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Semi OT....towing dolly hire??


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Hi folks, just bought a car derived van in north London and now need to tow it back to Peterborough.

I've been searching in the evenings for a local hire firm (to Peterborough or surrounding area)who can rent me a dolly (oy...not that type) for the week-end, unfortunately I am working long days at the mo and dont have access to a phone during the day.

It's getting near now and still no joy. I would appreciate it if any of you could give me some ideas / contact details so I could contact them during Friday or Saturday am.

I will be towing it with my 2.8L 90 so no problem with towing regs. (.......er Landrover content)

Regards Charles.

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Hire a full lift vehicle transporter trailer, a towing dolly or towing ambulance is for short distance 'to a place of safety' tows only, they are not meant for long distance towing.

When Ralph says 'not meant for', he means it's illegal unless all the vehicles of the 'towed trailer' brake. Cars on dollys tend not to activate the brakes on the rear wheels.

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When Ralph says 'not meant for', he means it's illegal unless all the vehicles of the 'towed trailer' brake. Cars on dollys tend not to activate the brakes on the rear wheels.

Hmmm, I was not aware of this. Thanks chaps looks like I will have to hire a suitable trailer.

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I think towing dollies are dangerous. A two-wheeld crane really. They damage the front of the towed vehicle unless there's some kind of cushion beteen the fron of the vehicle and the crane body, and the whole lot swings about rather alarmingly. A local guy uses one to take dumped/abandoned motors to the scrapyard, and the tiny wheels last no time at all. Ok for low-speed stuff, but try to keep the vehicle as low to the ground as possible to improve stability.

Les. :)

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Thanks for the info.

Mmmmm but I do so like those dollies pictured....handy piece of kit if you are strapped for space / cash.

Anyway I ended up borrowing a mates' ifor williams twin axled trailer, drove all the way to London and found that the Van 'ready for MOT' description was a little loose...because the cooling system was pressurising and had steam escaping as the cold engine fired up....I diagnosed head gasket was gone and left without buying it. God don't you just love timewasters. Still at least I found the fault before handing over my hard earned...

Only problem is some other poor sod may buy it unwittingly.

You win some and loose some hey.

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  • 3 years later...

Hi western, good shots about Harvey Frost trailer crane. It was a mater of great pride to most operators that they built the equipment themselves. This was not as strange as it seems today, because garage still used to fit exhaust and windscreens themselves. If you need new brakes more often than not, the garage would remove the lining from the shoe and rivet new linings on.

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Have a look through the following links.

Dollies can only be used to recover a vehicle from its broken down location to - effectively - the nearest place of safety. That doesn't mean halfway across the country! You may bring up the subject of the dollies used by many AA vehicles, but in the links below you will note they are regarded as 'specialist breakdown vehicles'

An A-frame is viewed as a trailer and a trailer with a weight over 750kg must be braked. With very few exceptions (the caratow link but if your car is damaged then unlikely this would be of any use) an A-frame will not comply with the law other than the removal to a place of safety aspect.

So you will need a proper trailer to remain legal. And you will need to comply with the driving licence requirements for trailers....



http://www.quattroforum.com/forum/general-technical-issues/13487-towing-frame.html (prosecuted & fined)

http://www.gmb.org.uk/Templates/PressItems.asp?NodeID=96776 (letters from DFT re the AA & other organisations breaking the law using the VRS dolly)

http://www.recoveryuk.com/laws.html (Essex Police 'Breakdown vehicle' 'Recovery truck' 'driving licence requirements')

You could of course chance your luck, but if you get a prohibition notice it makes life a bit difficult!

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That's great.

some pics of my heavily modded Harvey Frost trailer crane, now used with my 110 for rally recovery.

in stowed & travelling state


loaded with a Mk 1 Escort with broken steering


loaded with a very poorly Scooby rally car



Good pics there Ralph, but surely the Scoob is 4WD???

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Yes, but towed at less than 20mph out of a gravel rally stage the 4x4 system can cope, the crew said just 'get us out' didn't have very far to go, certainly less than 2 miles.

I've got a full lift now same as on the attached sheet. so no more excuse not to move a 4x4 car.


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