Schneider Bulk - Leaving For Training Today!

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ThinksTooMuch's Comment
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Day 5

Pre-tripped tractor and trailer. Tractor's brakelight bracket fell off and trailer had a broken marker light. I noted this to the instructor and we took them to the garage to have the mechanics fix them. The instructor told me it is real important to treat the mechanics with respect because I will come to rely on them.

Drove with an air ride suspension trailer. It had more surge than anything I have pulled so far, but got use to it. We drove some highway and some very hilly country roads.

On a bad note I regressed in my shifting today... I have no idea what was wrong with me, I got enough sleep, I had breakfast, everything was fine. But for some reason my shifting was horrible, I even forgot to double clutch a few times. I felt embarrassed in front of my instructor especially after he told me yesterday that I was doing above average. And it wasn't even the surge! I missed the slot for 7th 2 or 3 times, I didn't double clutch probably a dozen times, and other stuff I can't even remember.

Just one of those days I guess. I didn't stall or hit anything but I just felt terrible.

This afternoon we did trip-planning in the classroom. Did a few examples with the instructor then got some homework to do on our own.

Double Clutch:

To engage and then disengage the clutch twice for every gear change.

When double clutching you will push in the clutch, take the gearshift out of gear, release the clutch, press the clutch in again, shift the gearshift into the next gear, then release the clutch.

This is done on standard transmissions which do not have synchronizers in them, like those found in almost all Class A trucks.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Starcar's Comment
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Thinks...I've said it before...and I'll say it..There are STILL days that I wake up, and get in that drivers seat..and you'd think it was my first time behind the wheel...And you will have days like that too, now and then. shrug it off, BREATHE, settle your mind and nerves, and do what you know you can do.....And btw...I've got more than 15 years driving experience. So those days that you can't do crap will always pop up now and then...

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
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On a bad note I regressed in my shifting today... I have no idea what was wrong with me, I got enough sleep, I had breakfast, everything was fine. But for some reason my shifting was horrible

Yeah, Starcar is right - it happens to every driver on the planet regardless of experience. You just get those days where for some reason you can't do anything right. Don't think anything of it. It doesn't mean a thing. Just forget it like it never happened.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
ThinksTooMuch's Comment
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Day 6

It is associate appreciation week at Schneider. It happens once a year, when the DOT blitz happens. We got a nice catered buffet lunch and a lady executive come visit the OC today. Other than that I had a nice day driving, much better than yesterday. We got in the tractor, coupled and pre-tripped a 4 compartment tanker and drove to Pilot to fuel up. Was about a 90 minute rountrip. Then we went on some country hilly roads, I did a lot better downshifting going uphill. There was a few times 7th got away from me but I recovered fairly fast.

In the afternoon we found out 1 student was asked to leave because of his attitude. We all knew it was coming, they gave him a few chances but he blew it. There are 10 of us left now and we will all make it. In the classroom we did more trip planning, it just got more and more complex, 1 student was sort of confused about it but the instructor took time to go over every step with all of us.

I forgot to mention in my earlier posts that Schneider Bulk gives us these study guides for pre-trip, couple/uncouple, in-cab air brakes test, and everything else. The papers are very good. They lay everything out exactly the way Schneider wants it done step by step. I use them every morning to pre-trip and couple, then in the afternoon to post-trip and uncouple. The instructors encourage we use them, they are laminated and we can get more if we lose ours.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

malek's Comment
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Your updates are great. Even after being in trucking for 15 years I'm still curious how they run these training programs, especially a bulk tanker program. So I know people who are considering a career in trucking must be loving the updates!

double-quotes-start.png

backing (even straight backing) is a lot harder in a tanker than a dry van! No nice big box in my mirrors to judge distance and angle lol.

double-quotes-end.png

If you adjust your mirrors so that you can see the same amount of trailer in the mirror on both sides when the truck is straight, it shouldn't be any different than a dry van. Once you see more trailer in one mirror than the other, you know you're not straight anymore. I realize in training you may not have the time (or it may not be practical) to adjust the mirrors all the time if you're switching trucks and trailers all the time, but once you get your own truck it will be easier.

