Turning Corners - Yes, I'm new to this...

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elm_tx

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May 19, 2006
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106
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Houston, Tx
I will be taking ownership of a 2002 36' New Horizon Ultra fiver(awesome condition - 3 slides) in about 3 weeks.

I generally drive a 2 seater 300ZX, and have done so for the past 15 years (different models), and before that it was small sports cars.
I have also driven a 97 Chevy 1500 now and then. We bought a 2006 HD 4x4 Diesel Chevy 2500 a few days ago.

Can anyone give me some basic suggestions on how to get this RV back to the house. I will be doing freeway and neighborhood driving. I can find parking lots after the fact to practice, but my FIRST pull will be in moderate Houston Tx traffic. :-\
 

Carl L

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west Los Angeles
First thing to do is relax.  The trailer will follow your car just fine.  Because it is a fiver, like semitrailers, it will cut inside on turns.  So on a hard ride turn, you do what the truckers do and cut the turn a bit wide, sort of like a fishhook. 

You have extended mirrors on your tow vehicle, right?  If not, buy a pair of slip on mirrors before you take off and put them on.  Use them, especially on clearing right turns until you get the feel.  Be cautious about lane changes, use those mirrors and go only when you have a lot of space. 

On highways and interstates, you belong in the far right lanes.  Entering a freeway remember you are going to take a bit of time to get up to 60.  If you have to transition to a left exiting lane, do the move over early enough so that you do not have to execute a last minute panicked lane change.  In fact, if you do have to make a panicked last minute lane change, don't.

Be careful about entering residential streets, it is easy to get trapped in a dead end street with no way to execute an easy U-turn.




 

Kenneth

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Nov 21, 2005
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438
moderate Houston TX traffic ?  ???

Elm TX,

I'm in the area if you need help, just holler at me and I'll do what I can to ease your fears  ;D

Where are you picking up at and where's it headed to ?

Its really a lot less stressful than you might imagine. But we've all  been there :p
 

blueblood

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Mar 16, 2005
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1,082
elm_tx said:
I will be taking ownership of a 2002 36' New Horizon Ultra fiver(awesome condition - 3 slides) in about 3 weeks.

I generally drive a 2 seater 300ZX, and have done so for the past 15 years (different models), and before that it was small sports cars.
I have also driven a 97 Chevy 1500 now and then. We bought a 2006 HD 4x4 Diesel Chevy 2500 a few days ago.

Can anyone give me some basic suggestions on how to get this RV back to the house. I will be doing freeway and neighborhood driving. I can find parking lots after the fact to practice, but my FIRST pull will be in moderate Houston Tx traffic. :-\

There are two simple things truckers do that are helpful. One, stay in middle lane of three lane highway. You avoid the problem of traffic entering and leaving the inside lane. Two, on turn on roads providing two turn lanes stay in the outside lane. For example on left turn use right hand lane. Avoids running up over a curb/s or some ones vehicle.?
 

Karl

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Mar 3, 2005
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Elkhart Lake, WI for the summer. Work at Road Amer
Two, on turn on roads providing two lanes stay in the outside lane. For example on left turn use right hand lane.

If I understand you to mean 'when turning left, start your turn from the right-hand lane; not the left-hand lane', I don't agree. You'd be cutting across the left-hand lane of traffic which may or may not be a thru-traffic lane also. Sounds like you're asking to be hit on the driver's side. On the other hand, if you meant 'start your left turn from the left-turn lane, but finish it in the right lane' or 'start your right turn from the right-hand lane but finish it in the left lane', that would make for a much shallower turn, and you wouldn't be impeding traffic.  Is that what you meant?
 

blueblood

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Karl said:
If I understand you to mean 'when turning left, start your turn from the right-hand lane; not the left-hand lane', I don't agree. You'd be cutting across the left-hand lane of traffic which may or may not be a thru-traffic lane also. Sounds like you're asking to be hit on the driver's side. On the other hand, if you meant 'start your left turn from the left-turn lane, but finish it in the right lane' or 'start your right turn from the right-hand lane but finish it in the left lane', that would make for a much shallower turn, and you wouldn't be impeding traffic.? Is that what you meant?

No, I left out a word which I have now added.
 

Carl L

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blueblood said:
There are two simple things truckers do that are helpful. One, stay in middle lane of three lane highway. You avoid the problem of traffic entering and leaving the inside lane.

