Tips for backing

SLW

Well-Known Member
I already asked this in the newbie thread and didn't get any response. Maybe because it's an embarrassing/stupid question, but I want to get better so I don't care.

Does anyone have any tips for backing, especially in a crowded center? I *really* suck at this, probably because I never even back my personal car, although I've started to do that for practice, and I never got any training on it. Easily the most stressful part of my day.

Any help appreciated, both by me and all the drivers stuck behind me. Thanks
 

Yeet

Inbound, turnaround, go to town
I already asked this in the newbie thread and didn't get any response. Maybe because it's an embarrassing/stupid question, but I want to get better so I don't care.

Does anyone have any tips for backing, especially in a crowded center? I *really* suck at this, probably because I never even back my personal car, although I've started to do that for practice, and I never got any training on it. Easily the most stressful part of my day.

Any help appreciated, both by me and all the drivers stuck behind me. Thanks
Package or feeder?
 

Whither

Scofflaw
I already asked this in the newbie thread and didn't get any response. Maybe because it's an embarrassing/stupid question, but I want to get better so I don't care.

Does anyone have any tips for backing, especially in a crowded center? I *really* suck at this, probably because I never even back my personal car, although I've started to do that for practice, and I never got any training on it. Easily the most stressful part of my day.

Any help appreciated, both by me and all the drivers stuck behind me. Thanks
Definitely find a good spotter until you get comfortable. Heck, have a sup show you while you ride in the jump seat or just ask another driver if you can jump while they leave the building. It's easier to demonstrate or draw a diagram than verbally explain, but let's say the next pkg car is a few inches to your left.

Pull out straight (but watch that your tucked mirror bracket doesn't clip your neighbors!). Extend driver's side mirror bracket. From here you're making a semi-circle maneuver to create space for your back. Feather the wheel slightly to the right (watch your tail swing like a hawk!) then back to the left as you approach the line of PCs opposite. Get as close as possible to the opposite PC's bumper.

Cut your wheel as hard as possible to the right, back, and begin cutting your wheel hard to the left once you get close to your neighbor's hood. Continue backing at an angle -- but don't get too close to your neighbor(!) because you have to repeat the same steps and don't want your tail swing to sideswipe your neighbor as you pull to the right to complete the next semi-circle. Usually doing the whole process 3 times gives enough space to clear both your tail swing and front bumper. But it all depends, of course.

And obviously, if the next PC is on your right, the directions are reversed.
 

Whither

Scofflaw
FWIW: I'd guess we all were stressed out leaving the building (or parking on the belt at night -- which is often trickier yet!) until we got used to it. The '4 foot rule' is tossed out the window in the building. Mgmt would throw a fit if we intentionally put ourselves in a position on area where we had to perform such tricky maneuvers. Nevertheless, you might yourself forced to use the same maneuvers on route, e.g., delivery at the end of a mile long, narrow dead-end street with no cul-de-sac.
 
I already asked this in the newbie thread and didn't get any response. Maybe because it's an embarrassing/stupid question, but I want to get better so I don't care.

Does anyone have any tips for backing, especially in a crowded center? I *really* suck at this, probably because I never even back my personal car, although I've started to do that for practice, and I never got any training on it. Easily the most stressful part of my day.

Any help appreciated, both by me and all the drivers stuck behind me. Thanks
Use your mirrors
 

Netsua 3:16

Stop being a little bitch
Shouldn’t ever back when you first start, avoid it like the plague. Learning p5 routes gave me the confidence and awareness to back properly. Takes time. Go as slow as literally possible when you do back and honk that horn. If you are in a driveway with stationaries get the f outta there. Walk everything until you are totally confident and comfortable backing especially in one of the bigger trucks.
 

DriverNerd

Well-Known Member
If you want tips for backing in the building I'm going to tell you exactly what the car washer told me when I was struggling. You need to know your pivot point and where your bumper is "actually" on the camera. First pivot point; as discussed above by Wither, it's where your vehicle "pivots" aka the point when the area behind the rear wheel starts moving toward the truck next to you and the are ahead of the rear wheel which starts moving away from the truck next to you. I didn't explain well, Wither did better, but pivot point is crucial is looking like an amazing backer in tight spaces. You don't crank your wheel until the rear tires are even with the other trucks bumper.

As for your camera. UPS package cars only have a few different types of rear view monitors. If you have the same truck everyday, learn exactly where the truck is next to you on the screen. Some monitors/cameras are very fish-eye-lens and when it looks like you're going to hit the truck next to you, you still have 3 feet. When the car washer showed me on the screen where my bumper really was (in relation to the next truck) I could get much closer and that made readjusting happen much less.

Oh yeah, don't get cocky. Use a spotter if you're ever unsure.
 

Whither

Scofflaw
Thanks for your help! This is actually the part that I was talking about. Haven't had any issues getting out in the AM (yet)
It can be a nail-biter when you're in a P1000 or 1200, especially since your building is probably as dimly-lit as mine. Convex mirrors are our best friends, but you need some light to put em to good use.

Adding to the excellent post of @DriverNerd - if you're leery, get out and size it up before committing. If you're just as leery afterward, and no drivers are around to spot you, take the time to find a car washer. Sometimes they're getting ready to move a pkg car that will make your back ten times easier, and usually they're happy to help, spot you, give advice. Let the sups complain about your 'Inside PM' time. They're rarely around to offer 'help' later in the evening anyway. And they won't have a leg to stand on when you explain that you were doing what was necessary to prevent an accident.

You'll get a feel for the pivot point the more you drive. The reason you don't want to cut the wheel into a back any sooner than necessary is, gotta make sure you don't rip off your front bumper (against the row of pkg cars opposite) while not striking the pkg cars behind/beside you. Or get yourself stuck in an impossible position with only a couple inches of clearance ahead of and behind your pkg car!

Just wait til they give you the keys to a bulk van (the enormous box trucks), haha. Luckily they don't have us park those in the building.
 

Mycow

Well-Known Member
Go rent a uhaul for the day and practice. They drive different but atleast get some confidence backing something bigger then a car, it help you to use mirrors before camera
 
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