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  1. #1
    Bobtail Member
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    Staight Line and Alley Dock Tips

    First day on the range. Had to do straight line back up and Alley dock. Any tips for these two maneuvers?

    I know with the straightline back up, you have to steer in the opposite direction, when the trailer begins to drift. Any other tips?

    With the Alley dock, when's the right time to begin the first left steering wheel turn?

    Any and all tips appreciated.


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  3. #2
    Road Train Member
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    You'll only know that with practice. It's more a feel than anything else. Just remember when ally docking or any other backing...you're steering your tandems. Let the truck follow the trailer.

  4. #3
    Big Dummy JustSonny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by largemargefan View Post
    First day on the range. Had to do straight line back up and Alley dock. Any tips for these two maneuvers?

    I know with the straightline back up, you have to steer in the opposite direction, when the trailer begins to drift. Any other tips?

    With the Alley dock, when's the right time to begin the first left steering wheel turn?

    Any and all tips appreciated.
    Do it exactly the way your instructors tell you to do it...and do it
    s l o w l y! If you're in a school, the instructors will be grading you. If you feel you are doing a backing maneuver EXACTLY the way they have instructed and you are not successful, do whatever you must to have one of the instructors patiently watch every move you make and as they see you get "squirrelly" ask them to stop you. Then stop dead, set your brakes, shift to neutral, get out of the truck and look really hard at everything (e.g., angle at the tractor/trailer pivot point, position of your steers, position of the rear of your trailer with respect to the front/side of the "box", the depth and location of your trailer within the box (too deep? too shallow?, too far toward the back of the box to have the "wiggle room" to complete the maneuver), what useful information can you gain from what, if anything, you can see in your mirrors?...all of them!).

    I have a loooonnng way to go to be even marginally proficient at backing, but I know one thing for certain; trailers are hard of hearing....it takes them longer than we think to understand and then do what we tell them to do.

    Good luck in your training!!

    (This is a little bit embarrassing but I talked to my trailer as I was pushing it where I wanted it to go.)

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