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Old 12-13-2021, 07:52 AM   #1
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Getting Stuck with a Diesel Pusher

Hi all, I am fairly new to IRV2 and a newbie to RV’ing and quite interested in many of the subjects. After retiring from ownership of a heavy-duty truck dealership in Ontario Canada we decided we would like to do some traveling in a motorhome. We purchased a 2018 Pace Arrow 33D last year for the specific reason to travel out west and into the Yukon with Tuktoyaktuk and Arctic Ocean our ultimate goals. Being new to RV’ing I have been watching, reading and learning much about the different situations one can find themselves in. Getting stuck was a big one and in most cases cost thousands of dollars and/or a lot of work to get unstuck.

My dealership specialized in heavy-duty log trucks and other construction vehicles. We had one option that was a necessity for the log trucks working in the bush and soft ground being a Central Tire Inflation System. The function of the system was to deflate and inflate the tires from the convenience of remaining in the cab when soft ground and/or mud were present thus gaining extra traction. Getting stuck was as simple as flicking a switch in the cab and the tires would deflate enabling the truck to move on its own. BTW, these trucks will often weigh well over 100,000 pounds.

Without a doubt, while on the road with our motor-home I expect to get stuck at some point in our journey. As I have a compressor on the engine and a long airline to inflate my tires I won’t hesitate to deflate the tires to about 20-30 PSI depending on how stuck I am.

Deflating the tires increases the footprint of the tire and exponentially increases the traction. Once unstuck, I will manually inflate the tires to the normal operating pressures. You may want to try this the next time you get stuck. No need to purchase a $15,000 system for me. Hayes Dana, Meritor and others sell this system but I don’t feel the investment will pay off for me but as mentioned there is an alternative. I hope you find this helpful!
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Old 12-13-2021, 08:15 AM   #2
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Letting air out of tires was common in the 50ís and 60ís. I donít think people do it much anymore. Your post took me back a few years and I enjoyed reading it.

Just donít tell me your still using sawdust tires.
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Old 12-13-2021, 08:42 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HenryH001 View Post
Letting air out of tires was common in the 50ís and 60ís. I donít think people do it much anymore. Your post took me back a few years and I enjoyed reading it.



Just donít tell me your still using sawdust tires.

Off roaders do it now more than ever. You can even get devises that screw on to your valve stems to quickly air down to a pre-set pressure. And there are portable compressors available to air back up quickly.
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Old 12-13-2021, 08:46 AM   #4
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Have you considered having tow hooks added to the chassis that are accessible from outside since you are planning ahead for that possibility?
Seems like every RV that’s stuck I see on YT, the biggest hurdle is getting a chain to the frame without damaging body panels as the body hangs lower than the chassis
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Old 12-13-2021, 08:56 AM   #5
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I air down both of my offroad rigs. The buggy with 43" sticky tires is aired down to 5 psi in front and 3 psi in the rear. The tires have a stiff biased sidewall and look normal at those pressures. The TJ on 40" tires is run @ 8 psi. The lower pressure makes a huge difference in traction as I'm sure it would on a MH as well. However, I make a point of keeping our coach on firm ground to avoid being in a position I can't drive out of. Once the drive wheel slip on a tag coach, you're done unless you can lift the tag.
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Old 12-13-2021, 09:07 AM   #6
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You should look into installing a selectable rear locker like those used on logging trucks and other heavy duty off road trucks.
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Old 12-13-2021, 09:12 AM   #7
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I seriously doubt letting some air out of a DP's tires is going to help much. You'd have to be barely stuck for it to work.

But, let us know how it works out. I have been wrong before.
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Old 12-13-2021, 09:15 AM   #8
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Welcome to the forum.

We live on the beach and routinely air down our Suburban tires when pulling boats out over the sand. We got stuck in our pusher this summer after going onto a shoulder to turn around. We were just a little stuck and luckily a guy came along to give us a little nudge by pulling on our trailer hitch. Had not considered airing down but will now keep it in my quiver.

Thanks for the post!
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Old 12-13-2021, 09:17 AM   #9
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Follow the lead of the mall crawlers and mount a Hi-Lift in a prominent spot. You'll never be stuck.
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Old 12-13-2021, 09:58 AM   #10
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We sold a fleet of Peterbilt tri-drive trucks to Yukon Alaska Transport that had those systems. Apparently they worked great, hauling from the mine in Faro to Skagway. Ice roads to mud.
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Old 12-13-2021, 10:04 AM   #11
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Almost got stuck once in some shallow mud. Airing down the tires would not helped at all other than to sling more mud. Lesson learned,I'm not going anywhere I might get stuck.
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Old 12-13-2021, 10:48 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 69Stang View Post
I seriously doubt letting some air out of a DP's tires is going to help much. You'd have to be barely stuck for it to work.

But, let us know how it works out. I have been wrong before.
I agree. There isn't much ground clearance as it is so things would only get worse if air was let out of the tires.

Imo, a typical DP is not the rig a person should travel in if roads are that bad or if the intent is to purposely drive on un-maintained roads.
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Old 12-13-2021, 10:50 AM   #13
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Can’t imagine airing down tires on an RV enough to get better traction without breaking the bead. Then you’d really be in a pickle. A lot of weight difference between a RV and an off-roader.
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Old 12-13-2021, 10:59 AM   #14
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Not my proudest moment. 40ft diesel pusher pulling a 20 ft enclosed trailer. Got stuck pulling in to camp at night. Aired down but not too far because I was afraid of losing a bead and it being a real nightmare. Lot's of digging both front and rear axles. Disconnected the trailer, had it towed out of the way by another truck. Hooked tow rope to rear hitch and drug it out backwards (downhill). Wasn't too difficult after digging and a 1 ton 4x4 truck. Parked on some flatter ground after that. Good times.
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