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Old 09-16-2011, 02:42 PM   #81
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Anyone know if one could buy the orange baton or orange star wars light saber that the air line use when the plane is approaching the ramp?
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Old 09-16-2011, 11:07 PM   #82
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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:-)
There's an App for that?....

I have down loaded the app here so I can stay in touch via local coffee shops with an iPAD. So now attach it to the tow hitch... neat.

Got my backup camera fixed (replaced) by Toyota, now it's a cinch.
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Old 09-17-2011, 06:40 AM   #83
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The barn doors on my Suburban when open, fully clear all the apparatus on the tongue of my Airstream, so I leave them open and can see the ball line up... providing I don't have too much junk in the back of the truck obstructing my view and the back seats are down. Pretty simple.
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Old 09-17-2011, 07:14 AM   #84
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Backup Camera

When we bought our new TV the salesman was telling me all about the backup camera. I was like "aww thats just a bunch of extra junk I'm paying for"....Boy if I only knew. Its a wonderful tool for backing up to the Airstream. Saves many trips from going back and forth to the TV and Airstream.
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Old 09-17-2011, 12:16 PM   #85
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Re: Marital advice.

John, how I wish I still had that partner who responded, as you do, to my hand signals so well. I would much prefer to still be in that position than to be in the position of doing my own backing and hitching up solo. But, I'd rather have to learn how to do this alone than to not have my AS at all! Thank your lucky stars you have that wonderful partner to travel with.
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Old 09-19-2011, 11:18 AM   #86
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Thanks for the note, caper2. We do indeed have lucky stars.
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Old 09-19-2011, 02:24 PM   #87
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Last Thursday, it was raining when we went to hitch up. My wife? "You can do it yourself tomorrow morning." LOL

Unfortunately I damaged one of the 'antennas' on the telescoping balls by bending it while trying to close it. Be careful with those - I didn't have my hand very far from a joint and it still bent! Someone at the rally over the weekend said they managed to do the same thing.
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Old 09-19-2011, 02:35 PM   #88
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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.

~~
You have a generally valid point that it's important to have a standard of communication with your partner so you can help each other with hitching and parking, and that's all constructive and nice.

That said, it can also be important to be able to hitch and/or park solo, and that may require a few gadgets and tricks. Sometimes my partner isn't around to help me fetch the Argosy from storage or return it there, and this past weekend I went camping on my own (because he was working all weekend.)

I use a mirror that stands on the A-frame and extends high enough for me to see the coupler and the space 3-4 feet ahead of it, it's worked out quite well. It just reduces the number of times I have to Get Out And Look, though. And I used the GOAL method for parking solo as well. Not the fastest, but it's reliable!
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Old 11-21-2011, 05:54 PM   #89
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The new TV has back up camera mounted on the tailgate which makes hooking up a breeze. It gives a good view of the hitch ball as well as the trailer tongue so that most of the time i can back up and drop it right in place. I really like towing with the new 2011 F-250. It makes pulling an airstream a real dream.
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Old 11-21-2011, 06:44 PM   #90
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Am a big fan of the tennis ball system, and obviously, GOAL lol

the temptation to just push on the tennis balls to collapse the telescoping antenna MUST be avoided.

on the other hand i seem to keep putting dent in the telescoping rods by backing into them because they won't sit on top of the hitch coupler exactly

i was able to connect solo the other night in less than 20 minutes....
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:41 PM   #91
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I use a periscope I salvaged from an old U-boat. Cut a hole in the roof and ran it horizontal along the top of the truck, pointing straight down at the hitch. The only problem is I can't see too well because the eyepiece doesn't fit my tri-focals, and it gives me a crick in the neck. Plus, the duct tape keeps pulling loose. What am I doing wrong?
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:58 PM   #92
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I use a periscope I salvaged from an old U-boat. Cut a hole in the roof and ran it horizontal along the top of the truck, pointing straight down at the hitch. The only problem is I can't see too well because the eyepiece doesn't fit my tri-focals, and it gives me a crick in the neck. Plus, the duct tape keeps pulling loose. What am I doing wrong?
Cut a hole in the floor and run it underneath since its easier to look down, and save your neck. It easier to get the tri-focal lined up that way too.
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Old 11-21-2011, 08:18 PM   #93
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This works pretty good on a pickup. It sits on the tailgate, mirror is about 9" in diameter, provides a good view of ball and coupler. I put a flat mirror on the flip side and used it so that objects didn't appear smaller. The 1st time I used it, it took a bit of adjusting to get the angle on the mirror right. I scribed a line in the plastic so each time I just had to set it on the tailgate and rotate the mirror to match the mark. The whole thing folds flat for storage. CIPA 11955
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Old 02-01-2012, 11:03 AM   #94
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worked like a charm

