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Old 10-11-2012, 10:08 AM   #15
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Been towing 4 down for 20 years with 3 different Class A's and many different toads. Recently we down sized to a Sprinter based class B and bought a Mini Cooper S as a toad. I decided to try a dolly as I could buy one with brakes and not need to purchase a supplemental braking system for the Cooper. Well all it took was 1 trip to know the dolly was not for me. Way too much hassle and I certainly didn't like laying on my back under the car connecting the safety chains, especially in wet weather. So we sold the Demco SS dolly ( one of the best dollies on the market by the way) and put a tow plate on the Mini. Purchased a Blue Ox brake system and off we went. This experience strongly confirmed that I knew what I was doing the past 20 years. IMHO, forget the dolly, put a tow plate on your car and buy a supplemental brake system for it and don't look back.
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Old 10-11-2012, 10:40 AM   #16
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Since we are weekend warriors, and want to keep my vehicle (Honda Element) and since the Element has essential functions at many of our destinations and since the AWD Auto tranny Element cannot easily be adopted for 4-down towing, we opted for the full trailer.

We are pleased with the simplicity of loading and unloading the E and have had no problems towing even up some serious bits of the Rockies. We consulted with a local trailer supply shop to design the best trailer to fit our needs as far as size, weight and loading/securing design.....we must have a decent setup as we have had a few folks in campgrounds wander over after seeing us load in very quickly and ask about how we did what we did to the trailer.....

As for parking on sites, I have yet to have to remove the trailer.....and back the rig with trailer still attached into almost every site we have used (except the few pull throughs we encountered). As for storage while not being used.....I found a lot that let's me keep the whole rig set up and ready to roll.....

YMMV but this rigging works extremely well for us!

Paul
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Old 10-11-2012, 11:32 AM   #17
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I have been towing for the last 10 years. Until this year I always used a trailer and this year I tried the 4 down method. With the trailer I only had to disconnect it at a campground twice because it wouldn't fit in the site. With the 4 down I have already had to disconnect it once because I needed to back up. When that happens you may be in a bad situation on the highway so it is especially annoying. After about 6000 miles towing 4 down I am still not as comfortable as with using the trailer. I really believe that on flat ground the trailer pulls easier than the 4 down even though the trailer option is 1600 lbs more weight. I have had a gas and two diesel motorhomes and never had an issue with the extra weight.
The cost of the 4 down equipment was actually more than the new trailer cost. The only issues I have with the trailer are the tires. Trailer tires are notoriously poor quality, especially in the 14" & 15" wheel sizes. Over those 10 years I usually don't get more that two years before a tire goes bad (the pressures are correct and the tires are not overloaded). Other maintenance is minimal. I am working on way to deal with the tires because I think it is worth it.
As for a dolly, I haven’t used one but I have a close friend who tried one and ended up selling it after the first trip.
As for ease of use the 4 down setup and tear down is a little faster than the trailer (if the trailer is already connected) but not much. The storage can be a big issue for some, I have plenty of room. One of the benefits of the trailer is that I can haul a spare tire for the MH along with loads of other stuff.
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Old 10-11-2012, 05:36 PM   #18
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We Tow 4-down

We have a 40' diesel pusher and tow a Honda CR-V which had to have a tow bar put on front to use the blue ox tow bars. We use a rock guard on the tow bars and have no problem with damage for 3 yrs. it is easy to set up and even easier to unhook. But the computer monitor in our car uses too much electricity when the key is in the tow position without the engine being on so we have to pull the one fuse each time we tow. It is a little difficult to grab the fuse even with the proper tool but we fuss around and get it anyway. All this has caused us to not be able to use the brake buddy system since without the fuse the electric plugin for accessories needed to plug the brake buddy in has no power. Now we have to either continue to drive without braking assist or spend a lot more money to get power from the motorhome to supply power for the car. We were also disappointed with the number and quality of cars that could be flat towed.
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:13 PM   #19
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Thanks all. Good information. I may be limited to excluding the trailer idea, as I have a gasser with 5K towing capacity, and the Edge is aroud 4k already. i like the 4wdown idea, just not the price tag - especially since I will be only taking a toad once or twice a year, and may change what I am towing. For you Edge guys, I am looking at the Blue Ox and Roadmaster - looks like they may both need a bit of grille mod to install, and certainly some fasica trimming. Hate to start cutting up my brand new car....how much trim mod did you need to your Edge?
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:25 PM   #20
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I've been towing a vehicle behind a MH since '96. Have found (as said in my earlier post) that a dolly is the best way for us. Doesn't take any longer to get ready than four down, and remember I've towed the same vehicle ('05 Honda Odyssey) behind the same MH both on a dolly and four down.
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Old 10-13-2012, 07:31 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanbro View Post
Thanks all. Good information. I may be limited to excluding the trailer idea, as I have a gasser with 5K towing capacity, and the Edge is aroud 4k already. i like the 4wdown idea, just not the price tag - especially since I will be only taking a toad once or twice a year, and may change what I am towing. For you Edge guys, I am looking at the Blue Ox and Roadmaster - looks like they may both need a bit of grille mod to install, and certainly some fasica trimming. Hate to start cutting up my brand new car....how much trim mod did you need to your Edge?
Stanbro, if you go with the Road Master the grill modification is little or none! I did not install the system, however just went out to inspect the only modification to the grill is where the elec plug is for the "road master Invisibrake toad braking system." My suggestion go 4 down, and the roadmaster tow bar, all terrane, can be purchased for $799.00 at CW if GS member.
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Old 10-25-2012, 11:22 AM   #22
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Invisibrake

Quote:
Originally Posted by stanbro View Post
Thanks all. Good information. I may be limited to excluding the trailer idea, as I have a gasser with 5K towing capacity, and the Edge is aroud 4k already. i like the 4wdown idea, just not the price tag - especially since I will be only taking a toad once or twice a year, and may change what I am towing. For you Edge guys, I am looking at the Blue Ox and Roadmaster - looks like they may both need a bit of grille mod to install, and certainly some fasica trimming. Hate to start cutting up my brand new car....how much trim mod did you need to your Edge?
Stanbro,
If you think you'll be changing your toad sometime soon, don't get the Invisibrake. It's a great system but it's a challenge, to say the least, to move it from one car to another. It can be done, but I wouldn't want to do it!
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