Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 02-18-2016, 10:53 PM   #1
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Port angeles, Wa
Posts: 301
Year: 90
Coachwork: bluebird conventional
Chassis: international
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 72
Flat towing

There seems to be a misunderstanding about flat towing a vehicle with a bus with a long overhang. The thinking is that the car would be dragged around the turn. not true. The front wheels will always turn in the direction that the back of the bus is pulling it. For instance, lets say you are going left. The back of the bus will go right a bit first then follow the front to the left. The car will in turn go right first then left. The front wheels of the car following the direction the back of the bus is pulling it.
I have seen and worked on many large overhang buses flat towing a car with no problem.
Most people don't realize that the front suspension of a vehicle has steering geometry that allows this.
Imagine the casters of a shopping cart.
bluebird90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2016, 10:56 PM   #2
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Port angeles, Wa
Posts: 301
Year: 90
Coachwork: bluebird conventional
Chassis: international
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 72
One this I forgot to mention, The front tires WILL wear a little faster than usual because they are being pulled instead of directed into the turn.
bluebird90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2016, 06:28 AM   #3
Bus Nut
 
superdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: hills of sw virginia
Posts: 889
Year: 1996
Chassis: thomas
Engine: 8.3 cummins
Rated Cap: 11 window
thank you blue, does the length of the tow bar matter at all
__________________
living in a bus down by the river.
my build pics
https://www.skoolie.net/forums/membe...albums942.html
superdave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2016, 08:11 AM   #4
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Port angeles, Wa
Posts: 301
Year: 90
Coachwork: bluebird conventional
Chassis: international
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 72
A longer tow bar would help with the car tracking better.
bluebird90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2016, 10:01 AM   #5
Site Team
 
crazycal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: NUNYA
Posts: 4,234
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: 3800
Engine: DT408, AT545
Rated Cap: 23 500 gvw
I don't agree. Some of the overhangs on the bus are huge. To say the wear will be a little faster is an understatement. I have never towed a car with all 4 on the ground behind a bus but I tow trailers all the time and I see what it does to them. If you drive forward all the time, never need to maneuver in tight spaces or back up, then I agree with you.
__________________
I'm hungry!

You Gotta Let Me Fly
crazycal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2016, 07:06 PM   #6
Bus Nut
 
superdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: hills of sw virginia
Posts: 889
Year: 1996
Chassis: thomas
Engine: 8.3 cummins
Rated Cap: 11 window
Flat towing

I plan on getting a trailer but would like to flat tow when needed. The toad braking system is as much as a trailer. Extending the tow bar is easy enough. The trailer dealer will put the axels any where I want, has brakes and break away for 1600 bucks. I got my son a truck and need to tow it back from Il. hope to get the trailer this Summer, Lucky for me I got the 8.3
superdave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2016, 08:21 PM   #7
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Port angeles, Wa
Posts: 301
Year: 90
Coachwork: bluebird conventional
Chassis: international
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 72
Actually, when flat towing you never back up. The front wheels will just flop to one direction. ( that steering geometry thing)
bluebird90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2016, 08:00 AM   #8
Bus Crazy
 
gbstewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,204
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: 3800 International
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 72
you see lots of big motor homes towing 4 down, and a lot have just as long or longer of a over hang as a bus, they don't seem to have many problems, other then the tire wear is a bit higher. We will be flat towing my chev sonic .
gbstewart
__________________
my bus build viewtopic.php?f=9&t=5931
gbstewart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2016, 10:13 AM   #9
Site Team
 
crazycal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: NUNYA
Posts: 4,234
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: 3800
Engine: DT408, AT545
Rated Cap: 23 500 gvw
I guess flat towing is fine if you are set up right but I would just as soon use a trailer. Let that get beat up instead.
__________________
I'm hungry!

You Gotta Let Me Fly
crazycal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2016, 01:12 PM   #10
Bus Crazy
 
gbstewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,204
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: 3800 International
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazycal View Post
I guess flat towing is fine if you are set up right but I would just as soon use a trailer. Let that get beat up instead.
I agree totally with using a trailer, let it take the beating but I don't think my t444e with at545 would like the extra weight,
gbstewart
__________________
my bus build viewtopic.php?f=9&t=5931
gbstewart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2016, 06:45 PM   #11
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Winlcok, WA
Posts: 2,196
When flat towing there are a lot of things that come into play including the geometry of the rear bumper swing. On some of the Type 'D' FE buses the rear bumper swing can cover a lot of ground before it follows along around the corner.

The other real concern when it comes to towing four down is it has become a rigidly enforced law in a lot of jurisdictions in the west and Canada that requires supplemental braking in anything that weighs over 2,000 lbs. regardless of the size of the tow vehicle. Using a dolly or a trailer eliminates the problem of getting an auxiliary braking system for your toad and excess wear on your toad's tires.

In regards to weight, a car trailer designed and built to carry a small toad will not weight that much more than a slightly larger toad. Now if you are talking about a 40' double decker garage trailer with four axles that is a totally different conversation.

