Joe Flanagan

OT--Transporting a Vehicle

100 posts in this topic

As you guys know, I recently bought a '56 Chevy pickup that is currently in Arizona. I hired a shipping broker to get it to Virginia for me but right now I believe they are giving me the runaround and that they have no intention of moving this vehicle until they find someone who is willing to do it. The truck is in a remote place, way off the beaten path. I could wait months. Full disclosure: I knew they were a broker and I was trying to go on the cheap. I was warned how these guys sometimes work. I wouldn't be that concerned except my few conversations with them have left me with a really uneasy feeling. I wont go into detail.

Anyway, what I'm thinking of doing is flying to Phoenix and renting a U-Haul truck with a trailer, picking it up myself, and driving it the 2100 miles to Alexandria. Sounds crazy, I know, but I'm wondering if I might actually get off cheaper than the 1,500-1,800 I've been quoted from guys who actually do this (I got some names off the HAMB). I have the time. It's the money I'm trying to save. The pickup can't be trusted to make that trip on its own. My question is, does anyone know about renting this sort of equipment from U-Haul or a similar rental place? One person told me it would probably cost me more than I paid for the truck. The truck cost me a little over five thousand and I find it hard to believe I'd spend that much. If I can do this for under a thousand, I think it would be worth it. Oh, and did I mention it would be a great adventure? Sleeping bag, state campgrounds, greasy spoon diners, the great American landscape. Sounding better all the time, right?

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FWIW; I think it would be fun. Whats the matter with a little adventure. Do it, it won't kill you and it will make the truck more "your own". The more I think about it, I'd go with you if my leash was that long.

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U haul has a website that lists prices, availability, capacities, etc. I looked at a local rental for a car trailer for a weekend and was surprised how reasonable it was. Long distance one way I never priced. Sounds like a great adventure.

http://www.uhaul.com/

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have used the uhaul trailers many times, there great. go to www.uhaul.com. and you can figure what the trailer rental will cost. get the one that all 4wheels are off the ground, not the dolley. you still will have to figure in gas, food and ect. will cost. :)

post-7014-13585363805903_thumb.jpg

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Come to think of it, if my leash were that long, I wouldn't be sitting here typing.

I still think you should do it.

Try for a different rental company. Maybe google "cheap trailer rental". Try harder.

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You might be able to rent a truck or van that has a hitch installed from one of the big car rental companies for a weekly rate with no mileage charges. Then you could rent/beg/borrow/steal a trailer. No matter what you will spend fifty bucks for gas every 300 or so miles. Or you could check airline tickets from Southwest then rent the rolling stock for the drive home. You can fly for less than the cost of gasolene.

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Another thought. Check with one of the big cross country home movers such as United, Atlas, etc. to see if they might have room on one of there trailers. When I moved from California to Tennessee my wifes car was shipped in one such trailer. I dont recall the cost because the company I worked for at the time picked up the tab.

I bought my P-15 on the bay and it was located in Michigan. It cost me around five hundred bucks to ship it home but this was about 11 years ago. My car was shipped on an open car hauler and I had it in about a week after the auction ended.

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Thanks, all, for the answers. No, Tim, he didn't respond to e-mails. Don, I'll try some of your suggestions. There are a couple of guys on the HAMB who do this. They're pricey but they have great reputations. You can bet on the better part of 2 G's to secure their services.

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Joe, I just did it in for the "No Plymouth Left Behind saga" UHaul and the rest of them have it figured out. They would only rent me a box van with the car hauler (pickups dont have a hitch plus you will sign a contract that states what you can and cannot do). Since it will be a one way trip, they base the rate on the mileage zip code to zip code. My trip was 1,000 miles they gave me 5 days but only the mileage zip to zip. Rental was approximatley $1300.00 and probably $300 in gas those trucks are pigs. Believe, when I was trapped on the side of the road for fourth time, I ran all of the scenerios. Cheapest, fastest and least stressful for you, fly out, rent the truck and trailer and haul it home, I would make sure I had my rental inplace before making the trip.

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cannot quite find the format I used when I found Bill to do my trucking..he was an indepentdent and I found him on truckers.com website as a private transporter of cars in the areas of my purchase..I was able to list my consignment on the open board..and I also sent for quotes from about 4 compaines..this is how I found Bill. Here is a similar site..

http://www.autotransport411.com/index.php?rid=1

brokerage firms I have no use for..none whatsoever..they have too many hidden fees and charges that will make it to your door..

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Have you looked for a shipper in Hemmings? Also, Hertz does not have one-way drop charges for cars, maybe it's the same for trucks. Sounds like a fun trip!

