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Old 09-08-2012, 08:45 AM   #1
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Rig length?

Perhaps someone can help. With more free time on our horizons (aka: retirement), we are evaluating moving up from our F150/Airstream rig to a MH and toad. Before setting our heart on a tag axle unit in the 42/43 foot class A DP there's all the trade offs around how to bring along another vehicle. Our toad of choice would be a Tahoe, equipped for flat towing and proportional braking. However, I'm unable to determine the MH to toad separation distance, to ensure we stay under 65 feet overall ... which might force a change in the toad vehicle. Does anyone know the distance from the end of the MH hitch receiver to the front of the toad when using something like a Roadmaster Blackhawk 2 set-up? Thanks!
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:12 AM   #2
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As a rule of thumb figure 48" from the rear of the motorhome to the front of the toad. That said, I have never seen or heard of a motorhome/toad combination being ticketed for overlength.
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:53 AM   #3
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see my picture
we tow a 18 foot bed length hauler plus the tongue of nearly 5 feet
puts us pert near the 65 foot limit, with the bed of the truck hanging over a little bit

our only issue is some roads and right hand turns....i have had to back up a few times
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Old 09-08-2012, 01:26 PM   #4
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I'm almost 68 ft long towing my pontoon behind my coach which mesures 34'11" plus the drop hitch. I haven't worried about it, like lllkrob says never heard of anyone having a problem. So far I've only towed it in AZ and CA.

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Old 09-08-2012, 01:47 PM   #5
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I was at a rv show her in TX. and met a couple from OK. They were over 65' and got a ticket. I don't know by how much. They weren't happy campers.
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Old 09-08-2012, 02:05 PM   #6
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I wonder what the circumstances were?

I don't recall hearing of any others.

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I was at a rv show her in TX. and met a couple from OK. They were over 65' and got a ticket. I don't know by how much. They weren't happy campers.
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:06 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone for the feedback! It's clear with today's MHs you can quickly get to the limit, I've seen some on the road that have to be north of 70 feet. I would love to take my non-toadable F150 with me, just like powerboatr, but finding somewhere at the campsite to store the trailer is not my idea of fun. But, with a 4 foot separation, I can just about keep the rig under 65 feet - great!
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Old 09-09-2012, 03:58 PM   #8
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Motor Carrier's road atlas gives max length by state for various semi truck trailer combinations but doesn't give anything for MH combinations. I didn't do a google search but FMCA may have data. I wouldn't be too concerned if in the 65 to 70 ft range. The big coaches are 45 ft plus pull 25 to 30 ft stacker trailers.
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Old 09-09-2012, 06:51 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by NCRog View Post
Thanks everyone for the feedback! It's clear with today's MHs you can quickly get to the limit, I've seen some on the road that have to be north of 70 feet. I would love to take my non-toadable F150 with me, just like powerboatr, but finding somewhere at the campsite to store the trailer is not my idea of fun. But, with a 4 foot separation, I can just about keep the rig under 65 feet - great!

finding a place to put the trailer, so far has not been a problem
just planning, 1st pic is cedar ridge coe park the site is over 75 long, 2nd is the same place but a pull thru, 3rd is ft sam houston in san antonio, 4th is at lake whitney
we use COE parks i get the longest site
at thousand trails i manipulate the site to store it
and if all else fails i park it at the office or in the secure lot and chain her up, but that has only happened once
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Old 09-09-2012, 07:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Motor Carrier's road atlas gives max length by state for various semi truck trailer combinations but doesn't give anything for MH combinations. I didn't do a google search but FMCA may have data. I wouldn't be too concerned if in the 65 to 70 ft range. The big coaches are 45 ft plus pull 25 to 30 ft stacker trailers.
Usually it's a max for ALL vehicles, not just semi's.
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Old 09-10-2012, 05:22 AM   #11
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In many states the max. length for a tractor-trailer rig is different than the max. for other towing combinations. And, to further compound the challenge, FMCA reports some incorrect data. The only way to be certain you're legal is to read the regs in each state, and not some state PR booklet, the actual regs. For example in IL there is a state booklet that states the max. towing length is 60 ft. If you read the regs you'll discover this only applies to non federally funded roads and highways. If you got off of the interstate and drove the city streets of Chicago, you'll be stopped, ticketed, and required to disconnect the tow.

CA max is 65 feet. I have heard of people with Prevost / big trailer combos who have been stop and hit with BIG fines in CA.

Excluding CA, in general you can expect the restrictions to become more severe as you go towards the NE states.

Also in CA, if your motor home is more than 40 ft. long there is another set of restrictions. There are many highways where motor homes and buses over 40 feet are not allowed. 45' Motorhomes
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Old 09-10-2012, 06:10 AM   #12
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I agree, this appears to be a complex issue, where the devil is in the details. I'm trying to make the best informed MH/toad decision (together with the inevitable compromises) up front, before we part with those big $$, rather than find out after an accident or something ... when we're faced with an invalid insurance or citation.

The interstate limit is 65ft (per DoT) unless a vehicle has stinger steering (not applicable) or some other commercial exclusions. There's also something about "... highways providing reasonable access between the National Network and terminals and facilities for food, fuel, repairs and rest", maybe that applies if you're going directly to the camp site. While we're in Ohio (65 ft), several nearby states (Indiana and N Carolina) are only 60 ft and the NE states get to be way less than that. Even Utah and Colorado are less than 65 ft.

Our design criteria is to be under 65 ft, ideally 60 ft, but that's a lot of additional compromises. That's also why the toad must be easy to disconnect and drive away ... we'll exit the interstate, disconnect and drive the more restrictive states as a convoy.

Anyway, thanks for all the help, advice and opinions!
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:49 PM   #13
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... Our design criteria is to be under 65 ft, ideally 60 ft, but that's a lot of additional compromises. That's also why the toad must be easy to disconnect and drive away ... we'll exit the interstate, disconnect and drive the more restrictive states as a convoy....
At least you are thinking ahead! Keep up the good work finding a solution you can live with.
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