EPDM Coatings
rvupgradestore.com Composet Products Custom Yacht Interiors

Author Topic: Flat tow or toad?  (Read 6130 times)

driftless shifter

  • ---
  • Posts: 2409
  • A Luddite with a stupid phone
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #30 on: December 07, 2015, 08:29:14 PM »
Another vote for tow dollies, Any front drive car you purchase, within the weight limit is towable, no additional expense! no new lube pump for a different application no new base plate. We all know the trailer plugs are prone to malfunction and you lose trailer lights or electric brakes or something, woe to the toad when the lube pump wire fails. Then there's the procedure that has to be followed for transmissions that can be flat towed, Pull this fuse, or flip that switch, start it cycle the gears just so, repeat every so many miles or hours. With a dolly drive it on, chain it down check chains 1/2 hour out and whenever you stretch your legs, I also thump all my tires at the same time. I spent the money once, less than what I've seen spent on a flat toad rig, and it will out last a couple different toads. If money wasn't part of the equation, I might go flat tow, but a dolly is way cheaper in the long run. As far as moving the dolly by hand I don't, one of my toads had a hitch so I parked it that way. I have no hitch on my current toad, drive thrus I pull in too far, drop the dolly and back up over it. For back in spots I just back it in drop it and back up a couple more feet. They aren't that hard to back up just don't let them jack around very far. I have been pulling trailers for many years so maybe it just seems easy to me.

Bill
Bill & Nan
(o\_!_/o)
93 bounder 34, chevy chassis
couple of aircooled vw's, 1 fast(sold), 1 reliable(sold).  Dubless : (
USN '76-'80, 1 boat, USS Blandy, DD 943.
I'm an analog guy in a digital age.

NY_Dutch

  • ---
  • Posts: 3432
  • Following the warm weather!
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #31 on: December 07, 2015, 09:56:57 PM »
...woe to the toad when the lube pump wire fails...
Just to be clear, there is no "woe" in the unlikely event of a lube pump failure. An alarm sounds and a red LED lights up instantly in the coach, and you have plenty time to safely pull off the road before any transmission damage occurs. If the problem is a simple loose plug, then the fix is obvious. If the fix is not obvious and easily done, you have two options; if a co-pilot is on board, just unhook the toad and have the co-pilot drive it normally until you reach a location where further diagnostics and repairs can be performed. Or if there's no co-pilot, just reach in, start the engine, and continue on to the location. I'll just add that in nearly 50,000 miles towing two different toads, I have never had to use either option.

What are the options when a tow dolly looses a wheel bearing? Or a basket strap fails? Or a platform pivot fails? I've seen all of those occur over the years, but I've never seen or even talked to anyone that has had a Remco lube pump fail.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

Gary RV_Wizard

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 60774
  • RVer Emeritus
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #32 on: December 08, 2015, 10:27:40 AM »
If convenience and minimal physical effort is the top priority, then flat tow is the way to go. I don't think a dolly is a terrible pain, but it does involve some extra work and may be a nuisance is some campgrounds.
Gary
--------------
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

bucks2

  • Guest
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #33 on: December 08, 2015, 10:48:15 AM »
And the extra maintenance of packing wheel bearings, repainting chips, and two extra tires to buy, along with straps and the extra effort to check them at every stop. (like those terribly bothersome tag axles. I hear people that don't have one complain about how expensive the tag axles are to maintain every so often)

Really doesn't make a difference, if you want a dolly get one. You'll find a way to make it work or you'll not take your toad on some trips or maybe even stop travelling altogether. If you flat tow and have to eat ramen noodles for 2 months to pay for it you'll resent the cost and be unhappy with it. Find a method that works for you after you think about what you really want to do. Trying a dolly and then changing to flat tow is an expense you don't really need.

KEn

driftless shifter

  • ---
  • Posts: 2409
  • A Luddite with a stupid phone
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #34 on: December 08, 2015, 11:21:24 AM »
Toads can lose wheel bearings too. I use chains instead of straps. The pivot point is less likely to fail than an electric pump. The dolly would have to be very old or high mileage. A dolly is a one time expense that can tow multiple vehicles without added expense every time you obtain a new toad. A brand new dolly can be bought for less than most flat tow accessories, about $1500, you can find them used for half that. Most states you don't have to even register them. Like anything else mechanical take care of it and it will take care of you.

Here's a link to a blog that lays out pros and cons between the two quite nicely.
http://www.rvlove.com/2015/08/11/faq-pros-cons-tow-dolly-4-down/#sthash.8ykrLG4a.dpbs

This is a legitimate question, not a poke in the eye.
 Will the warning light, for the pump, still work if the pig tail snags and fails?

Bill
Bill & Nan
(o\_!_/o)
93 bounder 34, chevy chassis
couple of aircooled vw's, 1 fast(sold), 1 reliable(sold).  Dubless : (
USN '76-'80, 1 boat, USS Blandy, DD 943.
I'm an analog guy in a digital age.

NY_Dutch

  • ---
  • Posts: 3432
  • Following the warm weather!
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #35 on: December 08, 2015, 11:53:52 AM »

This is a legitimate question, not a poke in the eye.
 Will the warning light, for the pump, still work if the pig tail snags and fails?

