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> And Sage Advice/stories For First-time Class A Drivers?, (We go get our new camper on Monday - all 42 feet of it!)
GandJ
post Oct 5 2013, 04:01 PM
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Any advice or stories to tell about the first time you drove a Class A?

-and/or-

How long/how many miles did it take for you to feel comfortable
with your driving ability?

Between the two of us (G & J), we have a whopping half-an-hour
of Class A test-driving experience. That sure ain't much!

We are registered for an RV driving school, but still that's 350 miles
from where we're picking up our camper.

Lindsay mentioned that the first time he got behind the wheel of a
rental Class A, it was a white-knuckle experience. Somehow that
made me feel a little better...or at least like being nervous is "normal".

Wish us luck, please?

p.s.: Also, how far did you go on your first trip? We seem to have
a different opinion on what's a sane amount of hours and miles to
drive when we're so new at this.


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packa
post Oct 18 2013, 06:49 AM
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I am not new at driving a class "A", but we purchased a 40ft new coach and brought it home and attemptd to back it into the side yard.
I have done this numerous times with the shorter 30ft coach so figured that it would be no problem with a little extra care so I wouldn't run over our central air conditioner unit at the side of the house.
I might mention also a neighbor's fence on the property line on the driver side.
I attempted to back it in and realized that it needs a lot of ares to manuever this gentle giant into the same space occupied by the other MH.
I had to pull forward to line up straight and when I pulled forward, "someone" had planted a Sago palm in my front yard and it leaped in front of me. Yup, I ran up over it and got it up under the front of our brand new coach.
I attempted to back up "gently" and strange noises were coming from the under side of the front of the MH.
Upon further inspection after getting it in our back yard, I found out what the noises were. When I got out to look at the front of the MH, I noticed that the "idiot that planted the palm {me} had managed to tear the fiber-glass front end of the coach part way off and would need extensive work to it.
After permission to take it to a RV repair shop, and a whole lot of duct tape, back to the dealer\ body shop place we just came from.
Our pride and joy unit was damaged and my pride was hurt, and that palm tree is now history.
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docj
post Oct 18 2013, 04:43 PM
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QUOTE(packa @ Oct 18 2013, 08:49 AM) *


I attempted to back it in and realized that it needs a lot of ares to manuever this gentle giant into the same space occupied by the other MH.



With all due respect, it really doesn't require much more space to back a 40' MH than it did to back a 30'. Yes, the turning circle is a bit larger, but that's all.

My suggestion is to buy yourself a set of small orange cones. You can get them at the dollar store or sometimes Walmart. When you need to back into a spot like the one at your home, put the cones out along the path you want your rear wheel to follow. Using your mirrors guide your rear wheel along the path and you'll be surprised how easy it really is. If you have a school parking lot nearby where you can practice it would even be better. In time you'll find that you don't need the cones but they're a nice "crutch" while you're getting used to the coach.


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packa
post Oct 18 2013, 08:19 PM
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QUOTE(docj @ Oct 18 2013, 04:43 PM) *

With all due respect, it really doesn't require much more space to back a 40' MH than it did to back a 30'. Yes, the turning circle is a bit larger, but that's all.

My suggestion is to buy yourself a set of small orange cones. You can get them at the dollar store or sometimes Walmart. When you need to back into a spot like the one at your home, put the cones out along the path you want your rear wheel to follow. Using your mirrors guide your rear wheel along the path and you'll be surprised how easy it really is. If you have a school parking lot nearby where you can practice it would even be better. In time you'll find that you don't need the cones but they're a nice "crutch" while you're getting used to the coach.

I thank you for the advise on the orange cone system. Orange cones at truck driving school many years ago became my best friend and at times my worst enemy. Perhaps I should have mentioned the differerence in the placement of the palm tree to the opening of my fenced in back yard. The gate is close with a 30 ft. to manuver forward without hitting the tree, but , yes, I know, a truck driver should take that into concideration when backing in, I didn't and the rest is history.
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