Also, here's a tip about something that can throw you off. Not all trailers track straight. The alignment can be off and the trailer will be skewed to one side or the other instead of being straight behind you. That can drive you nuts if you have your mirrors adjusted properly and suddenly you're pulling a trailer that doesn't ride straight behind you. You go to do a setup for a straight back and you think the trailer should be straight behind you, but it isn't. It's skewed a bit so when you begin backing it's going to push off to one side right away.

That's a good thing to know. I thought I was "crazy" thinking that there was something off about a few trailers that I learned my backing techniques with. It seems like no matter what I did to straighten up, it always kicked to one side immediately while backing up.

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.
malek's Comment
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What does SLOW manuevering mean?

Brett Aquila's Comment
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In the afternoon we found out 1 student was asked to leave because of his attitude. We all knew it was coming, they gave him a few chances but he blew it.

It's amazing when you see that happen, isn't it? I've always known that people will be skeptical at first when they hear me constantly stressing attitude. I know that's especially true when people are searching for a "good company" to work for and I tell them that any company can be a good company to work for if you're a hard work, safe, reliable driver with a great attitude. But everyone reads all of these horror stories on other websites about every trucking company out there and they don't understand that these people aren't being scammed or abused - they're the ones screwing things up for themselves. I'll bet you anything that the driver they sent home is already at TheTruckersReport telling everyone to stay away from Schneider because they're a "bad company".

Thanks a ton for sharing that with us. It's great when people can report from training just how important attitude is and just how quickly a bad one will ruin your career.

I forgot to mention in my earlier posts that Schneider Bulk gives us these study guides for pre-trip, couple/uncouple, in-cab air brakes test, and everything else. The papers are very good. They lay everything out exactly the way Schneider wants it done step by step. I use them every morning to pre-trip and couple, then in the afternoon to post-trip and uncouple. The instructors encourage we use them, they are laminated and we can get more if we lose ours.

Hey, I'm not joking about this - is there any way I can get my hands on a copy of those???? I would love to be able to use that on the site to help people understand how that stuff is done. And anyone going to Schneider would have a huge head start if they could study that stuff ahead of time. Do they have a version online that you know of? I don't care how I get em, but I want em! I can probably even add them to the High Road Training Programsmile.gif

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
ThinksTooMuch's Comment
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Day 7

Nothing new today. Drove about 1 hour in the morning in town, practiced doing tight turns. Then went to the OC to practice alley docking and slow maneuvering. Instructor had some barrels and cones I had to maneuver around, then we set up for the alley docking. I got better at it today, not perfect but improved on alley docking. Huge thing for me was to control the speed in reverse... these working trucks move in reverse a lot faster than our school trucks. Can't sit on the clutch, just had to keep my foot on the service brake.

In the afternoon we did some stuff about equipment. Hoses, valves, and so on. And then more trip planning.

What does SLOW manuevering mean?

That is just what it says. Moving slowly (around 5 mph) in the yard. Avoiding hitting cones, barrels, trailers, people, and anything else the instructor says shouldn't be hit. Sometimes it is quite hard because you have to go around something on the left side but then pretty quickly swing right to avoid your next obstacle. Like the instructors say "always set up for your next move, or next 2 moves if you can." That still applies even if you are going only 5 mph.

Hey, I'm not joking about this - is there any way I can get my hands on a copy of those????

Brett I will try to scan mine and send them to you. I do not have access to a scanner right now, so give me about 2-3 weeks when I get home after training. I think they will definitely help people.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
Brett I will try to scan mine and send them to you. I do not have access to a scanner right now, so give me about 2-3 weeks when I get home after training. I think they will definitely help people.

That would be awesome! Or have someone "lose" theirs and mail em to me. If there are a pictures and diagrams and such, I need them to be good quality or I won't be able to use them on the site. Do you know if they have that stuff on any computer-based training modules? If they did I might get in touch with them and tell em to email them to me. Heck, I can have people that are going to Schneider learn them at home just like we're doing now preparing people for their CDL permit testing and the start of Truck Driving School with the High Road Training Program.

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.
ThinksTooMuch's Comment
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Actually I will ask them for another copy of everything today. They told us if we ever need another copy of anything we can always ask at any OC. The computer based training does not have these particular sheets. PM me an address and I will mail them to you when I get a chance.

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