Bill

Yes, Bill, the alarm does sound in that situation, just as it sounds if you switch on in the coach without plugging in the cable at all. And if the cable is connected, but you forget to turn on the control switch in the coach, the alarm also sounds when you turn on the ignition switch.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

BLAKDUKE

  • ---
  • Posts: 374
  • point rig west, don't stop till you hit surf
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #36 on: December 09, 2015, 05:27:03 PM »
To the original poster:

Based on all of the posts in this thread, I think you have all of the major opinions from both sides of the discussion.  Each one is firmly convinced that their way is the right way to go. None of us can tell the absolute best way to go, you have to decide for yourself.
Good luck and let us know what you decide.
Al Kahl
2000 CruiseMaster by Georgie Boy DP

1PlasticMan1

  • ---
  • Posts: 225
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #37 on: December 09, 2015, 07:50:04 PM »
Well, I have gone 180 degrees after starting to add up what it would cost to flat tow the T & C. - $3,500.00, and at this time can't justify it.  Also, have a lifetime warranty on the drive train, and putting a external lube pump on the tranny may kill it, as the manual states "RECREATIONAL TOWING FOR THIS VEHICLE IS NOT RECOMMENDED".  "NOTE:  If the vehicle requires towing make sure all four wheels are off the ground."  Have been practicing more with the Rover towing the Tow Dolly in the driveway, and I can get it pretty much where I need it to expend very little physical effort to connect to the coach.  Also, have been practicing with loading/unloading the T & C on the Tow Dolly and feel that I'm down to 20 minutes or less. Will be going around the country come March, so should get a lot of practice and will probably rethink when the trip is over sometime in June.  Amazing what $3K + will do to your thinking.
2016 Bounder 33C
2008 T&C - Ltd.
2010 LR2
and Frisco

deloni

  • ---
  • Posts: 62
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #38 on: December 09, 2015, 08:12:38 PM »
Does flat towing reduce gas mileage on RV and increase tire wear on towed vehicle?
(newbie RV'r here)
Would love to have my little '08 Elantra w/me  :)
Homebase: Florida, The Sunshine State
Love you bro, "RoadHog" 8/18/57-5/15/15

Mavarick

  • ---
  • Posts: 2030
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #39 on: December 09, 2015, 08:25:14 PM »
Yes to both questions. All towing reduces your mileage to the Rv somewhat and flat towing will increase tire wear as compared to what is on the odometer of the toad. I purchased a CRV like most because it is very simple to flat tow and I needed a vehicle for around town. I have now toed the CRV more miles than what is on the odometer and am considering tires this next season. My CRV causes a loss of app. 1 MPG vs. my 18' enclosed trlr I used to tow which would kill my MPG by 1-2 easy depending on my loaded weight. Everything has a price but I much prefer the CRV 4 down over anything else I have considered. I also found the best price for tow bars and Air Force one by asking for a package price through PPL  http://www.pplmotorhomes.com/parts/rv_parts_rv_accessories.htm 
I did all the installation so can't compare labor on that, good luck.
2009 Tiffin Allegro Bus 43 QRP
Powerglide Chassis, 425 Cummins, Allison 6 Speed
2010 CRV - Blackhawk 2 - Air Force One
2002 Heritage Classic
Washington State

driftless shifter

  • ---
  • Posts: 2409
  • A Luddite with a stupid phone
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #40 on: December 09, 2015, 08:29:42 PM »
Well, I have gone 180 degrees after starting to add up what it would cost to flat tow the T & C. - $3,500.00, and at this time can't justify it.  Also, have a lifetime warranty on the drive train, and putting a external lube pump on the tranny may kill it, as the manual states "RECREATIONAL TOWING FOR THIS VEHICLE IS NOT RECOMMENDED".  "NOTE:  If the vehicle requires towing make sure all four wheels are off the ground."  Have been practicing more with the Rover towing the Tow Dolly in the driveway, and I can get it pretty much where I need it to expend very little physical effort to connect to the coach.  Also, have been practicing with loading/unloading the T & C on the Tow Dolly and feel that I'm down to 20 minutes or less. Will be going around the country come March, so should get a lot of practice and will probably rethink when the trip is over sometime in June.  Amazing what $3K + will do to your thinking.

Wait a minute! Your NOTE: says all four wheels off the ground for towing! Is this car all wheel drive? If so a dolly won't work! You will fry something very expensive if you use a dolly. You need a trailer or another toad. Any cheap, front wheel drive car will do. Think of used front drive cars that have between 100 and 150 K miles on them.

Bill
Bill & Nan
(o\_!_/o)
93 bounder 34, chevy chassis
couple of aircooled vw's, 1 fast(sold), 1 reliable(sold).  Dubless : (
USN '76-'80, 1 boat, USS Blandy, DD 943.
I'm an analog guy in a digital age.

