iwatson
Posts: 112
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 11:12 am
Location: Bartlett (Memphis), Tennessee

Re: Has anyone car dolly towed i-MiEV?

Sat Aug 05, 2017 12:26 pm

JoeS wrote:Still hasn't posted of photo of exactly how the steering wheel gets strapped down... :roll:


I'm really gonna get it done Joe. I'm taking an RV trip at the end of this month to the Smokey Mountains in East Tennessee. I'll take the pictures and send them to you to post.

BTW>>>My out west adventure last August, I towed the i-miev 5,169miles

My route was Memphis, TN. to St. Louis, MO to Kansas City, MO to Mitchell, SD to Mt. Rushmore, SD to Devil's Tower, WY to Yellowstone N.P., WY to Salt Lake City, UT, to Arches National Park, Moab, UT to Monument Valley to Zion N.P. UT to Las Vegas, NV to Anaheim, CA to Grand Canyon N.P. AZ, and back to Memphis (Whew!) :)
2012 Silver Mitsubishi iMiev ES
2012 Raspberry Mitsubishi IMiev SE Premium
2017 Cajun Red Chevrolet Bolt EV Premiere
2011 Viridian Joule Chevrolet Volt Premium
2002 Forest River Sunseeker 3100
2001 Buick LeSabre Custom
1997 Chrysler Town & Country

jray3
Posts: 1470
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:05 am
Location: Tacoma area, WA
Contact: Website

Re: Has anyone car dolly towed i-MiEV?

Sat Dec 23, 2017 4:21 pm

iWatson, I haven't come close to your record, but just dolly-towed an i-MiEV 1252 miles from home to Durango, Colorado (second time Moab UT has seen such a rig, more on that later...) For the first dolly tow, I had the wheel tightly bound to the seat mount and seatbelt latch with camlock straps, but for subsequent reloadings, found that looping the seatbelt over the wheel worked just fine. To do this, slide the seat full forward, run the seatbelt over the centered wheel at 7 o-clock, pass under the center spoke, and then over the wheel at 5 o-clock and snap in the buckle. Then slide the seat back to tension the belt. If you run the seat belt over the spoke, it will sound the horn at an inopportune time! Lastly, don't worry that this leaves a little play in the wheel. If anything, the car seemed to travel more smoothly with a looser tie on the steering wheel, and on a U-Haul dolly, there's plenty more than the minimum 3" clearance to each dolly fender well to allow for some pivot while cornering. Just don't tell U-Haul that you're towing backwards! Two of Two law enforcement officers encountered on our journey had no problem with the rear-facing tow, and seemed to appreciate the little flashing red triangle that I hung from the hood latch. Tire wear was a non-issue, with mold release 'nubbies' still visible on the new snow tires I installed just before the tow.

With the i-MiEV weighing only 2300 lb, it should have been fine behind our Odyssey minivan, which is rated for 3500 lbs. However my tranny started slipping a week before the trip, so we bit the bullet for that replacement (original tranny lasted 130k, this genuine Honda reman only lasted 100k, after they claimed to have fixed the original shortcomings such as narrow oil passages that get clogged by bits of clutch lining...) I also ran a tranny cooler on the second transmission that doesn't seem to have helped. The new tranny was broken in on a dyno prior to installation, and my mechanic said that he'd warrant the planned tow, plus I had 2 1/2 days of break-in driving! However, it had a bit of a whine and threw an error code by mile 20, and three more times after a reset. The mechanic found no bad wiring connections and the code didn't come up again in the next 20 miles of testing, but it lit up again by mile 30 of our tow, and I limped to an off-ramp at mile 40, with one freshly-smoked tranny! We unloaded the i-MiEV and headed for home after a cool-down period, pulling over for two more cool-downs when I felt it start slipping again. The van is undergoing a warranty tranny replacement right now! :roll: Here's hoping for no second thoughts on that warranty.

