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Old 07-23-2002, 01:38 AM   #1
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Towing cars

I'm trying to get information on towing cars behind Classic MH.
1. I remember a response concerning a magazine articile rating
autos for towing. Does anyone know what mag/date?
2. If your towing, what are you towing.
Thanks
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Old 07-23-2002, 08:02 AM   #2
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here is a link to the dingy guide:

http://www.motorhomemagazine.com/din...uide/index.cfm

I am not currently towing a dingy but I am leaning toward a Saturn due to the fact it is towable without modification.
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Old 07-23-2002, 03:00 PM   #3
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Saturns are perhaps the MOST popular. One of my clients, a Saturn "salesman" told me a couple of years ago that MOST of his sales are to people who set up an order on-line and then just order the car. There is no funny-money on Saturns, just one price and thus none of the silly multiple-price negotiations that are part of the usual disgusting business of buying a new car

He told me that MANY of the Saturns sold -- are sold to Motorhome people who price out just what they want, and pick it up on the road as they travel -- that is have it built or sent to where they are going.

I used to drive a large Vogue MH, 43' I think it was, and after many different types of vehicles, etc. I decided that liked a car-tow trailer the best as it puts NO stress on the TOAD vehicle at all and adds another suspension under the TOAD to limit stress on the suspension as well.

Another of my cohorts decided that he liked an enclosed car trailer to keep all the "stuff" off of his car -- that is to have it more secure from weather, stones, dirt, road grime, etc. After he got his enclosed car-trailer, then he got all excited about having a really NICE towed vehicle and bought a vintage Mercedes SL convertible. Inside the tow-trailer he kept all sorts of car-care, maintenence and specialty items for his SL. Before that, he said that it was always a chore to clean up the TOAD before he wanted to use it and he always felt he should just have some sort of cheap and expendable vehicle behind him because of the abuse it got being towed all the time. Sometimes he would just stop, on a nice day in a nice scenic area, park and take a ride in his shiny red SL for no other reason but to go out with the top down.

Another one of my cohorts, all of us road warriors, kept a nice little Jeep CJ outfitted for off-road and a full dress motorcycle -- both -- in his tow-trailer.

I think someday I will once again get a nice large MH and perhaps it will be an AirStream... If I do, I think (if I can afford it at the time) that I may well get a nice shiny aluminum, enclosed, tow trailer and put a vintage Jeep CJ and a vintage Kawasaki motorcycle in there. The CJ will not be tricked out, just have the removable hard-top and be fixed up and painted up as a nice inexpensive little go anywhere jitney.
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Old 07-23-2002, 03:22 PM   #4
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The saturn is how I am leaning. Not only due to lack of additional modification but because if you don't have to have brand new you can get one for less than 2 grand. I know it will need something, but I look at it as a disposable car and I am not going to obsess over it's paint and cleaness.

I just want to solve the pound of butter problem. That is when you get to the campground/rally/beach and get all set only to find you need someting from the store that is 3-5 miles away. Biking is ok if it is not perishable, but I would rather have a car to get it with. Also I would not want to take a really nice car into some of the National Parks. I would not be happy to come out from a tour or meal only to find my classic toad being bashed to death by a Bison, or ripped up by an angry moose.
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Old 07-23-2002, 04:17 PM   #5
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Car TYowing - General

We are pursuing plans to tow a car - I own a Prize-winning 1974 VW Sunpub Beetle that has been restored to "factory new condition" We need a tow vehicle and need to know what a towed car will endure in potential damage and/or stresses and potential damages to the MH that is towing the vehicle. A Beetle weighs roughly `1600 pounds. Would like questions like what type of tow bar - costs - reliability, etc. If there is such a reference available, we would like to know where we can obtain it.
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Old 07-23-2002, 04:38 PM   #6
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WOW! That Beetle sounds very special to you. The greatest potentials for damage, per MY experience, is from:

1. Backing up and jack-knifing the MH to the TOAD with a resultant lateral twist on the car that is damaging to the front axles or worse yet if twisted badly enough bending the front and rear corners of the two vehicles together.

