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Old 08-13-2011, 02:48 PM   #61
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I actually did think of one of the little tricks I use to hitch up. Set the tongue up at the same level as the ball, i.e. so it won't slide over or under the ball. Back up in line with the tongue, and you'll feel the ball hit the tongue. Get out and raise the tongue just enough to clear the ball, and back up an inch and a half. Drop the tongue and you're good to go.
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Old 08-13-2011, 07:21 PM   #62
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Our 2010 f150 has a built in back up camera , makes it an easy task . That camera has saved my marriage .
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Old 08-23-2011, 11:36 PM   #63
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So how about backing up solo?

So we have lots of suggestions for hitching up. Any input as to backing up into a site solo?
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Old 08-24-2011, 05:59 AM   #64
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So we have lots of suggestions for hitching up. Any input as to backing up into a site solo?
You could get a back up camera for your AS but if I can do it anyone can! I just get out of the TV a lot to make sure it's straight and that I'm not close to hitting Anything. Get used to using your mirrors!
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Old 08-24-2011, 06:08 AM   #65
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So we have lots of suggestions for hitching up. Any input as to backing up into a site solo?
I effectively do that every time since my wife is no help.

If you know where one side of the trailer is, you also know where the other side is. As you turn, watch the trailer wheels in the mirrors and put them where they need to be. Everything else will follow.

Whenever possible have the site on the driver's side so that you can see all of the service pedestals and water pipes. If you have the site on the passenger side and there are no "landmarks", throw a couple of leveling blocks or anything else easy to see along the intended path and then put the wheels alongside them.
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Old 09-07-2011, 08:03 AM   #66
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I just open the rear door, fold down the seat back and I can see the hitch and the ball.
I have a small pop-up camper rental business, I have to hitch and move campers often. I thought this would be a great idea to quickly hitch up and move a camper. After a couple of shufflings and congratulating myself for thinking of this great idea I noticed the two vertical dents in the front of the campers from my back door. Now I have gone back to relying on my back up sensors and the intensity of the beep, works most of the time.
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Old 09-07-2011, 10:02 AM   #67
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I am 99% of the time the one who hooks up to the TV to the trailer. I have found I can get with in a few inches, get out, adjust and ta da... done.
If the husband is around it seems to kill the domestic harmony and take longer. *rolls eyes* So I hook up by sending his butt in the house for something or I do it while he is at work
once you have enough practice you will have it down pat as well.
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Old 09-08-2011, 07:45 AM   #68
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So we have lots of suggestions for hitching up. Any input as to backing up into a site solo?
I have done a fair amount of solo camping and one cross country trip where I had to weave through tents to find my spot at Glacier National Park. My advice is to first have a thorough idea of what the site looks like before attempting to back in. Make note of obstructions, trees, and branches. I will often hang a red flag where I want to aim the side of the trailer. Next is to not be afraid or too proud to get out and look where you are going. I have saved myself many times from bashing into a tree or picnic table by getting out and walking in back of the trailer.
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Old 09-08-2011, 09:07 AM   #69
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Innovation is the American way. I love the innovative ways mentioned here.
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Old 09-08-2011, 09:32 AM   #70
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I tried the magnetic telescoping yellow balls today-two of them telescope to about 3 ft. and have a magnet mounts.. They were very helpful, just glided into position, lined them up and backed up till the one on the ball started to tip.
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Old 09-08-2011, 09:35 AM   #71
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clearly spoiled

practice makes perfect. I dare say, that on a flat spot, I learned how to generally hit it on the first or second try....

as mentioned before, a good walk & look around first is always a great idea.

in any not flat, or turned position, we also have a Swift Hitch camera that works pretty well.


but now, am clearly now quite spoiled - the built in backup camera in the new TV is excellent (but we always do the walk and look first!)

best,
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Old 09-08-2011, 09:43 AM   #72
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Old 09-08-2011, 12:12 PM   #73
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Get out and check the site then decide your approach. I agree. Don't be too proud to get out as many times as you need to, just to see where you are backing and how close you are to obstructions and such.
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Old 09-08-2011, 12:47 PM   #74
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I also use those yellow balls in magnut mounted telescoping radio antenna,sorry its the only way I know how to describe them.I bought mine on sale at Harbor Freight,7 bucks I think.Very valuable. Like someone said,I mount mine on the coupler lip and behind the ball and I put them together until one starts to tip a little and then stop,Im usually rite on.
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Old 09-16-2011, 11:32 AM   #75
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I am just thinking, I do not even have an AS yet, newbie here, but I used to tow a boat before, so, I know what I am getting myself into, still looking for my "new" AS.

