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Thread: Electric Trailer Dolly

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    Señor Member b3d3g1's Avatar
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    Default Electric Trailer Dolly

    I'm looking at moving to a house with a long enough driveway to fit my truck and trailer but it's on a pretty narrow street. I don't think I can back my trailer into the driveway if another car is parked across the street or even if no car is on the street. I think I'm about 43 ft long with truck (Ram 2500) and trailer (18 ft enclosed) and the main limiting factor is room to maneuver the truck after getting the trailer turning.

    I might be able to use an electric trailer dolly to get my loaded trailer from the street to the driveway and I found these sources.
    Power Movers | MOVING MADE EASY
    Power Caster, electric trailer mover dolly, boat dolly, toy hauler
    Parkit360° Trailer Dolly|Mover for Boats + RV Trailers

    I talked to the guy at Power Movers and he custom makes them for your trailer size/height/weight to make sure it can clear the needed driveway or obstacles. They have AC and battery powered units but everything seems to be over $1000.



    Anyone one have experience with something like this or a better idea? I'd like to store the trailer in the driveway and the street is not reliable to have a big enough opening to park.
    -Anthony
    1991 Miata - Trogdor SuperMiata
    2011 Ram 2500 - all the torque
    2016 Kawasaki Versys 650LT - commuter

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    The Real Captain Slow Red_5's Avatar
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    I looked at these a few years ago too for similar reason. I can get my trailer in my gate but it's pretty tight width-wise. A new, longer travel trailer and my longer truck might get tricky. BID has one I believe. I'm pretty sure he found his used on CL.
    99 Mazda Miata SuperMiata #515 - AKA Sparky SOLD
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    I have a power mover that I used to move my 24' enclosed trailer around with for years. A/C powered, not battery powered. I think I paid about 1100 which seems like a lot for it but the ability to park the trailer in a very confined space was priceless. I would never have been able to have that trailer without it. Access to my property is very restricted and the power mover made it possible to spin the trailer around and park it where it needed to go.

    Mark
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    Senior Member bikeindirt's Avatar
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    yep, I have a powercaster, it's the little one with a single wheel, They can be found used for pretty cheap, I honestly don't remember what I paid for mine, but it was not close to $1000. knowing my wife it was probably less than $500. it's AC powered but a 100' extension cord makes it easy to get around.

    The ability to park my trailer, hitch first into the back corner of the yard is easily worth it...

    BID

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    Senior Member granth's Avatar
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    I have the HF one like this works great for me.

    You are big strong young dude should have no issues moving an 18' trailer and the miata inside....

    image_22067.jpg

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    Sir flink
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    Some people have used the cheap bolt-on "Trailer Valet" dollies along with a cordless drill to power it.

    Others have had success using lawn tractors. I'm seeing 18hp Crasftman models on CL for $500. A bit of fab and R&D would be needed on the hitch - don't want the front wheels coming off the ground. But on the upside, you also get yourself a lawn tractor...
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    Senior Member slodrew's Avatar
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    What about putting a ball mount/hitch receiver on the front of your truck?

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    Señor Member b3d3g1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slodrew View Post
    What about putting a ball mount/hitch receiver on the front of your truck?
    I thought about this, but the biggest problem is the street width. I'm not sure it would make it any easier.

    Quote Originally Posted by bikeindirt View Post
    yep, I have a powercaster, it's the little one with a single wheel, They can be found used for pretty cheap, I honestly don't remember what I paid for mine, but it was not close to $1000. knowing my wife it was probably less than $500. it's AC powered but a 100' extension cord makes it easy to get around.

    The ability to park my trailer, hitch first into the back corner of the yard is easily worth it...

