• Welcome Visitor! Please take a few seconds and Register for our forum. Even if you don't want to post, you can still 'Like' and react to posts.

Towing with a tow dolly

franklin2

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 24, 2019
Messages
1,838
Reaction score
679
Points
113
Location
Virginia
Vehicle Year
1984
Make / Model
Bronco II
Transmission
Manual
Since the moderator shut down the other thread (prematurely in my opinion) I was not able to reply and give my experiences.

Besides the Ranger being on the small side, towing a vehicle with a dolly presents other problems, namely there is very little weight on the hitch. You would think this would be a good thing with a smaller Ranger pickup, but going around a turn or changing lanes can get interesting. Since there is not much weight on the rear of the truck, it will tend to slide and try to jack knife. Been there and done that, and I was using a full size pickup.

Here's a link to the other thread. https://www.therangerstation.com/forums/index.php?threads/towing-advice.191175/
 


Rock Auto 5% Discount Code: BD8D9A3814E19D Expires July 5th, 2022

Uncle Gump

Forum Staff Member
Forum Moderator
Supporting Member
TRS Event Participant
Joined
Sep 17, 2018
Messages
10,042
Reaction score
7,632
Points
113
Location
Ottawa IL
Vehicle Year
2006/1986
Make / Model
Ranger/BroncoII
Engine Size
4.0L SOHC/2.9L
2WD / 4WD
4WD
My credo
Lead, Follow or get out of my way
I addressed this with a additional post in that same thread...

When the OP asked us to forget the legal side of of it exceeding the legal limits of his vehicle... but is it still possible? He knew is wasn't legal... It was time to shut it down. We never endorse anything that violates the law... plain and simple. It gets shut down.
 

Uncle Gump

Forum Staff Member
Forum Moderator
Supporting Member
TRS Event Participant
Joined
Sep 17, 2018
Messages
10,042
Reaction score
7,632
Points
113
Location
Ottawa IL
Vehicle Year
2006/1986
Make / Model
Ranger/BroncoII
Engine Size
4.0L SOHC/2.9L
2WD / 4WD
4WD
My credo
Lead, Follow or get out of my way
I will also add that I included @Jim Oaks in the private messages that are not visible to membership.

Afterall it is his site and he has specific rules we abid by as moderators... he will have the final say in this matter.
 

wildbill23c

Well-Known Member
U.S. Military - Veteran
TRS Banner 2012-2015
TRS 20th Anniversary
Joined
Aug 22, 2012
Messages
3,799
Reaction score
463
Points
83
Location
Southwestern Idaho
Vehicle Year
1988
Make / Model
Ford Bronco II
Engine Type
2.9 V6
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Total Lift
0
Total Drop
0
Tire Size
235/75-R15
My credo
19K, 19D, 92Y, 91F
No its not legal, but we all know many people on here do illegal stuff all the time with overloading their trucks and far exceeding the limitations of them....so yes, of course its possible to use a tow dolly behind a Ranger...however, most rental places won't rent one to you in the first place if you show up with a Ranger to tow a vehicle much larger than its capable of safely towing, which isn't much especially with a tow dolly. Like mentioned in the OP's post, there isn't hardly any tongue weight on the tow dolly, therefore there's hardly any weight on the back of the truck to keep it planted. Don't even think about changing lanes or turning, think about a panic stop. You slam on the brakes on the truck, which is already light in the back end, you have a 3,000+lb car, SUV, Van, Truck, etc. on that tow dolly and its going to lift the back end of your little toy pickup right off the ground and send you uncontrollably in a direction you don't wanna go.

Rent a UHAUL truck and dolly, do it the right way, the legal way, and the safe way.

These little Rangers are awesome trucks, but I'd never attempt to use a tow dolly with one...I've pulled a Ranger on a tow dolly behind my F250 but using a Ranger as a dolly tow vehicle no thanks, not even interested in trying that. Sure maybe you could use the Ranger to pull the dolly home to hookup to a full size truck, but that would be all I'd ever try behind a Ranger. My Ranger is only rated to tow 2,000lbs anyways because it has a manual transmission, so really worthless to even think of towing anything LOL.
 

racsan

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
TRS 20th Anniversary
TRS Event Participant
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
4,092
Reaction score
2,762
Points
113
Location
central ohio
Vehicle Year
1994
Make / Model
ford
Engine Type
2.3 (4 Cylinder)
Engine Size
2.3/140-4
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Tire Size
225/70/15-winter. 235/75/15-summer
My credo
built, not bought
regardless of toungue weight, you still have to stop- the whole load. Which if its another ranger thats in the neighborhood of 6,000 pounds (total-at least), with a ranger that has a brake system designed around a 3,000 pound vehicle. Just not wise, Have I done it? , yes but it was a short distance and I never went over 40 mph. You just never know what could happen, if you need to stop suddenly/ quickly it aint gonna happen. And its not just yourself you are putting at risk.
 
Last edited:

Otis413

Active Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2018
Messages
187
Reaction score
113
Points
43
Location
Cass, WVa
Vehicle Year
2004
Make / Model
Ford
Engine Size
4.0 SOHC
Transmission
Automatic
When I bought my 02 Ranger I tried to rent a dolly to tow it home, they wouldn't rent it to me if I was going to pull a Ford Ranger or Explorer. No explanation, just no Rangers or Explorers, even pulling with my half ton Dodge (w towing package)... I'll end the story on that point...
 

franklin2

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 24, 2019
Messages
1,838
Reaction score
679
Points
113
Location
Virginia
Vehicle Year
1984
Make / Model
Bronco II
Transmission
Manual
I addressed this with a additional post in that same thread...

