OB Approved Following Your Spotter’s Signals

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4xFar Adventures

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Following Your Spotter’s Signals


A good spotter will use both hands (not thumbs only) to give directions. This allows multiple commands to be issued at the same time, i.e. turn right slowly, or stop but turn wheels left. Another best practice is to avoid using the terms 'left' and 'right'. Left for the spotter is right for the driver. To avoid any confusion use the terms 'driver' and 'passenger'. A pair of brightly colored gloves (or contrasting colors) makes it easier to follow signals.

Here's a link to my YouTube channel playlist for Spotting. Please subscribe if you like the videos.


Turn - Point hand in direction to steer, palms face driver


Straighten Wheels - Spotter's palms face each other, about 1 foot apart


Stop - Closed fists, shake if REALLY need to stop


Reverse - Point index fingers to back of truck


Maintain speed - Calmly wave hands toward spotter


More speed - Wave more aggressively


Slow down - Pat hands down to indicate slow down (like doing pushups in air)


Beware of object - Point at the object, indicate which side of vehicle it's on


Climbing object - Slowly lift hand as vehicle climbs over rock


Over object - Swoop hand back down


Ledge - Indicate moderate ledge by stacking hands ~1 foot apart, more for bigger ledge


Contact - Close hands together as tire makes contact with ground


Distance - Tell driver distance to move, start with arms open and bring hands together as distance decreases, hands should be together when full distance has been covered


Clear - Once through the obstacle, or a or a tire has touched back on the ground, use an umpire's “safe” signal by swiping both hands away from you to the side
 
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Winterpeg

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This is my example of spotting. I'm the voice.... my wife is driving my FJ. She has not done any wheeling prior to this. I asked her to simply pull the FJ up to the bottom of this obstacle-ridden steep incline... and she pulled up and started driving up the incline, stating she will drive it up.
It was the most stressed I was that entire trip to Moab, lol. Keep in mind this is very steep, the video doesn't do it justice. At the point when I tell her to put it in low and go forward, she had asked me if she should go forward.... if she had gone backwards we would have been walking home due to the 50 ft drop behind her, lol.

Oh, and this trail is Kane Creek Canyon, Moab.



 
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Lars

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I think we should try to add some good "Locations For Spotters To Stand" photos.

A spotter directly in front of the driver will get lost if the truck climbs an obstacle because of the hood for instance. Usually standing off to the driver's side of the vehicle, well out of the way is a good place to start.

20160403095559-dba527af-me.jpg
 

w_m_photo

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All good advice. The one big thing that I'm afraid most will over look... is...
And props for mentioning it a little in the initial thread...
I'm Mentioning it again because I feel it is as important as the hand signals...
Exact communication is very important when spotting someone over something...

If you are the spotter, do not use words like left and right while speaking the driver... You as the spotter are going to be proned to use the opposite of what you mean for the driver's ears.
In example, if you are the spotter and you tell the driver to go to the right, they will go to their right. However, from your perspective, they will go to the left.
So, a very easy way to avoid this, as mentioned in the first thread,
is to not use the words left and right!
USE THE WORDS DRIVER SIDE AND PASSANGER SIDE.
It may take a little bit of time to get used to it. But, once you do, you will never have that mistake again.
And it will put the spotter and driver on the exact same page while speaking.
 
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4xFar Adventures

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All good advice. The one big thing that I'm afraid most will over look... is...
And props for mentioning it a little in the initial thread...
I'm Mentioning it again because I feel it is as important as the hand signals...
Exact communication is very important when spotting someone over something...

If you are the spotter, do not use words like left and right while speaking the driver... You as the spotter are going to be proned to use the opposite of what you mean for the driver's ears.
In example, if you are the spotter and you tell the driver to go to the right, they will go to their right. However, from your perspective, they will go to the left.
So, a very easy way to avoid this, as mentioned in the first thread,
is to not use the words left and right!
USE THE WORDS DRIVER SIDE AND PASSANGER SIDE.
It may take a little bit of time to get used to it. But, once you do, you will never have that mistake again.
And it will put the spotter and driver on the exact same page while speaking.
I've stopped using Driver and Passenger as well to denote which way to turn. There are too many times I've had a RHD vehicle in the group, and that gets confusing for all parties involved.
 

4xFar Adventures

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Thanks for catching that @Art! I have made a 4xFar Adventures YT channel. The link is pointing to my personal one. I'll get that updated today.
 
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4xFar Adventures

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For the most part I don't talk unless it's a one on one with the driver. Hand signals should be all that's needed after you go over the line with the driver.