Tips, Tricks, And Techniques For Rookie Drivers

Topic 16099 | Page 8

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Big Scott's Comment
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What are some of the things you learned on your own or needed to know that no one told you before you went solo? I thought we could use this thread to educate newbies ;)

What to do when you jump the fifth wheel ---

If thw landing gear is too high and you back under the trailer, the kingpin then gets "stuck" between the skid plate and the cab.

Easy fix. Drop the airbags, and place a hammer under the lower end of the skid plate. This will raise one end and flatten it. Then drive out from under trailer.

Instead of a hammer use something crushable like an empty soda can or water bottle. That way if you aren't quite high enough when you pull out, you won't damage the king pin, you'll crush the can.

Eric G.'s Comment
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Wow thanks. I was wondering why I have been so crooked.

When I'm backing into a spot, if I am straight, out of my driver's side mirror (the flat one) the back of my trailer will look closer to the line than the front of my trailer does. Out of my passenger side mirror (again, the flat one), if I'm straight the side of the trailer will appear parallel with the line.

Eric G.'s Comment
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Awesome!!!

To check any leaf spring for cracks, tap it with a hammer (not a tire thump, but a tap!). A good spring will ring, a broken one will buzz or go "thunk".

This goes for brake drums, too. But the brakes cannot be applied for this to work, so use it on the front wheels.

Eric G.'s Comment
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Wish I knew that. I've been buying them out here in the road. I have had to replace three in my first month.

double-quotes-start.png

Glad hand seals come in 2 types....one lip and double lip. I bought the singles and they just fell out.

The also come in rubber or plastic which can differ on life expectancy

double-quotes-end.png

Most companies parts departments (including Prime's) will give you a bag full of glad hand seals for free. No need to buy them.

Big Scott's Comment
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Tandem sliding tips: If you can see how far back freight is loaded to, put the center of your tandems at the end of the frieght. If you have 250 pound holes start in hole number 8. If you have 400 pound holes start in hole number 6. If you have the kind where you have to pull the lever up to release the pins, put two bungee straps from the trailer ribs and under the handle. Now rock the truck and trailer until the lever pulls up. Then easily raise it the rest of the way. I have also used a ratchet strap to do the same thing. Get a piece of black or galvanized pipe that has a 2" ID and is about 2 feet long. That can also help with a stuck handle.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Team 1 Trucker's Comment
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Thanks to everyone here for the help with getting newbies (or wannabees) started out on the right track. I'm considering training schools now... pretty much decided on TDI (Oxford, AL) but still open to others and company sponsored training. Any thoughts on company paid vs self paid welcome. Again thanks to everyone here and especially Brett for creating this AWESOME site.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Tim H.'s Comment
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I cut out the pages of the US map in the front of my old atlas and taped them together to make trip planning a little easier.

Jason R.'s Comment
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Sometimes even though I am already scaled out I have to slide tandems to rear to get into a tight spot between other trailers, I mark off where I slid them from in order to slide them back to where they were.

Also ice melt and salt in the winter, the ice melt will melt the ice and snow then salt down for traction. Also rainy made a good point windex on the tires, that is one I will stick in the roledex for future use.

Errol I wish you would have said don't put the chock under but leave a gap 3yrs ago, I had to learn the hard way and roll over the top of it destroying the chock

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Jason R.'s Comment
member avatar

Forgot something, it doesn't matter how many times you get out and look or pull forward or how slow you back up, as long as you don't hit anything is all that matters. People who have 30yrs experience still have their moments when for some reason or another its hard for them to back up into an easy spot. People especially in truck stops will laugh to themselves and make more fun of ya if you hit something rather than take your time and do it right. I don't pay any attention to what people are saying on the CB I take my time and do it right, and safely.

Unholychaos's Comment
member avatar

Play around with your Jake brakes when you can safely do so. By knowing exactly how much stopping power the Jakes have, you can effectively save your break lining by using your jakes to slow you down instead of the service break. Just be careful when going down a steep grade and NEVER use the Jakes in slick conditions.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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