our Rock Solid Guard in place at rear bumper and cut it at the recommended height above the ground with no problems to toad. We also put RV Road Wrap on car and front of motor home to protect from other vehicles passing us head on and it worked great. It was also good for bugs. All you had to do was remove it and bugs were gone. It is a great product and I recommend it.

Enjoy your trip it is fantastic!

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Old 04-24-2015, 09:49 AM   #11
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Traveled to Alaska in 2012 [3rd trip there] with 2 other motorhomes. One had a full width solid flap, the other had one of those hairy or stringy full width flaps and all I had was the oem flaps behind the wheels. Same roads, we took turns leading and when we stopped both the other rigs had more stones rocks and whatnot on their hoods and cowls of their toads than I did.Convinced me not to have one.
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Old 04-24-2015, 09:53 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lakewoodpaul View Post
Traveled to Alaska in 2012 [3rd trip there] with 2 other motorhomes. One had a full width solid flap, the other had one of those hairy or stringy full width flaps and all I had was the oem flaps behind the wheels. Same roads, we took turns leading and when we stopped both the other rigs had more stones rocks and whatnot on their hoods and cowls of their toads than I did.Convinced me not to have one.
Forgot to add that one of the rigs was towing a jeep liberty as was I. The other toad was a wrangler
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Old 04-24-2015, 11:03 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom-NC View Post
Hi,

We traveled to AK and back with our Rock Solid Guard in place at rear bumper and cut it at the recommended height above the ground with no problems to toad. We also put RV Road Wrap on car and front of motor home to protect from other vehicles passing us head on and it worked great. It was also good for bugs. All you had to do was remove it and bugs were gone. It is a great product and I recommend it.

Enjoy your trip it is fantastic!

Thanks for the Road Wrap tip. I wasn't aware of it. I recall two years ago when heading south from Glacier through Montana, we drove through about 40 miles of freshly tarred and graveled road which is where I got some chips on the front end of the toad and a few in the windshield. When I got home, I noticed that the cowl area where the wipers are was full of gravel.
Does the Road Wrap have some kind of adhesive on it or is it just the same as plastic wrap??
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Old 04-24-2015, 12:52 PM   #14
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Gauge how many rock chips and windshield dings you currently have in respect to the distance you've travelled on gravel roads. Compare that to the number of miles you may travel on gravel during your Alaska trip.

My DW and I depart on our "North to Alaska" summer trip on May 4th. Regardless of your planned route you will be travelling on some gravel due to the annual road repair on the Yukon and Alaskan roads. These construction sections can frequently exceed 10 miles in length and some may be on soft freshly laid gravel that your wheels will sink into. For us, we plan on travelling the Top of the World Highway and others which have extended gravel sections.

I have found a number of small rocks laying in the cavity around my windshield wipers even though we've not taken our coach on gravel, other than in some campsites, for the past 10K miles. My thought is, if I can toss gravel up their with that little exposure to it, what might it be like during this summer's trip. The result in, my large rear flap is no leaning up against the wall in my garage and I have inspected the flaps just behind my rear tires to make sure they are in good shape.
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