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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2017, 08:12 PM Thread Starter
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Towing an auto trans vehicle

I was sitting on the main street deck of the local watering hole watching an endless parade of motor homes towing all types of vehicles with towbars through this tourist-trap town yesterday. Never been an auto trans guy, but years back I was under the impression you'd burn up the auto trans unless it had a rear pump, and even then, nationwide towing wasn't recommended. Trailer Life used to advertise a Remco unit IIRC which was a disconnect that mounted just behind the trans allowing the driveshaft to turn but not the trans. Anyone in the know (Chuckster 57?) if that's what people are using? I know for sure you can quickly burn up a big truck manual trans, (and many smaller manuals) unless the driveshaft is removed or axle shafts are pulled.

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2017, 09:23 PM
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There are some "newer" cars that are "tow friendly", we just did a set up on an automatic transmission Ford Focus. I believe it's spelled out in the owners manual, and I do know we don't add anything specific for circulating transmission fluid. Jeep has a number of vehicles with auto trans and "tow" friendly.
I can't say what year would be the cutoff, mainly because we set up mainly cars less than 5 years old.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-29-2017, 07:06 AM Thread Starter
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Gotch'a Chuckster, thanks for the reply. Figured you would know if anyone would. Hope Madras was fun, showed on the news it got pretty dark there. We were something like 98% and it was only like an overcast day. I was hoping for dark and weird.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-29-2017, 11:22 AM
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A 4X4 Superduty can be towed with all 4 wheels on the ground if you have a manual transfer case. Just shift to neutral and undock the front hubs.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-29-2017, 06:32 PM
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Gotch'a Chuckster, thanks for the reply. Figured you would know if anyone would. Hope Madras was fun, showed on the news it got pretty dark there. We were something like 98% and it was only like an overcast day. I was hoping for dark and weird.
I was considering Madras, but we opted for Baker City, Oregon for the eclipse, even though we had tickets for the Lowell Observatory event at the high school in Madras. Got to looking and realized Madras only has 2-lane highways in and out, while Baker City had an Interstate thru it.
The Eclipse was pretty awesome , especially when it went total (Baker City was about 40 miles off the center of the path, but still got 1.5 minutes of totality). It got pretty dark, and it was a completely clear sky. Looking toward the horizon looked like the sun had just set in every direction. I would classify it as dark and weird. I tried to take a video of the shadow heading our way at 2000+ MPH, but the dang camera kept adjusting the exposure, and it wasn't as dramatic as I had hoped. Overall a great road trip with our daughter. When we headed north, we were looking at Google Maps and Madras looked like a red spider with the traffic headed out of town tied up for at least 20 miles in every direction. We got our comeuppance though, creeping along at idle on I82 for 1-1/2 hours crossing the Columbia into Washington, which was one lane in each direction.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-29-2017, 08:39 PM Thread Starter
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Yep, by the news I gathered that Madras was going to be the most popular viewing area in the west. Good country, other than as you said, slow going during the eclipse.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-29-2017, 09:06 PM
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Yep, by the news I gathered that Madras was going to be the most popular viewing area in the west. Good country, other than as you said, slow going during the eclipse.

I know that according to the local Colorado news Casper was the best spot. I guess it depended on where you were or how far you had to drive.

I went fishing, and the funny thing is that as I was looking through my welding helmet at 10 minutes intervals I was to the point that I was going to see all that I could see. Just as I went to look through the helmet my pole tried to jump out of my hands. I ended up landing a 6 lb rainbow 15 minutes later missing the maximum amount of the eclipse that I was going to see.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-29-2017, 09:51 PM
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We were in my sisters back yard (1 1/2 acres) in Salem. Got 100% and the DW got some awesome pics with her Cannon 5D MKIII and special filter. Nightmare was the drive to Cascade Locks afterwards. 10MPH from Salem to Wilsonville.
We get calls all the time about setting up a TOAD, and since I'm just a tech, I don't know what all resources the service writers use to determine if the vehicle in question is "good to go". Some RV'rs opt for a tow dolly that puts front wheel drive on a trailer, and making the whole issue moot.

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-30-2017, 07:22 AM Thread Starter
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I went fishing, and the funny thing is that as I was looking through my welding helmet at 10 minutes intervals I was to the point that I was going to see all that I could see. Just as I went to look through the helmet my pole tried to jump out of my hands. I ended up landing a 6 lb rainbow 15 minutes later missing the maximum amount of the eclipse that I was going to see.
You did better than me, I'm probably the only idiot nationwide that alternated looking through my welding hood and picking up dog crap on the back lawn.
I DID hear Casper was pretty crowded too
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I don't know what all resources the service writers use to determine if the vehicle in question is "good to go".
That's what made me curious too, Chuckster. One guy was towing a small Chevy pickup (S10 type?) with all 4 on the ground. Don't know if a lot of people use that Remco deal or not. It was operated by a dash mounted cable but I don't know if it's a big seller or not.

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