Flatbed Variety

Topic 4373 | Page 4

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guyjax(Guy Hodges)'s Comment
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Good to know, Starcar. Flatbed seems intriguing . . . but I tend to bite off more than I can comfortably chew. As you mentioned, it's probably a good plan to drive dry van / reefer for a year, and then consider switching if flatbed still has appeal. From what I've read, there will be plenty of challenges in the first year without the added issues of securing a load!

That is exactly what I would recommend. Different types of freight will always be there so there is no rush. Take your time and learn to get comfortable with driving then think about other freight at that time.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

mountain girl's Comment
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The dog toy is a long ( about 2 feet) piece of plastic cording ( heavy) with a ball attached to each end, I'd take one ball off, slide the cord thru the middle of my coiled strap, re attach the ball, turn my back to the trailer, grab each ball and toss that thing over my head and back. Sailed over the load like It had wings. Since in flatbedding you usually hook your first strap on one side, your next strap on the other side, I never had to go "fetch" the toy...it was already there for me to use again. I used it on loads that were over 12 foot or so. anything under that I could sling over one handed..You get good at that full arm/body strap sling maneuver.... ALSO....a strap winder is a necessity....it hooks on your rub rail, and you just turn the handle and wind up your straps...perfect every time, and ALOT faster. I also used one of those long handled 5th wheel pullers with the hooked end, that also had the straight prong on the end. Great for reaching up to hook a bungee high, or straighten out a tarp flap, etc. Theres tricks for every different trucking trade...and more if you are a lady driver. Lacking upper body strength lets you get creative.

-Starcar

Great stuff to know, Starcar! Outstanding! If you have the time, sometime, you should start a thread on tricks of the trade for skateboarders. Thanks!

-mountain girl

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Pat M.'s Comment
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You mean things like NEVER use your cheater bar to unlock snap binders? You can if you like to launch solid steel bars into the air.

Joanna 's Comment
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I was about 50 when we changed to skateboard...and I can throw straps with the best of them...but I cheat, and use a dog toy to get'em over the tall loads....its a trick another lady flatbedder showed me...And in the years I did flatbedding, I have never thrown a chain over a load. we used a strap, threw it over, then hooked the chain to it and drug the chain back over. And to get chains in and thru some stuff, we use a "chain weasel"...nifty thing a friend of ours came up with...works perfect. But we also have a husband/wife who flatbed, and they run their own trucks. She weighs in at an amazing 97 pounds, and about 5 foot and a smidgin'. So don't let size, or age, or anything else scare you out. Get some experience OTR pullin' a box trailer. Then if skatebaordin' is still callin' to you...give it a try. If you don't like it....change back. And for the record...I have been to ALOT of load sights with dozens of fellow flatbed drivers. I didn't see ONE knuckle dragger there. I have always been treated with respect as a fellow driver. Sure, they will sneak a peek when they see me throw my straps with a dog toy...but wht the heck, it works !!! And when I made a ladder to crawl up the sides of the truck to hook bungees on high hooks, my hubby boo hooed it...but then he saw other drivers come over and borrow it...Invision a big tough trucker...hooking a HOT PINK 5 foot ladder to his rub rail so he can get up to reach his D rings with bungees.....I think that anyone who wants to work in a particular area of trucking should give it a try. But I also believe that if you can't do the job as well as anyone else, and you are always asking for help, you need to go do something else.....

Hello, Starcar, so nice to finally hear from a lady flat-bedder! Love the pink ladder story, that's hilarious hee hee. Lots of great info here. I agree with MG, if you ever have the time to start a diary like OS and Daniel B have done it would be a great read. I think I will do what you suggest. I'll probably start pulling dry van to get back into the swing of things and then switch over to flatbed later if I still want to at that point. I definitely think I can handle it though. It's all about having the right tools for the job and being creative, like you said. Thanks for all the great advice.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Chris L.'s Comment
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I use the sling shot method to get the straps over the tall loads, at least that's what I think it's called. Loosen the strap till your holding it kinda like a yo-yo and you can fling it over with little effort. Was taught this trick in the Securement class at Prime.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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I use the sling shot method to get the straps over the tall loads, at least that's what I think it's called. Loosen the strap till your holding it kinda like a yo-yo and you can fling it over with little effort. Was taught this trick in the Securement class at Prime.

I owned a tree service for a couple of years and we had the coolest sling shot. We used it to set lines waaaaaay up in the tree. The higher you could get them, the better for climbing. So we would shoot small bean bags attached to a light string 80+ feet up into the high branches. I mean, that beanbag shot up like a rocket ship!

media.nl?id=7294&c=839638&h=8da4b805d0f3

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Pat M.'s Comment
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The last few days have been really busy with everything including work.

Monday hauled a belly dump then yesterday I hauled lumber and went right back to the same pickup location to get a load of prefab floor trussses. Delivered those today and did not get any photos of the loads with the exception of the one that I picked up after dropping the floor trusses.

flatbed loaded with old truck tires

Even old tires need to be hauled away. I have hauled a lot of tires and thus the reason for 2 straps. If anyone has hauled tires they know that tired do move and bounce and flex... Well at least the ones smaller than these. This was my first time hauling tires of this size so after putting on the first strap, which is enough for the weight of the tires, I got up on the trailer and pushed on the stack and it wiggled a little (not side to side but front to back). Mind you the straps were playing like a banjo string but I still did not like the wiggle so I added the second strap.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Starcar's Comment
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You can never have TO MUCH securement.....

Pat M.'s Comment
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Yeah, the time to throw that last strap is before the load comes off. Piece of mind for you when you are driving is priceless.

SCPO DRAGO's Comment
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About to finish cdl a training. I heard flatbed maybe more work but the money is much better. I dont mind hard work and being 6'2" should allow me to skip the pink ladder. Lol. Great site. Really helping me train and make educated decisions. Thanks.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
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