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Old 05-26-2011, 09:37 PM   #1
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Do you use a "momback"??

In case some one does not know--a "momback" is the individual in back of your rig signalling or calling you to "momback" (come on back). If you use one where do you prefer that this individual stand? Or, do you communicate using handheld radios?

Do tempers sometimes begin to flare? Does the driver occasionally have to get out to reaffirm instructions and/or location desired?

I have tried and experienced all the aforementioned. Sometimes the best thing is to swap drivers just once to illustrate the difficulty of the communications coming from either end!!

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Old 05-26-2011, 10:15 PM   #2
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We attended seminars at both the FMA & Affinity Group rallies to learn proper backing signalling. We use the signals described in The Motorhome Guide. Whether DH is in the pilot seat or I am, the coach doesn't move unless we can clearly see the spotter in the driver's mirror. Over the years, we have found that he's a much better spotter than I am. He got us into this spot (what you don't see is the tree trunk just 2 inches from the rear ladder):

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Old 05-26-2011, 10:16 PM   #3
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We do. If there are two of us, the coach doesn't go in reverse unless momma is in the back. We don't use radios and the speaker in our rear camera is useless with a big diesel back there. We tried the radios but they broke right away and weren't that usefull anyway.

We start by both walking around the site and discussing where we want the right rear wheel to be and things we need to do and watch for to get there. If it doesn't go smoothly I often times will get out and we'll walk around and discuss again. Maybe we're lucky... or just retired and have lots of time, but we have never really gotten testy with each other while backing in.

Trading places is something we'll try when it gets very very cold in a very very hot place.

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Old 05-27-2011, 04:01 AM   #4
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Only if I cannot judge the height of limbs or a really tight spot with less than an inch of clearance.
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Old 05-27-2011, 04:39 AM   #5
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we do the same walk around first. momback driverside and don't move till we can c each other.
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Old 05-27-2011, 06:23 AM   #6
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I discovered that at times it is easier to have the DW in the drivers seat when trying to get in or out of a tight site. That way I can boss her around, momback, hard right, straight, etc and get away with it.

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Old 05-27-2011, 06:39 AM   #7
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If the female will back in the coach while the male provides direction that may work best. Please, no flames, as a species the female generally speaking will take direction better than the male. The male provides direction better than the female.

For me, since the wife will have no part in any coach movement tasks, I have a process that allows me to properly back into just about any site on the first try.
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:00 AM   #8
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I always ask for a pull-thru.

For those times that I can't get one, mom's back there doing her best, which is typically very good.
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:13 AM   #9
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I am the lone backer upperer... no spotter here.. If the area is very tight I will be out of the coach several times to check and double check as I back up.. I haven't hit anything in 20 years of doing this and have squeezed in some very tight spots...I take my time and go slow.

It always amazed me how many impatient people there are as you back up ... more often off a public road and occasionally in a CG. The amount of Time the backing takes, it's no more than a couple of minutes and people blow horns etc..
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:19 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by ctcamper View Post
It always amazed me how many impatient people there are as you back up ... more often off a public road and occasionally in a CG. The amount of Time the backing takes, it's no more than a couple of minutes and people blow horns etc..
I think the passave agressive in me would stop, get out and go see what i was about to hit.
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:53 AM   #11
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We use two way radios with a couple of rules:

1. Go hard/light left means to MY left as the driver , not her left.

2. The trailer does not move if I can't see her.

3. When in doubt, STOP!

Many times I cannot see well and back into a site "blind" with only my DW directing me. Works for us.
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Old 05-27-2011, 08:04 AM   #12
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I do not often use one because of lack of communications skills.. So I back in using the mirrors and if I need front/rear adjustment she walks to the door and tells me,, She's usually within 3 feet of accurate (I need 1 foot, but hey)

I've done the job.. If I'm using hand signals then I will stand just off one side or the other of the rig, if the person is backing a trailer it will be the side they can see me of course.

If it's a motor home it will depend on obstructions.

Last time it was both.. A 40 foot Class a with a trailer total length 75 feet bumper to bumper.. That was fun. Driver was interperting hand signals backwards.. Figured it out and adjusted, backed it right in.. One big rig (he was towing trailer home to his son) Wonder what happened when we went to cross the border (Flordia to Canada)
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Old 05-27-2011, 08:22 AM   #13
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My wife and I do exactly like RickO described. One time in Fla, our ex son-in-law jumped out of the moterhome, when I asked my wife to guide me out of my father's driveway. He said I will watch for you. I told him to watch the right side and I would watch the left. As I was backing up, I saw him walking back up the driveway toward the house. Just at that second I hit my dad's driveway entrance post. It tore off my awing arm. I have never let anyone else watch for me since. It is always just me and DW.
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Old 05-27-2011, 09:40 AM   #14
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I think of myself as a "professional driver". The reason I say that is because I drove 18 wheelers for a living before retiring. Some of the years I had a job spotting trailers in the doors so they could be loaded. 8 hours a day I backed the trailers that the over the road drivers brought me. So many times when someone asks a question like the one on this post I would get a bit flippant and say something like "I give my other half a job by asking her to spot for me just to give her something to do to keep her out of my hair while I go about parking the MH. Truth is that no matter how good you are at backing, there are times that the job will be easier if you have more than one set of eyes. There are many different ways to communicate. Yours may be better that one that we use. Working out a system that works for you is best done by both of you working on it in "advance"!

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