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Old 05-31-2017, 12:13 PM   #1
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Solo reversing into a known spot

Hi all,

I plan on taking our new stream on solo fishing trips quite regularly. I mostly park at a storage facility and need to slot the trailer into a 12' angled spot with a concrete pillar on one side, and a massive boat on the other. It's not a problem with a guide giving me directions, but I'm wondering what kinds of tips/tricks might make this less nerve racking when I do it alone. I'm thinking that I could use bright rope or other markings to help me get a sense for what is going on behind me but would love some ideas!

-Adam
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Old 05-31-2017, 12:26 PM   #2
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Camera

Get a backup camera
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Old 05-31-2017, 12:54 PM   #3
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I solo hook up, tow and park. Best advice I can give stop and get out and look - a lot. If you draw a crowd and you will starting charging a spectator fee. Quality entertainment is not free.
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Old 05-31-2017, 01:02 PM   #4
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Best advice I can give stop and get out and look - a lot.
I agree, it's the only way I know. I've backed in to our hanger a couple times solo. Not quite confident enough yet to do so with only the backup camera, so I get out and look things over a couple times.
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Old 05-31-2017, 01:08 PM   #5
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I solo hook up, tow and park. Best advice I can give stop and get out and look - a lot. If you draw a crowd and you will starting charging a spectator fee. Quality entertainment is not free.




I've been rally entertainment several times...

OP - your idea about ropes is good especially with a backup cam. Oddly, I love my Voyager while driving as a rear view scope but don't use it much for backing up as DW is my spotter and when I go to storage I can pull in to my space.

I use a rope and my truck's backup cam to hitch up so I think the principle would work really well. AWCHIEF is right - even with a camera, get out and look and take your time. It's not a race.
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Old 05-31-2017, 01:09 PM   #6
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Might consider a hitch receiver on the front of your tow vehicle ... I've heard it is much easier to snake a trailer into a tight spot this way.

I'm getting one for my truck, but can't yet speak from experience.
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Old 05-31-2017, 01:21 PM   #7
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Might consider a hitch receiver on the front of your tow vehicle ... I've heard it is much easier to snake a trailer into a tight spot this way.

I'm getting one for my truck, but can't yet speak from experience.
That sure works but the time and effort to unhitch, turn around and rehitch then unhitch again exceeds the effort to stop and get out for a look-see a couple of times.
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Old 05-31-2017, 01:39 PM   #8
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What I do: I get an appropriate length of rope to layout the line that I want the streetside (I.e. drivers side) wheel to travel. No, looking through the TV rearview mirror or better yet, hanging my head out the window, I can ensure the left side trailer wheel is following the rope closely. I place a wheel stop where I want to stop backing. Works every time and allows you to not worry about the other side. Just ensure your "rope line" ensures you have plenty of clearance on the other side of the trailer.

To clarify: The rope goes on the side you can see in your rearview mirror depending on angle of attack.
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Old 05-31-2017, 01:57 PM   #9
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Get out and get out often.

Even when I have someone guiding me, I prefer a visual to gauge the space/trajectory. When alone, I also use my leveling blocks (which are a bright orange) to mark some of the path/obstacles.
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Old 05-31-2017, 02:10 PM   #10
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I strongly recommend and endorse front hitches.
Primarily for the precision of placing trailers in places you'd think impossible.
That said, nothing will help you see around a corner better than your own two feet.
As others have said, get out and look, a lot.
And get a front hitch.
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Old 05-31-2017, 02:23 PM   #11
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[QUOTE=AWCHIEF;1956817 Best advice I can give stop and get out and look - a lot.[/QUOTE]

Yup. Even when I know the spot I stop and get out to check a lot. I look and see I can go 5 more feet back, so I look at the ground right below the drivers. window and pick go back what I think is 3 three feet. Get out and check again.

Dents are too expensive.
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Old 05-31-2017, 03:21 PM   #12
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With practice will come confidence. G.O.A.L (get out and look) is the best advice. Since you don't want to bang up your trailer, how about renting a U-Haul trailer to practice with to gain experience? Also placing a safety cone at your stopping point would be helpful. Set it up so you can see it in the corner of the mirror, and if you hit it there won't be damage to worry about.
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Old 05-31-2017, 03:56 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by LBOskiBear View Post
Get out and get out often.

