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Old 08-04-2013, 07:46 AM   #1
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Tow Dolly Question

Next week will be first long trip with tow dolly. Understand that the tow dolly is secured to the RV with chains. Question - my Master Tow manual also says to secure the car with chains. I'm assuming they mean to the dolly?? Thanks.
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Old 08-04-2013, 07:52 AM   #2
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Hello, On the front of my tow dolly there were 2 1/2" holes in front of each front tire, so I got 2 coiled safety cables like a tow bar uses and went from those holes on the dolly and the other end I hooked in to the front coil spring on the car.
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Old 08-04-2013, 08:28 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmason View Post
Next week will be first long trip with tow dolly. Understand that the tow dolly is secured to the RV with chains. Question - my Master Tow manual also says to secure the car with chains. I'm assuming they mean to the dolly?? Thanks.
I believe these chains are optional for a MT dolly. My MT dolly has them bolted to the inside edge of the wheel pan. I wrap the chains around the lower A-arm of my Focus. I'm not a fan of the chains, because they scratch the suspension parts. I may switch to coated cables.

Fran
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Old 08-04-2013, 08:53 AM   #4
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I believe these chains are optional for a MT dolly. My MT dolly has them bolted to the inside edge of the wheel pan. I wrap the chains around the lower A-arm of my Focus. I'm not a fan of the chains, because they scratch the suspension parts. I may switch to coated cables.

Fran
I was thinking along those lines of using the coated cables vice the chain link ones. Eliminates scratching and easier to handle while under the front end of the car.
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Old 08-04-2013, 04:17 PM   #5
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I have seen stories on this forum where the ratchet straps have worn through and one incident where someone arrived at their destination to find somewhere along the way they had lost BOTH straps and there was nothing holding the car to the dolly. Very lucky not to have lost the car.
I have seen some fraying on my straps so added chains as an extra safety measure. I run a chain from the eye on the front of the dolly through the front cross-member to the eye on the other side. The chain goes in through the end of the cross-member and out about 4-5" away, then in through the same hole on the other side and out the end.
It's a pain to feed the chain through each time, so today I bought some short chains which I will loop through the frame permanently and just attach the dolly to those chains.
I don't like the idea of attaching to suspension components because of the risk of damage.
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Old 08-04-2013, 05:54 PM   #6
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I found used fire hose, put the chains through that , no scratched on the chassis.
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Old 08-04-2013, 06:23 PM   #7
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The first time I used a tow dolly I followed the directions and wrapped safety chains around the car suspension and the dolly frame. After 100 miles of towing (stopped and checked the straps after 10 miles) I found that the webbing straps had loosened so much that the car had moved 4 or 5 inches back on the dolly. The chains were all that were holding the car and dolly together. As a last line of defense the chains certainly did their job.
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Old 08-05-2013, 08:29 AM   #8
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Since we couldn't get to our cars frame or suspension, we ran our chains, which we covered with A/C tubing foam thru the rims, and, we did lose a strap, and the chains kept both tires on the dolly. Make sure there is enuff slack to take them on and off easily, and I would suggest carrying an extra strap or 2.
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Old 08-05-2013, 02:57 PM   #9
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After reading through the replies (and my own), I ended up replacing the chains with Blue Ox coated, coiled cables I had. I set them up to run through the wheels instead of the A-arms. Much easier and cleaner.

Fran
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Old 08-05-2013, 03:34 PM   #10
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Yes, place a safety chain or 2 from the dolly frame to a hard point on the Toad.
If the dolly doesn't have any, go to Wal*Mart for:
Reese Towpower Safety Chain: Automotive : Walmart.com

I avoid hooking the safety chains to the car's drive-line and use the shipping loops that came from the factory under the front bumper of our Toad.

We have never totally lost a strap, but they can get loose and the chains are there for safety, so I also recommend that you don't "secure" the car with the chains (meaning to make them tight) like said above, or you might be fighting to remove the chains at drop-off.

Best of luck!
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Old 08-05-2013, 03:36 PM   #11
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Our KK-460 has both straps and chains. I wrap the chains around the lower A arms. I also stop after 5 miles or so and tighten the straps as they do loosen up some.
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