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Old 12-22-2008, 05:46 PM   #1
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Since I didn't see anyone questioning how to tow one, I figured I was the only motorhome owner dumb enough to buy one and not think of the consequences.
Bought the 2008 Toyota Tacoma, manual(6spd), 4WD with push button transfer case, REAR wheel drive 4/08 not thinking I would be buying a 2008 Winnebago Voyage 5/08 as I took early retiremnt 11/08.
I want to avoid a tow dolly or car/truck trailer BUT will do the trailer over the dolly if I have to. Before I call REMCO or others, do they or others make a system that will allow me to tow all 4 DOWN ie: transmission disconnect/lube pumps.
I don't really want to get rid of the Toyota because it is what suits our off road plans to canyoneer/hike/camp out west during our winter over plans that will start 10/09.
Any suggestions and ball park prices would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance for any help you may provide.

Navy Blue

2008 Winnebago Voyage (1 each)
2008 Toyota Tacoma (1 each)
Smart wife (1 each)
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Spending my kids inheritance, one day at a time
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Old 12-22-2008, 06:40 PM   #2
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I guess I don't understand the problem in towing the Tacoma. It is a manual transmission correct? You use both the term rear wheel drive and 4WD so I assume that the rear wheel drive applies when not in the 4WD mode. I assume the concern is that the pushbutton transfer case does not a neutral position. What is wrong with towing the manual transmission with it in neutral? Does the manual transmission have a lube pump?
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Old 12-22-2008, 06:43 PM   #3
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We towed out 1999 Tacoma 4x4 with 5 speed manual transmission for over 8 years fulltime with no problems. Just put the transfer case and transmission both in neutral and away we'd go.
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Old 12-22-2008, 06:52 PM   #4
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We tow our 2004 Tundra with a Remco disconnect. Works fine, lasts a long time.
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Old 12-22-2008, 06:58 PM   #5
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I read your post to quickly, so missed that you were looking for costs. We had the Toyota dealer get the disconnect installed. I think it was about $600 with installation. You might be able to tow without one since you are a manual transmission. Remco has always been pretty much the expert on dingy towing, so I would ask them.
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Old 12-23-2008, 05:37 PM   #6
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Hi Guys,

To Mike Cantor and all, thanks for replying. I know enough about auto mechanics to be dangerous. I can tell you EXACTLY how every BASIC system in a car/truck operates. Put a tool in my hand and you are asking for trouble. Mike, you seemed to have focused on my biggest concern. Before I call Toyota/REMCO I was hoping someone could explain things for me that I can't find in the manual.
The BIGGEST concern is the push button transfer case. When I have the manual transmission in a rear wheel drive truck that has a 4WD transfer case up front in front and I put the transmission in neutral is the TRANSMISSION now part of the drive shaft/rear axle OR is it part of the motor/4WD transfer case up front OR neither. The 4WD is always in 2 wheel drive until you slow to under 30MPH or stop and put it into 4WD drive with a knob(I incorrectly stated prior that is was push button) that you switch from 2 to 4WD. It has NO neutral like the older manual 4WD handles.
My transmission mechanic in PA that I used for 15 years said if I put the transmission in neutral and the 4WD in 2WD mode and tow it 4 wheels down, I will burn up the 4WD transfer case. Do I trust him? He rebuilt my 1995 Ford Explorer auto tranny at 75,000 with Borg Warner parts and GUARANTEED it will last longer than original. Was still working when I got rid of truck at 225,00 miles. Son had his 1997 Gran Prix rebuilt at 80,000 miles and tranny is still working at 257,000. Both original trannys crapped out. Do I trust him about transmissions/4WD. Oh yeah !! A bunch.
Mike, I don't know if tranny has a lube pump, but you won't find out about it in the manual. I looked. I know the TOAD guides I've read don't show the Tacoma as towable all 4 down. I am thinking I don't need a disconnect as the transmission is in neutral. I am thinking as a minimum I need a lube pump for the transmission and possibly one for the 4WD transfer case. I am thinking I am just better off calling REMCO and see if they have dealt with Tacomas. I think they are primarily for disconnects for people who have AUTOMATIC transmissions because I assume if you have a manual transmission, 2WD and rear wheel drive, you put it in neutral, 4 wheels down and tow away. Or am I wrong and in this manual transmission, 2WD scenario you will still need a lube pump. I assume that when you are tooling down the highway the lube system in the 4WD system runs off the serpentine belt and as such when towing, truck motor off, no lube.
I anxiously await your replies because I am at a dead end.

Mike AKA Navy Blue
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Old 12-23-2008, 05:53 PM   #7
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Mike,
I don't think you need the remco disconnect. Automatic Tacoma's requires disconnecting the driveshaft but I think you are ok with standard transmission.
You may try posting on Dinghy Towing forum on RVNet with the specifics about the push button transfer case. There could be an issue with the push button transfer case instead of locking hubs.

The URL is:

http://www.rv.net/forum/index....istings/forum/31.cfm
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Old 12-25-2008, 03:10 AM   #8
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Mike,

We opted not to buy a Tacoma due to this reason and went with a Frontier. Nissan confirmed that I would be covered by warranty whereas Toyota stated I would not be towing 4 wheels down. They never explained why we could not with a manual transmission but there you have it (this was Toyota Canada). I know that doesn't help you much now that you have the Tacoma.

