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Old 09-10-2016, 11:09 PM   #1
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Handling Issues..just a thought

The subject of handling issues is an endless one. I see mostly two areas, one is the steering category and one is the ride comfort category. The ride comfort is coach related and somewhat subjective. The steering category generally launches into coach related and fairly seldom not at the "driver" component. Nobody wants to get into that as it is often sensitive, or perceived that way. I never had any issues with steering handling and being an old,old guy who got a chauffeur's license back in the sixties I thought I was just used to the whole thing so it was fine with me. Then in a campfire chat a much younger guy, in his 50's, asked me why I thought I was comfortable in the exact same make/model that he was really uncomfortable with. I told him the only thing I could think of was I started decades ago with a teacher that said "it's all about how you drive, not what you drive". He beat the dickens out of some things like "focus on where you're headed and gonna be in several seconds, if you focus too close it's too late anyway and you'll be jerky." It's what is often called "happy hands". People that have steering issues should consider some "over the road" time with a CDL instructor to get calm hands and comfort. Not a coach in the world can fix that and I really do think it might well explain some of the complaints I see.
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Old 09-10-2016, 11:22 PM   #2
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Maybe they should drive some M-Series military trucks if they want to really know what poor handling feels like.

Jon
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Old 09-11-2016, 01:34 AM   #3
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A nice people pleasing M35 deuce and a half is a real sweetheart....butt busting before it's even started....
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Old 09-11-2016, 10:13 AM   #4
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A nice people pleasing M35 deuce and a half is a real sweetheart....butt busting before it's even started....
I've been preaching that "2-300 yards distant focus" theory for years. It definitely helps prevent the constant steering input and over steering.

It's like trying to steer a boat by keeping the compass needle exactly on course. It can't be done. You will zigzag across the water like "a drunken sailor" and absolutely wear your arms out. Focus on the distant objective, and enjoy the ride.

I'll admit, ten years ago I drove about half way to Alaska, from North Carolinia, before I learned that.
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Old 09-11-2016, 10:56 AM   #5
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I have no idea what the science is to the distance focus thing but it can't be just a theory, it works. A short focus means steer here, steer there and endless strain with a likely tight grip accompanying. The distance focus is like a yaw damper in a plane to pilots who have them. I do know that in landing a plane a runway location that remains in a fixed eyesight position on the windscreen will be the touchdown point so somebody probably can explain how all that translates to the brain to allow the hands to be calm.
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Old 09-11-2016, 12:17 PM   #6
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I have no idea what the science is to the distance focus thing but it can't be just a theory, it works. A short focus means steer here, steer there and endless strain with a likely tight grip accompanying. The distance focus is like a yaw damper in a plane to pilots who have them. I do know that in landing a plane a runway location that remains in a fixed eyesight position on the windscreen will be the touchdown point so somebody probably can explain how all that translates to the brain to allow the hands to be calm.
Didn't mean to get you worked up by using the word 'theory". I guess I should have more accurately called it a technique. And yes, it does work.

The "science" as you called it is quite understandable. If your eyes don't see the minor lane drift, immediately in front of the coach, your mind and muscles can't react to it. If/when a drift off course from the distant target point is perceived, the mind will automatically calculate a less sever correction response. Hopefully, ones mind and reflexes aren't so slow as to allow drift completely out of your chosen traffic lane.
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Old 09-11-2016, 12:19 PM   #7
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Handling Issues..just a thought

My Dad taught it to me while plowing with a Farmall. He called it the Easy Wheel. Straighter rows!
Works for all road vehicles!
I also don't know how it works, I just believe from experience.
The folks with tired arms at the end of the day don't believe me, say its the rig, has to be the rig!
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Old 09-11-2016, 03:38 PM   #8
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I understand the theory but the fact of the matter is that you are driving a huge box with a swaying backside that steers the front. Track bar will fix most issues and stiffer suspension (in that order) will take a lot of that slop out.
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Old 09-11-2016, 04:22 PM   #9
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Handling Issues..just a thought

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I understand the theory but the fact of the matter is that you are driving a huge box with a swaying backside that steers the front. Track bar will fix most issues and stiffer suspension (in that order) will take a lot of that slop out.

It's a combo deal for some: upgrades and driving properly.
I had a C20 class C, P30 class A, W20D class A. Never needed any changes cuz I focus far down the road.
Later in my work life I took The Smith System Driving course. It only confirmed what I knew. And I highly recommend it.
Too many folks are too nervous and some have a panicky fear of RVs. Proper training can easily fix that for most.
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Old 09-11-2016, 05:19 PM   #10
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I'm sorry, but I don't buy that "far off" theory for operating a vehicle at all. I don't drive that way and I don't think any of you drive that way either. I concentrate on keeping my vehicle in my lane and where my lane is going in the next 10 or 20 yards. If I didn't, I would be off in the ravine or in a head-on crash in short order.
That "far off" theory is exactly what you do in the open skies when you're not trying to miss other oncoming planes by 10 or 15 feet, or on open waters when you're not trying to miss other oncoming boats by 10 or 15 feet, or tractors in open fields, but not what you do in vehicles on our busy highways.
If your coach doesn't handle well, get it fixed. A good alignment with motorhome specs is the best thing you can do. It won't go all over the road so you won't be trying to drive it all over all the time. None of mine have handled well when I got them but with a few adjustments, the joy of the trip starts when you set down behind the wheel.

Just my $0.02 worth.
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Old 09-11-2016, 05:22 PM   #11
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Handling Issues..just a thought

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I understand the theory but the fact of the matter is that you are driving a huge box with a swaying backside that steers the front...

Say WHAT? My coach sure doesn't handle like that. Stable as a rock and a dream to drive. If that's what yours is doing, it needs work.
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Old 09-11-2016, 05:28 PM   #12
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My first Coach wandered all over the road. I am very familiar with the Smith System as I went thru the program and then taught it to my crew.

The RV I now have drives straight as an arrow without any suspension upgrades.

Some RV's just handle and drive better than others.

My nickles worth.
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Old 09-11-2016, 05:30 PM   #13
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I want to travel with Rich-n-Linda. I think we could enjoy our trip.
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Old 09-11-2016, 07:53 PM   #14
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Handling Issues..just a thought

I'll bet we would, alank! I'd rather drive our coach than my Chrysler 300C or the Jeep.

I think a lot of handing issues are caused by over-inflated the tires. When we first got our coach, the previous owner had all the tires set at 110 lbs. It was unpleasant to drive. It oversteered on curves and rode rough. I weighed the coach and found that I only needed 95 psi in the rears. Changing the rear tire pressures made a HUGE difference in the way the coach handled.
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