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Unread 04-09-2014, 11:05 PM   #1
WWheeler
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Cost of not having a tow rig?

My Jeep is a second vehicle and not heavily modified. I'm going to keep it street legal for a long time. Unfortunately, good off-road parks are about 300-500 miles away. I'm at a point where I'm looking to trade in my 04 tacoma DD for something else. I could go with a car or move to a full size truck to trailer my Jeep.

What experiences have others had with breaking their Jeeps far from home and having a tow service get it home? I would be with my club, so hopefully we could fix it or put my Jeep on one of their trailers, but I'm thinking worse case scenario.

The difference between the car and truck I'd like is about 13K, and the car gets double the gas mileage. I'm curious how much it would cost each time I needed my Jeep towed. I would only be going that far out of town once or twice a year.

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Unread 04-10-2014, 05:43 AM   #2
wilson1010
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I made a flatbed tow rig with room for two rigs, mine, and the broke one. Many times, I would take a club member's rig or even a stranger's and drop his rig off someplace. I had a full sized winch on the headboard of the bed to pull em up. It really was great fun to do. But, I saw a lot of misery and fear from a guy with a seriously broke rig, stranded somewhere he could not leave it safely (despite off roaders being an excellent bunch of guys, there is not an off road park in the US where you can leave your rig in the weeds for a couple of days without the removable goodies ending up in someone else's truck).
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Unread 04-10-2014, 07:58 AM   #3
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Figure up cost of annual ownership (for DDing) of the two vehicles. Now figure the price difference and the cost of a trailer. Now figure up how much a uhaul truck and trailer would cost for the trips you take. Sometimes, while more annoying, the uhaul route is cheaper. Or it takes many many years before the uHaul catches up to the cost of buying your own setup.
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Unread 04-11-2014, 04:05 PM   #4
smccollamjr
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If the only reason you are getting a truck and trailer is to tow your Jeep a couple times a year it's going to be cheaper to rent U-Hauls or a spot on a buddy's trailer. If you go the u-haul route you and another buddy could split the rental and haul one in the truck and another on a trailer.
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Unread 04-15-2014, 02:18 PM   #5
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Unless you tow very regularly it's a waste of money to have a tow vehicle. Pretty much the long and the short of it. Kind of like me living in Wyoming and carrying tidal wave insurance. Your mileage will be worse, your usual initial purchase will be higher, maintenance will be higher, insurance will be higher etc etc etc. So you'll be spending a lot of money every month "just in case" someday you break down.

Best advice I have. Buy a car for a DD, hit CL for an old truck that will do the job that you can pay cash for. I have an old beater f250 for just that reason. It gets driven maybe 6 times a year, besides carrying $10/month in liability insurance doesn't cost me a dime. Best application of $2k I could find. I still want a really nice diesel but common sense rules every time.
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Unread 04-15-2014, 05:34 PM   #6
wilson1010
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If it was about the money, none of us would have an off road rig in the first place.

I have had every manner of tow rig, trailer, flatbed, etc. I think having an interesting and well performing tow rig is part of the fun of the sport. I started out as others have with a series of worn out pickups. Fun to keep them running well. I'd agree that if you are not going very far and towing one rig, you can get an F250 5.4 gasser, and get there and back. But, consider other alternatives. My favorite recommendation right now is the Isuzu NPR flatbed landscapers' rig. But, my old K2500 454 Suburban will tow any rig and trailer with ease. And, it sits most of the year with liability coverage only. You don't have to daily drive some humongous diesel pickup for it to work.

In the end, however, only a diesel rig of some configuration will give you a really pleasurable towing experience.
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Unread 04-15-2014, 09:45 PM   #7
WWheeler
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Thanks for all the replies. Something I didn't even think about was to check the areas around the offroad parks to see if they have Uhauls around. I can just rent a truck and trailer to tow it back one way. I don't have to rent one for the entire time . Its a lot cheaper that way.

wilson1010, I saw some of your posts about that landscaping rig during my searches. I looked into renting a similar setup from Hertz commercial equipment, but they say you can't take it out of the area. It would have been sweet though. Another issue I didn't mention is I don't have the space to keep a trailer. I think I'll just get a car, use my dad's tacoma when I need it, and rent a full size truck and trailer until I have the space for a dedicated tow setup.
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Unread Yesterday, 05:51 AM   #8
wilson1010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WWheeler View Post
Thanks for all the replies. Something I didn't even think about was to check the areas around the offroad parks to see if they have Uhauls around. I can just rent a truck and trailer to tow it back one way. I don't have to rent one for the entire time . Its a lot cheaper that way.

wilson1010, I saw some of your posts about that landscaping rig during my searches. I looked into renting a similar setup from Hertz commercial equipment, but they say you can't take it out of the area. It would have been sweet though. Another issue I didn't mention is I don't have the space to keep a trailer. I think I'll just get a car, use my dad's tacoma when I need it, and rent a full size truck and trailer until I have the space for a dedicated tow setup.
This would be the most economical approach. Good luck!
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Unread Yesterday, 01:40 PM   #9
222Doc
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it cost six hours last saturday and fuel. friends tj. the time to go back home get a friend's trailer and truck go back. load it up take it home.
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