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Old 04-14-2012, 10:20 PM   #1
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Toad? Which way? Brain Freeze!

Sweetie and I are happy owners of a 2007 Bounder DP. After going on our first trip camping we really love it. Now I'm trying to decide on how to pull a toad. Do I get a tow dolly or tow with all 4 down. We are new to class A camping and have not had to do this before. After doing research on the pluses and minuses of both I've got a brain freeze!! Any help would be great!! Until then I'm putting a hot towel on my head. And by the way we have a chevy HHR. Thanks
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:41 PM   #2
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Hi and welcome to the forum.

I only have experience towing four down but have traveled extensively and spent an hour or two here on the forum reading the experiences of others. IMHO, the pros for using a tow dolly are that your choice of toads is probably larger than if you want to tow four down and I believe you can back up the coach (carefully) with the tow dolly. The cons are that you need to stow the dolly when set up and (although some debate this) set up time is a bit longer than with four down.

Towing four down requires that you have a toad which the mfgr certifies as being capable of such a fete. You can check out Motorhome Magazine's towing guide or Remco's website and they'll provide you information on any vehicle you have in mind as to whether or not it can be towed four down.

Best of luck.

Rick
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:42 PM   #3
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BTW... congrats on your new rig!!!
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:46 PM   #4
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I only tow 4 down. Hookup time is less than 10-12 minutes and we are on the road. I believe your HHR can be towed 4 down. All you need to do is add wiring for lights, aux braking, tow bar brackets and a tow bar.
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:50 PM   #5
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You should also be aware that it can cost up to $3K to get set up for towing four down... although some have reported doing it for less.

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Old 04-14-2012, 11:15 PM   #6
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You should also be aware that it can cost up to $3K to get set up for towing four down... although some have reported doing it for less.

Rick
I installed my own and spent about $1600 for tow bar, baseplate, safety cables, breakaway, toad protection and lights. With a trailer or tow dolly you add another vehicle that needs insurance, license and storage.
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Old 04-14-2012, 11:42 PM   #7
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With a trailer or tow dolly you add another vehicle that needs insurance, license and storage.
True for a trailer, but possibly not for a dolly. Here in WA no add'l license is required for the dolly and it's covered by your towing vehicle insurance.
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Old 04-15-2012, 07:03 AM   #8
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Over 14 years, I have towed:
- tow dolly with no brakes
- wide tow dolly with brakes
- minivan with Remco pump 4 down
- Jeep GC with neutral transfer case 4 down

Jump right to a Jeep and tow 4-down and you will learn from my mistakes!
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Old 04-15-2012, 07:13 AM   #9
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When I first started rving I used a tow dolly for about a year it is the probably the cheaper way, mainly for front wheel drive cars and don't forget it is added weight. I prefer 4 down.
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Old 04-15-2012, 07:23 AM   #10
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When I first started rving I used a tow dolly for about a year it is the probably the cheaper way, mainly for front wheel drive cars and don't forget it is added weight. I prefer 4 down.
X2
The first time you have to hook the car to a tow dolly while laying on your back in water while it is pouring down rain you will wish you had decided on four down.
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Old 04-15-2012, 07:24 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Mooseguy View Post
Sweetie and I are happy owners of a 2007 Bounder DP. After going on our first trip camping we really love it. Now I'm trying to decide on how to pull a toad. Do I get a tow dolly or tow with all 4 down. We are new to class A camping and have not had to do this before. After doing research on the pluses and minuses of both I've got a brain freeze!! Any help would be great!! Until then I'm putting a hot towel on my head. And by the way we have a chevy HHR. Thanks
Congratulations! After having pulled with; dollies, flat, DP and gassers we have settled on a Master Tow dolly with electric brakes. There is one reason for this. When we go on a nice spring or fall sightseeing trip the convertible is on the dolly. A trip to the grandkids means the minivan follows us. Any time we will be making lots of side trips the SUV gets dragged around. The cost to have that flexibility flat towing would be prohibitive.

Do a search and you will find that everybody has different needs, resources and applications. It's entirely up to you.
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Old 04-15-2012, 07:36 AM   #12
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I tow a 2011 HHR 4 down with a 2008 Bounder gasser. The cost to set up the HHR was about $2000 and I did all the work myself. Half of the cost was the US Gear Unified Tow Breaking System. The hook up time is less than 10 minutes by myself. The HHR manual says to tow turn the key on place the gear shift in nuetral and pull fuse #8. Most of us towing the HHR install a switch in place of fuse #8. My HHR weighs 3150 lbs full of fuel and no cargo. I have to keep checking the rear camera to see if it is still back there, otherwise I realy can't tell.
Hope this helps, good luck.
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Old 04-15-2012, 07:54 AM   #13
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I have an HHR and 2 jeep wranglers. I haved towedmthe wranglers 4 down and can move my stowmaster and easy brake between them.

I plan to add a hookup to my HHR. I have looked at tow dollies but the cost for a good one with brakes is more than the hookup. I already have a portable brake. I think 4 down is easier faster and one less thing to deal with at the CG. Jusk my opinion.

Good luck
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:48 AM   #14
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We went 'light' at first and towed a Corolla with a dolly, with a combined weight of about 3,100 pounds. It was fine for a trip here and there, but when we did our big 8,600 mile trip last year it was a PITA to put the car up and down on that dolly everyday. My total cost was about $1,200 for a Forest River dolly with swivel deck and electric brakes and another $100 for brake controller and magnetic lights.

We're now towing a Wrangler. I'm right at 3,500 pounds now. I bought a Ready Brute surge brake, Demco base plate and some accessories from Tow Bars Unlimited (excellent service BTW) for about $1,250.

Since the total setup cost was nearly identical in both cases, then if nothing else, the convenience of towing 4-down outweighs all other factors. If you like to take different cars on every trip however, the tow dolly is probably your most economical choice.

Keith
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