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Old 07-21-2017, 01:12 PM   #1
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Towing Dakota 4x4 on a dolly

It is my understanding that I can tow my 2001 Dodge Dakota 4x4 flat down when transfercase is in the neutral position. If this is acceptable..would it not be fine on a dolly as well with tc in neutral? Transmission would not be spinning, but not sure about the transfercase itself. Anyone have experience towing a Dakota 4x4 on a dolly.? Not looking for guess work but definite answer. Thanks guys.
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Old 07-21-2017, 01:30 PM   #2
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Not sure about dakota, but most 4x4 cannot be towed on dolly. causes the front/rear differential to spin.
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Old 07-21-2017, 01:52 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by mpierce View Post
Not sure about dakota, but most 4x4 cannot be towed on dolly. causes the front/rear differential to spin.
I beg to differ, especially if you have a transfercase that has a neutral position.

Even if your transfercase does not have a neutral position, when you are in two wheel drive the reason why the front differential is turning is because the car/truck is moving, in other words that is no power going to the front diff.

OP, check your operators manual for info on towing, I am NOT going to tell you 100% that you can tow your dakota on a dolly. But would be willing to bet you can
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Old 07-21-2017, 02:02 PM   #4
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Hey OP, if you have a NP231 transfercase, you can put that dakota on a dolly
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:12 PM   #5
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Hey CJ7365.........How can I determine if my transfer case is a NP231?... ( I'LL try my manual)

Manual says it is a NV233....which has 4 settings electrically controlled. 2 wheel high, 4 wheel high. 4 wheel low, and neutral. In neutral position there is no power to either front or bavk axle. And can be flat towed per manual. Seems logical that if the front is on a dolly it would make no difference since no power is delivered anywhere. Am I missing anything?
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Old 07-22-2017, 06:56 AM   #6
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Find a source that definitely says what you can or cannot do. Our 2016 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sport (JKUS) has the same 4WD gearing and says it can be flat towed. It also says, DO NOT tow on a dolly or you will damage the drivetrain. Good luck with your research.
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Old 07-22-2017, 01:50 PM   #7
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All towable Jeep/Chrysler products since around 1995, the manual will state NO DOLLY towing. Check the Recreational Towing section in your owners manual for what you have.

FYI, the towable (NP231, NP242, etc) transfer cases can be towed because they have their oil pump driven off the rear drive shaft so the get the same lubrication as when driving. Nothing in the transmission is moving while flat towing.
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Old 07-23-2017, 08:38 AM   #8
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I have towed my 2001 Dodge Dakota SL over 50,000 miles. When the transfer case is put in neutral everything is disconnected including the speedometer. I use a 2000 model Brake Buddy and have never had a issue. Richard
PS Why would you want to put it on a dolly when it can be towed 4 down?
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Old 07-23-2017, 06:12 PM   #9
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I have towed my 2001 Dodge Dakota SL over 50,000 miles. When the transfer case is put in neutral everything is disconnected including the speedometer. I use a 2000 model Brake Buddy and have never had a issue. Richard
PS Why would you want to put it on a dolly when it can be towed 4 down?
I decided to go with a dolly which can be used for nearly any front wheel car. I also did the math cost difference and determined it would be alot more cost to go the tow bar route...even used items considered....with base plate for every vehicle...and breaking system added. I know it is much more hassle to use a dolly but has the flexibility of towing other vehicles.

But I still want to be absolutely 110 % sure I will cause no damage to my Dakota 4x4. Some have said it may damage the transfer case bearings iftowed on a dolly. Some are saying their manual says no dolly hauling a 4x4 Dakota. My local Didge dealer says it will be ok to put on a dolly. My question is simple...if the Dakota 4x4 can be towed on all 4s having placed the transfer case in neutral........how or what changes if you put the front axle on a dolly?
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Old 07-24-2017, 06:08 AM   #10
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Just be 100% sure. There are vehicles that can be flat towed, that CANNOT be on a dolly. What changes is that flat towing, both front and rear axles turn at the same speed. When on a dolly, one turns, one does not.

Some vehicles that is OK, others it is not, depending on how it is made. Find the owners manual for YOUR VEHICLE, and do what it says. If it does not say it can be towed on a dolly, don't.
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Old 07-24-2017, 01:57 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by daryl989mich View Post
...But I still want to be absolutely 110 % sure I will cause no damage to my Dakota 4x4. Some have said it may damage the transfer case bearings if towed on a dolly. Some are saying their manual says no dolly hauling a 4x4 Dakota. My local Didge dealer says it will be ok to put on a dolly. My question is simple...if the Dakota 4x4 can be towed on all 4s having placed the transfer case in neutral........how or what changes if you put the front axle on a dolly?
The ones who said "...it may damage the transfer case bearings..." are somewhat correct. These transfer cases are not designed for a sustained high RPM difference between the front and rear drive lines. The last time I had one these cases apart I specifically looked for a reason for this and discovered there is no "bearing" between the front driveline drive sprocket and mainshaft it is just hardened steel against hardened steel. I know a couple of people who have done it without any issues but it is not recommended. Your Dodge dealer should not be telling you it's okay.
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Old 07-25-2017, 11:44 AM   #12
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Transfer cases vary some have neutral and others have true neutral .

Neutral is when the transfer case is disconnected from the transmission but the front axle and rear axle is sill connected together . this will allow them to be towed 4 wheel down due to the everything is moving together at the same speed.

then there is true neutral where the transfer case and the front and rear axles are all disconnected from each other .
In this case the car or truck can be towed any way one desires....

one thing you can do to be absolutely sure you can tow your Dakota is to remove the front drive shaft.
I did this with my 2002 due to cv joint on the rear of the front driveshaft went bad .. it just becomes 2 wheel drive
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