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Motorhome Madness
post Apr 12 2013, 11:17 PM
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I was searching around on the site, and I don't see where this topic has ever come up, so I thought I would mention a few things I've learned while driving our motorhome, and hopefully other can share their tidbits as well. When we purchased the first coach I was pretty nervous about driving it, and rightfully so it was much bigger than anything I had ever driven.

Here are my short list of tips:

On mine if you're in the drivers seat and aim the mirrors down so you can see the side marker lights, the motorhome will pivot where you see the side marker light when backing up. You should test this as it probably does not apply to all motorhomes. It's about the same if I open the window and look back at the marker light.

Along with that make sure you look up and down when backing up and check all clearances when traveling, these motorhomes can be pretty tall. It's a good idea to print your max height and stick it in view of the driver, so you can always have it to check against when you see a clearance sign.

When your at a red light turning left on a multi-lane road, make sure there are no cars tight on the right of you as your tail can swing wide right and take one out.

Keep your eyes way down the road, and be ready for anything.

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post Apr 13 2013, 11:24 AM
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QUOTE(Denali @ Apr 13 2013, 12:10 PM) *

Ron Jones, a friend of mine who writes books about travel and RVing in particular, had a suggestion that has saved our bacon several times:

Using a label maker, I made labels that tell me the height, weight, and width (including mirrors) of our motor home, in both English and metric units. I stuck these on the face of the speedometer.

Especially when driving in Canada and Mexico, being to tell instantly whether we can go over that bridge with a 15,000 kg weight limit or 3.6 meter height limit is pretty important. Even when driving in the US we have come across two bridges that were too low for us by an inch or so.

Here's us on a side road off the Natchez Trace Parkway with our 12'2" high motor home:

Although it doesn't include all possible roads, we have a Garmin "trucker" GPS (the 465T) into which we program our vehicle height, axle weights, etc. It's a good first line of defense and, for the most part, keeps us out of those situations. These limits are active even if the GPS is not being used in a route-guidance mode. So it will tell me things like "a mile further down this road it is truck-restricted".

There is a newer Garmin version which has an option for an RV rather than just a "truck." This would help avoid situations in which ours tells us not to go down a specific road because of truck restrictions that are not "size-based" but are simply "no through trucks" types of things.

Joel Weiss
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