That may not be legal.? It is not in California.? ?Trailers can use that lane only for passing on a three lane highway.? Otherwise, they must stay in the far right hand lane.? ?On a highway with 4 or more lanes, trailers can cruise in the second to far right lane, and it is a good idea as? you say to avoid on-ramp traffic.
 

elm_tx

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Joined
May 19, 2006
Posts
106
Location
Houston, Tx
It's currently sitting in Canyon Lake, TX however it looks like I'll be picking it up in Waller TX off 290. The current Owner graciously agreed to meet me there since he was heading through Houston for other reasons.

I'm taking it from there to the house, just north of Jersey Village right off of Beltway 8 & 290. I'll have to park it in the cul-de-sac the first day then pull it to the storage lot the next, I need to do this as I won't have a spotter to help guide me into it's storage spot, and I have no faith in my skill's backing up skills at this point.

Anyone have a  recommended maximum speed to run on the freeway? I know 80mph is not an option, I can't count the number of RV's I fly by coming home from the races at the Texas Motor Speedway doing 80 - 85. But I've never slowed down to see how slow they were going.

Thanks for everyones feedback, some of it I guess I've kind of known, such as making sure I stayed back and let an 18 wheeler make his wide turn, then I follow so as not to have my 2 seater crunched.
 

elm_tx

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Joined
May 19, 2006
Posts
106
Location
Houston, Tx
Kenneth,

Thanks for the offer, I'm sure I'll have tons of questions. 

My qualification on the Houston traffic was that I was originally thinking I'd have to come down I-10 to the beltway, then on past 290. As you probably know 10 is under construction and it just gets plain crazy once you hit Katy - Hwy 6 - Eldrigde areas. So at least IMHO, 290 is "moderate" relative to how I-10 is these days.

We can't wait to get the 5er and make our first trip, but I sure do have a whole bunch of learning to do first!!! :)
 

Bob Buchanan

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Mar 3, 2005
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3,038
Location
Philadelphia, PA
blueblood said:
One, stay in middle lane of three lane highway. You avoid the problem of traffic entering and leaving the inside lane.?

Best check w/local State laws on that. In CA, for example, what you suggest is against the law. Any vehicle towing anything must stay in the right most lane unless otherwise marked. There will be a black on white sign over the second lane if it is OK in larger cities -- such as Sacramento. Otherwise, the speed limiit is 55mph, and the correct lane is the right most lane.
 

John From Detroit

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Davison Michigan
elm_tx said:
Anyone have a  recommended maximum speed to run on the freeway? I know 80mph is not an option, I can't count the number of RV's I fly by coming home from the races at the Texas Motor Speedway doing 80 - 85. But I've never slowed down to see how slow they were going.

Strange as it may seem. I recommend the speed limit, I know there are folks who will cuss and swear and in Calfornia there are cops who will ticket you for obstructing traffic (They may try that with me once, but when I appear in court along with a crew from 60 minutes or simular... Well, it's not going to be their day,  I won't stand for that and will take enforcement action against any officer who does that to me)

I have another recommendation as well.. Make very sure the former owner goes over that thing with you hitch to bumper and shows you everythign, Every fuse, Every breaker, Every valve, Every connection, have him explain how the heater, fridge, lights and such work, how to empty the tanks, or fill them, how to prep the rig, how to wash and wax and treat the rig, everything.

Then (or first) By an "RV-Owner's Manual" I have and use the Woodwalls book, most of the folks here suggest a different book the name of which I forget just now
 

Bob Buchanan

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John In Detroit said:
Strange as it may seem. I recommend the speed limit, I know there are folks who will cuss and swear and in Calfornia there are cops who will ticket you for obstructing traffic (They may try that with me once, but when I appear in court along with a crew from 60 minutes or simular... Well, it's not going to be their day,? I won't stand for that and will take enforcement action against any officer who does that to me)

Hi John:

Not sure I understand what you are posting. The speed limit in CA if towing is 55mph and the correct lane is the far right lane. If you adhere to that law, why would a CHP give you a ticket for obstructing traffic? I'm a 10 year full timer licensed in CA. I obey the law as posted and have never gotten a ticket - nor have I obstructed or been concerned with those that exceed the speed limit and drive in lanes they are not supposed to be in.
 

