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Old 10-24-2015, 08:35 PM   #1
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Question about towing a vehicle

I have been towing vehicles for years and up until the last few mos I have been having to buy new tow straps almost everytime I tow. For some reason the straps move and get caught under the tire. I have an old dalco tow dolly that the tires swivel when the car is on the tray. There is a pin that you can pull when towing that allows the car to move as opposed to the tray or with the pin inserted the wheels are straight and has a shock strut that allows for tension. I don't rachet the car tight to the front and I have tried both tight and snug and regardless how its done the same thing happens. So I am wondering what is it I am doing wrong. The straps are good quality about 35.00 a piece.
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Old 10-24-2015, 09:21 PM   #2
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New straps stretch as they get tension put on them. I've always tightened them down as tight as possible, then stop in 20 miles or so and retighten them. Check again at 50 miles or so and again tighten. Woven nylon straps always stretch as the webbing tightens and the nylon fibers adjust to each other under tension.

I don't understand your comment about the stap getting caught under the tire, do you mean the auto's tire on the dolly or the dolly's tire on the ground?
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Old 10-24-2015, 09:58 PM   #3
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The auto tire. I have to cut the strap off the tire that moves. I stop periodically and look and feel the tension, but if I am turning the vehicle be it truck or coach the car seems to move somewhat on the tray depending on the direction I am turning. If I have to tight and a turn is made the wheel almost moves beyond the cradle. If to loose same thing. On new dolly's the cradle moves, but on the old 1's the tires move and the tray is stationary.
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Old 10-24-2015, 10:21 PM   #4
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Here is a good example. These are the types of straps I use, and if you see the buckle used to tighten it and not the part that is ratched , the buckle is getting trapped under the car tire and the strap on top is usually on the inside of the wheel, it all gets shifted to the inside of the wheel and has to be cut off, because even jacking that side of the car up and trying to free it, the strap is around the cv axle. Hope the picture comes thru so you can see it.
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Old 10-24-2015, 10:25 PM   #5
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That's an older Demco dolly, we have a KK-460 we bought in 2005. Here's a link to the picture of the Kar Kaddy 3: http://demco-products.com/rv-towing-products/tow-dollies/kar-kaddy-3
I had problems with ours at first too. I thought the original straps were too small so I ordered bigger ones. They would slide over the inside of the tire and rub on the suspension and cut the strap. Got the next size smaller and had no problems after that.
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Old 10-25-2015, 07:45 AM   #6
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Not knowing what you have for straps let me say the vehicle tires should not move in the tray. First check and make shure the steering on the tow dolly is free and fairly easy to turn with the pin out.(I saw a man that towed all the way from canada to florida with the pin in and complained about wearing out two sets of tires on the dolly.)
After putting the car on the dolly let it roll to the back of the tire cradles and leave the trans in nuetral with the brake off. Strap the tire down and tighten the ratchets as tight as you can by hand.( The car will roll forward as you tighte the straps) after tightening the strap put the car in park. This is what I do and I seldom have to retighten them.
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Old 10-26-2015, 08:28 PM   #7
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Vman I think your straps are not on your tires right, I have always had my straps spred out so it on the front and rear of the tire and the ratchet pulls from the middle of the tire, it looks like you have a dolly that the wheels move or stears in a turn if not you will never keep that style of straps on the tires with the steering wheel unlocked.
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Old 10-26-2015, 09:13 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vman60 View Post
Here is a good example. These are the types of straps I use, and if you see the buckle used to tighten it and not the part that is ratched , the buckle is getting trapped under the car tire and the strap on top is usually on the inside of the wheel, it all gets shifted to the inside of the wheel and has to be cut off, because even jacking that side of the car up and trying to free it, the strap is around the cv axle. Hope the picture comes thru so you can see it.
It doesn't look like you have the right strap but I think it might work if the straps went over thecenter of the tire.
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Old 10-26-2015, 09:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walt2137 View Post
Vman I think your straps are not on your tires right, I have always had my straps spred out so it on the front and rear of the tire and the ratchet pulls from the middle of the tire, it looks like you have a dolly that the wheels move or stears in a turn if not you will never keep that style of straps on the tires with the steering wheel unlocked.
I agree, in this link you can see pictures of how the straps go on. There are also video's to watch that could be helpful.
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Old 10-27-2015, 07:36 PM   #10
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I talked to tech support yesterday at Demco. They wanted to see pics of the dolly and straps. I told them what was happening with the straps getting trapped under the tire and around the axle. Told him when you make a turn you can see the car move. He said that has never happened nor never heard of it and said send me pics of the dolly. At 1st he was saying that isn't our dolly and I said it is an early model 80's and turned out I was correct, then he said well if your car is all the way up in the cradel to the front stop and ratched down tight enough the car can't move. I said I would be happy to take a video and send it to you. Doesn't go completely out but rises to top of the bump stop and when straightend out it rolls back. Then of course comes and says you may be using the wrong straps. Well I have used every type of strap that are made except for chains. Still the samething happens. So he says demco straps have 2 metal hooks that go into the area behind the wheel, a basket type that goes over the rear part of the tire following a strap that goes down the front middle of the tire that gets ratched , so I said like stehl straps? They are exactly the same but cheaper than demco. He never heard of them. Yes I have used those as well same thing. I said ok, how about I buy yours and strap the car down and the same thing happens, then what? He said we'd like to see the dolly and see whats is making it do that. I said no problem. I have used this trailer for roughly 2 years and have bought the same kind of cars all over the country and to no prevail the same issue. So lets see how these new demco straps works for 100.00
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Old 10-27-2015, 07:55 PM   #11
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Based on your first post, I have a couple of points to make.
You should always have the straps tight.
The car tire should rest against the front tire stop of the tray.
The straps are such that the single end of the strap lays over the tire tread, and holds it down tight against the stop block. The combination of the stop block and the front strap prevent the car tire from rolling forward.

