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  1. #1

    Default Moving from El Paso to Pittsburgh--How fast can I go in a 26' Penske diesel

    I am relocating from El Paso, Texas to Pittsburgh, PA and hoping to make the trip in 3 days. From what I can tell the best route is through Clovis, NM passing Amarillo in to Oklahoma City and then through St. Louis, Indianapolis, and Columbus before arriving in Pittsurgh. I've rented a 26' diesel and a car dolly for our Nissan Altima--does anyone know how fast the truck is governed to? I'm not looking to go excessively fast but 70-75mph would be great. I am also concerned about finding hotels with ample parking for the rig, any advice?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    1,549

    Default Oooohhhh, that seems too fast for my tastes

    Hello jroyko,

    I haven't bothered with mapping software to determine routes and distances for your move, but the mention of 70-75 mph in a loaded 26' truck towing a dolly + car caught my eye.

    I've been driving for 39 years and have run most everything up to and including a single-axle dumptruck. While I imagine the Penske diesel will run 70-75, I would not want to do much of that myself. That's a heckuva handful of truck and dolly being pushed through some very congested parts of the country and running it hard just seems unwise.

    And, if you're wondering if you can AVERAGE 70-75 on a beginning of day to end of day basis, forget it. With that rig, even if you drove 70-75 while not stopped for fuel, nature breaks, and food, you'd probably only AVERAGE 50-55 on a start-to-finish of the day basis. Example: I drove from Raleigh,NC to Port Hueneme, CA with my son in late 2007, we bent the speed limits somewhat, economized on our stops, and we still averaged only 67 mph on a morning to night basis. When not stopped, we ran 80 and over wherever possible, and having encountered virtually no traffic, weather, or construction delays, it was pretty much possible everywhere.

    I imagine there's language in the Penske contract which prohibits running at speeds like that, too. Being found to have violated that, one would expect the insurances to be voided.

    I suppose you understand there is no way to back a dolly--pull-throughs for the whole trip only.

    Foy

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    8,283

    Default Three minimum.

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    I would think that over the course of a day with some rest stops you will be lucky to manage more than 50mph average, which is roughly 3 x 12 hour day's. I don't think you should try to maintain speeds of 70/75mph, [not safe anyhow] more likely 60/65mph, and company's such as U haul recommend a maximum speed of 55 mph when towing a dolly, but it would be best to consult with the company you are renting from and check the details of your contract and make sure you are not in breach of your agreement. Remember that braking distances are far greater, and trying to take evasive action at high speed while towing can have a catastrophic outcome.

    Have a safe journey.

  4. #4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Foy View Post
    Hello jroyko,

    I haven't bothered with mapping software to determine routes and distances for your move, but the mention of 70-75 mph in a loaded 26' truck towing a dolly + car caught my eye.

    I've been driving for 39 years and have run most everything up to and including a single-axle dumptruck. While I imagine the Penske diesel will run 70-75, I would not want to do much of that myself. That's a heckuva handful of truck and dolly being pushed through some very congested parts of the country and running it hard just seems unwise.

    And, if you're wondering if you can AVERAGE 70-75 on a beginning of day to end of day basis, forget it. With that rig, even if you drove 70-75 while not stopped for fuel, nature breaks, and food, you'd probably only AVERAGE 50-55 on a start-to-finish of the day basis. Example: I drove from Raleigh,NC to Port Hueneme, CA with my son in late 2007, we bent the speed limits somewhat, economized on our stops, and we still averaged only 67 mph on a morning to night basis. When not stopped, we ran 80 and over wherever possible, and having encountered virtually no traffic, weather, or construction delays, it was pretty much possible everywhere.

    I imagine there's language in the Penske contract which prohibits running at speeds like that, too. Being found to have violated that, one would expect the insurances to be voided.

    I suppose you understand there is no way to back a dolly--pull-throughs for the whole trip only.

    Foy

    I know it's impossible to average 70-75, We need to make it roughly 500 miles the first day(after they load us up) and 650 the second and third. I'm hoping to limit stops and run as close to 70 as possible, that way a 12 hour day with around a 55mph average including stop nets me around 650 miles. I'm no stranger to larger loads, in the Army I frequently drove a 66' rig with a patriot missile launcher and we ran some with the governors taken off at 70+mph with no problem. I'm just wondering if the truck will go 70 with a tow dolly in a safe manner or if it is not possible.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    10,805

    Default

    I'm not as familiar with Penske's fleet, but I've driven my share of Uhaul pulling trailers across country and back a few times and I think you are being exceptionally optimistic. Assuming you'll be able to get 500 miles on the day when your truck is being packed, and 650 miles for two consecutive days after that seems perhaps possible on paper, but not very likely in the real world without traveling several more hours than you're expecting. Its my experience that you always leave later than you expect on that first day, and even ignoring the cruising speed angle, everything takes a bit longer in a moving truck because your stops are a little longer and since you're sucking down fuel at 10 mpg you have to make more of them, you're more likely to get stuck in slow moving traffic, it takes longer to get going and slow down, etc.

    One of the things I would strongly recommend is that you splurge for the full sized trailer for your car (I've even been able to get a free upgrade from Uhaul for major cross country moves just by asking). That's going to be much more stable and easier to operate than the dolly, especially when you are talking about freeway speeds. I've done a Uhaul truck with a full sized trailer at 70-75 going across I-70 in Kansas and other than having the side mirrors occationally fold in on themselves from the wind, it worked fine. However, I really don't think I would try going that fast with just a tow dolly, and pretty much every other day there was really just too many other cars, construction, towns, and curves to safely travel at those speeds.

    The other thing to keep in mind is that generally your max legal speed limit with a truck/trailer is going to be 65, and in many cases it will be 55. And being a moving van pulling an out of state car, you'll certainly be an inviting target for a cop looking to make their ticket quota.

    Your military experience should serve you well (and thank you for your service) and its possible that you'll be able to do everything as you've currently got planned, but I'd certainly have a 4th day available so you don't feel pressured into trying to do too much when things don't go off exactly as planned.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    7,273

    Default

    I just talked to my son in law who has rented 26 foot Penske diesels twice. He says that if it has a governor, he never hit it. He also said that he tried to keep it at around 65, it didn't feel too good going any faster. He said that he got between 10 and 12 miles per gallon, he wasn't towing but it was loaded so full they had to force the door closed. He also said that it's pretty gutless trying to go uphill. One more thing, he told me to remind you that you have to stop at weigh stations with it.

    I agree, it would be worth it using a full trailer instead of a dolly. You shouldn't have any problems finding hotels with space for them, the best bets are budget chain hotels at Interstate exits away from the cities that also have a truckstop at the exit. Park in the 18 wheeler yard.

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