Personally, I would much rather have my car on a trailer that is wide enough to be seen in the bus mirrors so I can see what is going on behind me. There have been more than a couple of instances where people have continued on down the road long after a tire has gone flat on a toad. In one particular instance the people went so far that they were dragging the toad along on the rim causing fires to start over many miles. IIRC the owner of the moho who did it was charged with negligence. In addition, he and his insurance company had to cough up $$$$$$$$$$$ to pay for putting the fire out.
cowlitzcoach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 03:57 AM   #12
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Erie, PA
Posts: 62
I never understood toads. you invest 2x as much just in equipment to tow the vehicle than a tow dolly, then when it comes time to sell the toad, you have DECREASED the value of the car by having all those bits put on.

tow dolly if you cant afford a trailer. yeah, its a bit of a pain, BUT it doesnt decrease the value of the vehicle being towed, and you put way less wear on it by just pulling it by the rear tires and putting all the braking force onto the dolly. if you want to upgrade to a trailer, you can sell the dolly, and get the trailer. you dont get much of your investment back with flat towing, if any at all.
keiffith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 06:38 AM   #13
Bus Geek
 
EastCoastCB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 21,477
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
I know our car dolly comes in really handy at times.
EastCoastCB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 08:41 AM   #14
Bus Crazy
 
gbstewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,204
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: 3800 International
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 72
having talked to motorhome owners that had dollies loved them, or hated them. the biggest problem was loading and un loading, you have to strap the front tires down which is a pain and when the weather is crappy its no fun, down the road you have to check and tighten the straps again, also when your at a camp site you have to find some where to store the dolly. when you tow 4 down its a madder of 5 mins and your on the road, most people will never go back to a dolly after you tow 4 down. also when your in a spot where you need to back up much faster to unhitch a 4 down and move your bus. I would rather have a trailer that way you can back up with out unhitching, and no wear and tear on your car, but it all works well dolly, trailer 4 down it all has its pros and cons, ill have my little sonic set up for 4 down.
gbstewart
__________________
my bus build viewtopic.php?f=9&t=5931
gbstewart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 08:51 AM   #15
Bus Crazy
 
2kool4skool's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Spring Valley AZ
Posts: 1,343
Year: 2000
Coachwork: Bluebird
Engine: 5.9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 2 elderly children, 1 cat
I back my Kar kaddy often, as long a it's in a straight line. I lock out the steerable wheels on the dolly. Learned from driving CDL and watching pros X chain their full trailer steers to back long distances.

Whatever works for you. Vanilla AND chocolate, nice to have a choice.
__________________
Don, Mary and Spooky the cat.
2kool4skool is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 10:25 AM   #16
Bus Crazy
 
gbstewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,204
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: 3800 International
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2kool4skool View Post
I back my Kar kaddy often, as long a it's in a straight line. I lock out the steerable wheels on the dolly. Learned from driving CDL and watching pros X chain their full trailer steers to back long distances.

Whatever works for you. Vanilla AND chocolate, nice to have a choice.
how does your bus handle towing? what do you have for a tranny?, right now i'm concerned how my t444e with AT545 will handle towing a car, maybe I'm just over thinking it
gbstewart
__________________
my bus build viewtopic.php?f=9&t=5931
gbstewart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 10:28 AM   #17
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 66
We chose not to dolly and to flat tow for the following reasons;

Our vehicle can't be flat towed or dollied without unhooking the drive line. We are going to install a drive line disconnect mechanism.

I want to be able to stop the bus, get the family out and hop into our toad with minimal steps necessary. So unstrapping and unloading from a dolly isn't something I want to do.

Unhooking the tow bar, pinning it up, undoing an electrical chord and an air line is all I will have to do to drive my toad. The air brake controller I'm putting into my toad will be out of the way and won't need to be disconnected to drive it.
When we get back from our little venture in our toad then I can just pull up to the bus, rebook up the tow bar, electric and air and off we go!
That's our plan
Eric
daddyoften is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 12:56 PM   #18
Bus Geek
 
Tango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 8,462
Year: 1946
Coachwork: Chevrolet/Wayne
Chassis: 1- 1/2 ton
Engine: Cummins 4BT
Rated Cap: 15
Get a scooter.
Tango is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 01:44 PM   #19
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Erie, PA
Posts: 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tango View Post
Get a scooter.
My kind of scooter

keiffith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2016, 02:48 PM   #20
Bus Crazy
 
2kool4skool's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Spring Valley AZ
Posts: 1,343
Year: 2000
Coachwork: Bluebird
Engine: 5.9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 2 elderly children, 1 cat
Quote:
Originally Posted by gbstewart View Post
how does your bus handle towing? what do you have for a tranny?, right now i'm concerned how my t444e with AT545 will handle towing a car, maybe I'm just over thinking it
gbstewart
Our 545 doesn't seem to mind a bit. We've towed about 5000 miles so far and the ATF still looks Ok, not brown or burnt. Lots of hills were we go. From PHX to Flagstaff for example is 10,000ft of climbing netting 6000 ft of el. gain. We are 20,000# plus tow.
__________________
Don, Mary and Spooky the cat.
2kool4skool is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:46 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×