Learning to haul... Any Advice?
I am very fortunate to finally have access to a truck and trailer!!!
The truck is a ford F250, and the trailer is a 16ft gooseneck.
That being said... My fiancé is very skilled at driving it, but I am determined to learn to do it as well! I take the truck out for hay runs, etc... but have never pulled the trailer. I want to take it slow and be extra proficient before hauling any of my babies.
Does anyone have any good advice or resources for learning to tow? I've read a few things online, but haven't found anything too in depth.
Since he is skilled, have him give you some lessons -- having him there with "hands on" training will be much more beneficial to you than what we can offer here, imo.
If your fiance is a smart man he won't give you lessons. Just take the truck and trailer out and drive around. With a goosneck trailer you will need to swing wide when turning because the trailer will cut the corner when you turn and if you don't allow enough space you'll run over the curb or hit whatever you're turning around.
This... terrified me at first but I hooked my trailer up and drove it around everywhere for a week. Trust me... pulling in and out of some of those parking lots in town is a pain, but you learn quick how to maneuver. You also learn to park at the back of the lot. Lots of exercise :D. Basically if you park where few others go most places don't mind if you take up two, three or possibly ten spots.
For slowing and stopping... act like you have a load of eggs in the back. Take your foot off the gas pedal long before you put it on the brake. To go... slow and easy is the way.
Like kevinshorses said above... big wide turns, your gooseneck does not follow your truck tires. Once your trailer tires reach the turn point you're pretty safe. When coming up to a sharp right turn, put blinker on and go as far left as you safely can... not far enough though for some idiot who can't see blinkers thinks they can pull up beside you on the right.
Speaking of annoying drivers... understand that once you are a pulling a trailer just about everyone else thinks you are going too slow. Doesn't matter if you are going 70 they will still insist on passing, pulling out in front of you, or riding your tail.
As for backing up... find a empty parking lot and pretend the white lines are other trailers.
make sure your insurance is good, hook trailer to truck, and leave it hooked to truck. Now drive said truck anywhere and every where for a couple weeks. NO EXCUSES, ya gotta go to work just leave a bit early. BUT NO EXCUSES, in a week or so you will be pretty good at it.
Its hard to give some tips online, but have your fiance (spell it wrong i am sure) help you out. He can give you tips as to what to do right there.
Joe -- that is so true. I wanted to do that when I got my GN, but most of my clients' driveways or parking lots are barely big enough for just my truck! :)
OP -- yup, practice, practice, practice and get used to using your mirrors all the time. Wide corners, slow speeding up and slow braking -- all as you have been advised already. Don't forget that all important walk around every time before you head out!
I taught myself to drive my bumper pull last year. Me, some orange cones, a big of M&Ms and a really large parking lot. Had it down in a few hours. Was towing baby the next week with no issues. Definitely practice the turning with the gooseneck or you will find yourself taking out a lot of street signs.
sound like you are getting it remember the horses are liquid weight they move around and that will you will feel as the trailer goes
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