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Double Tow Question


ewacowboy
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Looking for real world experiences....we travel with a HDT and 5th wheel with a Smart piggy backed on the truck. We recently purchased a side-by-side and are looking to upgrade to a toy hauler. Planning to visit Elkhart to see a few floor plans but need to get there by traveling through TX, OK, KS, MO and IL. Then we'd like to transition up through the UP of Michigan, Minneapolis and SD on our way to the rally in Boise - all this while double towing and total length just over 80'. Any advice?

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How are you double towing?  Your current set-up is not.  A UTV in a toy hauler is not.  How are you planning on double towing?  Most get away with being over-length, but, if you are one that gets checked/ticketed, be prepared to pay the fine.  Also, not all states allow double towing.  Another ticket and be prepared in those states to drop the double and getting it moved some-how.  Just my 2-cents worth.

 

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8 minutes ago, NDBirdman said:

How are you double towing?  Your current set-up is not.  A UTV in a toy hauler is not.  How are you planning on double towing?  Most get away with being over-length, but, if you are one that gets checked/ticketed, be prepared to pay the fine.  Also, not all states allow double towing.  Another ticket and be prepared in those states to drop the double and getting it moved some-how.  Just my 2-cents worth.

 

No our current setup is not double towing...since we purchased the SxS we have a small utility trailer behind the 5th wheel.  That's my concern and why we're looking at toy haulers.  All the states listed will allow double tow but we're a little concerned with our total length and what we may find regarding law enforcement agents.

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I double tower a Smart4Two behind our 37 ft. 5er and Volvo VNL 610 for two years with no trouble.

Went from West Texas to east Tennessee,, down through Georgia, Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and then to New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and Coloardo with no trouble at all. I was just short of 80 feet. I even got caught in an HOV lane with heavy traffic in Nashville. I got some ONE FINGER SALUTES during this experience.

 

ShortyO

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We have double towed on occasion at 83 feet. So far through CO, WY, NE, KS, NM & TX.  Old school '83 KW with 255" tandem wb, 36' triple axle 5th, and either 16' tandem axle enclosed cargo or flat car hauler (20' w/tongue).  I mostly run secondary and local paved roads and avoid Ports of Entry. With the big truck we do look large, but it looks to have the right proportions. If I was towing with a large dually like a 450/550 or so, then it would look odd.  I haven't scaled the total, but it's probably around 52,500.  I run two brake controllers, and the lighting/brakes on the second trailer are entirely separate from the 5th wheel circuits. Also have 3 cameras on the back of the 5th to hook up and watch the tires and other things. We don't double tow routinely, just on certain dedicated trips. 

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I double towed for several years with no issues, never got stopped.  I doubt that the typical LEO knows the laws on it.  If you're acting stupid and get stopped for other reasons, I imagine they would find out or call for a DOT officer.  I would guess the DOT officer has bigger fish to fry and won't stop you just for over length.  JMO

However, it only takes one.

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We go to Northern Michigan often and diesel fuel prices on U S 2 on the west side of St Ignace is typically cheaper than in the Mackinaw City area.

And the BP on US 2 on the west side of St Ignace is Big Rig friendly, and has a nice restaurant too.

Edited by Larry Burkett
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"Dirt" has done double towing (and possibly even triple towing). He hasn't been to HDT rallies recently but, maybe another HDTer has contact info for him. As already mentioned, you are likely to be "noticed" by at least some LEOs. Make sure you have ALL your paperwork in proper order.

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We started double towing our Jeep Wrangler last July behind our Raptor Toy Hauler 5th wheel. With that setup we were 80ft long. We towed all over the midwest last summer up to WI, MI, MN, then all the way across Hwy 2 to WA, OR, CA. I never got hassled and really never got a 2nd look. This past Oct, we downsized to a 30' 5th wheel, but still double tow the Jeep, but now we are a much more reasonable 67' or so. 

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As we have discussed, I have double towed all over the western US from CA to as far east as OK and all the states in between along the southern US.  From OK, I went north to ND and then worked my way back to CA.  I have hit every state in the western US (except WA and OR) double towing.  I know I was over length in most of those states,  but I never got a second look from any troopers or highway patrol (and I passed a lot of them).  I understand if I do get stopped, I might be subject to a ticket, but in my mind that is the cost of the lifestyle and being able to bring my toys.  

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3 hours ago, GeorgiaHybrid said:

Come on Chad, you have a "get out of jail free" card that most of us don't have. 😁😎

Unfortunately CHP doesn't always agree with that 😲 and I can't go anywhere without driving in CA (at least until I retire 😎).  So far though, the only time I have been stopped was running bobtail at the Oklahoma / Texas border crossing.  I bypassed the weigh station that had flashing "All Trucks Must Stop" signs.  I kind of figured someone would chase me down and they did.  When the officer found out my HDT was registered as a motorhome, he sent me on my way (and I didn't even mention the get out of jail free card on that stop 😉).

Edited by Chad Heiser
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  • 4 weeks later...

Do you guys have brakes on the little trailer you haul the SXS on?

My new trailer has a factory hitch with a 5k load limit. I'm thinking about pulling a car on a dolly. But, my tow dolly doesn't have brakes. I did some research and found that the dollies you rent form U haul don't have breaks either.

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33 minutes ago, jenandjon said:

Do you guys have brakes on the little trailer you haul the SXS on?

My new trailer has a factory hitch with a 5k load limit. I'm thinking about pulling a car on a dolly. But, my tow dolly doesn't have brakes. I did some research and found that the dollies you rent form U haul don't have breaks either.

The towed car and dolly are subject to trailer brake requirements like ant trailer.  What will you do if the trailer comes loose and there is not a trailer break away set up.  Yes it needs brakes,

Ken

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55 minutes ago, dan412 said:

In some states towing a car on a dolly behind a fifth wheel would be considered triples. 

 Yep. Oregofornia is one of them.

 Don't know the outcome, so this is just conversation and not information. But, a few years ago I did see a dually towing a 5er with a boat towed on the 5er pulled over. Speeding maybe? Kinda doubt it, but may have been warning an out of stater that "triple towing" is not allowed here in rv configuration.

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13 hours ago, Deezl Smoke said:

 Yep. Oregofornia is one of them.

 Don't know the outcome, so this is just conversation and not information. But, a few years ago I did see a dually towing a 5er with a boat towed on the 5er pulled over. Speeding maybe? Kinda doubt it, but may have been warning an out of stater that "triple towing" is not allowed here in rv configuration.

Just funnin with this question: so, like, if I’m driving my tow mobile bobtail, am I “single towing” in Origun?

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1 hour ago, noteven said:

Just funnin with this question: so, like, if I’m driving my tow mobile bobtail, am I “single towing” in Origun?

 LOL. I have no idea why "they" call it triple towing. In the motor carrier world triples means 3 trailed units behind a tow vehicle. But I guess in the DMV world, or should i say planet,......"they" seem to feel triple should include the tow vehicle.

 To the largest extent, I can see the reasoning for limiting the number of hitch points a non cdl driver can utilize. Youtube is plumb full of people that should'nt be allowed to drive a car much less tow something with it all tangled up in traffic and in ditches. Sometimes it gets difficult to remember that driving on public roads is not a right, it is a privilege and can be revoked at any time.

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