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Old 09-27-2012, 11:23 AM   #1
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Unhappy Overwhelmed on our first trip

Hi Everyone!
Glad to be part of this forum! We are new to RVing and just bought a 2012 Rockwood Roo (21 foot). Now that we have it, WHAT DO WE DO WITH IT...YIKES!

We are going on our first trip this weekend to a campground not far from home. We are so green, we don't know what to do first! We have never pulled any type of travel trailer, and are pulling with our Toyota 4-runner (which the dealer and various blogs assured us will handle the Roo). We had the dealer hook up some sort of brake package, and we have the hook up for the sway bar to try to figure out. We are in need of some serious practice, don't get me started on backing this thing up. Anybody out there have a checklist on getting started? What about what to hook up first at the campground? I feel so high maintenance and am slightly embarrassed!

We are hoping that our friends help us when we get to the campground but would like some help so we at least know what to ask when we get there!

Ann
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Old 09-27-2012, 11:27 AM   #2
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I'm sure your friends will be more than glad to help; RVers are generally very friendly and helpful. But, why didn't your dealer go through the hooking up process with you. They certainly should have!
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Old 09-27-2012, 11:32 AM   #3
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Between now and then i would suggest you hitch it up, find a deserted parking lot and practice, practice, practice. Did I mention you need to practice backing in a straight line, turning and generally getting used to handling it?
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Old 09-27-2012, 11:59 AM   #4
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get your friends to parctice EVERYTHING with you before you leave home. Go to a big parking lot and practice driving, backing, braking, hitching and unhitching. set it up in your driveway and sleep in it for a few nights and use every appilence and gaget.

Good luck
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Old 09-27-2012, 12:10 PM   #5
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Thanks everyone for the great tips! The dealer did go through some of the stuff with us but it was over a month ago and now that we are ready to take a trip, we find ourselves saying, "How do we do that again"? Youtube has been a big help with the hook-up.
:-)
Ann
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Old 09-27-2012, 01:00 PM   #6
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get your friends to parctice EVERYTHING with you before you leave home. Go to a big parking lot and practice driving, backing, braking, hitching and unhitching. set it up in your driveway and sleep in it for a few nights and use every appilence and gaget.

Good luck
this is excellent advice. Use it exclusively for a weekend BEFORE you take it out camping. That will help decide what you do and do not need in your rig.

Of course, you will overpack and forget a few things anyway (we all did!). Over time you will find that things you thought were necessary are not and things you thought were unnecessary are not! We have had our motorhome 8 years and I have changed stuff we carry so many times!

Keep a pen and paper handy - jot notes as you think of them so that when you get home you can add or subtract what is in your rig.

1. Make sure you have these things on board (not in any particular order):
2. Small basic tool kit
3. first aid kit
4. small mending kit
5. fire extinguisher
6. roll of quarters (if you use CG showers, some showers are pay in gov't cg's)
7. If you plan on using CG showers, something to carry all your hygiene stuff in to the restroom
8. matches or lighter
9. seasonings for food
10. laundry bag/basket for dirty clothes
11. carpet stain remover - someone always drops something on the carpet! Just as easy to clean up immediately than wait until you get home.
12. small level to level rig
13. outdoor chairs

MOST IMPORTANTLY...
Patience - backing up is still sometimes a challenge for us!! Work out hand signals in advance

Always remember - camping should be relaxing!!
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Old 09-27-2012, 01:11 PM   #7
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For your first "away from home" experience, try to find a campground no more than 10 or 15 miles away. We did that when we first got an RV, and ran home several times over the weekend for items we realized we would need. Likewise, take a very close look at everything you took with you but did not use, and decide whether you are ever likely to need it. If the answer is no, leave it at home!
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Old 09-27-2012, 01:22 PM   #8
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2 quick tips that my grandfather taught me at 10 years old when I was backing him down in the fishing boat...

1. Hold the steering wheel at the bottom with one hand and move the bottom of the wheel in the direction you want the trailer to go...

2. Go slow... When u think you are going slow enough.... Go slower!!

Good luck and good times!
Learning all this is half the fun!
Remember you are making memories every time you go...

Jeff
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Old 09-27-2012, 03:02 PM   #9
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Welcome to the forum and congrats on your new rig!

First thing to do is take three deep breaths and just chill. It's all going to be fine and become second nature to you very quickly.

You already have a good plan IMHO... you have experienced friends going with you on your first outing and you're not going very far from home.

As mentioned, take it slow and easy. Remember GOAL... get out and look. There's no rush so make sure you understand where you want the trailer to go and take it slowly... getting out to check progress as often as necessary.

Best of luck and let us know how it goes.

Rick
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Old 09-28-2012, 05:21 AM   #10
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Hi welcome to the forum, new here myself........but not to Rving......you are doing the right thing take it easy for the first trip and stay local......all good advice so far......reversing the only advice I will add to the above is practice where you have room don't turn the steering wheel too much little and often for a start......the first thing to do is master reversing in a straight line, if you sart and the outfit or or steering wheel is not straight you will see the trailer going out of line, this will soon show that not uch steering will send the trailer in a different direction to straight, when you have mastered straight then try turning in between a couple of plastic drums (no damage that way) keep moving them closer together untill you give yourself about a foot clearence total, then you have cracked it, take you about four hours

Come back let us know how you get on

Best of luck Rick
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Old 09-28-2012, 08:47 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by La-Z-Boy View Post
2 quick tips that my grandfather taught me at 10 years old when I was backing him down in the fishing boat...

1. Hold the steering wheel at the bottom with one hand and move the bottom of the wheel in the direction you want the trailer to go...

2. Go slow... When u think you are going slow enough.... Go slower!!

Good luck and good times!
Learning all this is half the fun!
Remember you are making memories every time you go...

Jeff
Good advice!
Small wheel movements too..
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Old 09-28-2012, 01:23 PM   #12
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Hi Ann! Welcome to IRV2! It's great to have you in the group! Congrats on the new rig! Yeah, it's normal to be nervous but you'll do fine. It sounds like the dealer didn't do his job very well, but you can bet there'll be plenty of people at the campground who are eager to help a newbie! Good luck, have fun, and God bless!
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Old 09-28-2012, 01:36 PM   #13
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Whatever happens smile it's your first trip...no matter what happens the memories you share are the most important. Even if its a disaster...one day you'll look back and smile. Happy Rving and welcome to the forum.
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Old 09-28-2012, 01:41 PM   #14
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A little less than one year ago, we were where you are. Thankfully, my hubby is very mechanically-inclined and has knowledge of electrical and plumbing, because I'm a doofus. Anyhow, we announced to everyone within earshot on our first outing that we were "NOOBS", and were astonished at how others gathered around to help us get parked and set up. Just ask for help; most times others are more than happy to assist you. Good luck and have fun.

Remember, even seasoned RVers have "un-ohs" occasionally.

Welcome to iRV2!
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