Carl L

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Joined
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Posts
7,239
Location
west Los Angeles
elm_tx said:
It's currently sitting in Canyon Lake, TX however it looks like I'll be picking it up in Waller TX off 290. The current Owner graciously agreed to meet me there since he was heading through Houston for other reasons.

I'm taking it from there to the house, just north of Jersey Village right off of Beltway 8 & 290. I'll have to park it in the cul-de-sac the first day then pull it to the storage lot the next, I need to do this as I won't have a spotter to help guide me into it's storage spot, and I have no faith in my skill's backing up skills at this point.

Anyone have a? recommended maximum speed to run on the freeway? I know 80mph is not an option, I can't count the number of RV's I fly by coming home from the races at the Texas Motor Speedway doing 80 - 85. But I've never slowed down to see how slow they were going.

Thanks for everyones feedback, some of it I guess I've kind of known, such as making sure I stayed back and let an 18 wheeler make his wide turn, then I follow so as not to have my 2 seater crunched.

Watch out for that cul-de-sac.  You could find yourself trapped and forced to back out.  Park where you can drive around a block to get out.

Do your state's speed limit for trailers.  You are a big target for cops to radar.    In any case, trailer stability drops with speed, take it slow at first until you are used to handling the thing.  36 feet is a looong tail to drag around.  Worse yet, you will have the aerodynamic x-section of a concrete block.  Your gas mileage will go into the toilet over 55 -- and we are talking serious bad mileage here.
 

John From Detroit

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Davison Michigan
Bob Buchanan said:
Hi John:

Not sure I understand what you are posting. The speed limit in CA if towing is 55mph and the correct lane is the far right lane. If you adhere to that law, why would a CHP give you a ticket for obstructing traffic? I'm a 10 year full timer licensed in CA. I obey the law as posted and have never gotten a ticket - nor have I obstructed or been concerned with those that exceed the speed limit and drive in lanes they are not supposed to be in.

Well, it appears you do understand, however it was a documented case, a police officer (I'm not sure if CHP, did give someone a ticket for going the speed limit..  Said he was obstructing traffic,  The judge dismissed but warned the driver to pick up the pace in the future.

I do knwo there are a lot of folks who get upset when someone drives the speed limit... I happen to enjoy upsetting them
 

Shayne

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If that speed limit tops out at 55.  It must be Smoky.  Take a rope get up close behind him and push on the rope.  Only way to get him moving.
 

Bob Buchanan

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John In Detroit said:
Well, it appears you do understand, however it was a documented case, a police officer (I'm not sure if CHP, did give someone a ticket for going the speed limit..? Said he was obstructing traffic,? The judge dismissed but warned the driver to pick up the pace in the future.

I do knwo there are a lot of folks who get upset when someone drives the speed limit... I happen to enjoy upsetting them

Here's the way the California Vehicle Code (CVC) reads on that issue, John:

22400.? ?(a) No person shall drive upon a highway at such a slow speed as to impede or block the normal and reasonable movement of traffic, unless the reduced speed is necessary for safe operation, because of a grade, or in compliance with law.

No person shall bring a vehicle to a complete stop upon a highway so as to impede or block the normal and reasonable movement of traffic unless the stop is necessary for safe operation or in compliance with law.


Without being able to read the details in the actual case -- and if the Judge ordered the person to "pick up the pace", would suspect they were driving under the posted maximum speed and probably in the wrong lane for that speed. That has happened to me a few times going "up" (South) on the Grapevine on the 5 South of Bakersfield. Once I dropped my speed due the traffic in front of me -- it was tough to get past and back into my lane. That's when I wish I had a diesel pushing me vs. a gas engine pulling.? :)? However, the CVC does cover "going up a grade".
 

John From Detroit

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Well, as I said, my recolation of the case is the Defendent was doing the POSTED speed limit, or at least that is what the officer put on the ticket.

The issue was discussed on several forums on Compuserve, and in other places.. Let me check

http://www.dvorak.org/blog/?p=4468


http://www.deanesmay.com/archives/005840.html

http://www.museumofhoaxes.com/hoax/weblog/comments/4017/P20/

Though this person was using the left lane to drive the speed limit (above link)


On all of those links you may have to search for "TICKET" or some such key word to find the relavant section

But I was unable to find a reference to the specific case I was looking for.  As I said, this was some years ago and may have pre-dated Google's search bots.  Also, I only looked at about 100 links, the search pramaters I fed it hit 160,000 links,most of which were not what I was looking for
 
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