Is 4x4 really necessary?

Discussion in '4X4 Truck Talk and Repairs' started by swdias, Aug 1, 2007.

  1. swdias

    swdias New Member

    Messages:
    9
    State:
    Ohio
    Here's a question for you folks.
    Does everyone really think that a 4 wheel drive tow vehicle is necessary?

    I've been using a Bronco 2 with 4 wheel drive to pull and launch my boat(14 ft alumacraft). It's on it's last leg and it's main purpose is just to tow the boat. I rarely even unhook it from the boat trailer. I've been thinking of just having a tow hitch put on my E-150 van , which of course is only 2 wheel drive, but runs and drives like a dream.

    Do you see alot of 2 wheel drive tow vehicles getting stuck out there?
    It feels like I would be limiting myself as to where I can put in at, but I'd also like to remove the headaches that I foresee with the Bronco.

    As always...your advise does get hammered in
     
  2. RiverKing

    RiverKing Active Member

    Messages:
    2,232
    State:
    Yellow Spr
    I never use 4 wheel drive to tow my boat , and its a 17 footer deep V, that is almost bigger than my SUV....It pulls it fine, it is a 4 wheel drive vehicle, but i dont engage it when pulling, i dont think you should use 4 wheel drive on dry pavement.
     

  3. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Messages:
    2,554
    State:
    MO
    Spend some quality time trying to pull your boat up an algae-covered, slimy, slicker-than-snot concrete ramp with a 4x2 pickup and you'll probably understand the advantage of 4x4. Same goes for a river ramp covered in silt and mud.

    If I didn't have 4 wheel drive, there would be a lot of ramps I couldn't (wouldn't) use and a significant part of the year that I couldn't fish.
     
  4. Arkansascatman777

    Arkansascatman777 New Member

    Messages:
    7,782
    State:
    AR
    4X4 99% of the time is useless but that 1% of the time will get you if you don't have it:smile2:.
     
  5. RiverKing

    RiverKing Active Member

    Messages:
    2,232
    State:
    Yellow Spr
    I fish the Ohio River, and use a 3.2 rodeo 4x4 to pull my boat, I pull a 17 ft deep V tracker with a 110 on it, and up to now, i have never had to use 4 wheel drive at all to pull up out of a ramp..I actually used to use a ford bronco 2, it was 2 wheel drive, and it did fine also, i had only had a 15 ft boat at that time though. But there are alot of people who pull boats without 4 wheel drive.
     
  6. swdias

    swdias New Member

    Messages:
    9
    State:
    Ohio
    thanks guys
    Normally I just fish local lakes...walborn, berlin (I always considered drive time as cutting into my fishing time) I know the ramps and what to expect.
    Just recently I started fishing the NeoCat tournaments and of course I never know what the ramps will be like 'til I get there.

    What's the standard for the Ohio River? paved? gravel?
     
  7. RiverKing

    RiverKing Active Member

    Messages:
    2,232
    State:
    Yellow Spr
    It just depends on where I launch, 2 of the ramps are pretty good, but I have used a few that were not so great. If the river came way up, and left a bunch of mud when it went down, then I may need the 4 wheel drive, but like one of the other guys said, 99% of the time you dont need it, but you are glad you have it when you do have to use it.
     
  8. GMC FishHauler

    GMC FishHauler New Member

    Messages:
    1,335
    State:
    Waco, Texas, Un
    Good point. I have had to pull alot of guys up boat ramps here lately with the water level changing. Some slime or mud gets on the ramp and the more powerful the truck is the more likely it is to break loose and start spinning.
     
  9. micus

    micus New Member

    Messages:
    524
    State:
    Lake St. L
    It all depends on where you are going to ramp & under what conditions. I used 2x for over 20 years, but the boat was light and I had to be carefull about the ramps I used. I use a 4x now and have a lot more versatility and am happier for it.
     
  10. Pirate Jerry

    Pirate Jerry New Member

    Messages:
    613
    State:
    Yulee Florida
    I have owned and towed boats from a 12 foot jon boat with a 3 1/2 Evenrude up to a 24 foot cabin cruiser with a 302 V8 and have never used anything but a 2 wheel drive. Common sense is the name of the game. If you have doubts that you can get in or out, don't try it. Find another place to launch. 4 wheel drive is of course a good thing, but I have on several occasions (with a 50 foot tow chain) snaked 4 wheelers back on terra firma after they guessed wrong. I also carry 4 rubber door mats that have metal mixed in the rubber to put under the tires if things go just a little bit wrong. About $40.00 for an insurance policy. Cheap at twice the price...:wink:
     
  11. metalman

    metalman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,456
    State:
    IN
    Name:
    Winston
    What he said!

    I very rarely engage 4WD but Marty is exactly right. I drive a long way to the major rivers and I want to know I have every chance that when I get there I am able to launch and more importantly get out...W
     
  12. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    This is my second year without a 4x4 and I feel the pinch sometimes not being able to launch at some good spots on a river near here. I have a 17 foot boat that I can get in that ramp with but the wife likes to use the toon. I can't launch there because It is to steep and I would burn the tires off trying to pull it out.
    There fore I have to drive 50 miles to launch but fishing is good any way just father out.
    There is another ramp closer but the theives will cost you plenty there. I have been broken into at that ramp and refuse to use it any more.
    I see a 4x4 in my futeure again
     
  13. coach

    coach New Member

    Messages:
    1,564
    State:
    Greenville , Ms
    here's some input from a guy that has never had a 4x4............ about 5 times a year i think to myself.. "self , why in the world did u think u could pull back up that damn ramp without 4x4 drive """........................cell phones do come in handy................... get a 4x4 and don't worry about bad ramps ....
     
  14. Creteus

    Creteus New Member

    Messages:
    1,030
    State:
    Loganville, GA
    You dont need 4X4 to tow anything unless you are off road or in the snow. BassMassy a member here uses a 4 banger passanger car to pull his 17 foot boat. Believe it or not it'll pull it right up the ramp.