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Old 05-06-2021, 06:36 PM   #1
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Master Tow w/ surge brakes

I understand there may be some “cons” to a car dolly in comparison to a tow bar. However, when you’re able to purchase a quality used tow dolly for a third the cost of a used tow bar, baseplate & Patriot why would you not buy the dolly?

Towing a Buick Enclave FWD behind a Monaco Dynasty.

Thanks for your input!
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Old 05-06-2021, 07:04 PM   #2
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First off make sure the dolly has brakes.
I had a dolly before I went to flat tow and it was a pain to load, crawl around to hook up straps etc. Then what to do with the dolly.....some spots it is easy to move it under o behind the motorhome but some it is not. I find wife and I can hook up in about 5 minutes and unhook just as quickly.
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Old 05-06-2021, 08:25 PM   #3
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You will answer your question the first time you need to load or unload your car in the rain on a muddy surface.
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Old 05-07-2021, 08:00 AM   #4
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I thought the same as you so I bought a dolly used it for one trip. Came home sold it on craigs list and flat towed from then on. Did not like loading in the rain and mud.
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Old 05-07-2021, 08:11 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lllkrob View Post
You will answer your question the first time you need to load or unload your car in the rain on a muddy surface.


Interesting perspective! I guess it raises the question “How often does one find themselves doing this on “muddy” terrain? Perhaps for frequent boondockers this may be a “front of mind” concern.
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Old 05-07-2021, 08:30 AM   #6
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I never understood the muddy terrain comments. Both vehicles can be driven, so why do it in the mud?

If I find myself in muddy terrain, I drive out of the mud, before loading or unloading the car from my dolly.
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Old 05-07-2021, 10:32 AM   #7
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I agree. Even if one is traveling alone there are usually spots within walking distance that aren't muddy, and if not traveling alone one can just find a convenient parking lot. Rain seems like a more valid complaint, but doesn't actually happen very often.
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Old 05-07-2021, 11:24 AM   #8
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For me it was just a matter of not wanting to have to trade cars when we had a perfectly good RAV4 that we'd bought new and maintained myself. If we'd already had a car that could be towed 4-down I'd have gone that route, but we didn't.

All in all, we don't have to load / unload more than maybe a dozen times a year. I'm not going to spend well into 5 figures to buy another car then equip it to tow. It's not that much trouble and wouldn't save me that much time.
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Old 05-07-2021, 12:16 PM   #9
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We have a master tow with electric brakes. Had to replace the brake assy’s, as they weren’t self adjusting. I like the ease and cost so far. Only been a year so far.
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Old 05-07-2021, 09:14 PM   #10
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We towed 4 down for years, Sold our jeep and had a small front wheel drive car and thought we would pull it with tow dolly. Used it two trips!! And decided no more, bought a new Versa 5 speed and setting it up to tow. For my part would only use tow dolly in emergency. I like simple!!
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Old 05-07-2021, 09:19 PM   #11
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I have a Tow Master with surge brakes, pulls really good, just don't like the loading and unloading. The unloading is worse, can't open the ratchet enough to release straps because it hits the front of car, just a pain, I don't need.
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Old 05-07-2021, 09:30 PM   #12
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I tow my VW Routan with a master tow dolly with electric brakes behind my Diplomat. Some of same reasons as above apply. I already own the Routan and it’s paid off. My whole family fits in it comfortably. It is definitely more of a pain versus flat towing.

Most of our trips involve a drive and then a long term stay. If I was doing shorter trips where I had to unhook a lot I might consider getting something I could flat tow, or a trans pump for the Routan.

Dollys hold their value really well. If you buy it used you can probably get your money back when you sell it.
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Old 05-08-2021, 06:42 AM   #13
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I have used a tow dolly to tow various cars for a LOT of miles. For me loading and unloading the car from the dolly wasn't enough more difficult or time consuming than hooking and unhooking 4 down to be an issue.

Swivel plate tow dollies tow a little straighter than 4 down. Tow dollies are wider than the car and can be an issue in tight turns and on narrow roads.

There is the issue with the tow dolly of where to put it when not in use. In campgrounds I generally disconnect it from the ball on the MH and push it under the back. It becomes 3' long then!

I think a tow dolly is a viable method of towing a car.
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Old 05-08-2021, 12:08 PM   #14
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I will keep the tow dolly, but find the ratchet binder that uses a wrench to tighten the straps, that is the only problem with tow master, is the long ratchet handle. Hard to get them off, where they hit the car and won't open to unlock. Takes three hands, lol
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