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Bruce D
08-21-2018, 12:19 AM
Hi, folks.

We are new to 5th wheeling and have only taken out our rig once. Our problem is parking when we have to back into a parking space.

We have practiced parking, but still find backing our rig into a tight parking space very difficult. E.g., we will be able to back half way into a parking space, usually at a slight angle; then, we just need to go straight back to finish parking, but can't seem to get our rig to move straight back no matter which way we turn the wheel.

Any suggestions that you might have about backing a 5th wheel would be greatly appreciated.


Thanks,


The Newbies

Mtntrek
08-21-2018, 01:55 AM
Welcome to the forum.

Learning to back a 5w can indeed take some skill and practice. Often it slowly develops as an art form.

Mainly because the pin is directly over the TV rear axle, so there is a delay both in jacking, and chasing the trailer with the tow vehicle. The tail swing on bumper pull hitches gives you more of a head start.

Many inexperienced backers rely on staying neutral to long, once they're jacked adequately. So experiment with chasing the trailer a little sooner.
Plus, there is no shame in taking multiple stabs, or points of a star back and forth. It's all about safety and protecting your equipment.
Keep up the good work, it'll go smoother the more you do it.

Stripit
08-21-2018, 10:15 AM
Practice, practice and more will get you looking like a pro, but it normally takes time. I used to find I didn't pull far enough forward before making the inital start to backing up, or not pulling far enough forward on the second attempt. Once i got the feeling of where I really needed to start the process, it got easier. I bet that first year I gave folks a pretty good show, but as time went on and I got better, I could put that trailer in spots I never would have thought possible. It is not a contest, so just take your time and practice.

Bruce D
08-21-2018, 11:40 AM
Thank you all for the advice.


I guess we'll just have to get back out there and practice, practice, practice.



Though my wife says she's done with parking the fifth wheel. Sigh. ; 0 )

wingnut60
08-22-2018, 11:02 AM
GOAL: Get Out And Look. Several times, have a spotter and use mirrors. And try to get a spot where there aren't any spectators...goes much easier!

Good advice up above.

Rhagfo
08-22-2018, 12:04 PM
MtnTrek has it pretty much, once the 5er starts to move in the desired direction start to straighten back out, otherwise you will never catch up with it.

Stripit
08-22-2018, 01:28 PM
The other thing we learned over the years was my wife was my spotter, always!! She had to be in my mirrors and me see her, and if she disappeared I stopped till I saw her. She kept me out of trouble from hitting a bush, tree, picnic table, power stantion or her. With her hand signals I knew where she wanted the back end of the trailer. Everyone can come up with the signal that works for them, but some sort of signal should be used, yelling isn't one of them.

Bruce D
08-23-2018, 01:18 AM
Thanks to all the great people who have been kind enough to share their wisdom with me. Much appreciated.


BruceD

BearKeller
08-26-2018, 12:14 PM
I recommend going to a large empty wide open parking lot and practice putting it between the lines. Also I watch the trailer tires not the rear of the trailer. You eventually will fine the way that works best for you and your assistant

oldbird
08-27-2018, 09:01 AM
I live on a busy street and when I want to park my RV next to my house this really helped a lot:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzlOfBGr1i4

morzio
08-27-2018, 07:39 PM
Soafter driving truck for 18 years, backing you would think comes natural..But I found a 36 foot 5th wheel is not the same as a 53 foot trailer..MY Solution was quite simple..... I bought a Yellow tor strap.. 30 footer. I lay it out on the drivers side where i want to back in.. and just guide the wheels accordingly. Just like the parking lines at a whorehouse !! TRY IT

Bruce D
08-27-2018, 08:34 PM
Great video. Very helpful.


Many thanks.

Bjlakatos
08-27-2018, 10:59 PM
This helped me understand several things about backing a 5er. Most have been mentioned above.

-Starting in the right place
-Unwinding the turn at the right time
-Fix errors early. Most errors can't be fixed later like on as bumper pull.

https://www.loveyourrv.com/back-fifth-wheel-trailer/

OneReallyOldGuy
08-28-2018, 09:11 AM
Soafter driving truck for 18 years, backing you would think comes natural..But I found a 36 foot 5th wheel is not the same as a 53 foot trailer..MY Solution was quite simple..... I bought a Yellow tor strap.. 30 footer. I lay it out on the drivers side where i want to back in.. and just guide the wheels accordingly. Just like the parking lines at a whorehouse !! TRY IT

Thatís great advice although Iíve never backed in at a whorehouse. Most are pull thruís. (Ainít autocorrect great?)
Having a target makes backing much easier. The only thing Iíll add is when you pull forward keep going until your truck and trailer are parallel if possible.

RNBTT-Hal
08-28-2018, 04:56 PM
The other thing we learned over the years was my wife was my spotter, always!! She had to be in my mirrors and me see her, and if she disappeared I stopped till I saw her. She kept me out of trouble from hitting a bush, tree, picnic table, power stantion or her. With her hand signals I knew where she wanted the back end of the trailer. Everyone can come up with the signal that works for them, but some sort of signal should be used, yelling isn't one of them.




While backing up, my wife and I will communicate via cell phone. She will stand behind the camper and give me directions. Of course this only works if the tow vehicle has a hand free ability.

Bruce D
08-28-2018, 06:05 PM
Thanks to all the kind folks who have pitched in to help us. Much appreciated.

oldbird
08-28-2018, 07:36 PM
We visit a few places without cell phone reception so we have walkie-talkie's.

Stripit
08-28-2018, 08:29 PM
We visit a few places without cell phone reception so we have walkie-talkie's.

And we were where no cell phone, dead battery in one walkie talkie, so we reverted and stayed with hand signals. Worked for us.