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Old 05-17-2013, 07:12 AM   #1
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Question Dolly or Trailer

Me and the DW are very new to this. We recently purchased our MH and are getting ready to purchase either a tow dolly or a trailer. We have a Ford Focus which can be towed on a dolly and a Ford Mustang, which would have to go on a trailer because I don't want to have to install and remove the driveshaft all the time. DW says trailer so we could take either vehicle. I say dolly for Focus. Alot of things to consider. Storage,more braking power with trailer, hooking and unhooking. Trailer can more easily be backed up. Just looking for experienced info on both to build my case. We are full timing while we both work and now that we are in our MH we will be taking alot of weekenders. I just think the dolly way would be the best but cruising at the beach with the top down, Mustang is a convertible, is always nice too. Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:29 AM   #2
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I'd check out Remco and see if they have a driveshaft disconnect kit for the Mustang. No way I'd want to drag a trailer (or a dolly). I prefer 4-down.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:53 AM   #3
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Was talking with someone about a dolly that has two sets of wheels. One for front tires on car and one for rear tires with an aluminum bar that connects the two. Anyone ever heard of such an animal? And also, has anyone ever towed with the rear wheels on the dolly?
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:25 AM   #4
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I think towing on a dolly backwards causes a problem with the camber or something on the car. They aren't designed to be towed long distances backward. I've heard that won't track correctly and tire wear is an issue.

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Originally Posted by MissyanMe View Post
Was talking with someone about a dolly that has two sets of wheels. One for front tires on car and one for rear tires with an aluminum bar that connects the two. Anyone ever heard of such an animal? And also, has anyone ever towed with the rear wheels on the dolly?
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:41 AM   #5
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Towing 4 down is by far the easiest way to go. You really have to think about what you are going to do when you get to your campsite. With a dolly you can pretty quickly unload the car, and move to your site. The dolly can be unhooked and somewhat easily pushed by hand to park it. With a trailer, which is usually another 20-22 feet long and about 2000lbs, unless you have a really long pull thru site you are going to have to park it somewhere. That means probably parking it somewhere else in the campground if they have room for it. You will have to unload the car then move the trailer with the MH to park it. Then reverse the process when you leave.
The trailer can be backed up, kind of hard with the dolly, you cannot back up towing four down.
I use my trailer when I take my Vette to car shows.
I have used all three ways. As far as ease of use the best and easiest way if four down, next easiest is a dolly and last is a trailer.
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:27 AM   #6
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Another option is to consider trading off one of the cars to a 4 down friendly version. With 4 down there is an additional investment of purchasing the tow bar and braking equipt etc. Buying a dolly or trailer(which requires braking setup as well) all have costs beyond just the price of the vehicle. If the car you are bringing along will be sold off next year because it now has 2 million miles on it, you will be spending more to equipt it's replacement for towing again. If I were to use a trailer, the next question would be, what am I going to put on that trailer? Just the car? Will I also want to bring along a golf cart, or the kids bikes? Maybe I want to load up the house and all it's contents as well. Do I want to enclose the trailer or a flat bed. Once I reach a spot or just store at home, how am I going to move the trailer around and where am I going to store it? Will I need to rent an additional spot for storage as well?
4 down towing has it's merits!
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:42 AM   #7
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I do not want to have to deal with a tow dolly or trailer (disconnect/connect, load/unload the car, go park it somewhere (you need to set up the tow car to be able to pull the dolly/trailer))- so 4 down towing for me. I would get a toad that can be towed 4 down. Much easier - just pull the car up behind the MH, connect the tow bar, cables, and lights wire, then go.

IMHO...
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:43 AM   #8
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I'm with others on this. Trade both cars for something fun and flat towable. There are a a number of convertibles, for example, the ever popular Jeep Wrangler, or many others that will fit the bill.

Finding a place to park the trailer or dolly, in many parks, can be challenging, not to mention the hassle of dealing with it.
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Old 05-17-2013, 06:38 PM   #9
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I use 4 down and a trailer. While the 4 down is a little easier I prefer the towing the trailer. I like being able to backup whenever I want and as far as I want. I rarely have an issue finding room for it and if I have to disconnect it I move it around with whatever vehicle is on the trailer. The initial cost of my tow bar, base plates, and brake system was more than the trailer but the trailer will require new tires once in a while and some maintenance. I also like the ability to use the trailer for anything that will fit on it.
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:25 PM   #10
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Get a dolly with a pivot pan. The Focus will serve as your primary toad and will be a very happy car by not adding any miles to the half-shafts and bottom end of the transaxle, and having much less risk of rock damage being up high on the dolly.

Then when you want, put the Mustang on the dolly with the rear tires off the ground and lock or tie down the steering. It will tow fine backwards as long as the steering does not get off-center.
Beware - if the Mustang has a large front airdam, it might be tight to the road while riding on the dolly.

I have towed on my dolly for over 10,000 miles with no problem and towed a full sized car facing to the rear on a dolly before with no issues.

My current dolly is an Eze-Tow (no pivot pan) so I would need to rent a U-Haul (with pivot pan) to tow in reverse again, but that's the only limit...so this is the ONLY situation when I wouldn't recommend an EZE-Tow

You are a smart person to make the equipment work for you versus changing everything just so you can flat tow...BTW: if you add-up the cost of a tow bar, mounting plate, lighting kit, and brake system, you will find most all dolly's costs MUCH less and it enables you to switch toads at will.

The trailer/car carrier idea has perks too, but adds a lot of weight to the set-up and can be a pain to stow a camp grounds. But it would work for both of your cars, and backing-up is easy - of course.

Best of luck and safe travels
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:19 PM   #11
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Everyone is telling you to go 4-down and forget the dolly or trailer. I wonder how many of them have ever towed with a dolly or are their opinions based on the limited experience of 4-down towing.

When we had a motorhome, we initially towed with a dolly. We bought another car that was capable of flat towing or 4-down and sold the dolly. We had to have brakes added and a break-away device added. Now we had only one car to tow. If we sold the car, we had to set up the tow brackets and brakes on another vehicle, which is not cheap.

Honestly, if I were to go back to a motorhome, I would get a dolly with brakes and pull which ever vehicle I want.

So, I would question all of the nay-sayers and ask about towing with a dolly until they can tell you about actual experience.

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Old 05-18-2013, 05:42 AM   #12
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I have towed with a dolly and found it a complete pain. Hard to hookup and then you have to deal with it once parked. Not for me.

I have a brake control that I can move between vehicles, a wireless brake light system and a town at that stows on the motorhome. About the only thing I need to prepare a different vehicle to tow are the base plates.
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Old 05-18-2013, 06:04 AM   #13
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Having done dolly, trailer and 4 down. I prefer 4 down. But I also like the convenience of a dolly. Just put almost any FWD vehicle on it and go. Ours is a fold up Demco. Easy to store on site. Least liked was the trailer. To much weight and the need to store it.
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Old 05-18-2013, 07:28 AM   #14
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Since the question was dolly or trailer, my input is;

I have both, if I'm going 4 wheeling and know I'll be wheeling challenging terain I'll trailer my 4X4. That way if I break something that will keep me from dollying I'm good.
If I'll be driving easy trails or taking my Neon, then it's the dolly.
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