Backing, how long did it take you to catch on?

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by DevJohnson, Jul 22, 2018.

  1. Omega7777

    Omega7777 Medium Load Member

    May 21, 2018
    basically just pull up straight and be as close as possible to the end of other trailers till the center of your rear tractor wheel are aligned with the right side of the spoto that you are trying to get in. at the point, turn your wheel all the way to the right until your tractor is at between 2 and 3 o'clock then immediately steer your wheel all the way to the left until you have a good angle and the end of your trailer in a good spot to alley dock. but there are many ways to do it, always ask for advice from other experienced drivers out there
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018
    BUMBACLADWAR Thanks this.
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  3. JTAN

    JTAN Light Load Member

    Jun 12, 2009
    Rome , GA.
    A lot of it depends on how you have to set up your truck and how tired you are..sometimes they'll just fall in place some require a little work...don't worry about the other drivers we've all had trouble at one time or another...
    Bluedew, Samuelh and James122 Thank this.

    BUMBACLADWAR Road Train Member

    Dec 5, 2013
    Well,Ive rambled before.Any "old Dinosaur" will tell ya...its your initial "set up" that will make or break you". Ideally,you Wanna see ,Both sides of the truck (in the mirrors). Some days Im Good,some days I get the "fish eye" from Veterans...Look like a "rookie". Id "Venture to say" after a year of tight "alley backing" ,it Should be "Natural"
    al_huryn and BigDog Trucker Thank this.

    BUMBACLADWAR Road Train Member

    Dec 5, 2013
    Not "Hitting anything",is what its about.Sometimes Joe Smoe has been there 116 times (has it down pat). Yes he /she May give the "dumb look" and the "fish eye".Just let it roll off you.You get good .See...once you have the "same" truck for a while(you start to get good at "knowing" how big this "rig" really is....and angles and first youlll chase trailer around with a sweaty head.Look "ate up".Evenyually you get it.Unless you were "born in a truck",no real "substitution" for old fashioned experience.
    McCauley Thanks this.
  6. GoldDot40

    GoldDot40 Light Load Member

    Jul 20, 2018
    Athens, GA
    I was always OK at backing...even when I was a rookie. Then I got a job with Cardinal...who was the premiere carrier for the Caterpillar plant in Athens, GA. Didn't take me long to figure out I needed WAY more practice. I volunteered to do yard duty on a Saturday...PLENTY of practice doing that. I taught myself more in that one day than I had learned in the 1st 8 years of trucking. We had some accounts where you have to start out backing to the drivers side, then swing around into a blind side and hit the loading a supernatural offset backup. Had a couple more accounts that required similar and some you could ONLY get into by blindside backing.

    At the end of my stint there, I felt pretty good about it. Still do actually. While I don't HAVE to back into many places pulling a tanker, I have to back OUT of plenty of situations...usually in the very tight quarters of a convenience store parking lot full of cars and people.
  7. snowman_w900

    snowman_w900 Road Train Member

    Nov 25, 2010
    So there was a guy at the drives AND at the front corner of the trailer watching?

    Seems like that woulda been a little counter productive. Were they wearing helmets with flashing red or amber lights on top? Or walkie talkies so they could all take turns hollering at you and giving precise movement updates?

    Also, why didnt you put any guys up on the roof of the tractor and trailer?
  8. Trucking in Tennessee

    Trucking in Tennessee Road Train Member

    Mar 19, 2018
    Saw a remote control semi at Advanced auto parts today for $35. Might help someone.
  9. 88228822

    88228822 Heavy Load Member

    Sep 26, 2018
    I'm 14 weeks in and I'm just now to the point where I don't dread it. I still don't like backing at truck stops near other peoples' rigs. If at all possible I look for pull throughs or a space where I can setup fully then straight back.

    I manage pretty good at the customers but I'm still inconsistent.

    I have also gotten to where I just go ahead and back in after the customer makes me slide the tandems to the rear (instead of sliding them to the front to back then sliding to rear after in the hole). It's actually easier in a way since I love to oversteer when backing.

    Not freaking out, getting out and looking, and remaining calm are your best assets when learning to back.
    kemosabi49 Thanks this.
  10. Opus

    Opus Road Train Member

    Dec 18, 2011
    South GA
    Here's a pro tip from someone who, going on 7 years still backs like up to the truckstops 5. You have your choice then and the sun is still up.
  11. Gdog66223

    Gdog66223 Road Train Member

    Dec 30, 2017
    Coal Town
    I been driving for 11 years and I still pull up some... just depends on where I am and how tired I am... If anybody ever says they don't need to learn anything else then they need to quit...
    kemosabi49 Thanks this.
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