Trailer Storage and Backup Geometry

Discussion in 'General Camping Discussion Forum' started by Dunce, Feb 2, 2017.

  1. Dunce

    Dunce New Member

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    So we just moved in to a new house and I'm trying to figure out where the home for the pup will be. We have a 2005 Fleetwood Niagara HW that is 19' long and 7' wide (with the awning bag attached. The TV is a 2002 dakota quad cab at about 18'. So all in all the length of the rig is 27'.

    We currently have a large area to the side of our house off of our driveway that is unused space would be perfect for storage. The issue is that I know how far out I need to make the opening for the drive in to the storage area.

    You can see in the attached file that the deck (which has posts on the corners) juts out about 20 feet from the back of the house over the driveway. So we can't start the opening until there. Also, about twelve feet out from the end of the deck, the side yard takes a sharp drop, and I want to put in a retaining wall to level off the whole side yard area.

    Can anyone help with the numbers or a system to figure out the angles for the back in opening?
     

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  2. Mogimus

    Mogimus Active Member

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    Well, I certainly wish you luck...

    I had a similar but different situation. I also have a Niagara but I only have 10' of space between my house and the wall and also have the gas meter to maneuver around. In front of the gate is the inclined driveway but by the street directly in front of that is curb, a fire hydrant, and the mailbox so I can't just pull in straight. When backing in, I have to somewhat "jackknife" the trailer so that it is straight and parallel to the house and then back it in slowly with a power dolly (I only have couple on inches between the wall and the gas meter so I don't want to chance it). Seams like you have a couple extra feet to maneuver around in but I think the largest opening you can make would definitely be beneficial. Most of the time I back in, my truck is over the curb and inches away from the mailbox.

    Here's an aerial shot for reference:
    [​IMG]
     
  3. mpking

    mpking Well-Known Member

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    As mogimus hinted at, a power dolly would remove the truck from the equation. Not sure if it's worth the cost to you.

    I think you can make it work with the truck however.
     
  4. Dunce

    Dunce New Member

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    I think my best bet may be to set up some cones in a parking lot that simulate the opening and the drive into the storage area. Then reduce or increase the size and note.
     
  5. BelchFire

    BelchFire I speak fluent vise-grip

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    I was going to suggest a simple "Try it out", but wasn't sure if you could do that in the actual parking place because of the grade that you were describing.

    My gut feeling tells me that you're going to need the whole length of the yard out to the alley to get it around the corner without dropping the right front tire of the truck off the retaining wall. Backing on a controlled jackknife is very, very skillful and requires a lot of practice, plus you don't have a lot of extra width for the corners of the trailer to clear as it's turning into the gap.
     
  6. tombiasi

    tombiasi Well-Known Member

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    Might be better with a front mounted hitch.
     
  7. FarmerDave

    FarmerDave Active Member

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    OK, I had some fun with this.

    If it doesn't help, at least it might make you laugh.

    Black tracks are trailer tire paths red tracks truck tire paths. I'm half asleep but I think it's right?

    Blue is what looks like where the opening needs to be, I am guessing 20 feet to have lots of room.

    I agree with the "try the parking lot and pylons"
     

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  8. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    By looking at your drawing, your going to need to either remove some of the retaining wall or buy some sort of trailer dolly ..
     
  9. Wrenchgear

    Wrenchgear Near Elmira, Southern Ontario

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    Yes, exactly right. I was thinking the same thing as I was reading. When backing the trailer in, all will be good while swinging the front end of the Dakota around. When pulling the Pup out, the front of the trailer will try to straighten out and hit the front corner of the deck. You're gonna need a longer opening for the truck to go down before you start turning the steering wheel when pulling the trailer out.
     
  10. Jughed

    Jughed Member

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    If you have the dimensions from the centerline of the axel to the hitch - I can sketch it up on CAD and see if it works... I don't think it will.
     
  11. Hawkester

    Hawkester Hawkesnest

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    Not sure what trailer you have or if the drive area is flat vs sloped but we have an '07 Sun Valley and our driveway is flat.

    I pull straight into my garage and unhook. I then turn and push the trailer by hand to it's storage area.

    If you back in close can you push it by hand into the area? Is it concrete all the way? sloped? I envy a motorized hand dolly but it's not hard on flat smooth surface either.
     
  12. Hawkester

    Hawkester Hawkesnest

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    Sorry....somehow I missed the HW....get a dolly....
     
  13. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

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    I'd say try it with the pylons. BTW, you're combined length is 37 feet.

    For that set-up, we'd choose either a front hitch or a trailer dolly. Even with our fairly open parking situation, we've considered both, though removing one tree opened up maneuvering room enough that we haven't gone either of those routes.
     
  14. Dunce

    Dunce New Member

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    Oh god, that is very correct. Good thing I didn't go ahead and build being off by that much.
     
  15. Dunce

    Dunce New Member

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    The most I think about this, the more I feel like I should just scrap the proposed retaining wall at the end of the side yard, and just grade it and turn it in to another driveway area so I can take a straight shot at it.

    I just really wanted to turn the area above the proposed retaining wall in to a basketball area. Oh well. This will work out better in the long run.
     
  16. BelchFire

    BelchFire I speak fluent vise-grip

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    Now you're talking! You'll be glad you did when it's all said and done.
     
  17. wecamp

    wecamp Member

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    When we had our 2002 Bayside we had a powered dolly to help us put it in its storage space behind the house. There was no way we could use the TV to back it in, even with a front mounted hitch. No longer have the Bayside but still have the powered dolly. Michigan is too far to ship it. It was worth the grand it cost. We were pretty level but it was a struggle to make the turns.
     
  18. Dudman5703

    Dudman5703 Jeep Guy

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    Personally, I push it while she looks out to make sure I don't hit anything. I've done it on my own several times too.

    I'd go x2 with the trailer dolly if you can verify it fits. I could never justify the cost of one since I'm capable of doing the physical work [:(!]

    Don't get me wrong, I didn't do the math here, but the only way you'd get it in the truck even if it is physically possible is by tons of practice. I found it was just easier to push and not worry about making a mistake.
     
  19. 94-D2

    94-D2 Happy Campin'

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  20. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

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    @94-D2 - that's the one I thought would be nice for theTT
     

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