    BID
    Do you think it's reasonable to pull up at night after a track event and unhook in the street and push the trailer in to the driveway with one of these? Looks like these things are pretty slow and I don't won't to block my entire street for too long.
    -Anthony
    1991 Miata - Trogdor SuperMiata
    2011 Ram 2500 - all the torque
    2016 Kawasaki Versys 650LT - commuter

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    Senior Member bikeindirt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by b3d3g1 View Post
    Do you think it's reasonable to pull up at night after a track event and unhook in the street and push the trailer in to the driveway with one of these? Looks like these things are pretty slow and I don't won't to block my entire street for too long.
    It is slow,,, maybe 1/2 walking speed. The real advantage would be that you can spin it basically in it's own length, think about being able to pivot the trailer around the dual axles. So you could drop it perpendicular, in front a normal 2 car driveway. Pivot the trailer 90 degrees and pull/push it up the driveway... no real reason to block the street at all.

    BID
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    Señor Member b3d3g1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeindirt View Post
    It is slow,,, maybe 1/2 walking speed. The real advantage would be that you can spin it basically in it's own length, think about being able to pivot the trailer around the dual axles. So you could drop it perpendicular, in front a normal 2 car driveway. Pivot the trailer 90 degrees and pull/push it up the driveway... no real reason to block the street at all.

    BID
    This would actually be with 1 car driveway about 50 feet deep, but I guess the same idea. Trailer needs to be rotated before entering driveway but it still sounds like a possibility.
    I don't actually live there yet so I need to try it manually with the truck, but I've got an auto search on CL going if anything pops up. Maybe I'll be surprised and street parking will be no problem.
    -Anthony
    1991 Miata - Trogdor SuperMiata
    2011 Ram 2500 - all the torque
    2016 Kawasaki Versys 650LT - commuter

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    Ironically I'm in a similar situation and need to find a better option for maneuvering my trailer in and out of its current storage facility. If you happen to find a decent solution please let me know. I had the HF dolly years ago and it was more trouble than it was worth so I don't want to walk down that road again. I did see this https://www.trailervalet.com/ and thought the XL version might not be a bad option.

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    Señor Member b3d3g1's Avatar
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    That thing doesn't look bad, and it's half the price. If I buy something, you're welcome to try it out Jason.
    -Anthony
    1991 Miata - Trogdor SuperMiata
    2011 Ram 2500 - all the torque
    2016 Kawasaki Versys 650LT - commuter

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    Senior Member fatbillybob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slodrew View Post
    What about putting a ball mount/hitch receiver on the front of your truck?

    Saved me more than a few times.
    p1100676.jpg
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    Senior Member albertg's Avatar
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    Can you go 4 miatas wide on that street Anthony? I don't have a super wide street but I do have to get my open trailer up a single car driveway. Fortunately my neighbors driveway is almost directly across from mine so nobody parks right at the exit of my driveway.

    And Eric, I'm surprised you would have any problem trying to get that trailer through your gate.
    1990 S2 SuperMiata

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    The Real Captain Slow Red_5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by albertg View Post
    And Eric, I'm surprised you would have any problem trying to get that trailer through your gate.
    The gate opening is only 2' wider than the trailer so while not terrible, it's tricky by yourself especially when cars are waiting to get by.

    The new truck is longer than the Aspen and the new trailer will be longer than my old trailer. That might make things interesting. I think my new trailer is 6" narrower than the old so that will help.
    99 Mazda Miata SuperMiata #515 - AKA Sparky SOLD
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    Senior Member albertg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red_5 View Post
    The gate opening is only 2' wider than the trailer so while not terrible, it's tricky by yourself especially when cars are waiting to get by.