EV Tow Take Two- time to throw some new starting batteries in my 1987 F250 Diesel, which hasn't ventured far from home in the past decade, just "dump runs" and towing my electric dragster to shows and races. The olde truck scarcely noticed that puny load out back, but my junkyard-salvage electric cooling fan failed before cresting Snoqualmie Pass. Fortunately, this is winter and that Ford has a semi-sized radiator, so keeping up momentum for airflow plus running the cab heater at max when topping passes was all that was needed to prevent overheating!

One of the other idiosyncracies of my old truck is that despite a fuel system rebuild last year, the new tank-switching solenoid valve seems to work intermittently, so I can only depend on one of the two 19 gallon tanks. For this tow, I had figured my minimum safe range at 216 miles, and only stretched that interval once, on the approach to Moab, Utah approaching 9 pm. Well, we sucked air and coasted to a stop at mile 201, with the fuel station literally at 202 miles. No problem, as we have a lifeboat! For its second deployment on this journey, the i-MiEV was used to fetch diesel, which was a pain as the first three gas stations didn't sell fuel cans! I returned to find my wife entertaining one of Moab's finest, who pulled up to what looked like a car thief's getaway rig, tow dolly ramps and straps deployed at the ready, but instead found the wife and kids singing karaoke from an iPhone! When my first few attempts at purging air from the fuel system failed (with no small amount of smoke and clatter), the officer asked if there was any way to get our rig off the highway shoulder, so I simply tied a tow rope to the i-MiEV and had my wife pilot the mighty bean as it towed the stricken diesel a mile down the road effortlessly. The cop was stunned, and my wife was amazed by 'how easy that felt'. After a messy, smoky air purge, we arrived safely by 2 am. (The second officer encounter noticed a burned out low beam as we exited a small town, about 30 seconds after I noticed it, so he sent us on our way with functioning high beams...)
2012 i-SE "MR BEAN" 87,000 miles
2012 i-ES traded at 21,648 miles
1983 Grumman Kurbwatt,170 kW, 32 kWh
1983 Mazda RX-7 EV 43 kW 10 kWh
1971 "Karmann Eclectric" EV 240 kW 19 kWh
1965 Karmann Ghia Cabriolet

iwatson
Posts: 112
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 11:12 am
Location: Bartlett (Memphis), Tennessee

Re: Has anyone car dolly towed i-MiEV?

Sat Dec 23, 2017 4:56 pm

That must be your Dad's Christmas gift you told me about???

Too Bad about the breakdown issues you had. But good to know the law enforcement officers were ok with everything. I use a set of lights hung out of the front windows just over the folded mirrors.

I promised JoeS several times I was going to take some photo's of the procedure I use. Most recently I promised to take some in August of last year but that trip got cancelled. My next RV trip is in two weeks. Were going to see a couple in Central Florida that we've been supporting now for several years. You likely know them....His name is Mickey and her name is Minnie.

I must really make good on my promise this time

Merry Christmas to all our EV Lovin' friends, wherever you are!
2012 Silver Mitsubishi iMiev ES
2012 Raspberry Mitsubishi IMiev SE Premium
2017 Cajun Red Chevrolet Bolt EV Premiere
2011 Viridian Joule Chevrolet Volt Premium
2002 Forest River Sunseeker 3100
2001 Buick LeSabre Custom
1997 Chrysler Town & Country

JoeS
Site Moderator
Posts: 3459
Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2011 5:47 am
Location: Los Altos Hills, California

Re: Has anyone car dolly towed i-MiEV?

Sat Dec 23, 2017 7:48 pm

Jay, your account had me rolling on the floor, bringing back many memories of similar, uh, adventures, in my youth. :lol: It will be a memorable story for your kids, as well, and kudos to your wife for putting up with all these shenanigans. Great Christmas present for your mother! That diesel truck needed a workout, anyway, and this is another example of something that is foreign to us: ICE range anxiety! :evil:
Merry Christmas!
EVs: 2 Wht/Blu SE Prem., '13 Tesla MS85, 3 156v CorbinSparrows (2 Li-ion), 24v EcoScoot(LiFePO4)
EV Conv: 156v '86 Ram PU, 144v '65 Saab 96
Hybrids: 48v1kW bike
ICE: '88 Isuzu Trooper. Mothballed: '67 Saab (orig.owner), '76 MBZ L206D RHD RV

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