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Old 05-11-2015, 07:06 PM   #1
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Tow Dolly Questions ???

I'm looking at a new car, but it can't be towed 4 wheels down........so thinking of a tow dolly. I've never had one. So, I'm looking for any and all comments, pros and cons concerning the use of a tow dolly. Thanks
Brian

PS: I assume any front wheel car can be towed on a dolly, like a Ford Escape?
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Old 05-11-2015, 07:33 PM   #2
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Front wheel drive no problem. My opinion is to get a dolly with a turn table it eliminates some problems. I use a master tow dolly which the ramps are stationary on the dolly, american tow dolly has the turn table with removable ramps so there is no chance of rocker panel damage. I made a two wheel tote for the dolly with a 2" ball so I can move it into the campsite, you will not be able to back it in with the camper but if your car has a hitch you could use it. There are a lot of differant dollies out there the ones with no table you need to have the steering unlocked. Brakes are a must be it electric or surge. All this you need to look into so you understand how each dolly works don't just look at the cost, you can buy a number of dollies for around $1200 with or without tables, with or without brakes so YOU need to do your homework. The biggest advantage of a dolly is you can change cars all you want without butchering them to add hitch plates and the cost.
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:39 PM   #3
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I just ordered a Acme EZE tow, we have two cars that will be towed, both are short wheel base so using a dolly with stationary ramps was a HUGE concern as one car is brand new, do your research, I have a brake controller in the coach, but went with surge brakes as I can tow with 4 different vehicles and only two have a controllers, so no worries about brakes, I had been looking at used as well ...... Inspect them very well .... Here in Canada .... Used are dang near as much as new ... So I went new!!! Also the Acme can be stored standing up in the garage ... That's a bonus!!
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:02 PM   #4
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4 different vehicles and only two have a controllers...what does that mean?
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Old 05-12-2015, 03:45 AM   #5
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It means he can hook the dolly to 4 different towing vehicles, he owns, but only 2 of them have electric brake controllers installed.

Surge brakes don't need controllers.
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:30 AM   #6
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I've used the Acme EZtow dolly for the past year. It works very well with my front wheel drive Toyota Solera convertible. It is simple to hook up, it stores pretty easily and I like the surge brake system.
Regarding the steering, many newer cars don't have the steering wheel locks and if you have one of those you will to need to worry about the steering issue. On my car I leave the key in the on position to unlock the steering wheel as Acme instructs and it works fine. I do disconnect the positive battery cable from the toad to prevent the battery from discharging.
I have used this for a year with no problems except those caused by the operator (but that's another story).
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Old 05-12-2015, 09:08 AM   #7
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I have used a tow dolly in the past. I used a Roadmaster with steer tires. Only negative I had with tow dolly was the fact I would have to lay down to get safety chains on and the chips on front end of toad (I didn't have any protection like I should have).


The functionality of tow dolly of taking any front wheel drive vehicle was very good for me at the time.


Be very careful that you do NOT back up too far with tow dolly and jackknife the dolly into your toad. Good luck with your decision.
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Old 05-12-2015, 10:33 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twinboat View Post
It means he can hook the dolly to 4 different towing vehicles, he owns, but only 2 of them have electric brake controllers installed.

Surge brakes don't need controllers.
Duh, yes I understand that, however, if you have electric brakes on the dolly you would install the brake controller in the RV allowing you to tow any front wheel drive vehicle. Not sure why you would put brake controllers in the dolly vehicle as surge brakes only brake the dolly too.
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Old 05-12-2015, 10:40 AM   #9
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I have used dollys with the turn table and also rack and pinion steering. I prefer the steering units. We use a Demco Kar Kaddy III. It has surge brakes and LED lights. You can also get the one that lets you fold up the ramps and tongue for storage.

I have towed everything from my Ford Explorer to my Corvette on it. Usually it's my wife's VW Passat.

The only issue is getting under the front end to attach the safety chains. Wish they'd come up with a fix for that.
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Old 05-12-2015, 07:58 PM   #10
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For the brake controller, I would recommend that you have a flat trailer connector wired on the inside of your vehicle and route the wire under the carpet in driver compartment so it comes out next to the drivers seat. You only need one brake controller and can move it from vehicle to vehicle when if you need the brake controller in a different vehicle if you do electric brakes. You also don't have to deal with the brake controller when not in use.
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:05 PM   #11
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Having towed the same Odyssey behind the same MH both four down and on a dolly I can say that for the sake of wear and tear the dolly wins hands down plus you don't need to add brackets and braking when changing vehicles.
Four down is easier though.
We have a KK-460 which is galvanized and folds along with having surge brakes and steerable wheels.
The tow dolly follows the MH wheel paths better also.
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:50 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milasman View Post
Duh, yes I understand that, however, if you have electric brakes on the dolly you would install the brake controller in the RV allowing you to tow any front wheel drive vehicle. Not sure why you would put brake controllers in the dolly vehicle as surge brakes only brake the dolly too.
I have a brake controller in the RV and in my Jeep Grand Cherokee, mostly for my ATV trailer, but I also have a Toyota Sienna and a Chevy SSR both of which can haul the dolly, but are not equipped with a brake controller, so I went with surge brake setup on the dolly so I can haul it with any of the above vehicles, I was offering a tip to the OP if they have more than one tow type vehicle something to think about!!
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Old 05-12-2015, 09:01 PM   #13
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FWIW - the first time you try to load a vehicle on to the dolly have someone watching the overhang for interference. IF there is a problem a couple of pieces of 2x8 or 10 a couple of feet long can be used as an approach ramp. One end goes under the dolly ramp and the other lines up so the front end raises the 2 inches then encounters the ramp. Works if you need it.

We use a Stehl Tow. Turntable and permanent ramps. Works well with our Escape. Put a hitch on the Escape to move the dolly with if I need to in camp.
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Old 05-13-2015, 02:13 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ttarob View Post
I have a brake controller in the RV and in my Jeep Grand Cherokee, mostly for my ATV trailer, but I also have a Toyota Sienna and a Chevy SSR both of which can haul the dolly, but are not equipped with a brake controller, so I went with surge brake setup on the dolly so I can haul it with any of the above vehicles, I was offering a tip to the OP if they have more than one tow type vehicle something to think about!!
But you don't need an electric brake controller mounted inside you vehicle to have electric brakes on a dolly. American tow dolly sells a brake controller mounted to the dolly for those without a vehicle mounted break controller and uses a flat 4 wiring harness.
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