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Old 05-04-2013, 12:09 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by lindy View Post
On one hand if your "LEGAL" in your state of registration you'll be legal in all 50 states. That being said what will your Gross Combined Weight be with the Saturn in tow? If the Saturn in tow puts you right at Gross Combined Weight, with the camper loaded for camping, then for SAFETY SAKES I'd for sure use and aux brake sys on the Saturn.
Lindy, I did some reading and what I am seeing, your first statement may not be true. From what I found, you have to observe the towing laws in the state you are traveling in. The laws can change when crossing any state line. For instance in Mississippi, the tow weight is 2000 lbs and over, you have to have brakes in the towed vehicle. Also, max tow speed is 55 mph.
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:11 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by awwall View Post

Lindy, I did some reading and what I am seeing, your first statement may not be true. From what I found, you have to observe the towing laws in the state you are traveling in. The laws can change when crossing any state line. For instance in Mississippi, the tow weight is 2000 lbs and over, you have to have brakes in the towed vehicle. Also, max tow speed is 55 mph.
Was that commercial requirements or private?
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:17 AM   #13
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Turbs, from what I could tell it is for Private. See this link and read the first paragraph.

Please correct me is I am reading something wrong.

State by State RV and Towing Laws
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:27 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by awwall View Post
Turbs, from what I could tell it is for Private. See this link and read the first paragraph.

Please correct me is I am reading something wrong.

State by State RV and Towing Laws
I would have to agree with you.
Legal in your state doesn't necessarily mean legal in others.
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Old 05-04-2013, 11:29 AM   #15
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Lots of controversy whether you "need" a supplemental braking system or not. One question you could ask yourself is would you rather be hit in the face with a baseball thrown at you by a 5 year old, or a major league pitcher? It's the same ball, same weight(?), same everything so what's different? Why not consider your toad to be that baseball, and then think of all that free weight rolling down the road with no brakes of it's own, and imagine the forces put on your towing vehicle with a panic stop. Your state may require a brake-away system to apply brakes if the vehicle comes loose. Check with your chassis manufacturer too as several specify supp brakes over 1500 lbs, even with a class IV hitch.

I hope you will read and consider the information presented here... The Physics of Towed Vehicles

The truth is that most states require you to be able to stop in a specified distance at a predetermined speed. If you can do that and you feel comfortable with your decision, nothing anyone will say will change your mind, only experience.
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Old 05-04-2013, 08:25 PM   #16
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This is from our 2010 E-450 Owner's Guide, page 186, in the section Tires, Wheels and Loading, in the paragraph on Trailer Brakes:


The braking system of the tow vehicle is rated for operation at the
GVWR not GCWR.

You probably need brakes on anything that you tow with a Class C regardless of the state law. The Ford E-450 Class C chassis brakes are not rated to handle as much as it can tow. The E-450 has the heavy duty components for the power train to tow the weight but the brakes are only for the gross weight of the chassis (14,500 pounds for ours), not the gross combined weight (20,000 pounds for ours). You can only meet this if the total weight of your empty coach, everything in it, and whatever you tow are still below the gross vehicle weight rating. Our 2011 model year coach has a cargo carrying capacity of about 2500 pounds, so with people, gasoline, and lots of stuff, we're near gross without a toad.

I see in the 2013 Sunseeker brochure that they have increased the GCWR to 22,000 pounds, but didn't increase the GVWR, so they can tow more but they won't stop any more.

Get a braking system for your towed vehicle. Some day you'll need to make a panic stop and will want all the help you can get.

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Old 05-04-2013, 10:21 PM   #17
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A friend with a 38' gasser (I didn't know there were any that big) tows a Honda CRV. He reckons that the proportional increased weight of the CRV in the combined "train" weight is so small as not to need aux braking.

We haven't embraced the "toad" community yet, since our daily driver (an 03 Kia Sedona) weighs 4800 pounds and would need over $3200 spending on it to make it flat towable. The chances of us finding a dolly that could handle a 4800 pound FWD car that weighs less than 200 pounds are so slim as to be negligible. The hitch on the MH is rated at 5000 pounds. The Sedona is our only vehicle other than the MH.

We've been toying with the idea of finding a dirt-cheap car of a brand nobody wants (like maybe a Yugo or a Renault) just to use as a toad. I wish I'd kept our Renault 18i wagon that we owned about a decade ago, but DW can't drive a stick-shift. I've been looking at the Saturn LW, a wagon with a 3-liter V6, but DW is leery of vehicles from defunct manufacturers. My experience many years ago with a 1958 DKW has blackened her view of "weird" cars.

Can anyone confirm whether the LW series Saturns fit the general category that "all Saturns are flat towable without any mods required?

Still trying to figure the best way to proceed.
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Old 05-04-2013, 10:32 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by F and E Damp View Post
A friend with a 38' gasser (I didn't know there were any that big) tows a Honda CRV. He reckons that the proportional increased weight of the CRV in the combined "train" weight is so small as not to need aux braking.

We haven't embraced the "toad" community yet, since our daily driver (an 03 Kia Sedona) weighs 4800 pounds and would need over $3200 spending on it to make it flat towable. The chances of us finding a dolly that could handle a 4800 pound FWD car that weighs less than 200 pounds are so slim as to be negligible. The hitch on the MH is rated at 5000 pounds. The Sedona is our only vehicle other than the MH.

We've been toying with the idea of finding a dirt-cheap car of a brand nobody wants (like maybe a Yugo or a Renault) just to use as a toad. I wish I'd kept our Renault 18i wagon that we owned about a decade ago, but DW can't drive a stick-shift. I've been looking at the Saturn LW, a wagon with a 3-liter V6, but DW is leery of vehicles from defunct manufacturers. My experience many years ago with a 1958 DKW has blackened her view of "weird" cars.

Can anyone confirm whether the LW series Saturns fit the general category that "all Saturns are flat towable without any mods required?

Still trying to figure the best way to proceed.

If you are interested in flat towing send me a pm as I have a very nice towbar I would sell all you would need is the base plates for you toad. I spent bout $1400 to have it intalled and I would take much less than that.
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Old 05-04-2013, 11:21 PM   #19
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The weight of your saturn with a tank of fuel is almost 2900 lbs. You should take the Saturn to a weight scale and have the weight checked. The curb weight is listed at 2788 lbs. If by change you were to put some items into the car you could be over the 3000# limit.
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Old 05-05-2013, 08:16 AM   #20
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Thanks all for the suggestions- Now which Aux braking system would be the best?

I have been convinced from the comments that a supplemental braking system is the way to go. Now which one? The Roadmaster Invisibrake looks good but are there others just as good?
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