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Thread: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

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    Past North Carolina Chapter Leader lduguay's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    USA - NC

    "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    We have been out 2x's in our new fiver. Each an "experience" all its own!!

    I've read lots of post on backing up......"hold the wheel at bottom...", "use mirrors", "survey the site", "arrive while still light outside".....etc.........All GREAT suggestions!! My BP issue is this one....."have someone behind you....use radio".

    The first time out we were delayed in traffic, arrived after dark (not one of the suggestions).....Sooooo, like good newbies, I have my DearW behind the fiver, after explaining where we need to be is what she says over radio...."OK, now come THIS way".......not a lot of help IN THE DARK!!!!

    TODAY we are taking the camper to a BIG parking lot to PRACTICE with the are my questions:

    WHAT verbal signals do you use?

    If pulling past your site, (site on drivers side), where do you position truck prior to backing up...right/left/center of road? Different tips for site on passenger side?

    I really HAVE to get this figured out before the NC Rally next weekend......Terry (NC Chapter leader) said something about rally members having "Olympic Score Cards" for arriving campers!!!! Gotta LOVE THAT!!!!

    Lance & Kem Duguay
    Waxhaw, NC
    2003 Silverado 2500HD 4x4 CC D/A with Firestone Ride Rite
    Curt Q5, Prodigy P3, RDS 60 Gal Combo, and TST 507RV TPMS
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    HOC Member #1850

    I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.

  2. Print this Post   #2
    Fulltime TXBobcat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    USA - TX

    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    We have had a number of posts on this subject. You might try to do a search on backing. However here is a post I made to a thread Backing your trailer. Read the entire thread to get various opinions.

    Each of us have to find a way that is comfortable for us. Be careful about standing behind the trailer, you might have to order a new bride if you squash her.

    Travel safe & may God bless
    Bob Curry & Trevor
    2016 F350 CC SRW LB 4WD
    Ruby Red 08 Bighorn 3400RE #9948
    Mor/Ryde 7k IS, 8k DB * 17.5 Rims w/G114 GY Tires
    Bigfoot Auto Leveling
    Escapee 96030 * Fulltime since 10-08-2007
    Club Member # 1081

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    Committed Member truknutt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    USA - PA

    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    Ha Ha, this is the true test of your relationship!! We went through the same "process" & "compromised" (didn't hear that in the old wedding vows, did ya?).

    If DW faces the rear of the rig and you're sitting in the driver's seat facing front, then her left is your left! Ground guide talks, driver listens. Try to have her stay in your mirror; if she can't see your face, then you can't see her! It's definitely a team effort.

    As far as the actual mechanics of backing, I have the ground guide stand near the spot where I want my trailer tires to pivot; this helps with the aiming process especially on the passenger's side.

    When checking your site before backing, remember to look up for any overhead obstacles or hanging branches; they wreak havoc on a rubber roof.

    Good idea on the parking lot 'cause these Heartland Owners are rough (but good natured) when it comes to parking & setting up your site!!
    TrukNutt & Co.
    (Dave, Nona, Sienna, Maverick & Salem)
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    2009 F450 6.4L PSD C/C Lariat Dually 4x4 ("The Beast")w/ReTrax Pro Tonneau, Bedsaver, Ride-Rites & Titan 67 gal. Tank

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    Past Heartland Ambassador kakampers's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    USA - TX

    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    I was taught how to back our trailer by a good friend, who showed me how to get it backed in, usually in one are some of the main things he taught me...

    1 - back from driver's side whenever possible
    2 - position your rig somewhere between the middle of the road and the side that the site is on...leave the other side of the road for swing room of your truck
    3 - pull forward enough to have your truck straight with your trailer
    4 - back straight toward the site watching your trailer wheels, NOT the end of the trailer
    5 - aim the rear tire of the trailer for the edge of the parking spot on your side, and approximately 4 feet before it reaches that point, start to cut the tail of the trailer toward your side. This will begin the process of pivoting the trailer into the site.
    6 - Do not oversteer...when the trailer wheels have half-way cleared the pivot start point, bring the wheel back and start to chase the trailer into the site. Do not be afraid to pull forward and straighten up to the trailer as many times as necessary.
    7 - Remember, small corrections...they are easier to adjust then large over corrections.
    8 - For the passenger's side entry - everything is the same, but your spotter should be able to understand the above and instruct you when you reach these points...OR, what I like to do...adjust my passenger mirror downward so I can see the tires on that side, and have the spotter watch the driver's side and the rear of the rig.
    9 - As for verbal instructions...we seldom use them as we never park at night...but if we did, try "tail toward driver's side" or "tail toward passenger side"...meaning the tail of the trailer, which tells you which way you need to turn the wheel.

    Hope this helps...Kathy
    Ken & Kathy - H.O.C. #1077
    '17 GMC 3500HD Denali 4WD DRW Long Bed w/Nav, Sunroof, Curt 24Q, WIFI, Sprayed liner, Deep Ruby Metallic!
    '2013 Landmark Key Largo, Fullbody Paint and virtually every option PLUS Mor Ryde IS and Disc Brakes - Our Dream Coach!!

