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Old 08-23-2014, 09:23 PM   #1
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We're new at all this.

Having never owned a motor home till a week ago, we have lots of questions.

Right now, we would like to know what surge disc brake tow dolly is best without being terribly expensive?

We've checked a few on line but since many of you have had experience with towing, we figured we'd ask here.
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Old 08-23-2014, 10:05 PM   #2
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Finding one with surge brakes and not being terribly expensive are sort of tough. I'd look in classified ads, Craig's List, Ebay, etc. for a used one. A used one will be hundred's of dollars less and at most new tires, brakes and bearings would still make it less than a new one, even more if you can do the brakes and bearings yourself.
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Old 08-24-2014, 12:48 PM   #3
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Don and Dar,

Welcome again to iRV2. Stand-by for the "flat towing is the ONLY way to go" crowd that might stop by.

But just like you, my car is not flat towable...and we are not inclined to buy a new car just for RV travel.

You are very smart to talk about surge brakes. They are best for tow dolly's because the brakes are automatically adjusted from loaded to unloaded or any weight in between...no user adjustment, no skidding brakes due to mis-adjustment, and no risk of a run-away if the wires come lose. And electric brakes need a separate battery on the dolly for a break-away device.

The Acme EZE-tow was the first dolly with surge disc brakes:
Car Tow Dolly -The Lightest and Toughest Tow Dolly For All Car Towing Needs - Acme Car Tow Dolly Company

Demco and other companies have seen the wisdom and are now offering surge brakes too:
Tow Dollies | Demco Products

The reason I like my EZE-tow better than other brands is that at only 405lb, I can roll it around with 1 hand on the built-in tongue handle and the dolly weight has little impact on the towing load. The weight savings comes because there is no pivot pan or steering on the dolly, instead using the car's steering to negotiate turns just like flat towing.

For any dolly, your car will happy and safe up high on a dolly away from rock strikes and not adding miles to the car's lower driveline.
There is no reason to ever have to get under the car during hook-up. If the safety chains must be connected up-under the car, you can add a piece of chain to the car during initial set-up for making the connection to the dolly's safety chains.

Finally, a tow dolly will cost measurably less than a similar flat towing set-up. A tow-bar alone does not provide braking, so that is a separate system...and these systems are not cheap...but brakes on the toad is a very good idea

Best luck
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Old 08-24-2014, 02:45 PM   #4
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Welcome to iRV2. You can search this forum and find many posts about tow dolly brands and functions. Will take hours to read them all.

I started out with a EZE Tow dolly and never had any problems with it. Some have a pivot point that reportedly can allow the dolly fenders to contact your toad. Some on here have reported big dollar damage. The EZE Tow does not have a pivot point so no worry about damage. Brakes on mine worked very good.

Good luck with your search.
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Old 08-24-2014, 04:10 PM   #5
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I see the EZ-tow is roughly 500 pounds and 1200-1300 dollars With this system you get The equivalent of the front wheels only braking when you stop the motor home. This will SLIGHTLY increase your stopping distance over a 4-down with a braking system. I also feel a 4-down system is easier to use.

That said. Many cars can be towed on a dolly (Most any Front Wheel Drive) with no modifications.. Where as my Neon needed a 1500 dollar lube pump, a 500 dollar base plate (I already had the tow bars) and a yet to be priced brake system but figure around the cost of the dolly.
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Old 08-24-2014, 05:39 PM   #6
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I just went thorough this and I have a car that will flat tow. I initially looked at the Demco, but in the end the ACME Eze Tow made the most sense and that is what I bought. I really like the dolly and the ramps. Also, the new tires are self balancing. Very happy.
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Old 08-24-2014, 06:18 PM   #7
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Old 08-29-2014, 03:48 PM   #8
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you are better to flat tow reason being less hassle to hook up second more tires and bearings to repair,and most important you need space to put it in your rv spot
I flat tow a mustang with an automatic trans,had a remco quick disconnect on my differential right from inside car works great.
good luck
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Old 08-29-2014, 04:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lacdubonnet View Post
you are better to flat tow reason being less hassle to hook up second more tires and bearings to repair,and most important you need space to put it in your rv spot
I flat tow a mustang with an automatic trans,had a remco quick disconnect on my differential right from inside car works great.
good luck
Seriously, don't be afraid to sell your car and get a different one.

