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Author Topic: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?  (Read 10751 times)

drhines

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What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« on: August 20, 2005, 06:18:59 PM »
Hello - I am a newbie to this board. In 2003 I bought a new Newmar Mountainaire but had to later sell it about a year later due to taking care of 4 young grandsons. My problem with the motorhome was that I love riding motorcycles and we always had to decide whether to take a vehicle or the bikes.

Now I am trying to make my mine up between a 5th Wheel Toyhauler - 40 Ft All American Sport by Forest River that will give ample living area as well as plenty of room to haul a couple of motorcycles or to just buy a 5th Wheel  rig and maybe tow the bikes behind it on a trailer.

Does anyone know of an internet site that publishes states that allow double trailers to be pulled without having to check out each state? Someone told me some states would let you pull double trailers with a 5th wheel rig but not a travel trailer. I don't have a clue.

The reason for checking out both is that the 40 ft rig at max weight is about 1000 lbs over the gross towing capacity of my new 05 F250 Ford with the 6.0 diesel, and also a 40 ft rig is not going to fit into a lot of campgrounds. I thought that if enough states allowed double trailers that a standard 5th wheel trailer would be much lighter and would resale better later if I decided I had rather have another motorhome instead of the 5th wheel. I loved the motorhome for traveling but don't see no big advantage after you get to where you are going.

Any help concerning any of these thoughts would be appreciated. I grew up in trucking business and have lots of miles driving 18 wheelers and pulling two trailers don't really bother me much although I have never done so with small rigs like I would be doing with the F250.

Doug Hines
Benton, AR

Gary RV Roamer

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2005, 09:10:57 AM »
Some states allow tandem towing only under specific conditions, e.g. by a CDL-licensed driver on an interstate, while others allow Rvs to tow boats or other conditions. Some don't allow it at all.   One of the problems is that the restrictions vary tremendously.  If you will tow only in one or two states, check with the local DMV.  If you plan to travel cross country, you will have to plan your route carefully.

There are also overall length restrictions, even on interstates.  I think it is 65 feet (except by special permit).

A Trailer Life campground guide will include a summary of vehicle regulations in each state - you might check there to get a general idea.
Gary
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Ron

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2005, 09:28:07 AM »
In addition to comment s Gary offered, be sure not to exceed your GCVWR.  Also consider auxiliary braking requirements since your Mountainair braking system does not provide for the additional weight.  In some states such as Mich that do allow towing double you cannot tow using two draw type hitches.  One must be a 5th wheel type hitch.
Personally IMHO double towing is not a good idea and should not be allowed anywhere without special inspection of the combination to be towed and driver certification.
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John From Detroit

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2005, 01:13:26 PM »
Michigan allows you to tow a BOAT TRAILER behind a 5th wheeler provided the entier assembly is not ore than the maximum length, Which I can look up if you need it but since you want to tow bikes, and that's not allowed,  You are basically out of luck here.

One suggestion.. How heavy are these bikes? There may be a way if they are not too heavy  It is not a trailer however
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Carl L

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2005, 05:13:40 PM »

Now I am trying to make my mine up between a 5th Wheel Toyhauler - 40 Ft All American Sport by Forest River that will give ample living area as well as plenty of room to haul a couple of motorcycles or to just buy a 5th Wheel  rig and maybe tow the bikes behind it on a trailer.

Does anyone know of an internet site that publishes states that allow double trailers to be pulled without having to check out each state? Someone told me some states would let you pull double trailers with a 5th wheel rig but not a travel trailer. I don't have a clue.

The reason for checking out both is that the 40 ft rig at max weight is about 1000 lbs over the gross towing capacity of my new 05 F250 Ford with the 6.0 diesel, and also a 40 ft rig is not going to fit into a lot of campgrounds. I thought that if enough states allowed double trailers that a standard 5th wheel trailer would be much lighter and would resale better later if I decided I had rather have another motorhome instead of the 5th wheel. I loved the motorhome for traveling but don't see no big advantage after you get to where you are going.

Any help concerning any of these thoughts would be appreciated. I grew up in trucking business and have lots of miles driving 18 wheelers and pulling two trailers don't really bother me much although I have never done so with small rigs like I would be doing with the F250.


Generally speaking the only states that will permit a double tow with a 5th wheel are flat Great Plains states.   The mountain west and Pacific coast states tend to forbid any double tow by a non-commercial licensee.   For example California flatly forbids any double tow by a "passenger vehicle" and permits commercial class-A licensees double tow only if they have a special endorsement.   Since an illegal double tow is a easy ticket for a state highway cop to write, you are going to have to check out the provisions for every state that you enter. 

Generally speaking the tow regs are to be found at state DMV websites.   Trailer Life's Campground Directory has a chart of state RV provisioms, but their listing for triple tows [what we call double] is singularly unhelpful being a mass of often cryptic footnotes.   

