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Old 12-24-2016, 07:15 PM   #1
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Tow dolly vs Toad and best car to purchase

I began researching tow dollys vs toad and best vehicle to use.
I have preliminary decided to buy a tow dolly. I'm looking at ACME in Kernersville, NC

Hydraulic Disc Brake Car Dolly - Car Tow Dolly

$1800.00 plus $300.00 shipping. I like the quality of the steel and unique braking system.

Let me know your thoughts and experiences. I have not bought it or the car yet.

V10 FORD gas engine in my THOR 34F

Thanks.
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Old 12-24-2016, 07:22 PM   #2
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Why bother with a 3rd vehicle to license, park and insure? Choose a car that can be towed with all 4 wheels on the ground.

This will help you find one

192.168.1.1:8181/http://webcontent.goodsam.com/motorhomemagazine.com/2016DinghyGuide.pdf

Also look in the signature line on posts. Mine is a 2012 Smart Car
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Old 12-25-2016, 01:00 AM   #3
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There are advantages to a dolly, with the biggest advantage to me being you can bring any vehicle you want with you.

However buying a car that can be used 4 down is much much easier. Any reason for not going this Route?
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Old 12-25-2016, 06:52 AM   #4
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I can think of a couple .
You already have a car you really like & don't want to buy another .
You don't like any of the small saelection of cars that can be flat toad .
You don't like the idea of investing a bunch of money into a car to tow it , to find out later you want a different car .
That being said . We've decided to flat tow . I don't want another piece of equipment to have to take care of .
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Old 12-25-2016, 07:12 AM   #5
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We pull 4 down. First one was a 08 Honda CRV, then a 2011 Ford Edge SE, now a 2011 Jeep Wrangler Sport. We almost went with a dolly 3yrs. ago, sure glad we didn't. 4 down is pretty easy! Good Luck
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Old 12-25-2016, 07:56 AM   #6
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First, the braking system is not unique. Many dolly manufactures use hydraulic surge brakes. Stehl Tow, Master Tow and others.

It was 3 years ago, but I paid $1,699.00 for my Stehl Tow at a local hardware store. They had a few "No Brakes", "Electric Brakes" and "Surge Brakes" models in stock. All completely assembled.

I had the MH and Kia Soul with me. We needed the proper hitch adaptor to raise the ball 2", so we ran across the road, to an RV dealer, for that.

The hardware store guy helped us get it setup for use, supplying all the tools needed for the ball mount.

From that store in PA, we towed the Soul to FL. Since then we have put about 30,000 more miles on the dolly, with no problems.
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Old 12-25-2016, 08:36 AM   #7
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Look at a Master Tow

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam1219 View Post
I began researching tow dollys vs toad and best vehicle to use.
I have preliminary decided to buy a tow dolly. I'm looking at ACME in Kernersville, NC

Hydraulic Disc Brake Car Dolly - Car Tow Dolly

$1800.00 plus $300.00 shipping. I like the quality of the steel and unique braking system.

Let me know your thoughts and experiences. I have not bought it or the car yet.

V10 FORD gas engine in my THOR 34F

Thanks.
I have a Thor 34J on the Ford F53 chassis. For $1400 and a simple $100 electric brake box you will be on the road. I like the vinyl fenders on the Master Tow dolly. I have towed mine for 7000 miles in the last 6 months with little problem towing. If you have a lower profile vehicle, like the Toyota Sienna van, you will hate loading and unloading it. I have had to modify my dolly so the van will not be damaged by the dolly. My future plan is to buy a vehicle that I can flat tow and do away with the dolly. Come spring mine may be for sale.
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Old 12-25-2016, 10:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stepside454 View Post
I can think of a couple .
You already have a car you really like & don't want to buy another .
You don't like any of the small saelection of cars that can be flat toad .
You don't like the idea of investing a bunch of money into a car to tow it , to find out later you want a different car .
That being said . We've decided to flat tow . I don't want another piece of equipment to have to take care of .

Obviously we all have a reason or reasons for going the direction we did. I wasn't really worried about what other people use as their reason but the OP and their reason. They state they haven't purchased a dolly or a car yet
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Old 12-25-2016, 10:34 PM   #9
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I've done both flat towing and the Acme tow dolly. My preference is flat towing. I had been towing four down until I bought a new car I thought was towable. The Fiesta ST isn't, so I broke down and got the dolly. Setup takes longer with the dolly and there are times when it's really tough to move it. We own an RV site and getting the dolly put away over the wedge curb and gravel site was a lot of work. The Acme is relatively light, but it's still about 400 lbs and there were places where it was everything my wife and I could do to get it in a good place. The advantages are that you can tow almost anything that is front wheel drive and there are no modifications required to the car. The disadvantages are many, including crawling under the car to hook up the safety chains and the car sometimes shifting on the dolly making it difficult to unload.

We're back to flat towing a Jeep Grand Cherokee. There's no heavy lifting and it only takes a few minutes to hook it up to the motorhome, make the connections and put the transfer case into neutral. It costs more to install the base plate and braking, but I think it's worth it. The downside is that you'll spend that money again if you buy another car.

Our current setup is the Grand Cherokee with the NSA Ready Brute Elite that has surge braking.
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Old 12-27-2016, 11:57 AM   #10
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[QUOTE=NC25T;3387632]There are advantages to a dolly, with the biggest advantage to me being you can bring any vehicle you want with you. /QUOTE]


Not quite true. You can probably tow "most" FWD cars. Many RWD and AWD vehicles cannot be towed with rear wheels on the ground.

For the OP, the cost between a dolly and setting up a 4-down car can be significant. However, the ease of hooking, unhooking, maintenance, and towing leans toward having a 4-down vehicle rather than a dolly.

Ron
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Old 01-01-2017, 12:20 PM   #11
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Thank you for all responses - leaning toward TOAD

I am now leaning back toward using a TOAD. What is the best brand for the money? I don't need the most expensive just best bang for my buck.

I understand everything but the following:

1. Are the mounts specific for each car?
2. Braking.. what all is needed?
3. Lights.. Can I hook it to my coach or do I have to use those ugly magnetic mounts?
4. Can I install the car mounts myself?

Blue ox?

Remember, I am driving 35 foot, gas V-10, Ford Triton, class A. I don't have the power of a diesel but I thank God for what he has given me as I am grateful.
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Old 01-01-2017, 01:28 PM   #12
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Tow dolly vs Toad and best car to purchase

Base plates are car specific . There are several different options for supplemental brakes . There are also lighting kits available . Can you do it yourself ? Depends on how handy you are .
What toad is best brand for the money ? You'll get replys with everything from Chevy Cobalts to Saturn Vues & everything in between
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Old 01-01-2017, 01:30 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by okmunky View Post
Why bother with a 3rd vehicle to license, park and insure? Choose a car that can be towed with all 4 wheels on the ground.

This will help you find one

192.168.1.1:8181/http://webcontent.goodsam.com/motorhomemagazine.com/2016DinghyGuide.pdf

Also look in the signature line on posts. Mine is a 2012 Smart Car
X4!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 01-01-2017, 02:43 PM   #14
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We chose a Chevy Sonic with auto transmission to tow and is my daily driver. It checks in at about 2,700 lbs. I had CW install the base plate from Roadmaster along with a light wiring kit so toad lights are used. All works well, easy to setup, easy to tow, and so far we are happy with the setup. CW often runs a special for everything you will need for towing so check them out.
One other note on dollies...Not all cars can be dollied...
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