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 > Tow Dolly Vs. 4WD

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Napa

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Posted: 02/13/18 09:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As a new RV'r, I hadn't considered that my front-wheel-drive vehicle would require a Tow Dolly, if I wanted to bring something easier to get around in at various stops. Having experienced a few trips using the dolly, I'm seriously considering the convenience of changing out for a 4WD Pick-up which has a bed large enough to accommodate my Harley, too.

I'm hoping to find tips, advice, guidelines, etc., as I'm a 1st timer, and have yet to take my first road trip. I realize, and expect, that I'll also acquire a lift mechanism (where? how much?) to pull the Harley up into the bed.

There are lots of 4WD's out there, and I'm considering something used, perhaps in the 20K range. Both Jeep & Chevy have been suggested, but I've never had a 4WD, so am a novice at this as well...

Sure would appreciate some input... thank you!

RWjSIM2003

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Posted: 02/13/18 09:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Jeep is probably the most commonly used but you wont put your Harley in that. I have seen both Ford 150 and Chevy 1500 flat towed many times. I am not sure that they have the capacity to haul your Harley either. That is a lot of extra weight to haul in the back of the truck and flat tow. Thinking I would have gotten a Toy hauler if you want to take all that along with you.

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Posted: 02/13/18 09:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well, let’s add up the numbers..
You have a 35’ Class A, which I assume is a gas coach. Usually the following would have a 5k hitch.
In order to take the harley, you would need a full size truck... 4800 lbs.
Harley weighs, average, 800-1000 lbs.

If you have a 5k hitch, you are already at max towing the truck alone, without the bike, and definitely will be over the GCWR of your coach.

Good luck with your decision


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obiwancanoli

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Posted: 02/13/18 09:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yeah, I hadn't considered that combined weight... shortcomings of a newbee... the coach is diesel, but 5K would be about the weight limit for GCWR... OK... so maybe I'll just tow one or the other then... you're right, RW, for all that, a TH might have been the better choice, but I chose the Class A, so, no big deal... perhaps the next RV - if there is one - will allow me 10K GCWR, and my challenge will be resolved!

kerrlakeRoo

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Posted: 02/13/18 09:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First, check the towing capacity of your Motorhome. If 7500 or 10,000 you have room to work.
Your Harley will need an 8' bed, which limits you to full sized trucks (F-150 or 1500 series)

Even the street 500 is 88" long, and many others wont fit in an 8' bed without keeping the tailgate open.

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Posted: 02/13/18 10:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nutin's math seems accurate to me. No, you can't.


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Prowler guy

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Posted: 02/13/18 12:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

How about buying a cheap used smart car and have a trailer made to haul bike and car. Bound to be cheaper than a 20k truck as a toad.

bukhrn

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Posted: 02/13/18 05:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You didn't say what kind of front wheel drive vehicle you have, not all of them must be towed on dolly, My Focus can be flat towed, but I already had the dolly from our previous car, that was NOT flat towable.


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Posted: 02/13/18 06:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nother thing to think about. Ever try loading a 1000lb street bike in the back of a truck and removing it? Pretty much no matter what you do it’s not a plug n play situation.
I load and unload sleds, dirt bikes and snow bikes from a truck bed and it’s a young mans job if you’re doing it by yourself. And ground clearance when you break over the tailgate is not a concern with my bikes. You’re looking at a long ramp and likely a winch to run it up unless you’re good enough or have the ballz to ride it up and coast it back out.

Towing capabilities of the moho aside, if you want to haul a vehicle and a hog at the same time, a trailer is likely the best option.
Open or enclosed trailer, little Jeep or something motor forward and bike on the back or bike up front and vehicle backed on to have a chance at balancing the load. For tongue weight.
I dont think there’s an easy solution to haul both at the same time regardless of what vhecile or size of pickup AND a cruiser bike.
FWIW I’ve hauled more different stuff on or in different trailers than most people, including some creative configurations and I don’t “see” an easy answer here.


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Grit dog

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Posted: 02/13/18 06:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Now if I was dead set on minimizing weight and getting both flat towed behind the moho, I’d do this.
Short or long bed 2wd half ton, stick shift ( the truck will haul the biggest bike made. Only the weight cops here would tell you a Harley is too heavy for a half ton).
Balance the length of ramp with truck height. Preferably lower the truck, low rider to match your bike, lol. Put a winch in the bed. I’ll drive a dirt bike up a 2x10 board into a 4x4 truck but would not be comfortable with a bike that weighs 4x as much.
Tailgate up or down, don’t matter it will hold the back tire of a motorcycle.
You could get the combo under 6000lbs which is doable for flat towing behind a diesel pusher.
Still would need tow bar, brake setup preferably, lights hooked up etc.

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