After reading this thread, I also got the Harbor Freight tennis balls-on-antennas device.

Magnetic Trailer Alignment Kit

It worked perfectly! I was centered exactly over the ball, having followed the instructions to the letter. I recommend you read them. I started to do it the way I thot it should go, and would not have done it so easily.

Also, as they recommend, before hitching up you use one of the antennas to measure the height of your TW hitch ball so you know how high to raise the trailer hitch cup. This set up works so well I wouldn't even replace it with a camera.
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Old 02-22-2012, 08:24 AM   #95
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After reading this thread, I also got the Harbor Freight tennis balls-on-antennas device.

Magnetic Trailer Alignment Kit

It worked perfectly! I was centered exactly over the ball, having followed the instructions to the letter. I recommend you read them. I started to do it the way I thot it should go, and would not have done it so easily.

Also, as they recommend, before hitching up you use one of the antennas to measure the height of your TW hitch ball so you know how high to raise the trailer hitch cup. This set up works so well I wouldn't even replace it with a camera.
Well, I've used this method solo several times now and I can't see how even a camera could be better. The most I have been off is less than 1/2 inch, which the tongue self-corrects as it is lowered. It is actually better than having someone help you.
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Old 02-22-2012, 08:31 AM   #96
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Am a big fan of the tennis ball system, and obviously, GOAL lol

the temptation to just push on the tennis balls to collapse the telescoping antenna MUST be avoided.

on the other hand i seem to keep putting dent in the telescoping rods by backing into them because they won't sit on top of the hitch coupler exactly

i was able to connect solo the other night in less than 20 minutes....
20minutes? Are you stopping for coffee? Lol. 2to5 minutes is my range for hookup and less than 10 more to carefully attach all my bars and chains. But the backup is the easiest/quickest part. I put one antenna on the hitch ball and the other on the flat top of the tongue jack. Sits pretty stable there. Works like a charm.
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Old 02-22-2012, 08:31 AM   #97
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GOAL, here, so far. I did ask if I should get one of the tennis ball things, and my dealership said, "well, you can if you want, but why expect failure?" I usually get it right with three or less tries, usually more like 2.
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Old 02-22-2012, 08:34 AM   #98
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GOAL, here, so far. I did ask if I should get one of the tennis ball things, and my dealership said, "well, you can if you want, but why expect failure?" I usually get it right with three or less tries, usually more like 2.
That's pretty good. But I'll settle for ONE try everytime.
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Old 02-22-2012, 08:48 AM   #99
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I expect I'll get there. I'm usually centered just fine, the second try is usually because I haven't got enough trust in where I think the hitch is in relationship to the rear end of the Jetta yet. Once I have that, I think it'll serve me well in general. I think it's always good to know where the edges of your vehicle are!
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:03 PM   #100
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I expect I'll get there. I'm usually centered just fine, the second try is usually because I haven't got enough trust in where I think the hitch is in relationship to the rear end of the Jetta yet. Once I have that, I think it'll serve me well in general. I think it's always good to know where the edges of your vehicle are!
That's why I like the tennis ball system. You know exactly where you are. I just wait until the one on the ball wiggles and stop instantly. Plus using the rod to measure exactly how high you need to jack up the tongue makes sure I am going to clear it when I back under it. Can't judge that by the height of the front trailer wheel extension since it varies depending on the levelness of the ground. Also, I have my spare jeep tire on the back, so I feel more secure using the indication of the tennis ball. Too bad there isn't a similar system for backing the trailer. But I guess that skill will come with practice. Hopefully I don't learn it the hard way.
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