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Old 04-15-2015, 10:04 PM   #1
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Towing a toad

I need opinions and advice. I'm trying to decide the pros/cons of towing a vehicle with "four on the ground" vs. a tow dolly. The cars today really limit you to towing and would SEEM easier using a dolly. In the market for a 35' - 38' gas class A to tow the toad. Thanks in advance for your input.
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Old 04-15-2015, 10:09 PM   #2
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With a gasser you are usually limited to 5k of tow, depending on you loaded weight of your rig. Keep this in mind while shopping.
We have a 37 foot gasser and tow 4 down, easy to hook up and go. No parts sitting around while not hooked up.
Either way you will need to make sure you have a brake of sorts in your toad...

Good luck


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Old 04-15-2015, 10:21 PM   #3
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Just went from a 5th wheel to a Class A, towing four down with a CR-V, using a readybrake system. Couldn't be happier. As a newbie with a toad, I wasn't sure to go the dolly or four down route, but glad I went four down. Literally takes me 5 minutes to hook/unhook and pulls great. As above, need to keep in mind the towing limits with a gasser.

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Old 04-15-2015, 10:25 PM   #4
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I've towed the same '05 Odyssey with the same RV both on a dolly and four down. Four down is slightly easier but harder on the vehicle running gear and body (rock chips), plus the brakes will wear out sooner. The dolly we use is a KK-460 that has steerable wheels and follows the MH very well. Four down the Ody will cut inside by a foot or so so I have to adjust for that.
Towing four down will usually cost more as you have to buy the towbar, brackets and brake setup and also may need a charge line to the towed.
With a dolly you can tow almost any front wheel drive vehicle with very little or no modifications. Also the Ody has a 65 mph tow speed limit whereas with a dolly there is no limit, but that's not a real problem as I don't usually go over that anyway.
Which do I prefer? Well, four down I guess as I don't have to horse the dolly around for storage. Only once have I had to store it offsite and being foldable it doesn't take much space.
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Old 04-15-2015, 10:51 PM   #5
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The first time you have to strap a car down on the dolly with cold rain running down your backside you might wish for a tow bar
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Old 04-16-2015, 05:00 AM   #6
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Been there done that both ways

We've towed both ways, 4 down and dolly over the past 30 plus years. There are real advantages to both.

After towing 4 down though I found the set up cost, some limitation on vehicle transmission/ drive type, demands by the DW for a front wheel drive automatic, and ease of hook up and travel put me in the dolly column for preference.

I have found little or no difference in overall hook up time. Yes the wheel straps on the dolly can be a bit more of a hassle on a wet day, but we've managed to learn how to do it quickly and effectively. Momma has the car she wanted.

I had a 4 down tow set up break away from me in my younger years, but I could have prevented that with more attention to my set up-- and more expense. I have installed many safety features offering more peace of mind for less cost with the dolly.
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Old 04-16-2015, 06:11 AM   #7
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Thank You

MR D and americanrasc, game me some ideas. I'm in the market to replace my car, thinking this one will probably be a toad. The choices are definitely altered if planning to tow 4 down, and the dolly method, seems to offer me a few more choices. Hoping for a few more replies, because I'm interested in the storage aspect while camping. I've only seen a few rigs using the dolly method, but this was before I had considered using a dolly so I never asked the owner(s).
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Old 04-16-2015, 06:21 AM   #8
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Looking for a toad (4 down) with tow bar~
Reasonably priced & Dependable. Thank U.

geewiz_2@hotmail.com
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Old 04-16-2015, 06:21 AM   #9
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I've towed my Civic on a dolly and 4 down. The four down is a lot easier and faster to hookup/disconnect. I can back up with the 4 down , but its almost impossible with the dolly.

Cost for a dolly will be similar to the cost for back plates, tow bar, etc. The backplates are car specific so can't be moved around. The tow bar and brake system may be transferable.

The dolly allows me to tow almost anything with almost anything. This is great for "Dads auto repair and towing service". maybe thats not a plus.
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Old 04-16-2015, 06:38 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scott534 View Post
Just went from a 5th wheel to a Class A, towing four down with a CR-V, using a readybrake system. Couldn't be happier. As a newbie with a toad, I wasn't sure to go the dolly or four down route, but glad I went four down. Literally takes me 5 minutes to hook/unhook and pulls great. As above, need to keep in mind the towing limits with a gasser.

Scott
+1 for me too. Love my ReadyBrute.
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Old 04-16-2015, 08:52 AM   #11
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Back up? I know I am not supposed and I am being naughty, to but I back up (short distances) with my dolly all the time. No problems and works fine. But I do limit it.

I never could 4 down as the wheels always wanted to cross.
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Old 04-16-2015, 09:02 AM   #12
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Lots of choices and ideas

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guamboy87 View Post
MR D and americanrasc, game me some ideas. I'm in the market to replace my car, thinking this one will probably be a toad. The choices are definitely altered if planning to tow 4 down, and the dolly method, seems to offer me a few more choices. Hoping for a few more replies, because I'm interested in the storage aspect while camping. I've only seen a few rigs using the dolly method, but this was before I had considered using a dolly so I never asked the owner(s).
We tend to use the tow vehicle for extra storage- light stuff-- like extra soft drinks or bottled water that we don't want to store in the rig. Momma (the DW) even took her bread machine last trip and stuck it in the TOAD. Tried to get her to make soft pretzels but she could not get the spirit moving. So I didn't get my soft pretzels! So I guess the Toad is just a life support system for the bread machine when we are on the road now.

I like a dolly with a swivel/pivot table as I feel more comfortable with how it makes it easier on the front end for turning movements and I don't need to unlock the steering column to tow. There are a lot of great dollies out there and you will find all sorts of opinions and ideas on which one is best and liked. Its worth shopping around for what you really want and the threads here are very helpful.

I went with American Car Dolly and absolutely love it. :

Home | American Car Dolly

I have not experienced any problems with storing the dolly while on campsites to date as the dolly rolls right up under the MH and only shows about 3 more feet sticking out.
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Old 04-16-2015, 09:45 AM   #13
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Asking this question tells me you have not camped much or driven our nations interstate highways. By far the majority tow 4 down there must be a reason
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Old 04-16-2015, 09:54 AM   #14
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We first used a dolly with our 14JeepCherokeeLatitude behind our 14FRGeorgetown ClassA gas - no problem pulling the 3,500lb vehicle and 1,000 dolly - but difficult to strap, and you must 'park' the dolly somewhere, usually in the way, when you unhook, normally.
We moved quickly to a 14Thor Palazzo ClassA Diesel Pusher and use a BlueOxAlpha tow bar system, split with a 4bike, pulling our 'toad' 4-down -14FordFiestaSE 6spd Auto FWD - easy to pull this 2,500lb vehicle with the DP, and the toad is easy-to-connect and easy-to-pull since it's just 'put in neutral and go' design. 19k miles and no problems, don't even know it there when in the mountains, and so light no supplemental brake system needed.

: )
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