I am Askeered! - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-03-2007, 08:27 PM   #15
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I move my 16' Scamp around on level asphalt with a manual trailer dolly...I love it! But trust me, I don't see Gina moving the Burro with it....she's a petite lady and I don't think she could even move the 13' with it
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Old 02-03-2007, 09:19 PM   #16
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I use a "Powercaster." No choice, just quite expensive. But it was that or no Burro. Works really well, but the incline it will conquer depends on the proportion of weight on the tongue. There have been times when I've had two people stanting on the tongue for traction when the pavements was wet.
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Old 02-03-2007, 10:36 PM   #17
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I use a dolly around here to move the trailers and with the 17' up an uphill grade on asphalt, the dolly wheels lift off the driveway....I may as well have a longer hitch with a handle on it....also a problem with the 13' is that because I have a caster wheel on it, I can`t leave it sitting on the part of the driveway that`s sloped as the trailer wants to roll down hill.....of course with the 13, I really don`t need a dolly as I can move it around on the trailer wheels and the hitch caster wheel, like a tricycle....looked at the powered wheels at Princess Auto but thought that it would be a waste of money for me..,..around here I can also drop either trailer onto the garden tractor to move them around on the lawn,etc. ....of course now nothing is on the move with the snow and ambient temps near -40 ....brrrr ....never mind the wind chills!!! ... ..Benny
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Old 02-03-2007, 11:56 PM   #18
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It was not quite as traumatic or dramatic as I had feared

I actually came home along a hiway I most frequently tow the 13 on, so there were no suprises in that aspect. It just followed me, and the extra turning space seemed intuitive.

I recently had to drive a 24 foot uhaul with a 10 foot car dolly on it that I could never see except when turning, and I did OK with that.

The width did not seem a probelm. I noted it is wider than the 13, but split down the middle, I could still see the lane lines with plenty of space at either.. and with my regular Jeep Mirrors.

The trailer came with towing mirrors, and they were clipped on and adjusted, but I did not find them an additional help over my stock ones. Talk to me when backing tho!

It DOES back easier. It is temporarily sitting on some property a few blocks from here where there is a space cleared for it, but it involves backing uphill and around a motorhome, and I didn't think it prudent to make that attempt in the dark on my first outing. I will try again in the morning.

It did seem more stable than the Element 13 combo, more solid is the best way I can describe it. The Jeep did great.
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Old 02-04-2007, 01:06 AM   #19
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Good for you. We are all proud of you.

I was afraid I was going to have to get the monkey out.


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Old 02-04-2007, 03:43 AM   #20
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For a long time I have been pondering the use of a wheel apparatus on the front jack for manuevering. It was mentioned the use of a dolly - limit 600 lbs. There was also mentioned a swivel trailer jack - 750 lbs. I assume that that is the weight on the trailer hitch. My question is I really don't know what my hitch weight is, my trailer is 1500 lbs. (gross trailer weight). The info is on my spec sheet.

As long as it's not uphill, how strong does one have to be to push this trailer around by myself. I know, I know backing it up to park it takes practice, to make it perfect. The stress exacerbates especially when there is an audience of other campers watching, it's always a man. It's not that I am too proud, but would like to handle this trailer on my own. (there isn't always someone around either). It was very costly on my trip to the Yukon paying for those huge sites that were pull through. Kinda funny when we had monster motorhomes and enormus TT. Thanks for the ear .
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Old 02-04-2007, 09:29 AM   #21
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For a long time I have been pondering the use of a wheel apparatus on the front jack for manuevering. It was mentioned the use of a dolly - limit 600 lbs. There was also mentioned a swivel trailer jack - 750 lbs. I assume that that is the weight on the trailer hitch. My question is I really don't know what my hitch weight is, my trailer is 1500 lbs. (gross trailer weight). The info is on my spec sheet.