    The new truck is longer than the Aspen and the new trailer will be longer than my old trailer. That might make things interesting. I think my new trailer is 6" narrower than the old so that will help.
    Yeah 2ft wiggle room is not a lot. But I have no pity for you having to put up with that and getting to live where you live. I told my wife that we are moving there someday.
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    1990 S2 SuperMiata

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    The Real Captain Slow Red_5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by albertg View Post
    Yeah 2ft wiggle room is not a lot. But I have no pity for you having to put up with that and getting to live where you live. I told my wife that we are moving there someday.
    There's a house down the street for sale. We'd welcome you to the neighborhood with open arms.
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    99 Mazda Miata SuperMiata #515 - AKA Sparky SOLD
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    Señor Member b3d3g1's Avatar
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    One of these electric trailer dollies showed up on craigslist up here in NorCal. The house I was looking at renting fell through so I don't have a need for it right now.
    electric trailer dolly power dolly trailer mover
    Power Caster PC2 for $550
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    -Anthony
    1991 Miata - Trogdor SuperMiata
    2011 Ram 2500 - all the torque
    2016 Kawasaki Versys 650LT - commuter

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    I just bought one of these yesterday..

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzW6J8CLYEw

    ...and it already showed up in the mail this morning. Ill come back with a review once I've had a chance to use it. At $640 shipped- it wasn't cheap but hopefully it will do the trick helping me store my trailer against a wall to maximize space in my driveway.
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    So reporting back here. I've had a chance to use my Trailer Valet XL about 8-10 times.

    I have a narrow (8ft) sloped driveway of about 10* that flattens out and opens up at the top. Up top its a minimally slanted 2.5 car wide space in front of the garage door with a wall over on the far right. I keep my trailer (19ft aluminium feather-light open top) against that wall to allow access to the garage spots. The further to the right I get it the the more room I have to get cars in and out. The problem is the geometry of the driveway, width and a very unfortunately placed tree only lets me get it about 85% up the drive way and cocked to the side.
    Previously, I had to enlist help from friends to muscle it up and swing it over to sit parallel to the wall. After doing this a few times or using a jack and ****ty Harbor Freight come-along by myself I almost had the trailer break loose and roll back down the driveway i decided that I would need a solution that would no destroy my back or potentially cause property/trailer destruction. Like I said above the Trailer Valet XL wasn't cheap at $640 but after adding up the cost of other solutions and the potential for damage/injury by not doing it correctly, it seemed a right bargain. Also for longevity sake i'll hopefully be able to use for years and years in future houses and situations.

    As I said above- I ordered directly from the website (it was cheaper than the Amazon price also being sold by the manufacture, weird) and it arrived literally the next day by 10am so I'm assuming they're local to SoCal. After unboxing i gave it a once over. It looks and feels very sturdy with a steel construction and a nice powdercoat finish. its heavy so you probably would not want to bring it with you (i just leave mine home when im at the track) but its small enough that you could fit it in the tow vehicle if you needed too.
    When hooking it up to the trailer the instructions are very clear that the collar under the ball hitch must be snug or the trailer can slip and fall off, I found the easiest way to do that is to lower the trailer on top of the unit, clamp down the trailers hitch interface,
    then lift the trailer valet back up in the air using the trailers foot pad. This Lets the unit hang free and allows you to really cinch down on the Valets collar while not supporting any weight from the trailer. Once that is all tight lower it back down and the valet will easily support the unladen trailer weight. Moving the trailer is as easy as it shows in the promotional video. In my situation its a bit tricky as the first 4 feet on my move need to go over compact dirt of the arid landscaping we put it. If you try and move the trailer at too sharp of an angle the wheels will lose traction, NABD once you get the idea. After it rained once i used a wood plank on top the mud and it easily made the 2 inch transition down to the concrete of the while the trailer was hooked up. The automatic brake is nice to hold things in place while I chock the wheels once it where I want it. So far I've been able to move the trailer from its home and into the driveway where I hook it up to the truck in like 10 min, start to finish.

    The best part is its a relativity stress free, I can take my time and make sure i don't throw my back out. putting it away I just can reverse the process and have it back in its spot after a long track day by myself in the dark. All in all i'd recommend it if someone is looking for a solution to getting their trailer in a tight spot, especially having to do it, by yourself. I wouldn't recommend it to move a trailer long distances up a hill over slippery ground. Time will tell on the longevity of the tool but it doesn't feel maxed out or weak or creaking at any point during its operation. so so far so good, fingers crossed there.

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