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Old 10-23-2015, 04:03 PM   #1
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camping mishaps you will never forget

I will start this off so others just starting in their new redwood will no what to look out for and what not to do in their new redwood.

To start off, Tuesday I finally got my trailer back from service late that day and headed for the ranch. It was getting late and I was in a hurry to set it up and get with my tasks before it got to dark on me. I accidentally hooked up my fresh water to my black flush outlet and left to fix a deer feeder our Russian boars nocked over and twisted up the legs. when I got back I had a water fall of water coming out under the trailer. I first thought I jarred pipes loose getting the trailer to my ranch not realizing I hooked up the water to the wrong location. Make sure to shut it all off including water, shore power, and main DC shutoff. Crawl underneath and punch holes in the underbelly were it is sagging so you can get all the water to drain out before hooking it back up and take it back for service to make sure nothing major was effected.

It was already past 10:30 that night so I packed it up and drove a couple of hours back home so the water can drain all out and call explore usa in the morning. Wednesday when I got it back to the dealership they had two techs on standby for me and when I opened up the door to the trailer I had glass all over the floor. Looked like the shower door in our unit had shattered because the clasp holding the doors open in travel opened up so remember to zip tie that during travel so it won't do that again.

During all that I found out both one way valves were bad and they were replaced, servpro came out and cleaned all the black tank overflow inside the toilet area and shower door was fixed as well. While I was their I told them I smelled batteries burning and of course they both were low and fried. REMEBER THIS !!!! if you have the residential package, make sure to check the fluids in your batteries at least once a month if not every 3 weeks because it is constantly charging those puppies when hooked up to shore power. So 2 new batteries and I was good to go by closing time.

I would recommend the gel cell batteries for the residential package and I will put them in on my one year anniversary for our trailer.

Very embarrassing to have this happen to you, but a learning curve to remember for a lifetime.
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Old 10-23-2015, 11:17 PM   #2
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The worst thing that happened to us with the RV actually happened in our driveway with the old 30ft bumper pull. I had decided to repack the wheel bearings and all 3 of my adult sons came over to help and drink a few beers. It was early spring on a gravel driveway, all 4 tires off and the trailer was on automotive stands. I went into the house and when I returned I saw one of my sons sitting partially under the trailer while working on the hub. I quickly grabbed him and advised that if the trailer fell he could be seriously pinned and hurt under that trailer.......not 10 seconds after I said that the soft ground gave way under the jacks and down she went. I quickly ran around the other side of the trailer to make sure everybody was safe while my heart about blew out of my chest.

We gathered out thoughts....scratched our heads and laughed a little. About an hour later we had it back up on jack stands and completed the job. Lesson taught and learned.
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Old 10-23-2015, 11:40 PM   #3
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Worst one here was a my hunting buddy and I bought a 1969 Red Dale pickup camper. Old, beat but great hunting rig. Had the old 4 corner crankup jacks that you used and long lever bar. Had to do each corner at a time. We were working on it and you know what happened from here. He had about 3 feet between him and the camper and a chain link fence, one corner gave way, he dove, the camper landed on the top of the fence, crushed it aways and he survived in the triangle created below

None the less, lots of stories got told in that camper, what is said in hunting camp.............
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Old 10-24-2015, 12:32 AM   #4
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Most interesting with the RW just happened about 3 weeks ago.
We pulled in to get fuel and then went off to the side to use the restroom in the RW. Myself first and then the wife.....well I got side tracked and when she came back to the truck and off we went. We were just pulling out onto a small secondary road and there is this guy waving like crazy at us. Hummmm, what's he want??
Just then I looked in my mirror and rear steps are still down and door wide open. OPPS!!!!
I won't do that again!

Steve
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Old 10-24-2015, 03:26 AM   #5
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Don't worry, Steve, I won't tell a soul.
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Old 10-24-2015, 04:45 AM   #6
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After a very long day of pulling our previous fiver, we pulled into an RV park and proceeded to unhook the truck. I put the chocks under the wheels, put down the front jacks and proceeded to pull out from under the fiver. Whoops, had not pulled the latch lever. Got out pulled the lever and the truck took off without me. I had left it in drive. Boy did I run fast and was able to catch it before it hit something. Lesson learned-be very careful after a long hard day.
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Old 10-24-2015, 05:03 AM   #7
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Summer of 2014 were in Spokane WA stopped at the KOA for the night. Went out to unhook the Toad so we could meet some friends for dinner that lived in the area. I unhooked one side and instead or walking around the car to unhook the other side. I stepped over the tow bar did not get leg high enough and down I went on the Gravel. Was that white sharp kind to. Never made it t dinner and wife had to take me to ER I was sure I broke a rib or two. but was only Sprained but hurt like hell. It was a tough couple days driving the MH being sore from the fall. Always walked around after that.
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Old 10-24-2015, 01:57 PM   #8
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After a very long day of pulling our previous fiver, we pulled into an RV park and proceeded to unhook the truck. I put the chocks under the wheels, put down the front jacks and proceeded to pull out from under the fiver. Whoops, had not pulled the latch lever. Got out pulled the lever and the truck took off without me. I had left it in drive. Boy did I run fast and was able to catch it before it hit something. Lesson learned-be very careful after a long hard day.