One other note. If you were to tow the Tacoma on a trailer, wouldn't you be over 5000lbs for the hitch that comes with the Voyage? We have an '06 Adventurer and the Frontier is between 4100-4400 depending on the level in the gas tank. I'm sure the Tacoma (4 wheel drive) is in the same ballpark.
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Old 12-25-2008, 04:57 AM   #9
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I too wanted to buy a Tundra or Tacoma to tow as a dingy. I e-mailed the Toyota factory to inquire if I installed a Remco disconnect if it would affect the warranty? Toyota's reply was that ANY drive line modification would void the warranty! It was interesting to read that one of you got his Toyota dealer to arrange the installation of the driveshaft disconnect. If you can go back to that specific dealer they would have a hard time not honoring your warranty. I ended up buying a new Chevy Silverado since they have a 4WD Neutral position and even instructions in the owners manual on towing four wheels down.
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Old 12-25-2008, 11:14 AM   #10
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Hi folks,

Did some research on REMCO's website and it basically says manual transmission and manual 4WD shifter Tacoma can be towed as if 4 wheels down WITHOUT modifications, BUT if you have an "ELECTRONIC" 4WD shifter you have to install to a Drive Shaft disconnect. Toyota manual says no towing but I don't think they have done any major research themselves on it. The big question is when you take the Tacoma to Toyota for transmission warranty work and they see the transmission/drive shift disconnect and tow plate assembly/hookups, it is kind of hard to play dumb and say they you have never towed the Tacoma.
I also still have concerns about the 4WD drive transfer case ie: Lubrication and if it is lubricated while the truck is going down the highway under its own power does that present a problem if it is being towed 4 down with the drive shaft disconnect and the 4WD case is not getting lubed. I am still researching to find out if it has its own or runs off the serpentine. I know that part of the maintenance for the truck in addition to regular oil changes is changing rear axle grease/oil and 4WD grease/oil.
My feelings are that in the end its, dolly, car trailer or shaft disconnect/lube pump combo and none of these get me happy. The trailer does have the advantage of being towed by the Tacoma to go get fresh water with water buffaloes/barrels, to get more gas to run generator and go dump black/gray water portable tanks when extended dry camping in the boondocks/desert.
For Kyle 421: The 2008 Voyage I have is listed at 20,500 GVWR and 26,000 GCWR. I am at 19,500 GVWR with all my stuff(includes wife), full tank gas/propane and NO water, allowing me 6,500 lbs. The Tacoma is 4,100 lbs and Sure Trac 16' trailer is 2290 lbs gross for 6,400 lb total leaving me a leeway of a GRAND TOTAL of 100 lbs. Do I want to do this. Not really, but I could as I only drive 60 MPH, drive VERY defensively an (3) weeks in SC/NC I have found some ideas/ways of cutting about 500 lbs off of GVWR that does not include leaving wife with daughter. Just have to check to find out if the actual hitch is a Class III or Class IV.
I just MIGHT saw to heck with it, tow with all 4 down, manual transmission in neutral with NO modifications. My extended warranty through Toyota is 7yrs/70,000 miles so if something breaks it will be under warranty. I'm thinking since I stop ever (2) hours, I could disconnect Tacoma, crank her up and drive around rest area/stopping place and run engine to lube everything. Would (2) hrs 4 wheels down do that much damage. Don't want to find out, but the saga and the dilema continues as I search the Great Oracles for an answer.

Navy Blue
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Old 01-03-2009, 05:07 PM   #11
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Hi Folks,

Have decided to try to trick Toyota into installing a disconnect and if they do the tranny would still be covered. If not am going with a dolly as I will be spending lots of time at military RV parks for 2-3 months at time so disconnects won't be such a pain. Thanks for all your replies.

Mike AKA Navy Blue
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Old 01-10-2009, 11:29 AM   #12
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Navy Blue Here:

Read on another site that I might be able tow all (4) wheels down without disconnect IF I install regular towbar/hook/up/brake system, IF I tow with the engine RUNNING and put the 4WD in the 2WD by way of the electronic switch. Of course the manual transmission is in the neutral position. Sound farfetched ? Guy said he burns about gallon of gas every 100 miles in idle. He installed a wireless camera pointing at dash of toad so he could monitor the guages from inside the motor coach. My question would be when running engine in neutral, going down the highway is the transmission, rear end(REAR DRIVE TOYOTA) AND 4WD transfer case still get lubed as if I was driving the Tacoma down the highway by itself. Any replies are appreciated.

NAVY BLUE
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Old 01-10-2009, 05:57 PM   #13
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I don't see how the transfer case would get lubed any better with the engine running than it would with it off if the transmission is in nuetral unless there is a lube pump in the transfer case that is some how powered by the engine.
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Old 01-13-2009, 01:21 PM   #14
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SubMustang,

You are correct. I spoke with my transmission guy(One mentioned in 12/23 post) He said engine off OR running the 4 WD drive transfer case doesn't need lubing when in 2WD mode. It is when it is in 4WD drive mode it needs lubing and when you put it in that mode a servo pump lubes the transfer case. The rear gear gets lubed by the rear wheels turning engine running or not. The BIG problem is the transmission. Tow all 4 down, engine OFF, transmission burns up as the rear wheels are turning, drive shaft is turning and the planetary gear is turning without lubrication. Engine RUNNING, planetary gear gets lubed and everything should works OK. He said at the end of the day he would disconnect truck and drive it and go though all the gears and the reconnect to coach. The minus is gas used running engine. American Society of Mechanical Engineers estimate gas usage at 1/2 gal per 1 1/2 hours. (2) gallon of gas used f0r (6) hours on road. Cost per day for extra gas plus/minus $2.00. Is it worth NOT using dolly/trailer. I think so and if it works out I am a genius. i fnot the DW will remind me probably every day
Found out from transmission guy you can not tow it on a dolly unless you buy a locking mechanism for the front wheels and tow it backwards because of the planetary gear. The thought of doing that scares me enough to not even consider it.

NAVYBLUE(Retired E9)
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