1PlasticMan1

  • ---
  • Posts: 225
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #41 on: December 09, 2015, 08:32:22 PM »
NOTE: says all four wheels off the ground for towing!  This is verbage from my owner's manual.  My car is front wheel drive.  Sorry for the confusion.
2016 Bounder 33C
2008 T&C - Ltd.
2010 LR2
and Frisco

garyb1st

  • ---
  • Posts: 2125
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #42 on: December 09, 2015, 09:42:35 PM »
NOTE: says all four wheels off the ground for towing!  This is verbage from my owner's manual.  My car is front wheel drive.  Sorry for the confusion.

My Infiniti SUV is 2 wheel drive.  Manual says it's only towable on a trailer.  I've heard that some folks with rear wheel drive vehicles simply back onto the dolly.  Anyone successfully towing a vehicle that way?
Gary B1st

2005 Pace Arrow 35G
2016 Jeep Wrangler

zmotorsports

  • ---
  • Posts: 1653
  • Hardcore Gearhead
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #43 on: December 09, 2015, 09:53:49 PM »
Yes to both questions. All towing reduces your mileage to the Rv somewhat and flat towing will increase tire wear as compared to what is on the odometer of the toad. I purchased a CRV like most because it is very simple to flat tow and I needed a vehicle for around town. I have now toed the CRV more miles than what is on the odometer and am considering tires this next season. My CRV causes a loss of app. 1 MPG vs. my 18' enclosed trlr I used to tow which would kill my MPG by 1-2 easy depending on my loaded weight. Everything has a price but I much prefer the CRV 4 down over anything else I have considered. I also found the best price for tow bars and Air Force one by asking for a package price through PPL  http://www.pplmotorhomes.com/parts/rv_parts_rv_accessories.htm 
I did all the installation so can't compare labor on that, good luck.

Maverick, I remember seein quite a few posts a few years back where you were commenting on towing your enclosed trailer.  Do you now not tow the trailer any longer?  Just curious.

Mike.
2003 Monaco Dynasty Baroness
2008 Haulmark Edge 26'
2011 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
FMCA# F315002

Ernie n Tara

  • ---
  • Posts: 3271
  • Life is Good - Together
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #44 on: December 10, 2015, 07:54:51 AM »
After all of the discussion, go to an RV park and count. You'll find 4 down at 8 to 10 times as many as the dollies.

Ernie
Ernie 'n Tara

2011 Winn Journey 34y
2012 Jeep Rubicon - Dozer (orange - kinda)
2006 Jeep Wrangler

Gary RV_Wizard

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 60774
  • RVer Emeritus
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #45 on: December 10, 2015, 08:26:26 AM »
Quote
I've heard that some folks with rear wheel drive vehicles simply back onto the dolly.  Anyone successfully towing a vehicle that way?

Don't even consider it!  The car front end design makes it chancy at best and prone to disaster, both mechanical and collision. Yes, a few people do it. And other downright crazy things as well.
Gary
--------------
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

garyb1st

  • ---
  • Posts: 2125
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #46 on: December 10, 2015, 08:41:24 AM »
Don't even consider it!  The car front end design makes it chancy at best and prone to disaster, both mechanical and collision. Yes, a few people do it. And other downright crazy things as well.

Thanks Gary. 
Gary B1st

2005 Pace Arrow 35G
2016 Jeep Wrangler

Mavarick

  • ---
  • Posts: 2030
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #47 on: December 10, 2015, 06:53:54 PM »
Quote
Maverick, I remember seeing quite a few posts a few years back where you were commenting on towing your enclosed trailer.  Do you now not tow the trailer any longer?  Just curious.

Mike, when we were going to MC shows (building choppers) I could haul up to 5 Harleys or 4 customs in that enclosed trlr. Now we pretty much travel just like everyone else so since we have 3 rescues I tow a CRV instead of the trlr. This way we can take the dogs when we leave the Rv park etc. The trlr was ok but I would prefer towing 4 down unless I had something really special that I wanted to put in the trlr. A couple of customs qualified as something special! ;)

2009 Tiffin Allegro Bus 43 QRP
Powerglide Chassis, 425 Cummins, Allison 6 Speed
2010 CRV - Blackhawk 2 - Air Force One
2002 Heritage Classic
Washington State

zmotorsports

  • ---
  • Posts: 1653
  • Hardcore Gearhead
Re: Flat tow or toad?
« Reply #48 on: December 10, 2015, 07:41:27 PM »
Mike, when we were going to MC shows (building choppers) I could haul up to 5 Harleys or 4 customs in that enclosed trlr. Now we pretty much travel just like everyone else so since we have 3 rescues I tow a CRV instead of the trlr. This way we can take the dogs when we leave the Rv park etc. The trlr was ok but I would prefer towing 4 down unless I had something really special that I wanted to put in the trlr. A couple of customs qualified as something special! ;)

Great.  Thanks for the reply.  I too generally tow 4-down anymore but we still tow the trailer when we want to take the Harley and the Jeep especially if we are not hop, skip and jumping around from campground to campground and have a single destination in mind.

I agree, 4-down is much easier and convenient.

Mike.
2003 Monaco Dynasty Baroness
2008 Haulmark Edge 26'
2011 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
FMCA# F315002

 

Hosted by Over The Network