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Old 08-22-2009, 06:38 PM   #1
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Tow Dolly

We have been using a Blue OX tow bar for 10+ years. We are thinking about using a tow dolly instead; mainly because of the advantage of being able to change toads without having to buy/install a base plate every time you change toads. 1. Opinions pro/con 2. Recomend source to purchase & model dolly(New England area)
Thanks in advance for any & all input.
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Old 08-22-2009, 06:56 PM   #2
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Hi Terry,
I tow both ways, 4 down and dolly. Both ways work well. The tasks are different. When you get CG reservations, make sure you get a pull through site long enough so the dolly can stay hitched to the coach. If the dolly stays hitched to the coach getting the car ready to tow or drive is easy. I have never had a problem with getting a spot long enough to accommodate the coach and dolly.

I have and recommend the Demco brand dolly, the model that folds up (tongue and ramps). I have model Kar Kaddy SS KK460SS. I got this model because, when I made the purchase it had the largest carrying capacity of all the dollies. This allows a bit more freedom when choosing a toad.

I have no recommendation for the New England area. Consider using the Internet or calling the different manufacturers. They can tell you where their dealers are located. Visit the dealers and have them demonstrate the dolly you are interested in purchasing. If possible, you do the tasks needed to hitch, unhitch, store, etc. This way you'll know which dolly is user friendly to you. Lastly, if there is a option for a tongue support wheel, get it when you get the dolly. It makes moving the dolly, when not attached to the coach a whole lot easier.
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Old 08-22-2009, 08:01 PM   #3
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Gary thank you for your input. I have been doing some research & the one you described (tow dolly) is what I was thinking of. Just not sure if electric or hydraulic surge brakes is the correct choice. Looking to tow a 2000 Pontiac Montana minivan. One other question is did you find the need to to use a sway control when using a tow dolly? Thanks again for your input.
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Old 08-22-2009, 08:46 PM   #4
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We also tow 4-down and with a dolly. We need the dolly when we take our handicapped son with us. We tow his van on the dolly with his larger chair in the van. The van is a Windstar. We have electric brakes on out Mastertow tow dolly.
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Old 08-22-2009, 09:08 PM   #5
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Even though I've been anti-tow dolly on this forum (based on 10 years of dragging that thing all over the country), we actually had pretty good luck pulling our 2000 Montana back when we had it. The van was thin enough to give you plenty of room between the tow dolly fenders.

I found with our dollies that there was constant maintenance on the tail lights. Seems road debris would tear up the wires causing me to rewire the lights after every trip (or even during a trip). You should invest in the magnetic lights that can go right on top of the van.

I just went the other way and sold my two tow dollies last year and now tow 4-wheels down.
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Old 08-23-2009, 12:07 AM   #6
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I too started with a dolly. While it does have the advantage of changing vehicles, there are other aspects we considered. That is can my wife load, unload, and tow the thing? If I am incapacitated, can she do the job. We tow four down and she practices hooking up and unhooking the toad. There is also the disadvantage of having to park one more piece of equipment. Have you ever found yourself down a dead end parking lot and had to back up. With four down, it only takes a few minutes to unhook, back out, and reconnect. Just my two cents.
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Old 08-23-2009, 11:00 AM   #7
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There should be no need for an anti-sway device with a dolly.

Sway is most likely when the bulk of the trailer weight is far behind the tow vehicle. The dolly axle carries most of the weight (the car is typically nose heavy and carries more than 50% of its weight on the front axle) and the dolly axle is close to the coach. Sway is unlikely in that scenario. Note that I said "unlikely" and not "impossible". Sway is also less likely with 4 wheels on the pavement.
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Old 08-23-2009, 07:23 PM   #8
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Hi Terry,
Electric brakes is the way to go. I have never use an anti sway device. In the rear view camera, I notice no sway when towing with the dolly or 4 down.
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Old 08-24-2009, 01:30 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pace89 View Post
Gary thank you for your input. I have been doing some research & the one you described (tow dolly) is what I was thinking of. Just not sure if electric or hydraulic surge brakes is the correct choice. Looking to tow a 2000 Pontiac Montana minivan. One other question is did you find the need to to use a sway control when using a tow dolly? Thanks again for your input.
terry, you should update your "signature block" to include what kind and year of moho you are using.
on my moho, installing a track bar on the rear axle got rid of the wiggle. i use a stehl tow dolly with a 2002 nissan altima.
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Old 08-24-2009, 08:37 PM   #10
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Tow Dolly

I use a tow dolly and have for the past 5 years and love it. I purchased a Roadmaster Tow Dolly with electric brakes which I installed. With electric brakes you have to install a controller in the RV. I purchased my controller from JC Whitney and installed it myself and had to run wires as I couldn't find plug under dash. The nice thing about the Roadmaster is that the wheels actually steer and follow the track of the rear wheels of the RV. With the roadmaster dolly there is a puin you have to put in to push it around so that the wheels don't steer which make the dolly act like a regular trailer.

Loading an unloading is no biggy. I usually load it and wife unloads it. Tying it down is simple and hooking up of safety chains is no biggy either.

I usually ask for a pull thru when I arrive at campground and if none available then I unload car, and unhook dolly and push the dolly into the site behind Rv (when space available) as I have installed a third wheel on the tongue. If not space behind available then I push it alongside RV.

One final point make sure you mount a spare tire for dolly as if you do get a flat on tow dolly, Rv service will not ionly charge you for a new tire but they will charge you extra to remove defective tire and install new tire.

Good luck and a tow dolly is the way to go.
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Old 08-25-2009, 02:30 AM   #11
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Smile

i have a mounted spare for my dolly. i got them from LES SCHWAB. they had the wheel in stock but had to special order the 6 ply tire. the wheel has a slightly different offset but will work ok.
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Old 08-26-2009, 07:37 PM   #12
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We had a dolly for 11 years and will never have one again. When our daughter was travelling with us it was not a problem. My wife has a real problem aiming that close on a ramp and has a bigger problem giving me directions if I am driving. We would end up having an argument and not speaking for a while. Now with the 4 down she helps hitch up and could probably do it alone and we speak all day. It is nice to have someone to speak to besides the cats.
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Old 08-26-2009, 07:58 PM   #13
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We have been towing all 4 down for 10 + years, had one tow bar failure (at the begining no one got hurt). Our issue is every time you change vehicles; can it be towed 4 down is part of the equation; then it is a new base plate & maybe more costs. I realize that, that is part of the RV lifestyle. We are interested in trying other options, & wanted other points of view. Some of the replies we have received are strongly favored for a dolly others are not. I was hoping someone could make it easy to decide, no such luck.
We thank all of you for your input.
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Old 08-26-2009, 11:36 PM   #14
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I have seen a lot of comments regarding which way to tow. You only need to look at the RV parks you are stay at. Look around and see how many dollys you see and how many tow bars you see. There's a reason for that. While the dolly might have some positive points, in general the four down towing is much easier and in most cases cheaper than another set of wheels. If you say your vehicle can't be towed four down, check with Remco.
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