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Old 05-19-2007, 11:59 AM   #1
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Obviously, a lot more people pull a toad 4 down than use a trailer or a dolly. That was our plan too (see other thread), but we're also considering getting a Featherlite or ATC enclosed trailer (probably 20' or so).

Pros of the trailer:

Room for car, motorcycle, bikes, maybe some other stuff inside, out of the weather.

No modifications to toad needed (tow plate, brakes).

Everything stays clean.

Easier to back up? I'm thinking you can actually back up and steer a real trailer, which you really can't do with a 4-down toad. Am I wrong on this?

Less weight on rear of coach, since I won't have to use a rear lift for the motorcycle.

Better brakes? Not sure about this, but seems like purpose designed trailer brake system would work better than buddy system on toad.

Can carry any kind of vehicle that fits.

Cons:

Costs more for the trailer than having the mods done to the toad.

Need to find a place to put the trailer when you're parked. Probably won't fit in the campsite with you.

Total tow weight is greater with trailer.

Up in the air:

Load time? Really don't know how log it takes to hook up a toad, nor how long it takes to load the car in the trailer.

Comments?

joe
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Old 05-19-2007, 11:59 AM   #2
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Obviously, a lot more people pull a toad 4 down than use a trailer or a dolly. That was our plan too (see other thread), but we're also considering getting a Featherlite or ATC enclosed trailer (probably 20' or so).

Pros of the trailer:

Room for car, motorcycle, bikes, maybe some other stuff inside, out of the weather.

No modifications to toad needed (tow plate, brakes).

Everything stays clean.

Easier to back up? I'm thinking you can actually back up and steer a real trailer, which you really can't do with a 4-down toad. Am I wrong on this?

Less weight on rear of coach, since I won't have to use a rear lift for the motorcycle.

Better brakes? Not sure about this, but seems like purpose designed trailer brake system would work better than buddy system on toad.

Can carry any kind of vehicle that fits.

Cons:

Costs more for the trailer than having the mods done to the toad.

Need to find a place to put the trailer when you're parked. Probably won't fit in the campsite with you.

Total tow weight is greater with trailer.

Up in the air:

Load time? Really don't know how log it takes to hook up a toad, nor how long it takes to load the car in the trailer.

Comments?

joe
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Old 05-19-2007, 12:11 PM   #3
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Joe, your comments are pretty much right on...

I recently parked my 24' Stacker Trailer after only two or three trips out...I hauled a golf cart,an H3 Hummer on the bottom and the lift was set up for up to four bikes.
I have been toying (nice pun) with the idea of a single level trailer versus a MH mounted lift and have all but decided to go ahead with the lift on the back of the MH.
I've sold the golf cart, just decided to scale back to the Hummer and the Harley and will rent the golf cart when necessary.

Most campgrounds will not, in my opinion, have the capability to store your trailer for even short periods of time.

Not sure what your coach is, but I would all but say the easiest method will be the cycle lift.
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Old 05-19-2007, 01:01 PM   #4
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Joe, what is the MH that you would be using to pull the trailer? Not all MHs will have the hitch capacity or the power to pull such a load.
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Old 05-19-2007, 03:08 PM   #5
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It'll probably be a 2008 Newmar Essex or maybe the new one (King Air?). We'll be ordering it this fall for delivery this winter some time. We're still getting all our ducks in a row for early retirement either late this year or early next year.

joe
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Old 05-19-2007, 03:17 PM   #6
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Well.......either one of those will "git-r-done"!
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Old 05-19-2007, 08:28 PM   #7
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Joe, this sometimes looks like a which is better vanilla or chocolate question. We towed a'99 Blazer 4 down for 4 and 1/2 years and have been towing a 20' Pace American enclosed trailer since Dec. '04. On the pro side you have got almost all of the bases covered.

Yes, you can definitely back up an enclosed trailer and with a little practice it pretty much becomes second nature. When we bought our trailer we spec'd 5000# axles and the dealer suggested upgrading tro 6000# his reasoning was very sound. The 5's came with 8 ply 15" tires; whereas the 6's came through with 10 ply 16" tires. I use a prodigy brake controller and the trailer brakes work whether I am using the foot brake or the engine brake which is really nice. When we towed with 4 down we used a Brake Buddy which in my opinion is a panic brake system.

You commented about hooking up, if the trailer is already hooked to the coach I feel that I can load and strap the car down a little faster than I could hook up tow bar and Brake Buddy. More important when I am loading/unloading the car I could care less about weather or time of day. The trailer has inside lighting and I am always dry and out of the elements.

If you go the trailer route I strongly suggest getting a 5 foot tongue as it gives you max clearance between trailer and motor home so as to prevent them from kissing which is not pretty. Also the longer the hitch the easier it is to back up.

Bob and I some time back agreed that we disagree on the capability in campgrounds. We don't do a lot of NPS, State Parks and COE. When we call ahead for a site we tell 'em what we have, if they can accomodate us that's fine if not we make another phone call. We know full well at Lazy Days we need to unhook and park the trailer in a holding area and we use a campground in NJ about twice a year where we have the same condition to contend with; but, other than that we have virtually had no problems to speak of.

I seriously doubt that we will ever go back to 4 down. If you need any additional info. just come back to me
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Old 05-20-2007, 01:26 PM   #8
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Thanks for the feedback, gang!

Decisions, decisions...



joe
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