Learning to Back up FRV - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-22-2015, 05:16 PM   #1
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Name: Jeff
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Learning to Back up FRV

I am on the fence about buying a fiberglass RV...I am most interested in a Scamp 13, probably buying new...what has me on the fence is whether I will be able to learn to back it up into my driveway....the driveway is wide enough for the Scamp, but we have on street parking on both sides most of the years, except for the winter months...the only time I ever backed any kind of trailer into a driveway was a Uhaul trailer, about 40 years ago....I've watched several YT videos and backing up a RV trailer, and they haven't improved my confidence....and I more often than not will not have someone who can guide me...

any suggestions or encouragement is welcome...
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Old 09-22-2015, 05:54 PM   #2
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I suggest you back in from the left while looking in your driver's side mirror so you can see if the trailer is going where you want. And hardly doing any backing before getting out and seeing where the trailer is going, and keep getting out to have a look. Might try a U-haul to get the idea.
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Old 09-22-2015, 05:59 PM   #3
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Scamp 13
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If you really have trouble backing up get it close and drop the trailer run and extension cord and use one of these.

Power Caster,electric trailer mover dolly, boat dolly, toy hauler

You can make one using 12 volt dc and plug it into your trailer battery.

The beauty of the 13 foot is it is easy to maneuver. its a little squirrley backing up but with practice you will get the hang of it.

For me it takes a bit to get it in place and sometimes it gets frustrating but its better than not going on a trip.
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Old 09-22-2015, 06:54 PM   #4
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Name: Handley
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There are two kinds of people. Those that
think they can, and those who think they
can't. Both are right.

Backing just takes a bit of practice. The
trailer goes the way the bottom of the steering
wheel goes, if that helps.
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Old 09-22-2015, 07:01 PM   #5
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Name: Wayne
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Hey Jeff,
I would say go for it, we all do it a little differently, I use the mirrors as little as possible. I shift my butt in the seat, stick my left arm and head out the window and watch what the back end of the trailer is doing. GO SLOW and make SMALL corrections. Our Casita is just over a year old and our last campsite required a fairly long back-in, I was able to put the trailer where I wanted it on the first shot, that's probably the exception and not the rule but like anything else the more you do it the easier it gets. Don't let the fear of backing up keep you from a world of possibilities.
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Old 09-22-2015, 07:57 PM   #6
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Practice at a vacant parking lot that has lines marking the spaces. Like a school on a weekend, church lot during the week, whatever you can find. Short trailers turn quick so make small steering adjustments. Take your time, get out and look (GOAL) when necessary.
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Old 09-22-2015, 07:58 PM   #7
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You could avoid backing up by staying at campgrounds with pull thru sites.
This may sound ridiculous but I have aquaintenses who have gotten by this way for years,
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Old 09-22-2015, 08:16 PM   #8
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Backing up RV

but....I have to back it up into my very tight driveway when I get home...someone suggested one of those devices that you hook to the hitch and it will move the trailer...at some point I may have to go with that...thanks
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Old 09-22-2015, 08:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RV Rabbit View Post
....I've watched several YT videos and backing up a RV trailer, and they haven't improved my confidence....

You are watching the wrong youtube videos! Watch this one instead. Its all a matter of practice.

With hands on the bottom on the steering wheel, the trailer will go in the direction you turn. With a lower profile trailer, its easier to look out your back window, but a pro will use his side view mirrors. It takes practice, but once you have it down using the side mirrors the height of the trailer is a non-issue. Being so short, the effect of turning will be exaggerated but you will get the feel of it with practice. Try not to get in tight spots until you have enough practice and confidence, and it will be fine.
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Old 09-22-2015, 08:55 PM   #10
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What Bob said. Practice in a empty parking lot. Then practice some more. It's not that hard after you have spent a little time doing it.

I also second the trailer dolly if the space is really tight. It doesn't need to be a powered one for a 16-foot Scamp, especially if the surface is all paved. I used a manual one for my 17-foot Bigfoot because the driveway I used to park it in was over 100 feet long and only about 10-inches wider than the trailer, giving me only 5-in on each side. The dolly gave me very precise control backing it into that tight space.
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Old 09-22-2015, 08:57 PM   #11
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Jeff,
I can't blame you for the lack of confidence. None of us was born knowing how to back up a trailer. Take your new trailer to the local church parking lot and have at it. Again and again.

If I can do it so can you.

Happy Trails,
Shirley
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Old 09-22-2015, 09:34 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shirley LaMoine View Post
Take your new trailer to the local church parking lot and have at it. Again and again.
Sunday morning is a good time. Nobody is there on the weekend.
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Old 09-22-2015, 09:55 PM   #13
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Name: Ray
Trailer: 2017 Scamp 16 Deluxe
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Jeff,

I think that you've gotten all the best advice .....

Backing just takes a bit of practice. The back of the trailer goes
the way the bottom of the steering wheel goes, if that helps.

It is easier to back from the left (where you can see the side of
the trailer from the driver's window and/or mirror) than it is to
back in from the right.

For short trailers, go slow make small steering wheel movements
to get started ..... and start reversing your turn early in order to
prevent the angle from getting too sharp.

If the angle does start to get too sharp, stop and pull forward until
things straighten out a bit. Then ease it backward again with smaller
corrections.

Definitely get a wheel that actually pins onto the nose jack. One of
the beauties of smaller/lighter FGRVs is that it is usually easy (if the
site is at all level) to disconnect from the tow vehicle and simply push
the little trailer into whatever position you want.

And ..... practice in a great big empty parking lot with striped parking spaces.

You will get the hang of it in no time ......

Ray
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Old 09-22-2015, 10:04 PM   #14
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Just to clarify, if you place the palm of your hand at the bottom of the steering wheel, facing up, when you move your hand to the left, the rear of the trailer will move to the left.
You also need to be aware of where the front fenders of your tow vehicle are as you turn. Go slow.
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