As long as it's not uphill, how strong does one have to be to push this trailer around by myself. I know, I know practice, practice makes it perfect. The stress exacerbates especially when there is an audience of other campers watching, it's always a man. It's not that I am too proud, but would like to handle this trailer on my own. (there isn't always someone around either). It was very costly on my trip to the Yukon paying for those huge sites that were pull through. Kinda funny when we had monster motorhomes and enormus TT. Thanks for the ear .
Bonnie, I had my teenage son to camp with last year, but I will not be taking him with me this year. I plan on doing what we have done for the past few years. That is using a board under the wheel to manuever the trailer around. I know that by doing this myself, I will not have the trailer in what I consider a perfect location. But you can do it. I takes practice (just like the first time you back your trailer into a campsite .)
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Old 02-04-2007, 02:03 PM   #22
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Name: Brian
Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
Alberta
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...It was mentioned the use of a dolly - limit 600 lbs. There was also mentioned a swivel trailer jack - 750 lbs. I assume that that is the weight on the trailer hitch. My question is I really don't know what my hitch weight is, my trailer is 1500 lbs. (gross trailer weight). The info is on my spec sheet.
Yes, the rating is for the weight supported by the dolly or jack; the dolly must support the hitch (or tongue) weight, while a jack is mounted a bit closer to the trailer axle so it needs to support a bit more weight.

The usual "rule of thumb" is that the hitch should carry at least 10% of the weight of the trailer, but it can be a lot more. The gross trailer weight on the spec sheet is probably a maximum rating... the trailer will weigh significantly less, and how close it is to the maximum depends on what you carry. That means the hitch weight could be not much more than 100 lbs, should be more, might be 150 lbs when loaded, and could be even more. Wildly guessing, it' probably no more than 200 lb when loaded.

My cheap dolly is also rated for 600 lb, and I would be surprised to see one rated for any less. At 600 lbs, all the parts are quite cheap, so it wouldn't save much to make an even lighter one. Mine has no-name tube-type "2 ply rating" 4.10/3.5-6 tires which would look at home on a wheelbarrow. And yes, they're made in China. I'm sure they're work fine.

Aside from dolly considerations, I think everyone really should know their hitch weight, and the weight on each of the tow vehicle axles when loaded. For the axles, a trip to a truck scale is in order, but the hitch weight can be measured with a bathroom scale. See "New Years Resolution and Tongue Weight" for a recent discussion.


I don't have a wheel on my tongue jack, but of course one could be added. The difference between a dolly and just putting a wheel on the jack is that the dolly provides a handle, both for pushing/pulling and to steer. The manual dollies typically have two air-filled tires, while a jack usually has one small solid-tired wheel.

Princess Auto has one strange variation (I'm sure there are many suppliers but that's where I saw it), which is a wheeled jack with a ratchet mechanism which allows you to move the trailer, one small fraction of a wheel rotation at a time. I looks like it is for fine positioning of heavy trailers... it would take forever to park with it.
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Old 02-04-2007, 04:48 PM   #23
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Thank you so much for your reply. I think I will go for a dolly, having two tires makes sense in ease. It was mentioned on the spec for the dolly that a 1 7/8 " ball is what is on it. My ball is now 2". What measurement is the ball on your dolly ? Ok, ok I am trying to keep a straight face, but there is no other way to word it.
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Old 02-04-2007, 05:12 PM   #24
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Slightly OT, but I had an FMR (actually just a ball hitch bolted directly to my bumper) on a big Dodge 3/4T van that I used to maneuver my 16' Boston Whaler on its trailer thru a 10' stock gate and then sideways a couple of feet, within less than a boat length, to park it under a shelter -- With the van, visibility was super and the steered wheels were almost directly under the hitch ball, so it was about as close to a motorized trailer dolly as one could get!

My other use was at boat ramps, where I could put the trailer right down over the water with the rear wheels remaining above the tide line and slippery stuf on the ramp for good traction.