When the OP asked us to forget the legal side of of it exceeding the legal limits of his vehicle... but is it still possible? He knew is wasn't legal... It was time to shut it down. We never endorse anything that violates the law... plain and simple. It gets shut down.
I understand your responsibility as a moderator. You do what you think it right of course. I think though that the original thread starter in the other thread would be better served explaining why it's against the law. The law is there for a reason, and some good threads and some scary stories should make him think twice.

We can be concerned about people and their safety, but we can't baby sit everyone. I don't think anyone would blame the board if he was in an accident when 99% of the posts in the thread recommended against doing it. I just wanted to get my 2 cents in the "don't do it" section and was disappointed that it was locked and I could not do it.
 

don4331

Well-Known Member
V8 Engine Swap
Joined
Sep 6, 2013
Messages
1,491
Reaction score
621
Points
113
Location
Calgary, AB
Vehicle Year
1999
Make / Model
Ford
Engine Type
V8
Engine Size
5.3
Transmission
Automatic
When I bought my 02 Ranger I tried to rent a dolly to tow it home, they wouldn't rent it to me if I was going to pull a Ford Ranger or Explorer. No explanation, just no Rangers or Explorers, even pulling with my half ton Dodge (w towing package)... I'll end the story on that point...
Manufacturers now provide Rental companies a list of vehicles which are safe to flat tow. If the vehicle isn't on that list (and Ranger's aren't), they won't rent you a dolly to tow it home - doesn't matter if you have removed the driveshaft (which would make it safe to flat tow) or not.

I don't think anyone would blame the board if he was in an accident when 99% of the posts in the thread recommended against doing it.
Unfortunately, people win law suits for getting scalded after spilling hot coffee on their laps while driving. So, the board has to protect itself against that 1%.

Personally, I just wanted it opened enough to correct errors:
A properly designed dolly has at least surge brakes as the load is guaranteed to be over 1,500lbs (lowest limit in 50 states/10 provinces and dolly should be designed for that). It was beneficial to have brakes on my 1k trailer when towing it with my Ranger.​
The dolly will also place the front wheels of the towed vehicle sufficiently forward of the dolly wheels to ensure adequate tongue weight - when I towed my '02 Focus SVT (~2,700 lbs) on U-Haul dolly, it added almost 500 lbs* on the rear wheels of the Ranger ('07 SuperCab with 4.0/auto, so well within legal limits; and vehicle Ford had approved flat towing of).​

Our Ranger's aren't porcelain dolls, but they aren't 1 tons either. If you stay within limits, you will be fine - I towed a 1k trailer behind my '94 (SCab/2.3/manual/2wd) from Ottawa to Regina and back 2X annually for a decade. Only time I had an issue was once during freezing rain and empty truck would have had same problem**.

* Some of the weight is coming off the front tires as the dolly doesn't have any weight distribution system but you're still looking at 400lbs of tongue weight.
** The Dodge 3/4 ton 4x4 that had to pass me knocked a bunch of rocks out of the house a couple miles up the road when he found the slippery as a curling sheet road wouldn't allow him to defy physics.
 

Alan_nc

Active Member
U.S. Military - Veteran
Joined
May 5, 2020
Messages
211
Reaction score
140
Points
43
Location
US
Vehicle Year
1994
Make / Model
Ranger Splash
Engine Type
3.0 V6
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Had the same problem with the rental companies. Would not rent me a dolly to tow a Ranger. Was able to borrow one and used a Dodge Dakota to tow my Ranger home. That said I was very careful and never went over 35 mph for about 10 miles on surface streets.

I think stopping is much more of an issue than anything else.
 

Broo

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2015
Messages
52
Reaction score
31
Points
18
Location
Quebec
Vehicle Year
2006
Make / Model
Ford Ranger
Engine Size
3.0 V6
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
I rented a tow dolly twice at the same place with my 2006 Ranger to tow the same vehicle, a 1981 Toyota Tercel, which is quite light by today's standards.

The first time (2015) they asked which engine I had in the truck and just what I would tow.

The second time (2020) they didn't seem to care, no questions at all, which I thought was odd.
 

Dirtman

Former Middleweight Moss Fighting Champion
Supporting Member
Joined
May 28, 2018
Messages
19,339
Reaction score
13,330
Points
113
Location
41N 75W
Vehicle Year
2009
Engine Type
2.3 (4 Cylinder)
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Total Lift
It's up there.
Total Drop
It's down there.
Tire Size
Round.
My credo
I poop in the furnace.
I think a big problem is the hitches on Rangers just aren't that strong. If you really wanna tow heavy loads you need a gooseneck hitch.

fifth_wheel_s10_crazy_tailgate.jpg


yU1Cg2Pl.jpeg
 

sgtsandman

Aircraft Fuel Tank Diver
Forum Moderator
Supporting Member
U.S. Military - Active
TRS 20th Anniversary
TRS Event Participant
Ham Radio Operator
GMRS Radio License
Joined
Mar 11, 2017
Messages
8,331
Reaction score
6,032
Points
113
Location
Aliquippa, PA
Vehicle Year
2011
Make / Model
Ford Ranger XLT
Engine Type
4.0 V6
Engine Size
4.0 SOHC
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Total Lift
Pre-2008 lift
Tire Size
31X10.5R15

Sponsored Ad


Sponsored Ad

Top