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Old 05-26-2015, 07:07 AM   #1
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Mid Atlantic Campers
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Looking for classes

I am looking for a class in VA about driving a class a rv. I used to tow the pop up with my girls when they were little. They are grown now.

I pushed the hubby to buy this class a with me. Our salesman was gone when we picked it up. We were actually forgotten about and had to push to get the rv. After 8 hours there we just wanted to go home but they showed the hubby how to drive it. The hubby refuses to teach me, saying he does not know what he is doing. He did drive it from VA to KY last summer, he know a bit at least. A follow up call from the dealer asked about our experience, I complained about no instruction for me and was told to bring it down during the week and someone would work with me. LOL..Let me wave my wand and appear there. If I could drive it there I would not need lessons!!!

1998 Damon Intruder M349 in Ford Chassis with Banks powerpack
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Old 05-26-2015, 07:46 AM   #2
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Try this:


Steve Ownby
Full time since '07

Steve Ownby
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2003 Monaco Signature
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Old 05-27-2015, 10:57 AM   #3
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Good for you on wanting to learn to drive. It is important that you can drive in case of an emergency.

One of my friends & wife travel without a toad. She has never driven or has a desire to learn to drive their Class A, even with my wife making the suggestion or recommendation.

My wife has taken our previous Class C and our current ~40' Class A coach solo many time pulling the jeep. She is fully self sufficient so don't get discouraged >>> it ain't rocket science but you do need lots of common sense.
Jim J
2002 Monaco Windsor 38 PKD
2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee w/5.7 Hemi
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Old 05-27-2015, 03:38 PM   #4
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Start with reading a book on it. They drive like a large ruck but more comfortable and the most important thing is how tall is it and how low are he bridges
Ed and Marina Marasi, Suffield Ct, 32' Tiffen allegro 1999
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Old 05-31-2015, 05:16 PM   #5
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Im slowly teaching my wife to drive ours... get her familiar with the cabin, air brakes, instruments, air suspension controls... etc. Practiced at our local high school parking lot...

Then I let her pull up the MH while I watch the tow bar lock levers go down, check lights etc.

When in bad traffic, I let her drive a bit since its very slow moving and gives me a chance to go to the bathroom.... she is gaining confidence and actually ask if she can drive during slow traffic. These things takes time... but you def learn with seat time.
2014 Thor Palazzo 33.3 (Melody), Folkstone
2013 Jeep Rubicon, Ready Brute Elite & Currie Ent Baseplate
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Old 05-31-2015, 05:43 PM   #6
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I hope you are successful in learning to drive. It will be a very satisfying experience. As previously stated it takes a bit of common sense.

1) It is taller than your car
2) It is wider than your car
3) It is longer than your car
4) It has a bigger turning radius than your car.

If you stay in your lane it will drive similar to a car. Leave room between yourself and the vehicle in front. I like to drive slightly below the speed limit. Then the space in front continually grows. People will pull in front of you but they will soon be pulling away.

Take it easy for the first while until
Gordon and Janet
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Old 05-31-2015, 06:13 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Steve Ownby View Post
Try this:

Lessons behind the wheel (Locations) | RV School

Steve Ownby
Full time since '07
My wife and I worked with an instructor from the Toledo, OH area. My wife did the driving, and I listened in. It was a very good class. My wife and I have been driving RVs for 5 or so years. I learned a lot of tricks and my wife is now a very confident driver. I would highly recommend a class for you and your husband. I believe it is very important that my wife is able to drive for a number of reasons. Don't tell her, but I think she is a better RV driver than I am.
Brad & Bonnie
2007 Monaco LaPalma 36DBD
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Old 06-01-2015, 05:21 PM   #8
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Look on you tube and search RV drivers confidence course by Lazy Days. Free and it is just plain wonderful.
Lynn & Dan Hochradel, & fur kid Carl
2015 Entegra Anthem 44B, Dodge Ram 1500 Quad Cab
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Old 06-01-2015, 07:56 PM   #9
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My wife and I have had our coach for just over two months. We talked about the whole "classes" thing prior to taking possession. In the end - we decided to try driving it without classes first - and if we didn't feel comfortable with it - seek instruction at that point.

To prepare for our first drive, I first read everything I could get my hands on about our coach. There's a lot of "coach specific" processes you need to know about before you move it an inch - i.e., proper starting sequences, proper warm up, necessary air pressures, what all the gauges-switches-warning lights mean. Get out your owner manual and read it. Then read it again. Then quiz yourself on what every gauge-switch-warning light does/means. This is stuff you need to know - and frankly, it's NOT something that most driving schools are going to cover for your specific coach at the level you need to understand it.

Next, search the internet for RV driving videos. There's a couple hours worth of them on YouTube alone. Watch 'em ... then watch 'em again. Bookmark 'em - because once you've driven your coach a little bit - you'll want to go back and watch 'em yet again!

Finally, you have to assess your own confidence level. No, I've never driven a 43 foot, air brake equipped RV before I first drove my coach ... however, I did bring 40+ years of driving experience (in lots of different vehicles and in all sorts of driving conditions) to my first drive. I had some experience driving larger vehicles ... including several 24' + rental trucks (used for DIY moves) as well as a week of driving a 32' rental RV. I had no doubt that if I spent a little time in a parking lot getting used to setting up turns and getting used to how the coach felt when accelerating and when braking - I would be fine. It took me roughly 20 minutes in the parking lot before I felt like "I got this". My first miles on the road were slow and deliberate. I "cherry picked" my routes to avoid tight spaces to the greatest extent possible. I was careful to travel at times when traffic was at its lightest.

I've now got roughly 1,200 miles of driving under my belt. I driven expressways, surface streets and some pretty tight subdivision streets. I've driven thru construction zones. I've backed into a dozen or so campsites and parking spots. I backed the coach into our friends' place - 150 yards of narrow, winding drive thru heavy woods. I'm certainly not an expert - but I'm comfortable enough behind the wheel to feel confident that I will be able handle whatever the road throws at me.

I'm still learning ... and am now working on teaching my wife. These days ... I'm walking her thru the startup procedures as well as the gauges-controls-warning lights. Every time I go thru the explanations - she understands it a little better - AND I get a little more sure of it myself.

I'm now trying to get her to go with me to the mall parking lot early on a Sunday morning to get some time behind the wheel. She's a little reluctant .. and frankly, a little afraid of it. Until she feels like she's ready to step up and take a crack at it - I'm not pushing her. If you're afraid of the vehicle - you're not ready to drive it.

Take your time, go slow, leave lots of stopping space ... and never, never, never push a bad position. If you're not certain - stop and assess the situation. You may have to wait for traffic to clear a little before you complete your turn ... or you may have to pull forward a little and reposition before backing up.

Know that you CAN do this! There are tens of thousands of these things out there on the road every day - driven by folks who aren't any smarter than you ... and who likely received no special training. This ain't rocket surgery or brain science!

2012 HR Endeavor 43' DFT, 2012 Jeep Liberty
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