Why not using an ipad 2 , it is just a one piece gigantic camera with a gigantic screen pointing the camera at the hitch, should break no sweat:-)
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Old 09-16-2011, 11:38 AM   #76
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I am just thinking, I do not even have an AS yet, newbie here, but I used to tow a boat before, so, I know what I am getting myself into, still looking for my "new" AS.

Why not using an ipad 2 , it is just a one piece gigantic camera with a gigantic screen pointing the camera at the hitch, should break no sweat:-)
Hmm, the camera is mounted at one of the corner of the ipad, one has to be careful as where is the camera since there is no right side or wrong side for the Ipad 2.

PS>>>>take that back this APPLE people are such genius bunch, the camera is mounted to one of the ipad corner but always capture image as if it was mounted center , just find that out.
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Old 09-16-2011, 11:47 AM   #77
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I also use those yellow balls in magnut mounted telescoping radio antenna,sorry its the only way I know how to describe them.I bought mine on sale at Harbor Freight,7 bucks I think.Very valuable. Like someone said,I mount mine on the coupler lip and behind the ball and I put them together until one starts to tip a little and then stop,Im usually rite on.

Yellow balls on telescoping antenna from Harbor Freight work very well.
Unfortunatley they do no work on my full size van, (door hides the ball from view)
Option 1) have wife or one of kids direct me
Option 2) Line up center of door with center of propane tanks and get out and check multiple times. I also open drivers door and look for mark on ground to estimate how far to back up.
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:00 PM   #78
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I'm with "Tiger" in post# 3, I use the magnetic alignment kit from Harbor Freight... And make sure The Bunny is inside, doing something other than trying to help me.

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Old 09-16-2011, 12:57 PM   #79
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Got one of these I no longer use....PM if interested.

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Old 09-16-2011, 01:15 PM   #80
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Marital advice

Now I understand the appeal of solo hitching (in another discussion this would be an oxymoron.) You've all extolled the advantages of hitch balls, backup cameras and buzzers, flags, tape, and toe marks in the dirt. All this as a means to avoid the obvious - teamwork with your partner.

All right. I see you there, flexing your fingers to prepare for a blistering reply! I've read your comments about eye-rolling, useless partners and the attempt-multiplication factor that comes with a team-hitching effort. But please - reconsider!

The basic problem with team-hitching - and marital life in general - is communication. "Left. Left. No, left! John, LEFT!!" Crunch. "Why didn't you turn left?" "I DID turn left!" "Well, it went RIGHT!"

So here's the dilemma. "Left," or "That way," or "A little bit more," are all ambiguous terms. A successful team-hitch requires an agreement on the terms and a goal-oriented focus. Here's our technique.

Position. She's in view from either side mirror, not the center mirror. Don't want to crunch Her. Usually.

No words. Only hand signals, and She's limited to pointing with one hand either left or right as I begin to move in. That point indicates the direction She wants me to move the ball. Once She has me lined up, She stops pointing, and instead holds up both hands apart, like "touchdown." That tells me to stay centered on the current course. She moves her hands together corresponding to my closing distance. Once I'm there, Her hands meet. It's kinda sexy.

Retries are expected. Very few of you brag about first-try hookups. Hookup interruptus. Same with us. Usually the first approach requires a two-palms "stop" signal, and a "go forward" gesture signifying a retry. Good form at this point requires a smile and a shrug. NO EYE-ROLLING!

Goal! Once the ball is under the socket, She gracefully lowers the trailer with a sigh and a smile, and gives me the thumbs up. No words have been exchanged, and there's that post-hookup satisfaction.

Now I admit hitching and backing into parking slots and camping sites is risky. I have straightened the AS rear bumber - twice! My rear CA license plate looks like the San Andreas fault. But - like most things in a partnership - practicing backing up and trying again can keep you going in the right direction.
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