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Old 11-04-2014, 02:51 PM   #1
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BEST tow dolly for my 2012 VW Golf TDI 5 door???

Hello All. Its me again! There is so much info out there! What, in your opinion is the best tow dolly for my VW Golf?
I finally found out it cant be towed on all fours, must use a dolly.
Also, do dolly's come with brakes, or do I need to add a supplemental braking system, and if so, what is the BEST one out there?
Thanks all.

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Old 11-05-2014, 12:49 AM   #2
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And Congrats on the smart decision to keep the car you have and pick dolly towing. Your car will be safe and happy riding up high on the dolly, away from rockstrikes, saving wear on the lower driveline, and avoiding any cutting of the fascia to fit base plates in the critical crumple zone of the frame

Kudos to you for thinking about brakes on the tow set-up...not required by law in many places, but smart and obviously safer.

The least expensive dolly will be a used unit. Lots of people buy a dolly, then decide to flat tow or go RVing less and sell their dolly. Check Craigslist and the local for sale ads.

There are 3 basic kinds of dollys...listed from most expensive to least:
-Steering on the dolly axle - the dolly wheels actually pivot to negotiate turns.
-Pivot pan - like U Haul rents - the car rides on a pan that pivots separate from the dolly to negotiate turns.
-Fixed pan - the car's front tires pivot on the dolly to negotiate turns, just like flat towing - requires the cars steering lock remain unlocked during travel.

About brakes...there are 2 types on dollys:
-Electric - just like most all towable RV's - requires a brake controller in the RV and the wiring to the bumper.
-Surge - like the bigger U Haul trailers - uses the pressure placed on the hitch to engage hydraulic brakes - totally automatic and infinitely adjusted from loaded to unloaded.

-Then...there are drum vs. dics brakes. Just like a car, disc brakes are simpler and provide better braking and cooling over drums.

All makers dollys are pretty good and I have never heard of any brand that was a real lemon. The only warning might be about a dolly with non-removable ramps...might contact the Golf's door sill when driving over curbs in driveways.

We have an Acme EZE-Tow. http://cartowdolly.com/
We bought it second hand and have over 10,000miles on it. It is the fixed pan type and comes with surge disc brakes standard. At only 403lb it is very easy to move around when unloaded and using surge brakes, it does not need a brake controller in the RV and the adjustment for use from loaded to unloaded, like dollys with electric brakes.And if considering buying new - Acme has recently improved their dolly with a lower weight, and new ramp and light design and other changes. See the post on iRV2 here:
Acme EZE-TOW Tow DollyNew Design Release 09-30-14

Not affiliated with Acme...I just like the product.

Best luck
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Old 11-05-2014, 05:40 AM   #3
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I've towed a Camry about 30,000 miles on a Master Tow Dolly with Electric brakes. It has been a great product. Get the 80" wide model for more versatility. I have also towed the Avalon and a Chrysler mini van with no problem. I'd buy another one in a minute. The best feature is that it tracks in the same wheel tracks behind the MH in a turn. What ever product you decide, get radial ply tires. They last longer at highway speed. Bias ply tires are tougher at slow speed but don't last as long. I recommend the LED lights as well.

Good luck


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Old 11-05-2014, 05:52 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C-PHartley View Post
I've towed a Camry about 30,000 miles on a Master Tow Dolly with Electric brakes. It has been a great product. Get the 80" wide model for more versatility. I have also towed the Avalon and a Chrysler mini van with no problem. I'd buy another one in a minute. The best feature is that it tracks in the same wheel tracks behind the MH in a turn. What ever product you decide, get radial ply tires. They last longer at highway speed. Bias ply tires are tougher at slow speed but don't last as long. I recommend the LED lights as well.
X2. Our Master Tow dolly with electric brakes, has worked great for two years and 7,000 miles. No problem towing a Mini Cooper with VERY low ground clearance. Good unit at a reasonable price.
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Old 11-05-2014, 07:03 AM   #5
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Thanks Scarab, I really appreciate the great info. You and the rest of the people are saving me a ton of time researching.
I do appreciate all of you!
G Man
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Old 11-05-2014, 09:11 AM   #6
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I have the ACME EZE Tow as well. I did a lot of looking prior to purchase, but went with this dolly. My car can be flat towed, but the dolly will save wear and tear on the car plus I don't have to cut up the front end to install the tow bar.

We are considering the VW Golf Sportwagon for out next car, which is new for 2015. We like the Jetta Sportwagon but apparently this is the last year for the Jetta version and we are not ready to buy yet. That being the case, since it will be front wheel drive, it is plug and play since we already have the dolly.
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Old 12-14-2014, 08:46 PM   #7
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I have a tow dolly but it does not have any braking system what can I do to add a braking system any recommendations out there? Thank you so much
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Old 12-14-2014, 08:59 PM   #8
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Brake equipped hubs are available for many axles and hub designs. These kits come with brake assemblies that fit on your existing axle...like:
https://www.etrailer.com/question-53296.html

A call to the mfgt of your dolly or a trailer retailer would be my first suggestion.

It would probably be electric brakes, and that is better than no brakes.

Safe travels
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Old 12-25-2014, 08:04 PM   #9
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USED tow dolly

If you decide to go used be sure to examine the latch assembly for the ball. We bought one and it appeared ok, probably typical several year old used unit and tires need replaced. When we took it home it seemed really noisy to tow, and wandered a bit. Got it home and upon closer examination found the surge brake hitch assembly on this unit was wore so it is loose on the ball, and this brand (Aero6000) has no adjustment to make it fit tighter. Not hard to fix but costs about $160 and a couple hours. etrailer guys were great to help.
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Old 12-28-2014, 03:50 AM   #10
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Tow Dolly

We have a KarKaddy tow dolly and tow our Toyota Prius on it, no problem. It does have surge brakes on it, a great way to go.
With the surge brakes you don't have to worry about electrical problems on the brake system, it is all mechanical.
With electric brakes you have to have a electric brake control in the MH, this has to be properly adjusted and maintained. If you have an electrical problem in the brake system, no brakes, that is bad.

Get a good dolly and enjoy the ride!!!
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Old 02-14-2015, 08:33 AM   #11
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I have a 2012 Golf TDI 5-door with a 6-speed manual transmission. It came with the keyless "KESSY" ignition system and also with the additional aero package with lower front spoiler and lower side skirts. I never found an easy way to unlock the steering column on the keyless ignition car so that eliminated any dolly that required an unlocked steering column. I looked at several brands and settled on the Demco Kar Kaddy 460 SS due to its robust construction and long list of features. BUT, the approach angle of my low nose Golf meant the Kar Kaddy would have destroyed my front spoiler during loading and unloading operations. I ended up buying a pair of "Race Ramps" to easy the approach angle which work perfectly. I could have used much less expensive 2x12 wood ramps but after experimentation I quickly decided that lugging the heavy wood ramps was not for me. The Race Ramps are really light weight and are easy to stow.







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Old 02-14-2015, 08:38 AM   #12
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When you released the ramps to tilt didn't that give you enough clearance? We tow our Passat on a Kar Kaddy and have no problems.
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Old 02-14-2015, 08:38 AM   #13
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Buy a car that you can tow 4 down. Have you ever towed using a dolly?
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Old 02-14-2015, 08:41 AM   #14
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When you released the ramps to tilt didn't that give you enough clearance? We tow our Passat on a Kar Kaddy and have no problems.
No, the VW Golf/GTI models have a lot of real estate forward of the front wheels.
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