Bye Bye Dolly Its Been Fun To Have Towed Ya
If you follow us on Facebook, you already know that we have recently made some changes to our RVing lifestyle. For years now we have wanted to replace our towed with something that we could tow four down and the vehicle had to be multipurpose including off road exploring.
So, after much looking as something to occupy some of the long days during this health situation, the one we all have all been keenly aware of, we searched for a used Jeep. Given we have spent the last several winters in Arizona where Jeeps are immensely popular it goes without saying its popularity there drives up the prices.
It was not until we returned to our home area in Wisconsin did, we come across a gem while out doing some other shopping and errands. On one of the local dealerships lots was a used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited (JK) with the Sahara trim package for what we considered a more reasonable price. After having our Honda Accord appraised and a comfortable trade in offer accepted, we made the deal and drove our new to us Jeep home.
Going from dolly towing a sedan to flat towing a Jeep requires some adaptation. First, we considered using the dolly to tow the Jeep around until we could get the appropriate towing system but upon reading the Jeep Owner’s manual that idea was eliminated. You cannot tow a Jeep Wrangler other than flat on all fours or up on a flatbed trailer.
Shedding ourselves of an unnecessary tow dolly was rather quick and easy. I gave it a thorough washing and snapped a couple of pictures of it and listed it on Facebook Marketplace. I had a clear idea of what a new one cost and set my pricing accordingly to make it affordable and appealing to someone who needed one. Within hours of posting the listing I had an inquiry.
Never jump at the first offer, especially when the person wants it for as close to free as possible. I left myself some negotiating room, but literally giving it away was not an option. The income generated was going to offset the costs of the tow system for the Jeep.
I let the ad run through the Memorial Day weekend and did not get any other nibbles although it was being watched by several people. I updated the price, dropping it by around one dollar, which was enough to spark someone’s interest. The negotiations began and when it was done, I made a one-day cash only deal which the person accepted and the next day arrived cash in had and took possession of the dolly.
We purchase our Tow Master Dolly new in 2013 just prior to going full-time. In that time we install three sets of tires, only paying for one set out of pocket. Two years ago I replaced the wheel bearings out of precaution more than necessity. We replaced the tie down straps about three years ago. Overall, it saw more than 50,000 miles over the last seven years without any complaints from us. Yes, it was cumbersome to use in the beginning but soon we got the hang of it and it was weaved into our traveling routine. At the time we had a vehicle that couldn’t be flat towed, even replacing it with yet another. While there are benefits to flat towing, don’t kick the idea of using a dolly aside. It can be an affordable option if you already have a vehicle you like and can’t afford to replace. We recovered about 80% of the cost to purchase and maintain it, which shows a dolly is a viable option financially.
Immediately, we ordered the mounting hardware, tow bar and required accessories to connect the Jeep to the back of the coach. I had been doing some online research on what brand and equipment to get and found the best prices on Amazon. Sure, I could have gone to a dealer but there were none listed close to where we are and ordering it through a local RV or parts house meant paying their ridiculous markup. By jumping on getting them ordered, they were in stock and prices were still good.
Vendors selling on Amazon will start out with an attractively low price, then ratchet them up as they start to sell.
I will be doing the install myself, fortunately the process on the Jeep is relatively easy to do with only some minor cosmetic cutting in the lower plastic skid shield which I am comfortable doing given my fabrication background. Soon, the parts will arrive, and I will start the process of installation and I will share the process with you here on our blog.