Profile For Boots&Bludog

Boots&Bludog's Info

  • Location:
    Reno, NV

  • Driving Status:
    In CDL School

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    6 years, 1 month ago

Boots&Bludog's Bio

I have been surfing this website for a couple of weeks and have decided to take the plunge in both creating a profile on here and attending a local truck driving school starting 05/08/14. Bludog is my blue heeler I hope to have with me on the road. He loves a road trip as much as I do :-)

Thank you TT for being such a wealth of knowledge and support for all of us newbies.

Page 1 of 2

Next Page
Go To Page:    

Posted:  5 years, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

Wow so much has transpired since my last post. I had to keep a focus on school and wrangling up whatever odd jobs for income, hence letting such a time lapse in posting here. With that let me bring things up to date.

After two attempts passed at DMV on July 28th. Three's a charm!

Took time out to visit with ailing parents and get my house together for leaving OTR. During school had spoke with various recruiters local and OTR and had pretty much made my mind up to apply with Knight, May & Werner and in that order for preference. Once I found out who would get the bludog on board the soonest, the order changed to May, Werner & Knight. Then of course the care for the bludog whilst in training went and changed up on me. By this time I was 5th on the waiting list for May and wanting to hold out even though Werner was ready for me when I was ready for them. Knight ....well let's just say they were no longer in the running on my list. It took almost two weeks to progress from 5th to 4th and at that rate I was feeling impatient to get the show on the road. So I recalled yet another company that I had met a trainer briefly months prior to passing at DMV. We had gone so far as to exchange phone #'s and he was introduced to me by the owner of the school I was attending. Of course this came to me in the middle of a sleepless night so I got on the laptop and applied and followed up with a simple text message to trainer. Woke up the next morning to a very early call from a recruiter telling me the trainer had already been in the office and set everything up for me to train in a week and a half. That was four days ago. Yesterday around noon I got a call from May saying they were ready for me to be in Salem, OR. on this Tuesday! Now I was really unsure of what to do. I had really devoted myself to May in my head but when I really thought about it my gut said go with the trainer that set everything up already. I made a call to the owner of the school and he helped put things into perspective and confirm I was on the right track with my thoughts. At this time I know the trainer I had met has been at training for a very long time. He has a proven track record not only with his current company but also with the school I had attended. With me being a complete newbie I figure the top priority should be in the training. So called May to thank them for working with me so far but I had found another company that I will be going with. And yes I had also called Werner with the same thanks. Now it gets better. Today I got a call from my trainer and he is routed through Reno so he will be able to pick me up and deliver me to SLC for orientation! See ya Greyhound! Although if I wanted I could have taken Amtrack and been reimbursed the fare upon arrival in SLC. Greyhound to location is prepaid but train is not since Greyhound will refund the company for a no show where as the train will not. Tomorrow I meet with the trainer and departure is scheduled for Wednesday early morning. Now make no mistake I know I will have a lot of learning ahead of me and I fully mean to make the best of my training but I'm not going to feel bad about getting a few perks when they're available. And the company is....Pride Transport.

I am going to post what the pay start is for any that may want a comparison. Orientation and three weeks with the trainer is $450 per week. Forth week until trainer feels the student is ready to solo is driven as team and all "truck miles" are paid to student at 14 cpm. Truck miles mean pay is calculated by the miles the student drives as well as the miles the trainer drives. Recruiter claims team generally average 5000 a week. Roughly $700 a week. By no means is the student required to be team driving after training. Once solo the pay starts at 30 cpm.

To be honest I have not wanted to look further into the pay, mileage and all that. I just want to get on the road before the snow falls, get some miles under me and be the best I can be. I have a tendency to overthink and for me any money inbound this first year is a step up from the last couple of years.

And there you have it. From school to the first job. Took longer in school than I expected, not exactly bragging, lol, however it seems to have been perfect timing to get on with a trainer and company I feel confident with.

Posted:  5 years, 9 months ago

View Topic:

First time driving semi's - can't recall 'what the minimum & maximum rpm' for the truck engine? Is it 0-5000rpm?

Welcome Karen. I'm a complete newbie to the industry but what I've learned in the school that I've attended is that it will vary per type of truck. I mostly trained on double clutching. We were instructed the magic #'s for shifting were 10-1100 and 17-1900. A graduated student informed me that the truck he is in the #'s are lower. I think if I were asked the question I would say it depends on the truck.

