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Old 07-13-2010, 09:54 PM   #29
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I use both. I tow a Jeep that is modified for the trails and rocks. It has big tires, low gears, and a lot of miles on it. I haul on a trailer if I am going a long distance. I tow with a tow bar if I am going a short distance.
So my opinion is it depends on what you a pulling and where you a going.
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Old 07-14-2010, 04:26 AM   #30
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On aligning a solid aframe tow bar I really do not understand what the problem is. My rear view camera is properly aligned so that the hitch ball is clearly visible so there is no blind alignment and jogging. You can pretty much zero in on the hitch in one shot most of the time.

Clean that lens, dust off the monitor, then get that camera adjusted and the solid tow bar or trailer that is too heavy to be moved by hand presents very little difficulty.

I have done all three and the trailer does have advantages while you are on the road as it gets your toad out of the path of a ton of debris that it will get hit with on a tow bar or dolly. You can nose into a tight gas station and then back out with a trailer but most times will need to unhitch a tow bar or dolly to do get out (a real pain when it is late dark, extremly hot or raining).

Pull into a driveway or side road so you can back out and turn around very doable with a trailer but basically impossible with the tow bar or dolly.

To me the major draw back of the tow bar is the cost of the brakes and the possible need for a transmission pump along with the labor fees for installation . These can drive the cost up into the thousands even if you do find a bargain and get a new or used tow bar for $50.

On safety with the trailer you are dealing with only the hitch and connector after the car is secured to the trailer and gravity for the most part along with the parking brake keep the car in place on the trailers with the tie downs not really getting stressed except for hard stops and starts. With the tow bar/dolly you have more points of failure that get wear and tear every time you hook it up and with every start and stop. It may end up being a draw as to which is safer.
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Old 07-14-2010, 04:55 AM   #31
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I am looking at a toad myself, and the advantage of a trailer is that I can tow an automatic - if I use a towbar, the car must be a manual. I wonder what the wear and tear on the car is if all of its wheels are running along behind you, compared with a trailer? The tyres on the car are likely to be much costlier than the trailer?
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Old 07-14-2010, 08:13 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by GSGracie View Post
I am looking at a toad myself, and the advantage of a trailer is that I can tow an automatic - if I use a towbar, the car must be a manual. I wonder what the wear and tear on the car is if all of its wheels are running along behind you, compared with a trailer? The tyres on the car are likely to be much costlier than the trailer?
Many automatics can be towed 4 down so a manual transmission is not a requirement. There are some additional steps for some automatics like stopping every 500 miles, starting the engine and running it through the gears. Some Hondas have this requirement. . The Motorhome Magazine Dinghy guide lists them
MotorHome Releases 2010 Dinghy Guide

We towed a '94 Saturn SL-1 for 5 years. I cannot say that I saw any additional tire wear because it was towed. With normal rotations the tires lasted around 50K miles.
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:29 PM   #33
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Hmmm, I note that Ford didn't add the Taurus until just recently, that could very easily scrap flat towing the rig right there. Ah well, there's a couple used tow dollys for around $400-500 on craigslist right now , and worst case I can always price out building one, I have a spare heavy duty Dexter Axle lying around unused right now that if wide enough would make a good base for a tow dolly.
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