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Old 05-08-2018, 07:52 PM   #1
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Towing a small car hauler?

We just made the transition from RV trailers (and 5th wheels) to motorhomes. I'm interested in towing our Mini Cooper Roadster which is not suitable for flat towing. I've seen lots of dolly solutions but I'm not crazy about that answer. I can't find any discussions about using a small car haul trailer, but this car is just 12' long and only weighs about 2600# so I'm thinking a 12' flat bed trailer should do the job. Is anyone doing this? Why or why not? Thanks for any help.
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Old 05-08-2018, 09:36 PM   #2
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how about here? It's UK but they said international.
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Old 05-09-2018, 10:01 AM   #3
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I use a dolly. Just a couple questions.

What does a 12ft flatbed trailer weigh? What will your tongue weight be? Where will you store the trailer at the campgrounds? Keep in mind that tongue weight is subtracted from OCCC.

I assume the trailer would need to be licensed - the dolly doesn't (at least in my state)

That said, it would be easier to load the car on the trailer than on a dolly.
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Old 05-09-2018, 11:04 AM   #4
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That said, it would be easier to load the car on the trailer than on a dolly.
Why would it be easier? Seems like a very similar process, but wouldn't the trailer need all four wheels to be cinched down, rather than just two with the dolly?

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Old 05-09-2018, 11:22 AM   #5
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Why would it be easier? Seems like a very similar process, but wouldn't the trailer need all four wheels to be cinched down, rather than just two with the dolly?

Dave
I think one could avoid getting under the car on the ground. Also less time on the ground putting on straps. I'm very anal about getting the car centered on the dolly (within 1/2 inch) - I think there would be a little more leeway on the trailer. Likely not quite so critical to have the straps (or whatever tie down method used) exactly centered.

The trailer itself would pivot vs the car and dolly.

Less tire wear on the toad (but overridden by the tirewear on the trailer). Less wear and tear on the toad drivetrain and suspension.

I've thought about trailer towing as my Audi's are not towable 4 down or dolly towed - but they weigh about 3800 lbs and adding the weight of the trailer would likely put me over tow capacity and/or reduce OCCC.
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Old 05-09-2018, 03:47 PM   #6
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Car hauler

Just started towing. Our car was 12’5” and 2100 lbs.

Went with a tandem 14’ aluminum landscape trailer with no sides. Same basic trailer but half the price. Only approx 1100 lbs.
Car is placed to the back of the trailer, leaving around a foot in front.

Use ratchet straps on the rear tie down in middle and the front tow hook. Ours involves piping out the small piece in the front bumper and screwing in the eye hook in the spare tire wrench bag.

Biggest challenge is the getting up a 4’ long ramp. Need some blocks to lift the front of the car to no hit bumper on ramp and Lift the back wheels to clear the center of the car when the front wheels are on the deck.

Check your door clearance if the genders are not removable.

Easy to back up. Dollies and flat tow cannot be backed up.
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Old 05-09-2018, 03:53 PM   #7
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<snip>

Easy to back up. Dollies and flat tow cannot be backed up.
I back up my ACME EZTow dolly all the time - pretty simple to do. It is easier with the car on it than without.
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Old 05-09-2018, 04:40 PM   #8
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We pulled a 2005 Mini Cooper S on a dolly. It was easy to setup and down.

My issue was finding a way to get the dolly out of the way at the campsites. I would think a trailer would be even more difficult to move around and also find a space for it. The dolly often fit under the rear bumper at the campsite, or off to the side next to the picnic table. I was able to grunt, get dirty and complain my way to getting it out of the way. I would think that a trailer is even more difficult to stow off to the side or rear. (at least in my experience). Perhaps you don't move all that often and it will not be a concern? Thus, being able to move the trailer by hand might, or might not be an issue. Slight hills made the tow dolly a bit of a challenge for this old guy.
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Old 05-09-2018, 04:54 PM   #9
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I back up my ACME EZTow dolly all the time - pretty simple to do. It is easier with the car on it than without.
The couple of brands that I looked at allowed the tongue to pivot at the car end and it was not recommended to back up more than a few feet. Two pivots, the ball and the dolly end make it difficult.

You may have a model without the pivot on the dolly.

The other reason we didn’t get the dolly is the need for lights on the vehicle being towed. Magnetic stick on. Not all states and provinces allow towing without the remote lights.
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Old 05-09-2018, 04:56 PM   #10
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Dave - agree, trying to move an 1100 lb trailer vs a 380 lb dolly would be challenging. I suppose one could put a hitch on the toad.

Usually, if we get a pull thru, I just leave the dolly attached. I will store mostly under the motor home if I remove it.

In Moab last year, I had a back in site and stowed the dolly next to the car. As we were leaving early the following morning, I put the car on the dolly and backed it into the space in the evening so as not to disturb the neighbors at 6am.
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Old 05-09-2018, 04:57 PM   #11
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First season for us. Will experience same challenge. Most places allow dropping the trailer in the parking lot before going in.
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Old 05-09-2018, 04:58 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allanrhamilton View Post
Just started towing. Our car was 12’5” and 2100 lbs.

Went with a tandem 14’ aluminum landscape trailer with no sides. Same basic trailer but half the price. Only approx 1100 lbs.
Car is placed to the back of the trailer, leaving around a foot in front.

Use ratchet straps on the rear tie down in middle and the front tow hook. Ours involves piping out the small piece in the front bumper and screwing in the eye hook in the spare tire wrench bag.

Biggest challenge is the getting up a 4’ long ramp. Need some blocks to lift the front of the car to no hit bumper on ramp and Lift the back wheels to clear the center of the car when the front wheels are on the deck.

Check your door clearance if the genders are not removable.

Easy to back up. Dollies and flat tow cannot be backed up.
Have you tried cranking up on the trailer jack. I do it all the time to make the angle less for loading.
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Old 05-09-2018, 05:24 PM   #13
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I am not entirely sure what your car has (auto or manual) but, you should talk to Remco. The make a pump for automatics that works like no body's business. I have sold and installed dozens of them and had one on my own car for years. Much easier than hooking and unhooking a trailer and finding space for it. Just saying Towing – Remco Good luck with whatever you do.
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Old 05-09-2018, 10:27 PM   #14
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Great discussion so far... Thanks! I think I'm starting to favor going with a tow dolly. Now... do I need one with electric brakes? How do I connect the toad's brake lights to the MH? Does the toad's steering have to be unlocked or should it remain locked while on the dolly? Does anything have to be done for the toad's rear axle/wheels? BTW, the toad is an automatic. Thanks again.
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Old 05-14-2018, 08:39 AM   #15
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The nicest tow solution I have seen is a set of hub releases , what is found on older 4wd cars and Jeeps that when set allow the front wheels to freewheel.

Installed on the wheels that drive the car , when unlocked there is no motion of axles or the tranny.

This is a great solution , as it takes only a second or two to turn to lock , and the car is now ready to drive.

Haven't seen them advertised in magazines lately , but they may still be out there.
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