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Old 01-22-2010, 07:34 PM   #1
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Can you pull a trailer with a trailer?

Good evening. This is my first post on the forum. I am a 36 year old insurance executive. I used to go camping with my cousins in a 1978 International whein I was a kid. My twin brother and I loved it. We were in Region 5, Southern Illinois Unit. My Dad's cousin (more like a grandpa to me) was a charter member of the unit and he and his wife had perfect attendance for over 25 years to all of their unit's rallys. It has been a while, but I am wanting to get an airstream. I now live in the Tampa, FL area. I have a question. Is it possible to pull two trailers at the same time. It might seem a little crazy, but I need to know if it is possible. I would want to pull a 31 or 34 footer, then pull a bambi behind that one. Have have you ever seen this done? Is it safe or even legal?

Thanks, Jeff
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:39 PM   #2
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Hello Jeff. Welcome to the forums!

A number of states (but not all) permit a 5th wheel trailer with another trailer pulled behind. The usual combo I see is a 5th wheel pulling a fishing boat but this is not specified as far as I know. You'll never be able to back up until the 2nd unit is unhitched. Truck stops for gassing up - yes. I think there'd be a lot of problems at most standard auto gas stations.

Trailer on a hitch pulling another trailer? Can't say I've heard of that. Wonder if it's legal anywhere. But call your highway patrol -- I've seen them attending camping shows and they know their stuff!
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:41 PM   #3
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On a recent trip to Arkansas I did see a 5th wheel pulling about 25' SOB.

Trailer on trailer?...... I really doubt it.
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:46 PM   #4
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Here is my idea. I want to travel around the country. My wife homeschools the kids, so we could go anywhere at anytime, but I still have to work. If I pull a trailer to live in, I still need an office. My thought was to pull a really small trailer behind the 31 or 34 footer for the office. Would it be any better to get a 325 or 345 motorhome, then pull a truck with a bambi??? Just thinking outside the box..
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:48 PM   #5
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Yikes!
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:49 PM   #6
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Yep, but trying to back it up is a real adventure. Try it and you'll understand what I mean in about 10 nanoseconds.

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Old 01-22-2010, 08:03 PM   #7
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Last summer at Cochiti Lake State Park in New Mexico I was amused to see a number of "bumper pull" travel trailers towing boat trailers behind. This would not be legal in Arizona, which does, however, allow a trailer behind a fifth wheel. Laws vary from state to state.

A few years ago the Arizona State Lottery had a TV ad showing a lucky winner towing a travel trailer and a number of toys on trailers behind his pickup!

p.s.... My Sovereign came with a receiver mount below the rear bumper, I've thought about hooking up the Bambi to it just for a photo op.
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Old 01-22-2010, 08:23 PM   #8
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You can do it if you have a 1929 Rumley tractor as a puller.
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Old 01-22-2010, 08:30 PM   #9
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Hi, I saw a motor home pulling small trailer.
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Old 01-22-2010, 08:41 PM   #10
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No way! As an insurance exec- I'm surprised you even have to ask this. A motorhome pulling a full size trailer- sure. But not a set up that has two different pivot points (hitches)- I don't think that is legal anywhere and it sure as heck isn't real smart (sorry to be blunt about it). The fifth wheel and extra trailer combo isn't even legal in all states. Also most states have a total length law as well.
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:00 PM   #11
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Some states allow different combinations but when you arive in a state that doesn't you have to leave one behind.
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:07 PM   #12
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They're called tandems and the legal requirements vary considerably from one state to the next. In Minnesota, for it to be legal, the tow vehicle has to be a pickup and the 1st trailer must be attached to it with a fifth wheel hitch. There are also length and weight limits.

Outside a few specialized situations, most people don't find it practical (When it's done it's usually a camper and a boat).

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Old 01-22-2010, 09:11 PM   #13
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In NM the first trailer does not have to be a 5th wheel but it has to have brakes. The total length of your parade is limited to about 60'

The 1st trailer used to have to be a 5th wheel but the law was changed.
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:21 PM   #14
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I think a better solution would be a large slide in truck camper pulling a trailer. Not sure the feasability of disconnecting the slideout so you could still work while the truck is gone though.

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Old 01-22-2010, 09:26 PM   #15
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Howdy and welcome to airforums.com, Jeff!

If you need an office, either tow a travel trailer with a motor home, or just get a bigger trailer. You will definitely live to realize that it's a better idea than towing two trailers.

To paraphrase Ma Kettle, "Onliest folks I seen doon' thet thar was jes' plane dummer'n paste."
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:31 PM   #16
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this info might help:

http://www.towingworld.com/articles/TowingLaws.htm
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Old 01-22-2010, 11:01 PM   #17
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Some other alternatives to consider:

- You can tow with a van conversion. Check out Sportsmobile's web site. The short-wheelbase E350 vans retain considerable towing capacity even when converted, and Sportsmobile does custom conversions that would be suitable as offices. We were considering this but concluded that we needed a pickup for 4wd.

- You can tow with a slide-in camper in the pickup. Most of these have electric jacks that make it reasonable to pull out the camper and lower it to the ground at a campsite, though some campgrounds don't allow this on aesthetic grounds. Pickup campers have changed in recent years and are larger and better appointed but also fairly expensive for their square footage.

- You can tow a small trailer behind a motorhome.

- You can tow behind a second car, assuming your wife or one of the kids drives. There are a number of minivans and crossovers that have towing capacities around 3500-4500 pounds, which would work for a Bambi.
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Old 01-23-2010, 05:38 AM   #18
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I would get an AS motorhome and tow my office trailer.
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Old 01-23-2010, 05:46 AM   #19
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A few years ago there was a post about someone who used their brand new TV to tow a brand new AS and a boat behind that. As I recall, all three were totaled.
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Old 01-23-2010, 06:13 AM   #20
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Something else to consider is that most RV parks allow one trailer per site (plus a tent or two). You might have trouble with some places allowing you to have a 31'/34' AND a Bambi on the same site. Space limitations in many sites may make this impossible as well.
I wouldn't even consider towing a trailer behind our Airstream trailer (even if it were another Airstream). Such a concoction, whether technically legal or not, would be just begging for a huge disaster on the road. You would also be inviting frame trouble for the 31'/34' as well (the general concensus is that a bike rack attached to the rear of an Airstream will cause frame trouble--nevermind attaching another trailer to jerk the rear around).
If this were my problem, I would consider a stout van as the tow vehicle that could be outfitted with an office in the rear or, as mentioned, a slide in camper in a pickup.
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