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Good solutions for lining up the X in a narrow garage door opening

Discussion in 'Model X' started by sc123, Oct 4, 2016.

  1. sc123

    sc123 Member

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    I've had my X for a little over a week now. I have a ~92" - 93.5" garage door opening (depending on whether you count the weather stripping flap), and it's definitely tight pulling it in and out. If I don't fold the mirrors, I *might* be able to barely squeeze in, but I always fold them to be safe. The car always yells at me to "STOP" as I'm pulling in or out based on the distance sensors I assume, so I can't use the side distance measurements on the dash. Conveniently once I get inside I've got good clearance on the sides and above, so I can open all the doors (yay!).

    I'm trying to come up with a good solution to make it easy to tell if I'm centered when I drive in. The slope of the front of the car makes it almost impossible to tell as I'm starting to drive in whether the front panels have enough clearance to the door opening because I can't see much unless I really sit up / lean forward. So far I've been fine, and careful, but it's tight enough that I'd love to have some better way to know that I'm lined up before the impact (that would happen if I'm not). Plus my wife won't even attempt it - can't blame her.

    I had an old convex mirror that I put on the wall to try to get a view when I pull in, but it's really too far away to see well when I'm pulling in. Some thoughts I had were:

    1) find a way to put one those ceiling mounted lasers in a place where it will hit something visible *before* I enter the garage.

    2) paint some lines on the garage floor, and come up with a way that I can see them relative to my tires as I'm pulling in (maybe a closer mirror)

    Any other ideas? This has got to be a solved problem (and it's obviously not Tesla-specific)

    I haven't tried summon yet, partly because I've got flaky wifi, and I'm too chicken to let that loose until I'm confident the network connection to the car is stable.

    Thanks in advance...
     
  2. systemcrashed

    systemcrashed Please Reboot

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    Fasten rubber bumper strips on the floor of the garage set the distance between them = (width of you car + tolerance before hitting something), this way you can get feedback as to how centered you are when you are pulling all the way in.
     
  3. jonman

    jonman Member

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    painting lines or taping lines on your garage might not be a bad idea especially if you can line them up perfectly with the lines in the backup camera. this is what i plan on doing in my garage once we move in this weekend.

    whatever solution i come up with i will post some pics of it
     
  4. sc123

    sc123 Member

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    Good feedback. Any suggestions on specific rubber bumper strips to get? Trying to visualize how big they would be, how they mount to the ground, etc

    I should also clarify that I pull in forwards into the garage (i.e. I don't back in), so if I painted something on the ground I still need a way to see it / line it up with the front tires...
     
  5. McRat

    McRat Active Member

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    When we change a car in a garage stall, I position the car where I want it. Now I get a string and a small stuffed animal and attach it to the ceiling so it hangs down and touches the windshield at the top of the steering wheel. If you have short arms, move it one foot outboard, back the car out, then move it 1 foot inboard.

    So as you pull into the bay, line up the beanie baby with the steering wheel, then stop when it moves.

    This keeps the floor clear, no tripping, or trouble rolling things, and the stuffed animal will not hurt someone if they walk into it. And it's cheap and easy and adjustable.
     
    • Like x 1
  6. sc123

    sc123 Member

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    I can see how the "hanging object" approach would work well for telling me when to stop, but it seems like I would have a hard time eye-balling the alignment of the steering wheel and something hanging 15 feet or so in front of me....
     
  7. mspohr

    mspohr Active Member

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  8. McRat

    McRat Active Member

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    #8 McRat, Oct 4, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2016
    It amounts to being able to walk into another person. Can you put your body where another human is standing? If so, you will have no problem hitting your head into a stuffed animal.

    It's not hard IMO, but I've been doing it for years. Other people use tennis balls, but they aren't as cute as hanging a mascot for the task. Like the last car was Satan, so I found a little stuffed devil. One was the Ratmobile, so a little rat. Another was Casper, so a friendly ghost. Spooky just reused the ghost.

    EDIT - you probably already know this, but if you know a vehicle or trailer will fit though an opening for a fact, you only need to see one side. Get that side close, and don't sweat the other. I fold the passenger mirror on the trucks, then get the driver's mirror 2" from the garage opening. The far side will take care of itself.
     
  9. thimel

    thimel Member

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    If you back into the garage, you can use the side mirrors to center yourself in the opening.
     
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  10. sc123

    sc123 Member

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    I suspect we're not talking about the same thing. Basically I'm looking for a way to determine whether the car is centered (or at least safely from either side) before any part of it enters the garage at all. Trying to avoid fender rash. By the time I'm anywhere near anything hanging, it's way too late for that. Unless you hang it out from something suspended 5-6 feet out from the garage :). Or maybe I'm just not getting what you're describing...

    Seems like if I can get a laser to point out at some reference point in the car that will give me that alignment early enough that might be the best bet. I've used one of those before, but it was more for once I was mostly in the garage....
     
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  11. patrick40363

    patrick40363 Member

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    I have always used a tennis ball on a string hanging from the ceiling. It lines up with the speedo in my S so I know when I am lined up right. I had this set up for my last car and when the ball hit the windshield I was good. It just happened to line up in my S perfectly.
     
  12. habanero69

    habanero69 I Dont Need Cialis. I Drive an EV.

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    I think most are missing your issue too. You need guidance BEFORE you enter any portion of the garage. I sort of have the same issue. So far I use the left mirror (folded in) to guide me close(st) to the left side of garage. I know that part of car is already inside at that point, but it works well enough for now. I'm still looking for a better way.
     
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  13. sc123

    sc123 Member

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    You got it. I'm doing the same thing you are ... it's just with the slope of the X, it's almost impossible to see that I'm OK until it's too late. So far I've been fine, but I'd like to have something with more positive feedback, and something that would make my wife feel comfortable pulling it in. Otherwise I'm out there turning it around (because she backs it up to the garage door so the charger cord will reach), and then pulling it in myself when she drives it...
     
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  14. habanero69

    habanero69 I Dont Need Cialis. I Drive an EV.

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    AND, I've tried summon and it wont. Thinks it's too close to everything and ding's and dong's but doesn't move an inch. Disappointing. I thought that would have made pulling in the garage easy...nope. :(
     
  15. sc123

    sc123 Member

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    Yeah, I haven't tried it yet, but I suspect that since it yells at me to "STOP" on the dash when I pull in or out that it won't summon for me either.

    Maybe we need to look into getting garage door side panels made of stealth radar absorbent material .... :)
     
  16. Craiggow

    Craiggow Member

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  17. systemcrashed

    systemcrashed Please Reboot

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    You could use two of these along side the parking slip.This site has an assortment of shapes. You don't want it to be too high (tripping hazard) or too low that you wouldn't feel it while driving over it. they look like they are fastened by screws, maybe you can use a strong adhesive as well.

    Guardian Modular Rubber Speed Bump 6G�� x 1G�� | DH-SP-26M
     
  18. RichardL

    RichardL Member

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    Something like this is what I was thinking - aircraft use a very similar system for lining up at gates in many airports - you can easily tell if you are to the right or left of the optimum as well, and it should work from well outside the garage
     
  19. sc123

    sc123 Member

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    This is a great idea - it needs to be integrated with a heads-up display!
     
  20. LuckyX

    LuckyX Stormtrooper X60D, Autopilot, and Hitch

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    We have an epoxied garage floor which I taped with 1" width blue painters tape. I've lined it up where once my wife drives her car into the garage and the driver side tire is on left of the blue tape I won't have room to get my X in without hitting her side mirror. She sticks her head out of the window to line it up but overall it's worked so far.

    This may work for your fit as well.

    Interested to see what you go with.
     

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