You are probably best off going to a smaller toy hauler -- how many bikes are you hauling?   Do you really need all that living space?   If the 40 footer breaks your tow limit by a half ton, a double tow is going to break it even worse.
Carl L/LA   [Forum Staff]  KI6SEZ

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cowboy49

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2005, 10:35:05 AM »
From state of Texas web site:

Combinations such as truck, travel trailer & boat or motor home, boat and towing a car 65'

Ron

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2005, 11:17:41 AM »
From state of Texas web site:

Combinations such as truck, travel trailer & boat or motor home, boat and towing a car 65'

Providing you DO NOT exceed any weight ratings GVWR, GCVWR, GAWR.  Also sufficient supplemental braking is required.
Ron & Sam-home is where we park it. Currently located   HERE

Wendy

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #7 on: August 23, 2005, 08:15:31 PM »
Don't know exactly what the rules are, but Colorado does allow double towing. I've been scared to death by truck-5th wheel-boat combos zipping by me on windy mountain roads.

Wendy
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drhines

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2005, 05:26:27 PM »
Thanks for the help so far. In answer to a couple of questions here goes:

The 40' All American Sport has a GVWR of 16,900 lbs. I have been looking at several 30-34 5th Wheel rigs with about 14,000 lbs GVWR when fully loaded. I have a 14 ft all aluminum motorcycle trailer that only weighs 500 lbs and the bike with gear weighs about the same so the only additional weight would be about a 1000 lbs. If I did this double trailer thing I would come in at about 15,000 lbs total which is 1900 lbs less than the 40' Toy Hauler and about 1000 lbs less than the capacity for my F250 diesel pickup.

I finally found a site that gives what states will allow you to pull double trailers when the second trailer is a boat trailer but does not say anything about other trailers. Most of the states that I want to go to allow double towing but still several don't.

If I buy the 40' Toy Hauler I think I will be within the towing capacity of the F250 with the bikes if I do the transporting without any fluids in holding tanks and no water supply. I don't know how inconvient that will be since I have never had to worry about weight before with the big diesel pusher motorhome.

Doug Hines

Bob_n_Amy

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2006, 09:38:57 PM »
I finally found a site that gives what states will allow you to pull double trailers

Can you share this site?

Thanks,

Bob

motojavaphil

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2006, 10:41:20 PM »
I have been going thru the same headache as you are about how to take the bikes along.  Personally I do not like the idea of the towed motorcycle trailer.  Just too much action back there for me.  The toyhauler, though heavier, is safer and easier to navigate.  I dont have your experience with the big rigs you have so my comments may not have much weight.  I did tow a 10X6 enclosed pace behind a small Jayco and though nothing ever happened I did not like it.  Moved to a 36' toybox and have not looked back.  Now that I am looking at full time and retirement I need to get a four season 5r, will be a toybox.  Just need to mate the right truck to it.  Have even considered MH's with an 18-20' trailer.  In any case good luck with your search.
Phil, Carol, Morgan (Black Lab), Ariel the Pup 
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04Duramax

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2006, 09:19:36 PM »
Case in point: Minnesota just passed a new law this year stating that the fifth wheel trailer cannot be longer than 28ft. when tandem towing. Overall length is now 70 ft, but thats not much help with the camper length restriction. My buddy just went to a D.O.T. class this week and found out about this new law, just to illustrate how quick laws can change and throw a monkey wrench into your best laid plans. Luckily my 5er I just bought last fall is 28ft. I do plan on pulling my boat in MN only.
Larry W
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PancakeBill

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2006, 09:30:53 AM »
All things considered, I think the Toy Hauler is the best bet.  An alternative is a front mount rack on the truck.  I considered doing this back when I bought my bike.  Most are a 500# limit on the bike.  However, I think it could affect handling and you have to be sure you still get good airflow into the radiator.  Another consideration is a good bug cleaner and brush.

Toy haulers come in many flavors, the Glendale Titanium gives good liiving space as well as a good sized, but nicely finished garage, complete with a side porch.  (36E41-MPRV)  I do thinkyou would need to jump a model in the truck for that one, If I remember correct, weight loaded is about 16900.  UVW well within, so light packing, minimum water you might fit. 

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motojavaphil

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Re: What States Can You Pull Two Trailers and newbie questions?
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2006, 11:51:30 PM »
I see this thread continuing and understand what you are looking at and dealing with.  My wife and I decided to never double tow again just out of safety concerns.  We have looked at the All American and it has many strengths but would be too heavy for your 3/4 ton truck.  It also had some problems in the quality area.  In the two we looked at there was a big gap between a wall and the kitchen counter.  Seemed like they were literally cutting corners.  I'd look at the Raptor or Puresport.  We found both of those to be well built and have all of the features the All American had.  In any case we figured we would be f/t in our choice and knew we would be loaded just by the nature of being who we are.  I'd say for rigs this size you will have to have a puller equal to the task to be safe.  Smaller toyboxes are out there but may not be adequate for f/t.  We did not like the bus route as it has limitations.  We have decided to get an MDT or HDT truck, set it up the way we like it, and tow with it.  Our plan will be to put an old MG Midget and the bikes in the garage area and just go.  HDT's are not super expensive, will go a million miles and tow just about anything you want to tow.  When I retire from retirement I will sell the truck.  Good luck on your search and I hope this is helpful..Phil ;)
Phil, Carol, Morgan (Black Lab), Ariel the Pup 
May The Wind Always Be At Your Back
2000 Beaver Patriot
BMW CLC, Kawi ZX10R