View Full Version : Quick catch-up and trailer question

06-04-2012, 05:58 PM
Hiya, Evryone!!
Wow, it has been a long while since I've last been here. I have missed you guys! :yesnod: I have been w/o a computer at home for about a year (yikes!) and it killed me to navigate the forums on my below average, not quite smartphone. Luckily, it seems like I am back on the grid.
Last October, we had some issues on our way to Triumphest in Big Bear beginning with a severed accelerator cable that left us stranded at Disneyland which, BTW, surely didn't feel like the happiest place on Earth. Long story short, Spidey stayed in Anaheim for what seemed like an eternity and I got home in a rental car. After gazillions of $ trading hands, Spidey seemed better than new. Probably because so much had been replaced.It was like the Bionic car-better, faster, stronger!
Spidey is currently running like a champ. We are enjoying outings with our car club, driving to work, and zipping around town whenever possible.
I am wanting to attend the PNW event in Forest Grove, OR this summer as well as the Triumphest in AZ in October. Problem is, I am feeling a little gun shy. So talk to me about trailers. No, not a trailer queen, but I do travel alone and these are longer drives. Advice, please! <3

06-04-2012, 08:41 PM
Welcome back!

I've used a trailer occasionally for shows, and given a preference I would avoid them - the only reason we used a trailer is that my wife and I didn't think a cross country trip would work for the two of us in the TR4. And we still don't think that.

But I only think a trailer is worth the headache if room is an issue - if you have the room, I would say trust your car, and for backup, make sure your cell phone and credit card is charged up. You will never be stranded for too long as long as you can communicate and have a little cash. The trailer on the other hand, demands that you pay very close attention to how to turn, how to backup, how to load the car, how to unload the car, etc. All doable, but its work and not fun.


06-04-2012, 10:42 PM
All doable, but its work and not fun.

Even driving in a straight line, you need to be aware of the trailer on behind you, and it's effect on stopping distance, etc. You're now driving a vehicle that is twice as long (and roughly twice as heavy) as it was before.

You'll also be burning more fuel. I once towed a basket case TR3A across country; we got 30 mpg without the trailer (70-75 mph with the AC on) and 12 mpg with it (doing only 55-60). In CA you'll also drive slower (state speed limit is 55 for trailers even when the car limit is 75).

Plus trailers aren't exactly the most reliable things. Way back there where you can't see very well, the tires take a lot of abuse and reward you by going flat at inopportune moments. You'll be making frequent stops to check tie-downs, safety chains, tire pressure, lights, etc.

Given the chance, I would take the TR every time, even if I knew it was going to break down on the way. But you can minimize the odds of that happening by driving it as much as possible before the event. If you've covered say 5000 miles without a problem, odds are much better that it will go another 1000 than if it breaks down every week.

Might also be worth trying to get some Triumph contacts along your route beforehand. I know a TR7 owner in Anaheim Hills who probably has a throttle cable in his garage; or I'm only 45 minutes away from there (and find that a bicycle cable actually works much better than a repro throttle cable).

06-05-2012, 12:00 AM
I totally understand that gnu-shy feeling Monica, but the trailer is a major pain and she sounds like a happy car now. On idle cars that are put back in service it is pretty common some silly stuff going wrong in the first round of use. Sounds like you are past that now.

06-05-2012, 06:45 AM
last time I rented a trailer is was just to take my body over to my warehouse to paint it, I used Uhaul and boy talk about a pain they wanted to know what I was towing the trailer with, a 2007 4 runner, they wanted me to proove that I had 5000 pound towing capacity, Like I could show that, then they wanted to know what I was putting on the trailer, told them a 71 triumph tr6, the reply was sorry sir but its not in out computer so we dont know the weight, we will have to wait till the office in AZ opens so we can confirm the car and its weights, I even showed them pics, told them to look up MG, Sorry sir you already told us its a triumph, I even had a reservation and a guy showed up needing a trailer,and they said they couldnt hold the trailer for 3 hours till AZ office was open so they rented it to him, I came back at 10 another sales associated took my money gave me the one trailer they had, never asked me a single question

but that didnt answer you question on towing your car. I see no issue just take your time, I would rather recommend you carry a gun if you get stranded, then you can shoot the car if you have too,,,, just kidding


06-05-2012, 07:08 AM
Good point, if you rent from U-Haul it's best to take along some evidence of your tow vehicles tow rating and weight (it's usually in the owners manual) and the weight of the car you are towing. The clerk is supposed to verify that your tow vehicle both has an adequate GCWR, and weighs as much as the trailer plus contents.

Of course they have only your statement as to what you are towing, and I have been known to take the motorhome to pick up the trailer and switch to a more economical tow vehicle when I got home :laugh: U-Haul also insists that you drive no more than 45 mph while towing one of their trailers (though again, they have no way to enforce that).

06-05-2012, 07:49 AM
I own my car trailer. It's aluminum and has disc brakes. It is light and easy to turn. My tow vehicle is a Toyota Tundra V8. Gas mileage is nearly the same with or without the trailer and when I tow, I often forget that the trailer is being towed. I rented a u-haul before purchasing this one and it was overly heavy and I wouldn't rent another if possible.

Maybe a different experience than some, but trailers are common around here, from car to tractors and snowmobiles. If you tow, check your vehicle and trailer tires pressures first and carry a spare as well as a small hydraulic jack and blocks.

06-05-2012, 07:53 AM
I reserve my Uhaul stuff on line. When I tried to rent a trailer to go get my 1980 Spitfire, it did not recognize Spitfire. When I put in Midget, it accepted it. It also accepted a 4runner as the tow vehicle.

06-05-2012, 06:50 PM
Might also be worth trying to get some Triumph contacts along your route beforehand. I know a TR7 owner in Anaheim Hills who probably has a throttle cable in his garage; or I'm only 45 minutes away from there (and find that a bicycle cable actually works much better than a repro throttle cable).

Finding a few emergency LBC contacts is an excellent idea, Randall! Jan in Anaheim Hills? Yeah, he and his wife are sweet and said exactly that! Sadly, that cable was the LEAST of Spidey's worries.It was a totally dumb Monica moment! :wall: Funny enough, I carried in a spare cable to help Clay Thompson as he found himself in the same predicament. If I should ever have LBC issues in LA, I'm looking you up! :smile:

Thanks for the advice,Guys. The more I think about it, I may drive Spidey to Oregon as I am very familiar with that route. Best of all, time is on my side as it is in the summer and school is not in session. AZ, though...maybe fly in and enjoy the car comraderie? Spidey could be there in Spirit. :wink: --Monica