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Old 08-30-2016, 02:10 PM   #1
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Towing Methods - Pros/cons

Okay all you experienced Motorhomers, or fellow coachers, how about some thoughts on the pros and cons of the different towing methods. I am sure some of you have been behind the wheel of a MH for long enough you have tried more than one method.

We have a SUV (FWD) and a Harley Trike. I know there is probably no way I can get a light enough trailer that would be long enough to tow both behind my 37GT. I would need about a 27' trailer and it could only weigh about 100 pounds after subtracting the weight of the SUV and Trike.

So pros and cons for a Blue Ox system for towing four down (I would have to switch cars) and pros and cons for just using a tow dolly.

Not knowing a lot about Blue Ox type systems the first thing that comes to mind for me is that a tow dolly is cheaper plus you can tow about any front wheel drive vehicle without putting miles on it.

What say ye?
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Old 08-30-2016, 02:42 PM   #2
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I went from a tow dolly to a BlueOx four wheels down setup and am thinking about going back to the tow dolly. The BlueOx setup is costly and limited to one vehicle. Once you figure in the baseplate, tow bar, braking system, wiring, installation, etc. can get into big bucks. With the tow dolly I only see one possible disadvantage: Where to store it once you are in your campsite. I also like the fact that I can use the tow dolly outside of RVing as I have a truck that can tow. The work involved in setting up a car either flat tow or dolly is comparable in my opinion.
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Old 08-30-2016, 03:02 PM   #3
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We dolly tow mostly because we can tow just about any fwd car on it. So far I've towed 3 different vehicles with it behind our MH (Focus, Escape, C-Max).

When camping the dolly simply slides under the back end of the camper; keeps it hidden away to some extent.
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Old 08-30-2016, 03:23 PM   #4
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+1 for the Tow Dolly. I went with the dolly so I wasn't stuck with just one vehicle to tow behind the motorhome. We have different vehicles we like to use depending on where we are heading.

There is a company out there that makes a tow dolly that has a platform on the front of the dolly so that you can haul your motorcycle with you. I have been looking into it but it's pretty expensive.

RV Towing Accessories | RV Trailers, Tow Behind Trailers, Motorcycle Trailers and Tow Dollies for sale

When we take our goldwing with us we have a enclosed trailer we use.
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Old 08-30-2016, 03:24 PM   #5
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We went from a 4 down Jeep Wrangler to a FWD Jeep Renegade that must be dolly towed or towed 4 up. Towing 4 down was easy but costly, as the Jeep had to be modified to accept the tow brackets and add the wiring harness plus add in the costs of the tow bar itself plus supplemental braking. It really is about a wash as most tow dollies run about the same costs with either electric or surge brakes.


I do think towing 4 down is a convenience as it is simpler to connect and disconnect than putting a car or SUV on a tow dolly and strapping it down. Tow bars can be left on the RV tow hitch, no need to store them unless another hitch is required. As others have mentioned, a tow dolly can tow practically any FWD vehicle without modification.


Most tow dollies can be stored under the rear of the RV at a campground or in storage and some even store standing up on end (for garage storage, etc.)
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Old 08-30-2016, 05:24 PM   #6
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I went with a 4 down tow. The reason (or my way of thinking) is that with a larger coach (1st was a Thor 34H, current is a 40 footer) that there are many CG's where I have to drop the tow'd at the CG entrance just to get around the CG and get parked.
A dolly/trailer setup would be a real hassle (unload toad,unhook dolly and hook dolly to toad, drag to campsite,unhook dolly from toad & store all. And have do repeat in reverse sequence to leave park/CG...
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Old 08-30-2016, 05:51 PM   #7
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I went with a Jeep Wrangler and Road Master Falcon II tow bar and Even Brake system. Very happy I did because it takes just minutes to connect and disconnect and can be moved from vehicle to vehicle. I purchased both on Ebay for a steep discount. The Falcon II had never been used so I have probably $1200 into the setup. My jeep was prewired so I saved several hundred dollars. Good luck with the system you decide on!
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Old 08-30-2016, 08:45 PM   #8
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This has been covered in many posts on the forum and in reality it boils down to personal preference. We use the BlueOx and would never go back to a tow dolly. First of all, either my wife or I can hook up the BO by ourselves in 5 - 10 minutes depending on how hot it is outside. (We tend to move slower when it is very warm). There is no way that I would pull our vehicle up on a tow dolly without someone there spotting to help get it centered and just to make sure it is far enough forward. The other thing we hated was putting the straps on the front tires to hold it in place. It would take the two of us 15 minutes minimum to get it on the tow dolly. I would rather not tow than to ever use a tow dolly again. We have two vehicles that we can tow. The first one was expensive because we had to buy the tow bar and the supplemental braking but the second one was far less expensive because we only had to buy the base plate and wiring harness. We live close to etrailer.com and they will install for free so that cuts down the cost considerably. But again, most of it is personal preference.
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Old 08-30-2016, 11:56 PM   #9
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As was suggested, it is different strokes for different folks. The way you travel and he places you stay matter in this decision. And always, the budget is a factor.