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In March I had my car shipped from Massachusetts to North Carolina. I called about a half dozen haulers listed in Hemmings. All but one used enclosed vans. They were all within $50 of each other on their prices except for the one with the open trailer, he was about $100 less than the closed vans. I had Thomas Sunday transport the car in an enclosed van because they could schedule it the way I wanted. They did an excellent job. I checked U-Haul, but when I added up the cost of the truck and trailer rental and the gas and a night in a hotel, it added up to within $100 of what the haulers wanted. If you have someone to be present when the car is put on the truck my advice is to go with one of the car hauling companies listed in Hemmings. It costs about the same as doing it yourself and you can have the peace of mind that it will arrive intact.

Dave

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...I have the time...The pickup can't be trusted to make that trip on its own...

Are you sure? Are there known problems that can't be fixed before setting out?

Otherwise, you could load up ahead of time with easy replacement parts (ignition, break cyl kits etc) and tools then take your time driving and take your chances. If the tires are dodgy, buy and mount a new set in AZ. Spend a day doing a complete lube and tuning up the engine, lights, etc.

Lots of forum members more-or-less along the way to say howdy to and maybe use as a repair base if necessary. Repair parts for a 56 Chev are only a day or two away by courier.

Worst case scenario you have some big breakdown part way and whatever it cost to ship the rest of the way home would be proportionately less.

That would be one fabulous trip fer sure, with or without problems on the road. Think about it. You only live once and this road trip really sounds like living to me.

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Joe -

This might be too far out of an idea, but what IF you forgo the idea of using a trailer and loaded the purchased pick-up into a rental van and simply hauled it home inside the rental truck.

Of course you'll need a loading ramp or loading dock or at the very least, stable enough portable drive on ramps to load and unload the pick-up.

Needless to say, you'll need to arrange some dunnage and tie downs at the load-up site, but that should be doable enough.

Another unseen advantage in addition to saving the cost of the trailer rental would be the security for you new found purchase--of having it inside-- while parked and stopped.

I know of a guy near me who delivers vintage aircaft to Calif inside rental trucks.

Good luck with your adventure.

Frank

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When I bought my 49 Suburban in Indiana I was going to have it shipped. However it seemed to run well so I drove it home. I figured if it quit I would ship it from wherever. It ran fine for the 2400 miles using only 3 qt. of oil.

Have an adventure.

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I vote for the road trip and keep us posted.

I am probably not brave enough to do it myself, but I can live vicariously through others.

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You might consider buying a truck in AZ, renting a UHaul trailer, then reselling the truck at home...maybe get lucky and make a buck or two and get the Chevy moved for free.

This is a good idea unless you blow a motor in the truck you buy to haul the trailer. I personally like the idea of taking the chance and driving the old girl home. What engine does your truck have?

Chris Bamford drove his old Dodge from Edmonton, Alberta all the way down to Florida and back with a none too healthy engine as it turned out. Take a chance and we can all live vicariously through you. Hey. it's only your money and truck and we get to enjoy for nothing.:P

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A couple years ago, a friend bought a retired military Blazer thru ebay,

that was in California. We flew out and drove it back to Missouri, and it

never missed a beat.

Had a couple small issues like having the tires all balanced at Wal Mart

and replacing one headlight, but that turned out to be all. It actually

began running even a bit better the farther we went.

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Some rental contracts specifically prohibit carrying a vehicle in the truck body. If you do rent a truck, you'd need to tie down the pickup suspension because on bumps it will start bouncing and could cause the rental vehicle to be unstable. A compound harmonic oscillator, if I remember my engineering correctly.

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The truck sat for 17 years but has been driven recently by the owner. He says there are no problems with it that he knows of but that he wouldn't assume it to be dependable. That's just his assessment of it. He's been very forthright with information about it, sent me lots of pictures, etc. The passenger side window is smashed out, which I can imagine would be an annoyance on a long trip. I don't think it has a spare. I'd have to find out if all the lights and gauges work.

I appreciate all your responses. I'm going to investigate it some more and see what I come up with. The engine, by the way, is a six cylinder 235 Thriftmaster.

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Hey Joe, glad to see you're at least considering the drive. The passenger glass will be flat so an AZ shop can cut and fit you a replacement before the trip (and that's money you would spend later anyway). If the speedo does not work a hand-held GPS will do fine. If the generator is kaput just charge the battery overnight at the hotel and you will have plenty of juice to start and run. A new battery would be a good idea of course, and again, that's money you will spend later anyway. No signals? Use your arm. Betcha there is an active forum for these trucks with members in AZ — one of them can fix you up with a decent spare. Provided they aren't cranky with you for taking such a neat truck back east.

And pictures? Maybe I missed them earlier but if you haven't posted photos yet please do. I'd love to see your new truck!

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