That is one of the reasons I don't like to do those "long hard days"!!
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Old 10-24-2015, 01:58 PM   #9
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We traded in our gooseneck Prowler 5th wheel for an Alpha that had the traditional hitch. No sweat hooking up to the B&W Companion. When I unhooked, I put the front legs down making sure they were solid. I then lowered the gate unhooked the truck and pulled out. My wife came running and my heart was racing when there was a VERY LOUD BANG! I forgot about the 'squat' on the truck and didn't raise the camper high enough. Only damage was the little hitch light under the camper, I broke the lens cover. No damage to camper or truck. WHEW! I will never make that mistake again.
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Old 10-24-2015, 05:03 PM   #10
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This story doesn't involve the fifth wheel but it could. Nonetheless, it's a "I'll never do that again" moment.

I had worked real hard one day replacing my kitchen sink. Finally, after several hours, the old cast iron sink was gone and in its place was a new stainless steel sink and a brand new faucet. I had just hooked up the water lines and just wanted to test the faucet for leaks. I turned on the water and just heard a clunk, but no water. Not thinking, I took off the handle, unscrewed the water valve and wow!!...............water shoots straight up to the ceiling. By this time I'm screaming "the water is still on!" I climb under the sink to shut the water off and realize that I haven't hooked up the drain lines yet so all the water going up is now coming down on top of me like a waterfall. The wife and I laugh about it now but not then!!!
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Old 10-25-2015, 03:29 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blenhardt View Post
After a very long day of pulling our previous fiver, we pulled into an RV park and proceeded to unhook the truck. I put the chocks under the wheels, put down the front jacks and proceeded to pull out from under the fiver. Whoops, had not pulled the latch lever. Got out pulled the lever and the truck took off without me. I had left it in drive. Boy did I run fast and was able to catch it before it hit something. Lesson learned-be very careful after a long hard day.
I'm sure that was a scary situation for you, but I had to laugh while picturing this happening
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Old 10-25-2015, 03:38 AM   #12
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This did not happen to me, but I felt the guys pain. While on a trip to SD we had stopped at a light and a 5'er was making a right turn on the road we were on. When he accelerated he lost his 5th wheel. Came completely off his truck and was sitting in the road. He quickly backed his truck up to the camper, but apparently his running gear was damage and he couldn't raise it up. I saw him put his head into his hands and just shake his head. Really felt bad for him, but this is why I ALWAYS do a pull test before taking off.
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Old 10-25-2015, 03:40 AM   #13
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I'm sure that was a scary situation for you, but I had to laugh while picturing this happening
We now look back and laugh at the incident. Makes me check to assure that truck is in park now. When it happened it was near our oldest daughters home. We agreed to not tell her at the time for fear she would take our keys away
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Old 10-25-2015, 06:14 AM   #14
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What is a pull test and how do you do it? Thanks
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Old 10-25-2015, 12:42 PM   #15
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After a very long day of pulling our previous fiver, we pulled into an RV park and proceeded to unhook the truck. I put the chocks under the wheels, put down the front jacks and proceeded to pull out from under the fiver. Whoops, had not pulled the latch lever. Got out pulled the lever and the truck took off without me. I had left it in drive. Boy did I run fast and was able to catch it before it hit something. Lesson learned-be very careful after a long hard day.
That's not funny.......but would have been fun to watch
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Old 10-25-2015, 12:50 PM   #16
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This did not happen to me, but I felt the guys pain. While on a trip to SD we had stopped at a light and a 5'er was making a right turn on the road we were on. When he accelerated he lost his 5th wheel. Came completely off his truck and was sitting in the road. He quickly backed his truck up to the camper, but apparently his running gear was damage and he couldn't raise it up. I saw him put his head into his hands and just shake his head. Really felt bad for him, but this is why I ALWAYS do a pull test before taking off.
I've seen many times where someone tries to hook up......too quickly or in the rain.

They miss the groove of the hitch and the pin falls in front of the hitch plate with a click and jolt. This feels like you're hitched but you're not. As soon as you make your first turn (I've seen trailers hang on for several miles), you loose the trailer. The one way to prevent this from happening is by visually inspecting the pin and latch.
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Old 10-25-2015, 01:03 PM   #17
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What is a pull test and how do you do it? Thanks
A pull test is used determine if your fiver is properly hooked up and ready to pull. Hook it up as you normally would. Raise all of the jacks except only raise the front jacks just barely off the ground. With the trailer brakes manually held on pull the truck forward a few inches. If hooked up correctly nothing will happen. If not hooked up correctly, the trailer will become unhooked and can only fall down a short distance and not damage the bed rails on the truck.


One thing I have done is paint the latch that closes on the pin a bright color so I can see it. Part of our hookup routine is for both of us to see if the latch is closed on the pin and that it is not high hitched.
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Old 10-25-2015, 04:41 PM   #18
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Here comes that pull test again... I did it for years with electric landing gear where I could put both the landing gear pads about 1-2" off the ground, but...

at least my leveling system is incapable of doing that. It raises the street side leg all the way up, then raises the curb side. No way of setting the two landing gears at a few inches up. Pull tests are a thing of the past for me, as I don't have anyway of doing it, and I'm not going to put side stress on the landing gear by trying to do it with the gear down supporting weight.

If you guys have successfully done it, I would be curious how you do it, because I don't see how it can be done.
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Old 10-25-2015, 08:00 PM   #19
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Roll the rig forward slowly and then apply the trailer brakes. This will tell you 2 important things

#1 are the trailer brakes working
#2 is the pin locked

I have also used the trailer brakes for unhooking the trailer if the pin gets bound due to uneven ground. But be careful
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Old 10-25-2015, 08:32 PM   #20
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I agree AA. I too don't do a pull test now that I have the leveling system. I just make sure the pin latch is closed. However, don't think, as Dave is suggesting, that it would hurt to take most of the weight off the front jacks and do a little pull on the fiver.
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