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Old 09-05-2013, 03:32 PM   #1
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Default Tow with a tow rope?

Anybody ever tow with one? I'm picking up a Miata with a snapped timing belt. I have the option of throwing it in a trailer, but if I can avoid the return trip, why not use a tow rope?

We have a 25' tow rope, and granted we wouldn't have power brakes, but is this such a terrible idea?
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Old 09-05-2013, 03:39 PM   #2
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If you have to go on a forum to ask if it's ok...you probably shouldn't.

I've towed my old CRV 20miles on a tow rope and probably wouldn't go much further then that.

Make sure its a strong rope and use your miata's non power brakes to help stop the tow vehicle so there is never slack in the rope...the less stop and go there is the better.
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Old 09-05-2013, 03:42 PM   #3
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I have done it many times myself.

It depends on how far you are going, the amount of traffic and the number of turns. It can be risky, and you have to weigh out the risk. If you have a trailer, you would be wise to use it. It cuts down the risk substantially.
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Old 09-05-2013, 03:43 PM   #4
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Just dont forget to keep the key in the ignition.
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Old 09-05-2013, 10:50 PM   #5
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Of course, I've seen the horrible videos when towing without a key, I won't forget.

it's a 14.5 miles drive, 75% freeway. I just wanted to make sure it wasn't an incredibly dangerous, mexican only method of towing. The shop owner we're picking it up from might not even allow us to do this. We'll see which is easier.
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Old 09-05-2013, 11:09 PM   #6
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around here I think you get in trouble from the po po for it but not sure.

otherwise have at it
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Old 09-05-2013, 11:18 PM   #7
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Use a tow rope for towing? Nah ninja that **** cray
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:03 AM   #8
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I have used a tow rope to tow before.

But it was on slow sub-suburban roads.

At night.

Probably 3 miles total.

The brakes are not a problem. My miata happily pulled my 4k lb SUV to a stop with no power. Just got to take it easy.

Only problem is my tow guy was unfamiliar with towing, and thus made a poor turn at one point, the rope was briefly caught under my front tire before rubber band snapping back out, the SUV pulled it right back out from underneath the tire. no problems the rest of the way.
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:05 AM   #9
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I've done it quite a bit. Use common sense and it shouldn't be an issue. Don't get in a hurry either, let people wait. I always click the emergency brake up a click or two for just a tiny bit of drag to help keep the rope taught. The hardest part is stopping and starting, so since it's mostly interstate, it should be fine.
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:07 AM   #10
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5pm traffic hour here we go.
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Old 09-06-2013, 01:14 AM   #11
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Most likely illegal to strap on the freeway. I've strapped cars quite a bit but it's rural here.
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Old 09-06-2013, 01:40 AM   #12
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we have access to a truck and trailer.... and this fool comes on and asks about towing a miata with another miata on two of the busiest freeways in the Portland Metro area... good lawd josh, let's just use the trailer.
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Old 09-06-2013, 10:07 AM   #13
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I've done it plenty of times towing dead jeeps, and vehicles home. Mostly in the country, and not to much city or city-highway driving.
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Old 09-06-2013, 02:40 PM   #14
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Freeway? Are you fawking high?

I've pulled with a rope many times and wouldn't dream of going over 35mph or risking other people's lives on a freeway trying to do it. It's dangerous and selfish to consider doing it.
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:11 PM   #15
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Freeway is dicey, only because of sudden emergency situations, I've been pulled around 60-70 on rural roads before, but freeway with traffic is sketchy. Maybe take suburban roads instead? May be longer but will be safer.

Make sure to keep tension in the rope or you will die. Try and anticipate braking of tow car (like use a cell and have them tell you when slowing).
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 18psi View Post
around here I think you get in trouble from the po po for it but not sure.

otherwise have at it
In **** Germany...err I mean California, it is indeed illegal to flat tow without a drawbar or tongue.

But then again riding in the bed of a pick up truck is illegal too, so we get no fun and nothing exciting.
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Old 09-06-2013, 09:21 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanRaduechel View Post
In **** Germany...err I mean California, it is indeed illegal to flat tow without a drawbar or tongue.
Solution:
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Old 09-07-2013, 12:24 PM   #18
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It was pouring, freezing, and early. I ended up using a giant diesel truck with a giant enclosed trailer, all for $20. Eddie at Adrenaline Racing is a good person (If you're ever in Lake Oswego, OR).

Seriously, this trailer had about 3' space behind an E39 M3, and about 8' of space in front of it.

But now it's home safe home!



We're hoping for $2000 after a plasti dipped black windshield header, and plasti dipped white mirrors, and either a polished hood or a respray? Not sure what to do about that. Plasti dip on the hood would look terrible. At least plasti dip's terribleness would be more noticeable.

Ah, problems of white 90's...
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Old 09-07-2013, 03:17 PM   #19
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Naaah mang leave it as it is. Mercedes Benz GTR paint job ftw.

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Old 09-11-2013, 01:50 PM   #20
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Tow rope is usually an acceptable answer.
Towed my buddy's 4runner behind my 1 ton truck when his ignition cylinder failed. All was going well until his steering wheel locked on the very last turn. Tow rope snapped, he goes flying (slowly) into a ditch. Could've been much worse if we had used a chain or some "proper" method of towing.
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