  5. Print this Post   #5
    Director of Owners Interests, Heartland RVs
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    USA - TX

    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!


    While I have no great ideas for you, I had to tell you your thread made me smile. My wife is smart as a whip but helping me into a site is not her strong suit. Radios, hand signals - nothing really works. So I favor pull-throughs and when I can't get one, I walk the site before backing into it.

    When I need Nancy to help me, I have her focus on one thing only, "don't let me back over anything". By not worrying about side to side or how straight I am, just not letting me go too far back or hit anything in back (trees, power peds, walls etc.), it works better. The one piece of advice I remind Nancy of is "if you can't see my face in the truck mirrors, I can't see you either". So when she is gone from view, I simply stop. She figures it out after a bit and relocates.

    Now with the new RV, I have the factory backup camera and it also has sound. We've yet to have a back-in site on our new full-timing adventure, but I'm sure it will come in handy soon enough.

    If Pete F is coming to the NC rally, he will thank you for taking over as "the judged one" It's all in fun. See you in NC.


  6. Print this Post   #6
    Senior Member rick_debbie_gallant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    USA - MI

    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    Here is all you have to do:

    1. Drive up to your site, park in the middle of the road just past your site.
    2. Grab two, ice-cold adult beverages from the fridge.
    3. Go back to the truck, stand next to it and say to the "judges": "I know that all of you never had any problems backing in you first time. I have a beer for me and one for the best backer in person here, so step up and get er done!!."

    The other thing you can do is show up at 0 dark 30 and set up. Folks should be in bed, but not for long!
    Rick and Debbie Galant and Ted E. Bear
    Mid Michigan

    2010 3670RL Bighorn
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    Prolifically Gabby Member JohnDar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    USA - MI

    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    Although we use radios, I have the wife stand at the rear of the rig, off to the side, and use arm signals. Point in the direction the end of the trailer needs to go. Or wave me straight back. Our seasonal site forces me to back in on the passenger side, so I survey the spot, tell her where I want to be and have at it. Usually doesn't result in a Maalox moment.

    As a precaution, if you run into backing into a site in the dark, get a flashlight or two with the plastic wands on them, like you see at the airport. Or a couple of Star Wars light sabres.

    As a drivers training instructor for the FD, I teach the kiddies how to back up a large vehicle using full arm motions. I've been known to stop the truck, get out and dress down FF's for just pointing with a finger. Or I point at them with one of mine.
    Camp Gotchurwallett
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    2009 GMC 3500HD SLT CC D/A DRW
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    H.O.C. #1225

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    Founding Illinios Chapter Leader-retired katkens-DW's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    USA - IL

    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    I have to say when Kenny is backing up if I stand where he can see me then I can't see the right side of the trailer. We use our cell phones to talk or yell which ever!! I have to keep and eye on the right side cause there is a telephone pole there which we have almost hit with the cap so I do watch it. My thing is why does he need to see me when I am talking to him all the time. He can see the house it's the right side we can't see. We always get it done some times it's easy and sometimes it's hard but in 5 years we have never hit any thing so I guess we are doing good.
    Kathy & Ken
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    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    Jim B's points are mostly mine.

    Unless the space is wide open I always get out and look first.
    I figure out where I want to be and will get there without directions.
    I want my spotter to only tell me if I will be hitting something or going off the pad etc.
    Dont forget to look up too.

    If I cannot see the spotter in the mirror I do not move. Radios or signals whatever - no face in the mirror - no move, they figure it out.

    I will let the spotter know where I want the trailer tire and will take some direction but usually try to get it where I want without the extra help.

    My job has me driving 70-75,000 pound 40+ foot long FD ladder trucks.
    We absolutely are prohibited from backing up without a backup person (although it doesn't stop some people).

    This might help you too. I do not back up until the person in on the left rear corner and I can see him in the mirror. I will not back up if that person is on the passenger side, in the mirror or not (usually not a normal partner)

    Radios, yelling and hand signals are useless at a fire scene.
    My backup will move to where he wants the left rear corner of the truck.
    I just follow his lead.

    He goes out of sight I stop - he doesn't come back into the drivers mirror - I pull the air brakes.

    You would be wise to go practice. A gravel lot may ease some scuffing of the tires if you plan on a lot of practice.
    Practice cant hurt, after all when you were 17 you practiced for your drivers test, no?

    Out of all of this though, I think the most important item is if you cant see the person in the mirror you stop.
    Duane & Debbie with Regis & Baylee
    RIP camping buddies Cagney, Misty, my Molly & Gungy
    2011 F-350 DRW

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  10. Print this Post   #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    CAN - ON

    Re: "Backin up" Signals........PLEASE HELP MY BLOOD PRESSURE!!!!!

    We use radios. My wife stands at the rear and directs me to put the rear of the trailer to "my side" or "your side". If she says "my side", then the bottom of the wheel goes to passenger side. If she says something out of whack like "turn the wheels the other way" I just stop. I also like to walk the site first and if possible back in so that I am on the inside and can see the port side of the trailer.
    Bill & Margaret M
    09 Ram 3500 CTD DRW 68RFE 4X4

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