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Old 04-17-2009, 01:57 PM   #1
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buying dolly

I was thinking of using a dolly for our Prius and wanted to try one first. Went to the local u-haul and they wanted 50 a day for rent and there are no brakes on thiers. I would think there are some dolly's that would be cheaper then that (for a 1 month trip that would be around $1500) i think i could buy one for that and it would have breaks on it, am i out of line or is that reasonable assumtion?
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Old 04-17-2009, 05:31 PM   #2
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Hi Chuck,
I'm not sure this is a good comparison. I have a Demco Kar Kaddy. The model that folds up to a small footprint. With options, my cost (new) was about $3.2K. It would be difficult to amortize the cost of purchasing versus renting a dolly. I keep the asset and use it more than a single trip. If one trip is all you want to use the dolly then renting may be the best choice. By renting, there is no cost risk with regard to breakdowns, maintenance or licensing.

Another option is renting a car only for the days you need a vehicle. Many rental agencies will deliver the car to you, at the CG. I've done this and it works.
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Old 04-17-2009, 06:48 PM   #3
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Here is one I am looking at, lighter weight than most, surge disc brakes and in most cases you can get it delivered with a spare tire for $1,500.00 or less.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Hydra...Q5fAccessories
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Old 04-17-2009, 09:38 PM   #4
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You can often find lightly used ones for under $1000. Shop ebay, craigs list, rv websites, etc. Maybe even the irv2 classifieds?
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Old 04-18-2009, 12:03 AM   #5
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about a year ago, I bought a new STEHL tow dolly with electric brakes in the portland, or. area that was advertised in the nickel adds for about $1300.
it is working well for me.
be careful when buying a dolly, especially used ones. they are not titled or licensed in most states.
i got a "certificate of origin" with my dolly.
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Old 04-18-2009, 12:29 PM   #6
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The Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin is what you use to get a title, in those states that issue titles for trailers (some do, others do not).
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Old 04-18-2009, 02:30 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RV Roamer [Gary] View Post
The Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin is what you use to get a title, in those states that issue titles for trailers (some do, others do not).
when you buy a tow dolly, my point is that you need some identifying paper work on it other than a bill if sale signed by the person you bought it from. check the serial number on the dolly against the paper work.
washington licenses utility trailers, but not tow dollies. from my research on the subject, it is my understanding that this is the same in most states. when towing a car using a tow dolly, my car license is sufficient even when i am towing in a another state that would title and license a tow dolly.
it would be very easy to buy a stolen tow dolly and not know it until it is too late to get your money back.
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Old 04-18-2009, 08:35 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Stewart View Post
Here is one I am looking at, lighter weight than most, surge disc brakes and in most cases you can get it delivered with a spare tire for $1,500.00 or less.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Hydra...Q5fAccessories
Jim,

I purchased one of these a couple years back. Seems to be solid. The only thing I would caution you on is to get the surge brakes set correctly before heading out. I had one hang on me and I lost a tire. I make sure that I carry a spare under the coach.

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Old 04-27-2009, 04:11 PM   #9
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ok I have looked around and cant seem to find any used of any brand. So i am torn between a demarko and road master both about the same price road master has elect brakes demarko has surge brakes (on the electric brake does it use the brake lite wire to turn the brake on that seem to be what the salesman was saying but i don't trust salesmen on techicnical questions beyond dod the sun come up in the east today ) those of you that have one of these which would be the best for my Prius
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Old 04-27-2009, 05:35 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck Linn View Post
ok I have looked around and cant seem to find any used of any brand. So i am torn between a demarko and road master both about the same price road master has elect brakes demarko has surge brakes (on the electric brake does it use the brake lite wire to turn the brake on that seem to be what the salesman was saying but i don't trust salesmen on techicnical questions beyond dod the sun come up in the east today ) those of you that have one of these which would be the best for my Prius
did you check the STEHL dolly? mine works well.
dollies and trailers with electric brakes require a "brake controller" installed in the towing vehicle and wired to the dolly or trailer.
there are 2 types of electric brake controllers: time based and inertial. imoh the better ones are inertial. the controller gets a signal from the towing vehicles brake light circuit and sends current proportionally (sometimes 20 amps) to the dolly or trailer to apply the brakes. the brake controller also has a means of changing the amount of automatic braking, (gain) and a way to manually apply the brakes.
my DEXTER inertial brake controller cost about $100. i use dexter because they make most of the axles and brakes (including mine) used in trailers and dollies. NAPA and other suppliers have other brands for less.
imoh surge brakes are a simpler setup. i don't have any experience with them.
my dexter electric brakes work ok.
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Old 04-27-2009, 06:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAN L View Post
washington licenses utility trailers, but not tow dollies. from my research on the subject, it is my understanding that this is the same in most states. when towing a car using a tow dolly, my car license is sufficient even when i am towing in a another state that would title and license a tow dolly.
DanL,
Some info on WA State tow dolly licensing. You are correct in that when towing a licensed vehicle on a tow dolly in this wonderful state the dolly does not require a license plate, but if you are towing the dolly MT, or the vehicle attached to the dolly is not licensed they the tow dolly must be licensed and registration must be current. I found out the hard way, got ticketed by WSP , went to court, got ticket reduced to warning . Live and learn, was towing dolly MT on SR-16 between Tacoma and Bremerton after dropping car off dealer for service.

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Old 04-27-2009, 09:26 PM   #12
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If someone is in the Atlanta area I have a Stehl tow dolly that I would like to sell. After buying the tow dolly, I bought a Ford Focus and tow 4 down now. The dolly was used on one trip to North Carolina -- about 1,000 miles total on it. I had the electric brakes installed on it and it also has a break away switch and battery installed. I think that I have around $1,200 total invested in it and I am willing to let it go for around $600. I have the Certificate of Orgin and the original bill of sale from the factory that will go with it. As I live in Georgia, it is not titled or licensed.
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Old 04-28-2009, 03:18 AM   #13
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Quote:
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DanL,
Some info on WA State tow dolly licensing. You are correct in that when towing a licensed vehicle on a tow dolly in this wonderful state the dolly does not require a license plate, but if you are towing the dolly MT, or the vehicle attached to the dolly is not licensed they the tow dolly must be licensed and registration must be current. I found out the hard way, got ticketed by WSP , went to court, got ticket reduced to warning . Live and learn, was towing dolly MT on SR-16 between Tacoma and Bremerton after dropping car off dealer for service.

Spike
thanks for your post
i tried to get my dolly licensed as a trailer at the dmv in vancouver, wa. they refused to license or title it. now that i know that there is some controversy, next time i am at the dmv i will ask them again and if they refuse i will try to get a written statement from them.
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