The weight limits for FMR can be taken very loosely in a trailer backing application because the limits were established for a real load in the front out on the road, speedy bumps included, not positioning a trailer to park it. My boat would flex my bumper, but it always came back.
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Old 02-04-2007, 05:34 PM   #25
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Trailer: 74 13 ft Boler and 79 17 ft Boler
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The 1 7/8" ball will work on pretty well all size couplers because the weight of the tongue will keep the coupler on the ball....not a problem ......the idea of the ratchet on the dolly that Brian mentioned is that if you pull it up hill and have to stop, it won`t roll back down hill, and you can pull it up a bit at a time such as not having to take steps when under strain, depending on the grade it`s on......the problem with the dolly is storage while travelling....that`s why it stays at home.....dollies may be fine with a small trailer, but I wouldn`t try to drag my 17' or even the 13' around on too many of the campsites I`ve been on, unless it was on a concrete pad in a trailer park.......Benny
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Old 02-04-2007, 06:05 PM   #26
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Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
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...It was mentioned on the spec for the dolly that a 1 7/8 " ball is what is on it. My ball is now 2". What measurement is the ball on your dolly ?
It is hard to keep a straight face...

My dolly came with a 1-7/8" ball, but it's just a [b]normal tow ball, so for $7 or less you can get a 2" ball and install that instead; or, as Benny mentioned, just use the undersized ball, which will slop around some but probably work okay for hand-pushed moves.

I think they come with a 1-7/8" ball because it is assumed you will be moving a very small trailer with it, and the smallest common ball size is 1-7/8" ball... plus, a 1-7/8" ball will work with a 2" trailer coupler, but not the other way around. My problem is that my utility trailer actually has a 1-7/8" coupler, so either I switch balls on the dolly (not a big deal, but it does take a big wrench), or I only use the dolly for one trailer, or move both with the 1-7/8" ball, or I convert the utility trailer to 2" (I like that last idea...).

The slickest way would be to use one of the interchangeable ball systems, in which a stud is left permanently bolted into the dolly, and various sizes of balls click on and off without tools. The interchangeable systems cost about as much as another whole dolly!

I also have a little dump trailer for my lawn tractor, with a clevis hitch. I've been thinking of putting a real coupler on it, and using a ball on the tractor, and this dolly thing might be the incentive to get around to that. I could even get a new utility trailer (with 2" couper) while I'm at it and make everything consistent at 2" - almost like being in Europe, where everything shall follow the EC standard (which is 50 mm). Why does every project lead to another one?

Anyway, my egg has a 2" coupler and I'll likely just put a 2" ball on the dolly to move it.
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Old 02-04-2007, 06:09 PM   #27
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Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
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The 1 7/8" ball will work on pretty well all size couplers because the weight of the tongue will keep the coupler on the ball....
If you have the type of coupler used by U-Haul (on their travel trailers, although not on all of their current stock), it will fit both 1-7/8" and 2" (and 2-1/8", according to some documentation) by rotating the gripping part to the right position. If that's okay for towing, then just being undersize by 1/8" will probably work okay for the dolly.
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.....the idea of the ratchet on the dolly that Brian mentioned is that if you pull it up hill and have to stop, it won`t roll back down hill, and you can pull it up a bit at a time such as not having to take steps when under strain, depending on the grade it`s on......
Make sense to me! Thanks for the info, Benny.
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Old 02-04-2007, 06:20 PM   #28
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Name: Brian
Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
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The weight limits for FMR can be taken very loosely in a trailer backing application because the limits were established for a real load in the front out on the road, speedy bumps included, not positioning a trailer to park it. My boat would flex my bumper, but it always came back.
That's a good point, Pete; the rating assumes you are going to mount a rack (such as for bikes or a tire) on it, not necessary move a trailer.

I would still be cautious, depending on the tow vehicle. An add-on ball platform or receiver on a traditional truck bumper might be a more secure mount than the FMR on some other vehicles. With the FMR in a structural location which is not intended for high loads, I would be concerned about tearing the structure if overloaded. If I were building an FMR myself I would look for points such as the swaybar mounts in that example, or the tie-down hooks (which are often used for flat-towing bars), and I would want my mounts to extend back to a second pair of mounting points to take the cantilevered load, just as a regular towing hitch mounts over some length of the frame. The last time I looked the current F-150 hitch mounting, that structural connection was one of the best examples of well thought-out design on the truck.

One good thing about FMR mounting: the front overhang is usually shorter than the rear, so the distance to cantilever and the weight transfer between axles is minimized.

Another FMR benefit: SUV drivers who find the door-mounted spare is in the way of the hitch can move the spare up front, for a genuine expedition look (and possible hot weather overheating, but nothing's perfect)
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