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Old 10-12-2016, 10:42 AM   #1
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Toad Alternatives

I'm working towards F/T RV'ing and looking into transportation at "destinations". Additionally, I have a limited budget, and I'm looking simplify my life after managing an organic farm.

Having a Toad is one transport option. However, it has several disadvantages - higher RV fuel consumption due to pulling extra weight, higher toll road fees, maneuvering difficulties, CG length restrictions. At the very least, a toad is just one more thing to think about WRT trip planning, maintenance, insurance, security while at CGs.

Has anyone ever tried to breakout the additional costs incurred by using a Toad?

I'm looking at ways to reduce the weight of the coach in order to minimize fuel consumption and lower stress on tires, engine/transmission cooling, etc., and it occurred to me that a Toad just added back all the weight and inefficiencies I was trying to reduce. OTOH, maybe a Toad is a worthwhile tradeoff?

One alternative is renting a car when needed for day excursions.

If the destination is near larger cities, there are new services like Lyft, Uber, and ZipCar which also offer the advantage of not having to worry about where to park and the time & cost of parking.
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Old 10-12-2016, 11:06 AM   #2
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I know that we travel to locations that seldom even have hookups, much less Uber or rental cars. So we live with the extra cost incurred from the convenience of having a Wrangler in tow. If you are planning on staying in populated areas, then you can probably get away with not needing a toad.

I would try it out for a while without, it's cheaper to buy a toad later if you discover that you need one.
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Old 10-12-2016, 11:43 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukerj View Post
I know that we travel to locations that seldom even have hookups, much less Uber or rental cars. So we live with the extra cost incurred from the convenience of having a Wrangler in tow. If you are planning on staying in populated areas, then you can probably get away with not needing a toad.

I would try it out for a while without, it's cheaper to buy a toad later if you discover that you need one.
That makes a lot of sense to me.

We went for many years without a toad traveling all over the US, including Alaska, with a TC. We started towing about 15 years ago and still do. I have used about the lightest tow vehicles I could find, including a Suzuki Samurai, Geo Metro and Geo Tracker.

Originally I used a Honda CT 90 on the front of the truck when "boondocking". Then another 90 for the wife with a small trailer. Now we take the Tracker with a CT 90 on both ends, or just the Tracker. The possibilities are nearly endless.

Just my 2c.

Steve
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Old 10-12-2016, 11:44 AM   #4
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The most obvious option is biking.

Traditional, powered, or added power to your bike, like:
https://electronwheel.com/

Bikes have only limited ability, so we most always haul a toad. The added cost is about 1/2 MPG or less (depending on terrain and speed) on the RV (Workhorse W24, towing a 3,500lb SUV). Our primary toad a Hybrid Escape, so 30MPG is typical...hard to beat. The Toad, it's insurance and registration are already paid for, so there is little else in trade-off for us.

If energy consumption is important, maybe make the toad as small as possible:
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Old 10-12-2016, 08:56 PM   #5
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I have an MG Midget that I've converted to EV (~60 range) so it would suffice for most excursions. However, even in neutral the gears are meshed and wearing so I'd either need a trailer or driveshaft disconnect to tow it.

I'm also an avid bicycler, but my DW not so much. I've traveled with a folding bike that I put so many miles (1000's) on it's folding mechanism started to get floppy so I don't use it any more. They're only designed for casual use.

I've seen some of the Wynn's videos and like their idea of combining the coach's and Toad's fuel use for a "net" fuel mileage.
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Old 10-13-2016, 07:00 AM   #6
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Before upgrading to our current 30ft Mirada, we owned a 21 ft, micro-mini Toyota that could barely pull itself, let along a toad. :-)

If we needed a vehicle at our destination, we would reserve a car at one of the local Enterprise or other rental places. NOTE - DO NOT pick up or drop off at an airport, there is usually a significant surcharge / tax at these locations.

We would then swing by the rental car place before going to the campground.
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