2. Stones thrown from MH to TOAD.

3. Wear on axles and suspension of TOAD


Since yours is a SHOW car; this might be a good reason to get an enclosed trailer...
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Old 07-23-2002, 09:26 PM   #7
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Thanks for your response Jody. Yes indeed, our 1974 Sunbug took two First Place Awards at the SE VW Expo, and it is priceless to us. Fortunately, our MH had a brush under the rear-end when we bought it. I also have a back-uip camera, so I would be able to control backing quite well. Nonetheless, we would not want to endanger "Golden Girl" in anyway and would not use her for a TOAD.
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Old 07-24-2002, 10:34 AM   #8
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I purchased a Saturn for the reasons mentioned, and also because I had worked for them for 3 years, and having visited the plant in Spring Hill,TN for training, I know their commitment to customers is real.
The cars are a good value, and I bought a very loaded 95 SL-2 with only 40000 miles on it, from a couple who had towed it behind their motorhome.
It came with the roadmaster tow set up already attached, and I need to buy the tow bar only.
It had been towed all over the US, so the tires were worn, but with the owners keeping a "bra" on the front, it has almost no scratches of any kind.
Also the side panels are a polymer on all Saturns, and do not dent.
Now if a classic benz was I my budget ( I already have a classic porsche) , with an enclosed trailer I would tow it. But having a practical and inexpensive tow car seems a ggod way to go. By the way my other choice was a jeep Wrangler, but their prices used were just too high for what you get.
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Old 07-24-2002, 11:03 AM   #9
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As usual, a good disscusion. I found the RV mag link above very interesting and would recommend it. One of canidates is a 1998
Maxima stick I use as a company car. It weights 3000lbs. Would it be to heavy?
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Old 07-24-2002, 11:05 AM   #10
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That is Soooo true on the Wranglers. But in this area, the old Jeep CJ-5s are almost free. Often below $1,000 and can be made wonderful for $3,000 more (including all mechanicals, paint, upholstery, tires, etc.) Then you end up with a $4,000 4wd that is even more "cool" than a new one!!! and you save $16,000 or so.
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Old 07-24-2002, 01:34 PM   #11
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And don't forget about the lightweight and compact other Asian 4wd vehicles. Suzuki Samurais come in both convertible and hardtop versions, are very economical to drive, have inexpensive tires etc. Or the Geo trackers etc. They are all very suitable for towing behind a motorhome because of their light weight and the N position in the transfer case. Wranglers are not very light, and the CJ transfer cases and transmissions do not like being towed without the input shaft spinning, oiling problems will occur. I have friends that tow their off roader CJ's to events, and many of them sustained damage over long distance towing without the engine running, and the gears spinning. The transmissions and transfer cases are a set up so that the moving parts will lubricate other moving parts and bearings. Most of my friends now use trailers for their rigs. i am not the absolute expert in this, but wanted to share what I experienced.
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Old 07-24-2002, 02:05 PM   #12
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You are right about the Geo and the Suzukis. They can be inexpensive to own although nowhere near the durability of Jeep. In my area Jeeps of any vintage bring bigger bucks. Lots of High school and college kids are driving them. I personally prefer the 97 and later models, with coil suspension, easy drop top, and the air bags.
A small 4 wheel drive pickup is a good choice also, especially the extra cab models.
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Old 07-24-2002, 06:10 PM   #13
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EWE is correct in my experience. Other than the Saturn, and there are certainly others, I would opt for a trailer; open or better yet enclosed. IMO, the extra money for the enclosed trailer will pay for itself in reduced depreciation on the towed vehicle -- AND the trailers retain very good resale value in this area.
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Old 07-24-2002, 09:15 PM   #14
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I like the Mercedes SL convertible enclosed in the tow behind garage stocked with car care stuff!

The AS owners manual for the 345 states the towing capacity is 2000 lbs.

I put our bicycles on a rack behind the motorhome and forgo the butter . When I want a vehicle at my destination, we take the Yukon xl and drag the Overlander behind it.

Jim
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