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Author Topic: Wide body. How difficult is it to navigate an 8 foot wide RV in small spaces.  (Read 7948 times)

rving

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  • Posts: 89
  • Alan
I just bought my first RV which is 24 foot long and 8 feet wide. My friend tells me I will have trouble on any two way streets and will not be allowed in certain areas. Ill be driving this around Florida to the beach and Disneyland. Should I cancel this and get something narrower.

Thank you!

Wendy

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We had a 24-foot Class C for over 14 years and never had a bit of trouble with it. When we were lazy, we'd take up several parking places at Wal-Mart. Most of the time, it fit quite nicely in 2. Now we have a 28-foot Class A that's 8.5 feet wide and while we do take up more parking places, we've never been anywhere that we weren't allowed to drive it. You will pay more for parking at Disney but IIRC, it wasn't any more exhorbitant than Disney parking is for anyone.

Enjoy your RV and ignore your friend's doom-saying.

Wendy
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
~We can't be lost because we don't care where we're going~
Here's where we are http://map.datastormusers.com/user2.cfm?user=2276
2015 Allegro Ooen Road
1973 Sunshine Yellow VW Bug

seilerbird

  • Guest
My last RV was 39 feet long and 8 and a half feet wide and I drove it all over towns all over the country without problems.

Ray D

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  • Jasper
Our motorhome is 37' long and 8.5' wide. I tow a car, behind it. I drive it down two lane city streets, occasionally. Sometimes, a bit slowly, if there is traffic. Our favoite campground is Three Island State Park, in Idaho. To get there, you must drive through the town of Glenn's ferry, a small town with two lane steets. Dozens of larger motorhomes than ours do that, daily. There are a couple of tight turns where one must swing a bit wide, but one just waits for traffic to give room, and continues on. And, local traffic is accostomed to that and gives room with a wave and a smile. Some see us coming, and stop well back from the corner to give us room for the wide turns. Get the RV. Wonderful life.

Ray D  ;D

You know, I have to say that I have not met much other traffic that resents our motorhome or gives us a hard time. People, for whatever reason, are more curteous to our RV than to our cars. Wonder why that is. ???
Boise, Idaho. U.S.A.F. Vet. Damon Challenger, Workhorse/Vortec, 2005 towing a Suzuki XL-7, 2003.

miket

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  • Posts: 57
  • Southwick,MA/Silver Springs,FL
Wide body refers to 102" width verses 96" width.
Mike T, Mo T
'05 Voyage, W20, SMI, '06 CR-V
Taffy, Ginger, the cats --Daisy, the dog

rving

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  • Alan
Wide body refers to 102" width verses 96" width.

Thanks Mike.

Thanks everyone else.

Jack Nichols

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“People, for whatever reason, are more curteous to our RV than to our cars. Wonder why that is.   “

I like to think it is “intuitive physics” – they realize that if they hit something that big, it is not going to go well for them.

Well, not really.  People in Boston were very nice when I took a long wheel base tractor and 53’ trailer through the Financial District”, or the time I took the same rig through the ancient, narrow streets of Toledo Ohio.  People un parked cars, backed up, tried to give directions, and did everything they could to help.  I think it is because they realized I was the one person in 50 miles that LEAST wanted to be there.

I remember them with great fondness.  Folks feel like they are part of the adventure when they help out, I think.

Backing can be intimidating, but it just a process of going slow and looking at what you are doing.  18 wheelers have a slogan, GOAL, or Get Out And Look.  A very good friend offered to let me park my 40’ coach in his back yard, a very tight place to get in to.  He and I got to yelling at each other, so the next time I did it by myself.  Took me maybe thirty-forty minutes to go about 25 yards.  You will see that the rig rotates around the rear wheel when the front wheels are turned.  As you work your way into a tight area, you may realize you have to move the rear wheels laterally (sideways) a few feet or a few inches to get where you want to go, and that may mean pulling up into a spot you left twenty minutes ago, just to scoot over a little.  Look your route over, identify pinch points like a low wall, lights that stick out from the garage, soft dirt that may sink you, prized flower beds, all that.  The trick is to just go a few feet, set the brake, get out, see how you are doing, then ease back a little further.  You are more likely to tear something up the second or third time you do it because you think you know how to do it.  Word to the wise, don’t ask me how I know.

