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Old 04-13-2014, 10:53 AM   #1
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Backing up without a Spotter

I'm currently working on getting a Nevada Class B drivers license and one of the required skills test is to back up the coach (43ft class A diesel pusher) from a 45 degree angle into a 12ft wide space without using a spotter, a camera, hitting any cones or getting out to inspect.

Obviously this is something you would never do in real life but it's part of the exam so I need to master it somehow. My biggest hurdle is how to determine where the back wheels are and when to start my turn using only mirrors, I can stick my head out the window but not far enough to see my wheels while still buckled into the drivers seat.

Any suggestions are greatly welcome, I've got about 2 weeks before I go back in to retest.

2009 Tiffin Phaeton 42QRH
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Old 04-13-2014, 11:01 AM   #2
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Check out this thread... Highly Recommended Backing Up Video!

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Old 04-13-2014, 12:53 PM   #3
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If you want to know where the rear wheels are, use your power mirrors and run them down far enough so you can see the wheels.
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Old 04-13-2014, 01:02 PM   #4
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I do it all the time I prefer sticking my head out just keep the line the same down the side. Loosen the seat belt so you can lean out.
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Old 04-13-2014, 03:43 PM   #5
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Hi itgeekgal,
This is what I have for you to consider, it is what I have done.
1. Purchase some of those small pads one uses on the feet of chairs. Lowe's and HD carry them.
2. You'll need two helpers.
3. One helper is to stand next to the rear drive wheels making sure their feet are where the wheels touch the ground.
4. You are in the driver's seat with you and the mirrors set to the driving position.
5. Tell the second helper where to place one of those small round pads on the lower mirror so the 1st helper's feet are covered up
6. Do the same for the other side.

Now you know where the drive wheels (pivot point) are located. I have done this for over 20 years and it works for me.
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Old 04-14-2014, 07:36 AM   #6
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My coach has a lower level side marker light about 20 inches in front of the rear axle. I lower my mirror, turn on the park/run lights and use that light to help determine the pivot point.

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Old 04-15-2014, 08:10 AM   #7
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You guys rock! I am headed back to the DMV in 2 weeks and will head to a large parking lot 1st and try out some of these great tips... thank you so much!!
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Old 04-18-2014, 08:12 AM   #8
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Watch the videos on this site. They give you some great tips.

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Old 04-18-2014, 08:34 AM   #9
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From a 45 degree angle you should be able to do it in your sleep. 90 degrees would be different, and much more difficult, depending on how wide the road you started on was.

You're right, in the real world you'd have the rear camera available and you'd be able to undo your belts and lean out the window. In the real world, if I lost my backup camera I'd find someone to spot for me. In the real world, I'd stop and get out to confirm I'm where I think I am, and want to be. But government established rules and regulations frequently have no resemblance to the real world.
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Old 04-18-2014, 08:51 AM   #10
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I took the same test in Nevada. I went to the CC Fire Department and looked at their test pad for their driving test (they use interior testers who are DMV qualified to administer and test firemen who are all required to have a non-comm class B). I talked with one of their raters and then replicated the same test with cones on a friends lot. It was a piece of cake after that. Good luck ! Let us know how you do.
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Old 04-18-2014, 09:03 AM   #11
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Practice makes perfect!

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