Even when I have someone guiding me, I prefer a visual to gauge the space/trajectory. When alone, I also use my leveling blocks (which are a bright orange) to mark some of the path/obstacles.
Rope LIGHTS are another good idea especially if you arrive after dark. Of course that supposes that you have power. Lots of battery operated LED stuff available though, even saw 100 votive lights for 20 bucks recently.

I just got some solar landscape lights which might work if they'll hold a charge long enough. I love Virginia Highland Haven, but their drives are narrow and it's too darned easy to go into the grass even when just parking the tow vehicle after dark... now I can BE a better camping neighbor!
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Old 05-31-2017, 04:06 PM   #14
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Have you ever noticed how your wheels are guided into a drive-thru car-wash?

Make your own wheel-guides using 4x4 or 4x6" boards nailed/screwed to 2x12" board-driveways (or plywood). Ropes can move (or be moved by others, etc.)

Oh, yeah... backup camera also. I love mine, but still get out and check in new spots.
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Old 05-31-2017, 06:01 PM   #15
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Like that Get Out And Look (GOAL).

Might use paint to mark the required track. It can be a measured distance off the obstructions. Whatever you use, it needs to be visible in your mirror when you move back. Cones might be helpful. I've used them, but not for very tight spaces. Don't assume anything is where it was the last time. Folks move stuff to use it, to bug you, and because they can.

A hanging rope might make it more visible.

The Voyager folks sell a triple camera system. It is hard wired and requires a bit to install, but would help considerably if the cameras were in the right locations.

Another option is to ask for an easier location to park. Since you use the coach often, the manager might help to reduce the number of rigs at risk. We have a lady in the WBCCI and she does it all. Her rig is in the end slot. All can be easier sometimes.

Best is - Get out and look. Practice (more fishing that way) practice a lot.

Be cool, be safe. Pat
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Old 06-01-2017, 11:09 AM   #16
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[QUOTE=David F;1956847]What I do: I get an appropriate length of rope to layout the line that I want the streetside (I.e. drivers side) wheel to travel. No, looking through the TV rearview mirror or better yet, hanging my head out the window, I can ensure the left side trailer wheel is following the rope closely. I place a wheel stop where I want to stop backing. Works every time and allows you to not worry about the other sid
I have used the rope trick on and off for years where there is limited room. Even when I was traveling with my wife, I always got out to inspect since she wasn't too good at directions.
I also park in a tight storage spot and sometimes get out a half dozen times since I want it straight and the truck mirrors are terrible at distorting the view.
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Old 06-01-2017, 11:30 AM   #17
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It hasn't happened to me ...yet.... but the scariest I've been was realizing I'd completely forgotten to look UP... at the places backing into... Overhangs, bldg. eaves, tree-branches, lamp-post-lighting-fixtures... have nearly crushed the endcap on a couple occasions.... I've just been lucky. (Many rear view cameras lose sight of nearby objects up HIGH...as they're trained downward for their view.)

Beware the HIGH obstructions.
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Old 06-01-2017, 12:33 PM   #18
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Hi all,

I plan on taking our new stream on solo fishing trips quite regularly. I mostly park at a storage facility and need to slot the trailer into a 12' angled spot with a concrete pillar on one side, and a massive boat on the other. It's not a problem with a guide giving me directions, but I'm wondering what kinds of tips/tricks might make this less nerve racking when I do it alone. I'm thinking that I could use bright rope or other markings to help me get a sense for what is going on behind me but would love some ideas!

-Adam
Sound as if you have done this once or twice.
I need to get my 30' in to a tight spot on my long driveway with a dogleg where the trailer goes. What I have done , after the first couple times , I set in the truck and worked out a line of sight to follow in relation to the garage wall and the trailer in place and now I just line it up with the mirrors keep my eyes on the reference line and stopping point and do it right the first try every time.
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Old 06-01-2017, 12:58 PM   #19
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I've had numerous neck surgeries so I installed a front hitch and ball setup so I can push my trailer into its "blind spot". One shot every time. I Take it on the road so if I have any more blind spots I just drop the rig, turn the truck around and pusher in.
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Old 06-01-2017, 01:13 PM   #20
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what the Chief said! Keep getting out and check the distances/alignments. And take your time. And if people watch, so what? Just take your time and you can do it. This is a skill that everyone needs to have (in my humble opinion). Safe backing, in any case. jon
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