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Author Topic: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long  (Read 661 times)

Paul M

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Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« on: December 25, 2017, 11:33:26 AM »
I dolly tow a Honda Fit on an ACME EZE Tow dolly.  The outside diameter of the 16" low profile tires on the Honda is very small and the typical 14-16" tire size basket tie-down straps available tend to be too long and cannot be tightened enough before bottoming out on the ratchet mechanism.

I'm considering using some sort of rubber spacer between the tire and cross-straps to take up some of the slack in the straps to allow it to be tightened.  Has anyone else experienced this problem, and if so, can you offer advice on another solution or suggestions on best material for rubber spacers?
Paul & Carol
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
2014 Winnebago Vista 35F
2016 Honda Fit on ACME EZE Tow Dolly

grashley

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Re: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« Reply #1 on: December 25, 2017, 05:51:29 PM »
I assume from your question that you are close to tight, just not there.  My first thought is a couple car or truck tubes, preferably with holes (free) that can be cut into thirds.  Lay these sections over the tire.  It is clearly a compatible material and will have little compression.  For multiple layers, a little "tire patch" will hold them together nicely.

Good Luck!
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

WILDEBILL308

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Re: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« Reply #2 on: December 25, 2017, 07:35:12 PM »
I dolly tow a Honda Fit on an ACME EZE Tow dolly.  The outside diameter of the 16" low profile tires on the Honda is very small and the typical 14-16" tire size basket tie-down straps available tend to be too long and cannot be tightened enough before bottoming out on the ratchet mechanism.

I'm considering using some sort of rubber spacer between the tire and cross-straps to take up some of the slack in the straps to allow it to be tightened.  Has anyone else experienced this problem, and if so, can you offer advice on another solution or suggestions on best material for rubber spacers?
I towed for a couple of years with this setup. My Civic had the same type of tires. I think you are not installing the straps right or have the wrong straps. Watch this video.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=ACME+EZE+Tow+dolly&view=detail&mid=15454EDAA707A3287E0015454EDAA707A3287E00&FORM=VIRE
I also found to get the straps tight the first time to leave about 2 in of space between the tiers and the front stop. Once you have the strap over the tier put the car in neutral and release the brake. Now tighten the straps. This will allow the tire to rotate removing slack on the back side of the tire (the straps don't like to slide over the tire) Now you can set it up for towing.
Let me know what you find out.
Bill


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2003 Bounder 38N
300 HP 5.9 Cummins
Allison 3000MH Trans.
Towing 2014 Honda CRV
Home base Fort Worth, Texas
A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way.
-Mark Twain-

Paul M

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Re: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2017, 08:43:40 AM »
Grashley - thanks for the suggestion.  We are presently stationary in Florida for the winter months so it will be April before I can work on the straps again.

Bill - thanks for the link to the ACME video.  The straps that ACME supplied with the dolly have adjustable main straps and adjustable cross-straps with two loops separated by some sewing.  For my Honda, I have to use the inner (shorter) loops.  This works to shorten the straps and allows them to tighten fine, but I have found that the sewing separating the inner and outer loops is not very strong.  I do a lot of towing and after a year or so of use, the sewing between the loops has failed on several of the cross-straps.

I decided to purchase different straps to replace the originals.  These are from US Cargo Control and have fixed length cross-straps permanently attached to the main strap.  They are supposed to fit 14-16" tires (mine are 16").  I haven't had an opportunity to try them yet but my hope is that they will be more durable and easier to install.  I anticipate they will be a little too long to fully tighten on the Honda.  Hence the reason for this post.

Seasons greetings to all!
Paul & Carol
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
2014 Winnebago Vista 35F
2016 Honda Fit on ACME EZE Tow Dolly

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2017, 10:13:25 AM »
I ran into a similar problem with the 245/45R17 tires on a Buick Verano.  You need to buy new straps of a smaller size, but the strap sizes are described only for more traditional tire sizes, basically a 70 or 80 aspect ratio rather than low profile.  I even contacted a company that makes the straps, but they didn't have a info for the many newer tire profiles.  I ended up getting an adjustable length & width type, but that isn't as convenient as ones designed to fit.

My best suggestion is to measure the tire height and width in inches and try to find a more conventional size that is fairly close to that. Maybe a car dealer would let you walk around their lot with a tape measure? Then order basket straps of that size. The alternative is to just guess: if the 16" basket size is too big, try a 15" or even 14". Trouble is, different strap makers make somewhat different lengths and widths. If the originals came from Acme, get the smaller size from them as well, so that it comes from the same strap supplier.

I was reluctant to try to use a spacer with the too-large straps. Too many variables for me to be comfortable with that.  The straps often loosen in the first 50 miles of travel anyway, e.g. tire flexing, dolly bouncing, temperature changes, etc.  I was just too worried any spacer I used might slip out and there is no way to know it happened.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

Paul M

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Re: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2017, 12:24:42 PM »
Gary - thank you for the comments.

My preference is also to get a set of straps small enough to fit snugly without modification.  I haven't had any luck locating them.  It seems they only come in standard size (which I have), x-large for the bigger tires, and adjustable (which I had originally but are not as durable or as easy to use especially on smaller cars).  When I previously inquired to ACME, they recommended the adjustable ones.

If anyone can suggest where to get smaller ones, please chime in.
Paul & Carol
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
2014 Winnebago Vista 35F
2016 Honda Fit on ACME EZE Tow Dolly

WILDEBILL308

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Re: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2017, 03:25:59 PM »
Gary, I had the same problem with the straps loosening till I started using the method that I posted on earlier. After I started doing it this way they were never loose later.
Bill
2003 Bounder 38N
300 HP 5.9 Cummins
Allison 3000MH Trans.
Towing 2014 Honda CRV
Home base Fort Worth, Texas
A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way.
-Mark Twain-

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2017, 10:40:29 AM »
Ebay has several suppliers. I got mine from this vendor, who was very helpful in trying to find something that fit. There are only a couple different styles of basket straps, so you can choose any that are similar in how they attach to the dolly.

http://stores.ebay.com/PDQ-ENTERPRISES-Store?_trksid=p2047675.l2563
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

Paul M

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Re: Dolly Tie-Down Straps Too Long
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2017, 04:31:38 PM »
Gary, thanks again for the link.  I will see if they have something to fit.
Paul & Carol
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
2014 Winnebago Vista 35F
2016 Honda Fit on ACME EZE Tow Dolly