When the car tries to move backwards, the tension of the front strap should keep it from moving backwards.
From the car dollies that I have used, the pin should only be inserted for towing the dolly without a car attached. If the car is attached, the pin should be removed so the upper tray assembly can swivel in relation to the dolly tires.

It scares me when you say you tried it with the straps loose...they should never be loose.


Did you read this manual http://demco-products.com/assets/use...ts/RD20018.pdf

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Old 10-28-2015, 02:24 AM   #12
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thanks Dan for the reply. I may have used a play on words. I meant that I have tried not to tighten the strap to the point where it doesn' compress the tire to the front bump stop to tjght. I have had the straps so tight that the tires were compressed and not so compressed meaning as tight as I could get and not so tight if that makes sense. I have tried everything. This is the 1st dolly I have had issues with in 35 years of towing cars. Thanks.Tony..
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Old 10-28-2015, 10:18 AM   #13
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thanks Dan for the reply. I may have used a play on words. I meant that I have tried not to tighten the strap to the point where it doesn' compress the tire to the front bump stop to tjght. I have had the straps so tight that the tires were compressed and not so compressed meaning as tight as I could get and not so tight if that makes sense. I have tried everything. This is the 1st dolly I have had issues with in 35 years of towing cars. Thanks.Tony..
Hi Tony,

So if the tire is compressed against the front tire stop, then where does the movement occur, and in which direction.
I guess two things could happen, somehow the tire raises, and the strap ends up under the tire, or the tire moves (in what direction) and ends up on top of the tire.


I just re-read your post. So when you say the strap gets caught under the tire, do you mean some part of the strap that was under tension and going around the tire, or do you mean some of the extra tail which is loose.


From what I see, when the straps are tight, they are stretched directly from the attachment points to the top of the tire. It looks like it would take a lot of slack to allow the tensioned strap to end up under the tire because the tight strap is too short.

Lets not let a tow dolly out smart us

Regards,
Dan
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Old 10-28-2015, 11:25 AM   #14
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Do you have the correct size straps for the tire size? I have a Demo SS 460 and never had your problem. Always had the tires against the front stop with the basket higher on the tire and straps very tight. After checking them a couple of times did not have to tighten them until the next trip.
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