For us and the way we travel, 4 down is best. It takes me about 5 minutes to attach or detach. And I have done that hundreds of times over the years. My car would not do well on a dolly, the angle would starve the transmission seals.

We towed our last car for 9 years, which helped spread out the setup costs. Hoping we can own our next toad for at least that long. We had Blue Ox on our last one, and the folks at that company are awesome. When we were at the factory in Pender, NE this summer, they took our 9 year old tow bars into their shop and refurbished them at no charge! New bushings and seals.

Besides Blue Ox, there is Roadmaster, which is similar but different. We have seen motor homes pulling a pickup with a cycle in the pickup, but have never noticed a trike hauled that way.

BTW, miles did not register on the car we towed all those years. Your results may vary.
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Old 08-31-2016, 01:20 AM   #10
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I have used the Blue Ox system on 2 cars over the past 11 years. I find it quick and easy to hook up or unhook.

A friend decided to use a dolly and has since said he should have towed 4 down.

A matter of personal choice I guess. I do notice that the list of cars that can be towed 4 down seems to be shrinking.
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Old 08-31-2016, 01:47 AM   #11
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We have two SUV's at home, I am a fire fighter so I like having 4x4. Went with a Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk with a Roadmaster Falcon 2 all Terrain and RVI 2 brake. Works for us and I don't have to get another SUV.

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Old 08-31-2016, 04:00 AM   #12
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To tow both your SUV and trike - I think the type of dolly Tunes indicated is the way to go... but may still be a challenge staying under your towing weight.

For a single tow - I prefer the 4 down option - and Jeep Wranglers tend to have a long life... (knocking wood) I expect the investment to last a while.
We tried to set up this RV so the wife could handle setup/teardown if needed. If the towbar is already on the rv and crossbar already on the front of Jeep - she should be able to hook it up herself. (Falcon All Terrain towbar that allows hookup and release without perfect alignment and off-level conditions... and Invisibrake that is 'plug and go'.)
I think a tow dolly would be a much bigger challenge for her. I've used them in past - pre RV days...
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Old 08-31-2016, 05:26 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmc View Post
To tow both your SUV and trike - I think the type of dolly Tunes indicated is the way to go... but may still be a challenge staying under your towing weight.

For a single tow - I prefer the 4 down option - and Jeep Wranglers tend to have a long life... (knocking wood) I expect the investment to last a while.
We tried to set up this RV so the wife could handle setup/teardown if needed. If the towbar is already on the rv and crossbar already on the front of Jeep - she should be able to hook it up herself. (Falcon All Terrain towbar that allows hookup and release without perfect alignment and off-level conditions... and Invisibrake that is 'plug and go'.)
I think a tow dolly would be a much bigger challenge for her. I've used them in past - pre RV days...
Good philosopy, but it would not work for me. I'm concerned my wife will wise up and ditch me in the sticks. So I make sure that breaking camp is a 2 person job,

Ken
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Old 09-21-2016, 12:29 AM   #14
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We tow our 2015 5-speed Focus four down. Perfect tow car, there is no steering lock so you don't even have to leave a key in it. Owners manual has two lines for towing, put in N, take off parking brake.
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