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Old 02-22-2004, 11:47 AM   #1
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I have been dreaming for years of owning a toterhome for my racing operation. I have lots of questions and will ask over time. I am am not made of gold and all my yard has is pine trees no money trees. I currently have a 1999 Chevy Crewcab Dually, Vortec 350, Automatic with OD, 4.10 gears. I have a 1999 32ft tag Pace American Bigfoot GT tri-axle enclosed trailer that I tow. The dually does great on the road...gets about 10 - 11mpg (depending on my heavy right foot it gets worse). I don't have a sway kit or load levelers on my tow setup yet. I have not been racing much in the past 3 years. I am looking to hit the road pretty hard this season though. I have been very happy with the handling and overall drivability of the rig. I even had my girlfriend (who never towed anything before) tow for her first time last season. LOL...I actally like the truck ride better with the trailer hooked up than I do just driving around everyday getting my kidney beat out of me.

I have some limited seat time in dump trucks and a KW road tractor. I also currently own a 29ft Winnebago Custom Class A RV, that I don't use to tow with since it is TOO UNDERPOWERED for the trailer.

I am a big guy (6'6" and 340lbs) and need my space (LOL). So I also have needs for a larger than standard RV bed, shower, etc. I looked at enclosed trailers with living quarters..and I could not get my shoulders through the bathroom door let alone get in the thing they called a shower.

I am very handy with my hands and resouceful when it comes to saving money. I am looking at getting a chassis (which one I don't know...but I did learn about cabovers from reading the forum today). I am now looking at conventionals and I am open minded from there. I don't have a bunch of money to spend on the chassis at this time. I will probably repair the leaking seal around the AC Units in the Winnebago and sell it to bankroll this effort.

I currently have a 32ft x 42ft garage behind the house with a 9x7 door and a 10x10.5 door opening. What do you all use for storage of your vehicles. My garage is 12.5ft to the truss so if I need to raise the opening a little I have some wiggle room. I am considering building a outrigging off the one side of my garage to park the tow rig to keep it out of the direct weather.

I have seen those canvas-tubular shelters. How are they with the wind, etc?

This is enough for now.....sorry for being so long winded. I am happy I found this forum and group.

Thanks,

-Eric-
2FastDesignz.com / Sledgehammer Motorsports

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Old 02-22-2004, 10:01 PM   #2
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I only found this site about 2 weeks ago. Lots of nice people to deal with and a ton of good info. I wish there were more people hear and info. flowed faster but it has been fun so far!

I have to ask you a question. Have you ever considered using a class 8 motorhome with your existing trailer. Possible replacing your RV with something that will do the same thing and still being able to tow your car? Depending on how much you use the dually the RV & dually would give you a pretty good down payment on a used class 8.
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Old 02-23-2004, 06:23 AM   #3
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Nice to meet you Big Toy. I just found this site yesterday. I use my Dually as an everyday vehicle...after owning a truck for the past 10 years. I would never live without one again. I laugh everytime I go to Home Depot and see those rental trucks and people driving away in them *wink*. I live in my local HD and Lowe's (to the point they know me on sight.)

I plan on getting rid of the Winnebago that is for sure. I can use it for the primary reason of towing to the races so it has to go. I don't go RV'ing much yet....that will change once I get something I am comfortable with.
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Old 02-23-2004, 10:09 AM   #4
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Start checking out the class 8's. I never knew what they were called but since I have discovered them I am hooked! Toter & Motorhome styles both have there pros & cons but I don't think you can tow with anything better.

From what I have seen so far 3 years old seems like the best place to buy. The first couple years they seem to drop in value about 15 to 20% a year but then it appears to stop with them only droping about a thousand a year after that. You will never find another tow vehicle that holds its value like a 3 year old class!

I thought I was 2 years away from a new one till I found a nice used one for about 1/2 the price of new. We all know, buying new, the first couple years value drops a good bit what surprised me is once you get past that they really don't drop in price much.

Good luck! I know what you are talking about with the truck. I have never been truckless and have been driving about 30 years. Sometimes a pick-up and sometimes a van, even occasionally a dump truck but always a truck!

Later,
Skip
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Old 02-23-2004, 01:21 PM   #5
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Hi Eric -- --

Nice trailer !!

Now -- Any upgrade to replace your 1-Ton ..... Will require a CDL to operate. Why? -- You are pulling a trailer with signage -- Which states a means for compensation.

I have an RV Hauler -- You'r welcome to view the build pictures .... May not be the way you envision to go -- But .. Just one example -- Here's a link to get you started:

http://community.webshots.com/album/49062992VBcrVd/0

As Skip mentioned -- Start with a Class 8 .... Then as time/money allow -- Convert into something like a Showhauler/Renegade.

Good Luck ......

Dave
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Old 02-23-2004, 03:57 PM   #6
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Having your trailer lettered won't force you into a CDL. Using the rig for interstate commerce will. Hobbiest racers are fine, if you're racing professionally (i.e. it's your only or main job and source of income) then you will need a cdl although even then getting pulled over is unlikely. I only know of 3 teams ot ever get pulled over by the DOT and all three were let go with no problems.


Sean P. Clarke
WERA Motorcycle Roadracing
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Old 02-23-2004, 08:43 PM   #7
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OLDphoneman...thanks. A lot of blood sweat and tears went into paying for that trailer.

No CDL will be needed as long as you don't use the vehicle for a income.

Because I declare my racing as a business for the IRS I will need a CDL. I do actually have my CDL learner's permit I was considering going into the dumptruck or OTR hauling business.

But instead I am toughing it out in the web site and graphic design business. Competition is deep and fierce...thanks to Microsoft and Front Page software.

I am actually looking at going the route that you did. I don't know if I can build the box and the interior before I mount it on the chassis.

Guys and gals...is that feasible? Or is that just asking too much?

OPM...btw..nice rig. Wanna sponsor a race team by loaning your rig...LOL (I couldn't resist) Me having fun in photoshop.


Thanks....

-Eric-
2FastDesignz.com / Sledgehammer Motorsports

[This message was edited by Sledgehamer Motorsports on February 24, 2004 at 12:09 AM.]

[This message was edited by Sledgehamer Motorsports on February 24, 2004 at 12:39 AM.]
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Old 02-23-2004, 09:11 PM   #8
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.....actually Eric, it's easier than many think....you order the box new to your specs for under $10k mounted...the rest is interior fab and side boxes as simple and cheap or a fancy as you want...interior is relativley easy if you can do woodworking and live near a Home Depot.....rest is finishing to your own tastes....geof
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Old 02-23-2004, 09:43 PM   #9
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Really $10K mounted? Sign me up. Now I just need to fix the leak in the seal around the AC unit in the RV....and do a little sprucing up. And off to the class 8 I go.

Man...and a home depot is just down the road and a Lowe's up the road. And they know me by first name in both stores...I built my 32x42 shop out of them.

Where is that Truck Paper I got at the rest area?

Do they lengthen the frame too or do I need to make sure I get a chassis that is long enough to begin with? Learning new things already.

Who are some of the companies that sell and mount the boxes you mention?
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Old 02-23-2004, 09:58 PM   #10
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OBTW....oldphoneman...QRZ de KA3ITJ. Just saw the pics of your communications setup. I will be setting up my 2m and 10m gear in the big rig not enough room in the dually.

-E-
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