Drive your own rig, don’t let anyone push you into a situation you are not comfortable in – take the attitude they will just have to wait.  Wives and friends want to help, and I try to tell people to just yell when they see I am going to crunch something.  They mean well but do not know as much as I do about driving it.  Or think I know, anyway.
"Before the internet, the village idiot stayed in his own village - or Washington"
"Be kinder than you have to be - most people are fighting some sort of demon in thier lives"

John Canfield

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    • Jane and John's Internet Home
24' and 96" wide?  No problem. 

Things get a little trickier when towing a vehicle four-down because you can't back up, but with some planning and situational awareness, this isn't a big deal either.  We have been through many little two-lane town centers and we are 12'6" high and 102" wide - sometimes we are riding on the center line due to a narrow street.  You do what you have to do.

The biggest issue for us is usually overhanging or encroaching tree limbs onto the road - you have to train yourself to be aware of clearances.
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
Our Horizon projects
Our weather

1joester2

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  • Apeo - forever in our hearts. New dog: Duh Kooky
The only place I ever had issues with my similar width MH was in Washington DC when we were looking for the National Zoological Park. We ended up on a side street in a residential are with about 2" to spare on either side. Better planning would have prevented that, and these days, the GPS makes directions clear and easy to follow.

Height is the only thing that requires full awareness in my opinion. Low branches on trees in parking lots and side streets are more of a concern than width of the vehicle.

Joe

<EDIT> I forgot about Yosemite Creek Camp Ground, but that was my fault...
« Last Edit: October 25, 2009, 09:34:56 AM by 1joester2 »
Common sense to many of us is, unfortunately, the higher education some strive to attain.

Joe and Carol
2001 Coachmen 220RK W/GM 7.4 Vortec

Betty Brewer

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Get a new friend! :D :D

He's trying to rain on your parade.  No problem.  Just use common sense. Go slow and you will be fine


Betty
Betty Brewer

see where we are

sluggermike

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I just bought my first MH and it is 8 and a half feet wide.  I live in Southern California and I haven't had a problems driving around down or on the freeways.  Go slow, which is not really slow in S. Cal,  and give yourself plenty of time to stop.  Keep in mind that a semi truck is even wider and they do OK. 

ArdraF

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I can't imagine why your friend is so negative.  Goodness, we drive a 40 foot motorhome that is 101 inches wide and we tow a car behind it.  I LOVE driving it!  Most highways are designed for today's wider vehicles and RV manufacturers have federally mandated width and length limits within which they must design.  Yes, there are occasional places that are pretty narrow such as going up to through the tunnel at Zion National Park with its narrow winding road and a speed limit of 25 mph.  I go slower if necessary.  We generally avoid residential areas but can't always and then we watch for overhanging limbs which often are more of a problem than width.

So get the RV you want and ignore your friend.  It's what you're comfortable with that's important, not a friend's misguided opinion.

ArdraF
ArdraF
:D :D

1joester2

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  • Posts: 931
  • Apeo - forever in our hearts. New dog: Duh Kooky
Misguided opinion or jealousy.

It has to be one or the other. My bet is jealousy.

Joe
Common sense to many of us is, unfortunately, the higher education some strive to attain.

Joe and Carol
2001 Coachmen 220RK W/GM 7.4 Vortec

rving

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  • Alan
Thanks for all the replies. I do not expect this to have any impact on what has been expressed  but I wanted to note I made a mistake in my first post I meant to say 100" wide. The concern that raised my question Florida is one of 9 states that have many roads that are restricted by law to 96" wide vehicles. I will be doing a lot of driving through out Florida and not sure how active this law is enforced. I wanted to make sure I was not getting into something I would later regret.

Again thank you all.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2009, 11:13:44 AM by rving »

John Canfield

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You are correct - doubtless we have been 'illegal' on many of the roads we have been on in 50,000 miles of travel.  We have never been measured, never heard of an RV being measured (but it probably has happened to somebody somewhere.)  My guess is as a non-commercial vehicle, you have little to fear - it is certainly something I don't worry over.
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
Our Horizon projects
Our weather

Ned

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  • Ned and Lorna are former full time RVers
    • Have you seen Rolling Stock?
Nearly every wide body motorhome is illegal.  The 102" maximum width is exclusive of only safety devices like mirrors.  It does not exclude items like awnings.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

 

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