Also, think about this - a tow vehicle is going to get BEAT UP!!!

Just the other day (damaging admission) I had to buy a set of new front tires... why? Cause my dumb self took the key out - and drove... whoops! Discount tire was nice enough to replace them at 1/2 cost, but they were brand new.. did I say WHOOPS?

We sold our range rover, and our lexus - paid cash for our little subaru beater, and we love it. I can beat that thing up and never feel bad about it.

trust me, I would HATE a dolly. When you stop somewhere, if there isn't enough room, you get to man handle that dolly. Not for me. I want to put the key to one spot, take it out of gear and GO!

If i didn't have a need for the cubic feet in the back of my subaru (business related) I would tow a geo tracker / suzuki samurai so fast your head would spin (or a mini cooper, used of course)
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Old 08-30-2014, 08:08 AM   #10
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Demco KarKaddySS,
Surge Breaks,Yes
Turning wheels, Yes -No damage to Caddie in 3 years.
Tongue folds in 1/2,Yes
Can move around by myself if need be, yes
4 wheeling, NO but I don't do that anyway, bad back, really bad back, That's why I drive a caddie, Com-fie all the way. With 190,000 miles Powerful 300 hp Northstar engine, ask the guy with the 350 Z , I will race her every chance I can.
Whatever you get enjoy the heck out of it. You only get one chance.
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Old 08-30-2014, 08:15 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spritz View Post
Demco KarKaddySS,
Surge Breaks,Yes
Turning wheels, Yes -No damage to Caddie in 3 years.
Tongue folds in 1/2,Yes
Can move around by myself if need be, yes
4 wheeling, NO but I don't do that anyway, bad back, really bad back, That's why I drive a caddie, Com-fie all the way. With 190,000 miles Powerful 300 hp Northstar engine, ask the guy with the 350 Z , I will race her every chance I can.
Whatever you get enjoy the heck out of it. You only get one chance.
Tim
WOW, that's amazingly outrageously cool! You get extra points for flair here sir!
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Old 08-30-2014, 09:29 AM   #12
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Same here with the Tow Dolly. A good Dolly is not cheap and neither is setting up a vehicle to tow. We looked at the dolly's but then found a 2002 Honda Civic stick shift. After new front bearings, new tires, and alignment we had $5,000 rapped up in a TOAD that tows very easily, (3,200 lbs) and when we get where we are going it gets 32 MPG. Very happy with the Civic. We don't know it's back there but I can see it in the camera.

What we like most about the Civic is it's just a beater. I don't worry about stones being kicked up by the MH. I don't care where it is parked. I put Yakama racks on top so I can strap my Kayak on top. I use the rack to tie my fishing rods on when I go surf fishing in FL. I'd like to maybe find an Isuzu pick-up stick shift (I had a 95 but sold it before we got the MH) put a camper top on it so I could put my bike in the back and still do all the other things we do with the Civic. Maybe in a few years.

TeJay
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Old 08-30-2014, 01:00 PM   #13
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Thanks for all of your input! It wasn't an easy decision but since we're not ready to buy a different car, we ended up buying an Ezetow.

Ok, since we have no idea where to go for at least a couple of months this coming winter, do you have any suggestions? We've been thinking Florida or Texas so far...but where? Do we just pick a place by the way it looks on the internet?

Thanks for being so helpful!!
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Old 08-30-2014, 01:51 PM   #14
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CONGRATS!!

Feel free to ask any specific questions about the EZ-Tow on iRV2 or PM me.
Also, Acme is an iRV2 sponsor, so thanks for supporting a sponsor

We have no specific suggestions on places to...just go where you like...we hope you have fun!

Safe travels
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