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Old 04-27-2014, 11:50 PM   #1
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Car Dolly

I have always had Travel Trailers and fifth wheelers,I just got my first Motor Home. On the dollies does the top area where the vehicle sits turn.I see on some pics that it looks like there is a large bolt through the top and was wondering if this is where the swivel is. The reason I am asking is we have a fabricating shop and I want to build one, thank you
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Old 04-27-2014, 11:56 PM   #2
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Swivels at the ball hitch plus you unlock the steering wheel so also swivels at the steering.
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Old 04-28-2014, 12:11 AM   #3
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Mine has a plate that carries the front tires with a king pin. The front wheels stay locked and do not turn. It's a Tandem Tow Dolly and the tray came even be moved fore and aft to help balance the tongue weight.
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Old 04-28-2014, 04:20 AM   #4
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They do not need to swivel if you leave the steering column unlocked. Look at Acme Tow Dolly website for the most simplistic design.
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Old 04-28-2014, 07:30 AM   #5
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That Acme dolly is sounding more and more like the way to go....
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Old 04-28-2014, 08:06 AM   #6
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There are 3 basic types of steering mechanisms on dollies.

1. Those with steerable wheels.

This style has wheels mounted in king pins and connected by a tie rod. The tires follow directly in the track of the rear wheels of the motorhome. This allows the motorhome to take sharper corners since the dolly does not cut the corner shorter than the rear wheels of the motorhome.

2. Those with a pivot pan.

With this style the dolly wheels are in the fixed straight ahead position. The front wheels of the towed vehicle sit on a pan that pivots on the main frame of the dolly. The wheels on the towed vehicle can remain locked in the straight ahead position since the pan swivels to provide steering around corners. This style requires the motorhome to take wider corners than when using a dolly with steerable wheels. The wheels of the dolly will cut the corner shorter than the rear wheels of the motorhome.

3. Those that have no steering capability

This style is like a 2 wheel fixed axle trailer. There is no steering mechanism. The wheels on the towed vehicle must be left unlocked. They provide the steering when turning a corner. Like the pivot pan style the motorhome must make a wider turn because the dolly wheels don't follow in the path of the rear wheels of the motorhome.

Examples of each are:

Steerable wheels - Roadmaster 2000-1

Pivot pan - Stehl Tow

No Steering - Acme Tow Dolly
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Old 04-28-2014, 08:21 AM   #7
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We have a Mastertow Tow Dolly MASTER TOW INC. :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: : Model 80THD. The plate where the front wheels go swivels. It is easy to use and if I had one thing to change I would opt for a 15" tire which is not offered. The reason being you can get a better tire than the 14" that comes with the tow dolly. More plys, more load capacity and less revolutions when you are pulling it down the road.
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Old 04-28-2014, 08:38 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hikerdogs View Post
There are 3 basic types of steering mechanisms on dollies.

1. Those with steerable wheels.

This style has wheels mounted in king pins and connected by a tie rod. The tires follow directly in the track of the rear wheels of the motorhome. This allows the motorhome to take sharper corners since the dolly does not cut the corner shorter than the rear wheels of the motorhome.

2. Those with a pivot pan.

With this style the dolly wheels are in the fixed straight ahead position. The front wheels of the towed vehicle sit on a pan that pivots on the main frame of the dolly. The wheels on the towed vehicle can remain locked in the straight ahead position since the pan swivels to provide steering around corners. This style requires the motorhome to take wider corners than when using a dolly with steerable wheels. The wheels of the dolly will cut the corner shorter than the rear wheels of the motorhome.

3. Those that have no steering capability

This style is like a 2 wheel fixed axle trailer. There is no steering mechanism. The wheels on the towed vehicle must be left unlocked. They provide the steering when turning a corner. Like the pivot pan style the motorhome must make a wider turn because the dolly wheels don't follow in the path of the rear wheels of the motorhome.

Examples of each are:

Steerable wheels - Roadmaster 2000-1

Pivot pan - Stehl Tow

No Steering - Acme Tow Dolly

Keep in mind also that the MH design greatly effects the tracking . A "Gasser" A or C with a long overhang will pull the dolly or trailer out from the inside radius greater than a DP with their shorter overhangs. Some of the steering or swivel Dollys also can generate damage to the toad from fender contact.
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Old 04-28-2014, 07:20 PM   #9
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Car dolly

Thank you for the information
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Old 04-29-2014, 08:25 AM   #10
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KarKaddySS the trailer wheels turn, steering wheel locked. Surge breaks no need for extra breaks. Fenders on KarKaddySS have yet to hit fenders on caddie and I have had to cut corners short and still didn't hit.
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Old 04-29-2014, 09:29 AM   #11
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Ask anyone who has a tow dolly with a pivoting pan who didn't lock their steering wheel. Believe it or not the vehicle can turn too tight when the steering wheel is NOT locked causing damage to the vehicle's side as it rubs against the tow dolly's fenders.

Some vehicles require that you tie the steering wheel down because the steering wheel lock will release once the front end reaches a certain angle above level, such as when being towed by a tow truck.

I have to tie down our Saturn Ion's steering wheel because it won't lock all the time depending on the angle at the time of hook up...especially if the rig is on a upward sloping road.
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Old 04-29-2014, 09:43 AM   #12
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This style has wheels mounted in king pins and connected by a tie rod. The tires follow directly in the track of the rear wheels of the motorhome. This allows the motorhome to take sharper corners since the dolly does not cut the corner shorter than the rear wheels of the motorhome.

The Kar Kaddy 3

This is what we use. We tow our VW Passat Diesel with it and have no problems what so ever. It eliminates wiring your car for lights and has its own brakes. In fact there are no modifications to your car at all.

We're on our second one and purchased it from PPL last year new. It was drop shipped directly to our home.
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Old 05-03-2014, 05:50 PM   #13
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Acme tow dolly?

I just bought an Allegro RED 33 and will need a tow dolly (until I can pick up a 4 down vehicle). I checked out the video on the ACME Tow Dolly site and the EZE Tow looks like a good product at a reasonable price. I'm towing a Solera convertible so there's not a lot of weight. Does anyone know much about these dolly's?
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Old 05-04-2014, 06:38 AM   #14
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They are pretty much bulletproof, the surge brakes are great. If you are buying a new one it will have the new style metal ramps. A few people had a dislike of the "box" style ramps in the past. You will need to leave the steering on your car unlocked, if that creates a significant electrical draw due to leaving the key on accessory, you may need to deal with that. Just yell for help here, lots of folks eager to help.
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