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Old 05-27-2016, 10:55 AM   #1
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Tow dolly questions

Newbie just purchased a 1998 Holiday Rambler Endeavor 37' diesel and need to get a dolly for my Nissan Altima. Any suggestions as to what to look for and where to look would be appreciated. Would like to save some money so used vs new. Also do I need to get a breaking system? One diesel owner said yes and another said with this size diesel rig no.
Thanks in advance for all responses/Jim
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Old 05-27-2016, 11:37 AM   #2
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I have Acme dolly with disc brakes very pleased. They have been outstanding to deal with for few replacement parts I needed after driving over a truck tire retread. Support has been excellent. I have DP ands got brakes, don't know if I had too but seemed like good idea.

Rich

http://cartowdolly.com
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Old 05-27-2016, 02:24 PM   #3
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Tow Dolly

I have a master tow. Bought it new with the surge brakes. Check you laws in the states you wish to travel as there a several that require brakes on tow dollies. The surge brakes work great and I didn't have to install any additional wiring for electric brakes.
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Old 05-27-2016, 02:27 PM   #4
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I also have an Acme tow dolly with surge brakes and am well pleased.

As far as brakes or no brakes are concerned, you better check state laws. I believe most states will require brakes on a towed vehicle due to its weight.
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Old 05-27-2016, 02:49 PM   #5
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I think you'll find the price is nearly insignificant to buy a used tow dolly with brakes as opposed to one without. You'll also be well advised to buy a unit with surge brakes for the simplicity of use. Electrics are fine but the best would be surge disc brakes. The only other caution is depending on your toad, if the dolly lights aren't fully visible you might have to double up signal lights by adding those magnetic lights onto the toad.
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Old 05-27-2016, 03:00 PM   #6
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There have been several threads recently about tow dollies. They are worth reading to see the different types and the reasons for choosing each. Does your steering wheel lock or not? It makes a difference. If you get surge brakes make sure you know how to lock them off and have any tool needed to do it. Craigs list is a good place to start looking. Always check the age of the tires. ;-)
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Old 05-27-2016, 08:48 PM   #7
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When I was looking for a tow dolly I wanted surge brakes and 15 or
at least 14 inch tires. My choice was master tow.Very pleased.
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Old 05-27-2016, 10:10 PM   #8
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Master tow, which is pivoting, and get surge disc brakes model.
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Old 05-27-2016, 10:31 PM   #9
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There are 2 types of dollies with 2 kinds of brakes...please get brakes on the dolly. Maybe not required in some places, but it's safer and smart.

There's pivot pan and fixed pan dollies:
The pivot pan turns the dolly top frame/pan to make turns.
The fixed pan uses the car's steering to make turns, just like a flat towed car.

There's electric and surge brakes:
Electric brakes are controlled by a box at the driver's seat (add'l purchase).
Surge brakes are internal to the dolly...totally automatic.

I suggest buying used...there's usually some for sale, 'cuz people are leaving the RV hobby or going to flat tow all the time.
If you want a warranty (buying new), I suggest the Acme EZE Tow - lightest weight, high capacity, maint. free hubs, surge/disc brakes and delivered to you for a good price.
http://cartowdolly.com/
We have over 15,000miles on ours and it is still in great shape.

Best luck
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Old 05-27-2016, 10:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimemeone View Post
Newbie just purchased a 1998 Holiday Rambler Endeavor 37' diesel and need to get a dolly for my Nissan Altima. Any suggestions as to what to look for and where to look would be appreciated. Would like to save some money so used vs new. Also do I need to get a breaking system? One diesel owner said yes and another said with this size diesel rig no.
Thanks in advance for all responses/Jim
On this website there is a classifieds section on the upper bar (parts & accessories). There is a Master Tow advertised for sale w/ electric brakes in Texas. Just a thought and good luck. Just a note,, I pulled a Master Tow for over 9 yrs behind two different motorhomes, had swivel plate, I never knew it was there unless I looked in the camera, and it had NO braking system, I drove sensible, downshifted when I needed . Good luck.
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Old 05-28-2016, 06:32 AM   #11
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Two major differences between a swivel pan design (master tow, and others), and fixed (acme). Acme tires are small and fat, not readily accessible if you ever have a flat. Fixed design also requires that the steering wheel in towed vehicle is unlocked so it can turn. Some vehicles have locking wheels, so that requires that you leave key in vehicle and wheel unlocked, which may also mean you have to disconnect battery or put an ignition switch in to keep from draining battery. Pivot pan works with both, and doesn't put any stresses on steering components.

I did extensive looking, and even went to acme plant... As it was initially my first choice. Then I realized that the vehicle has to have unlocked steering, and the vehicles I tow are both locked. I didn't want to leave key in ignition, and put in battery disconnect switch or ignition disconnect switch. Also the smaller acme tires, and stresses on steering components were negatives. The pivot pan design just works better, and been very happy with master tow with surge disc brakes. Easy and quick to load, don't even know it's back there.
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Old 05-28-2016, 06:44 AM   #12
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Scarab summed things up very well. The only thing I can add is to search the forum for the many threads on this subject. I find the search feature here somewhat challenging, but you could go to my username and look up the various posts I have on my EZ Tow. Lots of pictures and discussions of common problems with the EZ Tow.

I tow a CRV now but used to tow a Nisan Murano, which is a bit bigger I think than your Altima, but probably very similar.

Good luck. By the way, I looked at used before buying an EZ Tow new and found the price difference to be small enough that I preferred going new.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Scarab0088 View Post
There are 2 types of dollies with 2 kinds of brakes...please get brakes on the dolly. Maybe not required in some places, but it's safer and smart.

There's pivot pan and fixed pan dollies:
The pivot pan turns the dolly top frame/pan to make turns.
The fixed pan uses the car's steering to make turns, just like a flat towed car.

There's electric and surge brakes:
Electric brakes are controlled by a box at the driver's seat (add'l purchase).
Surge brakes are internal to the dolly...totally automatic.

I suggest buying used...there's usually some for sale, 'cuz people are leaving the RV hobby or going to flat tow all the time.
If you want a warranty (buying new), I suggest the Acme EZE Tow - lightest weight, high capacity, maint. free hubs, surge/disc brakes and delivered to you for a good price.
Acme "EZE-TOW" Tow Dolly - Car Tow Dolly
We have over 15,000miles on ours and it is still in great shape.

Best luck
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Old 05-28-2016, 08:02 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scarab0088 View Post
There are 2 types of dollies with 2 kinds of brakes...please get brakes on the dolly. Maybe not required in some places, but it's safer and smart.

There's pivot pan and fixed pan dollies:
The pivot pan turns the dolly top frame/pan to make turns.
The fixed pan uses the car's steering to make turns, just like a flat towed car.

There's electric and surge brakes:
Electric brakes are controlled by a box at the driver's seat (add'l purchase).
Surge brakes are internal to the dolly...totally automatic.

I suggest buying used...there's usually some for sale, 'cuz people are leaving the RV hobby or going to flat tow all the time.
If you want a warranty (buying new), I suggest the Acme EZE Tow - lightest weight, high capacity, maint. free hubs, surge/disc brakes and delivered to you for a good price.
Acme "EZE-TOW" Tow Dolly - Car Tow Dolly
We have over 15,000miles on ours and it is still in great shape.

Best luck
I have a third type of dolly. Fixed pan with steerable wheels. The car steering wheel is locked and the wheels on the dolly steer.
It has surge brakes. Very simple to use.
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Old 05-28-2016, 08:40 AM   #14
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Demco.
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