Immoveable Object Meet Moveable Object
I’ve spent a lot of time on different RV forums reading and learning about RV’s. Before we ever even decided to go full time we at least wanted a trailer for camping and trips so RV research has been on my radar for years. I noticed one frequent issue that people with 5th wheels posted about that made me scratch my head and say “How could they do something so stupid, there is no excuse for that mistake.” Well after only 2.5 months on the road, I have changed my tune.
So here is my excuse. Before we even hit the road I was in physical therapy for some back issues. Recently they have popped back up and my back has been hurting me a fair bit. Move days strain it the most. Mainly the bending over to drop the jacks and things of that nature. I carry two milk crates in the back of my truck, one with a standard bbq propane tank and the other with my leveling ramps and other handy things that we use when setting up the RV. These can’t go into the back of the truck until the fifth wheel is hitched and must come out before unhitching. Unfortunately this means that I am bent over under the fifth wheel between the trailer and tailgate when lifting and that lifting while bent position just kills my back.
So being the clever (or so I thought) person I am, I found a better way. I squat down between the truck and the trailer and lift the crates straight over my head onto the tailgate without standing up. My back remains straight and my arms do all the work. This plan works well…..or so I thought.
So we arrive at the latest campground and for whatever reason we do things out of our normal order. I am ready to pull the truck away when I notice the crates are still in the bed of the truck and I need to pull those out before I pull away. So I slide between the truck and the trailer and remove the crates in my new squatted down position. One problem though, it is hard for me to stand up, so I push the tailgate up and am able to walk right out.
In my rush I forget one critical step – to put the tailgate back DOWN. I jump in the truck and pull away. Moveable object (tailgate) meet immovable object (5th wheel hitch attached to 16k lb fifth wheel) and BAM there is an explosion from the back of my truck. The latched tail gate goes flying down as if some giant hand from the sky slammed it open, plastic pieces of the handle fly into the air.
Upon inspection the latches on the tailgate are twisted and contorted ever which way. They will never latch around the catch again. The once straight tailgate now resembles a taco.
There is no hope – off to the junk yard it goes.
There is a bright side though….I now get to purchase one of those really cool, louvered 5th wheel tailgates. In fact now that I think of it maybe all those guys on the forums that do this aren’t idiots they just can’t get their wife to approve the new tailgate purchase while they still have a perfectly functional one.
I feel more and more like a full time RVer everyday!
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