If you don't hear another reply to this post I would recommend posting on the General Discussion forum as many more folks will see it and be likely to offer suggestions.

Posted:  5 years, 12 months ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

06/04/14 Passed all the endorsements I could and now have a CDL permit in my possession! I will not be able to afford Hazmat right now. I've been told that hazmat drivers usually require more experience than any of the others. No worries I can get it when I can afford it if need be.

After pre-trips I was able to go along in the only running truck out on the road. I have to say it was FUN to drive. I will need to get more familiar with the gears but overall the instructor had lots of compliments for my performance so far. Sure hope it isn't beginners luck.

Posted:  5 years, 12 months ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

DAY ? Too many and not enough. It's been a while since I've posted. First and foremost I am embarrassed that I have not progressed further along. I've missed many days being sick and taking on some side jobs to get some income for bills. The school is really struggling along with the failing equipment. This means barely any practice behind the wheel or any practice on the brake tests. Pre-trips are coming along nicely. In cab inspections are also. Still waiting on the updated eyewear to arrive....however I squeeked by taking the eye exam at DMV. Also I've passed the endorsements for Tankers, Doubles and Triples, Combinations and General Knowledge. Alas I have failed the Air Brakes. I'm confident I will pass the air brake next time.

Skills for me are still not consistent. One day I can nail them and the next I fail. I know in my heart it is practice that will make it happen. Currently we have one truck and it needs to either be at DMV or on the road for the students ready to take the test. This means very little practice for those of us that do not even have our permit yet. Hopefully by next week we will have another truck running and by that time I will have my permit.

I want to note that I really enjoy the school for the positive instructors and owner. I have to admit had I known that there was very little equipment for the amount of students I very likely would have signed up elsewhere. At this point instead of getting all worked up over it I am trusting in my lucky stars that there is a reason this is proceeding as such.

In the event anyone is reading this I apologize it is not terribly helpful on a regular basis.

Posted:  5 years, 12 months ago

View Topic:

Alley Dock Parking from the Left (just venting)

OK, I won't say "it's so simple." Because for some of us it is NOT. However I will say that at some point I will bet that it will come to you, the light will turn on with what you did correct that works for you and then you will be able to repeat it. Sometimes a break or deep breath do wonders and other times it is plain old persistence. I'm having the same trouble with most of the skills. I understand the concept but am really struggling with a difficult clutch, uneven ground and worst of all no time behind the wheel due to truck breakdowns. I know in my heart to not loose faith that it will come to me with practice and patience. You can do it Cole!

Boots

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Are you really sure that this is what you want?

Gee Redgator thanks for the favor! We or I should say I would not like to have someone behind the wheel of these tractor/trailors on the road with me that didn't have their heart in it. Soon you will have a whole pack of students trained by you under your belt and you will feel the pride of knowing they were trained right by you. I would be honored to be your student from what I've read from you on here. Keep up the good work and happy trails and training!

Boots

PS: If I were your student could we get our nails done together, hee hee JK.

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

The World of Readymix Trucking

Good morning!

OK, to start wow I am happy to hear you still have your fingers! Is it normal to pre-trip with the truck running? So far at school the truck is always off.

Hear in Reno, NV our cement trucks are seasonal as well. Usually I embrace seasonal coming from the horticulture industry. I've got a plethora of projects normally lined up for the winter months when the work hours are slim. However with the economy tanking and the wages with it I no longer find it financially feasible to continue in this field. So along comes the idea to get back into Logistics and this time as a driver.

My first inclination was to stay local with the rock hauling jobs. After talking with a few OTR drivers and gleaning on this site I think it would behoove me to get in that golden "year" I hear of. Staying with the same company and getting the experience that will lead to more opportunities for me is what I need. Seeing your post Debby reminds me of that first inclination and has given me a clearer picture of the physical side of what to expect. So far I think I could do it and like the being physical part but as a 5'2" lightweight I have to be realistic too.

As far as my so called "handicap" for the record that was mostly my fathers negative way of making a big deal out of something I've already addressed and conquered. For now I will keep it off the record publically but anyone who wants more details on that is welcome to PM me. Thank you Debby for the congrats on my success with the above. :-)

I really admire your spunk with your driving and employment record Debby. It is very reassuring to me to see all of the women drivers post on here and the support they offer to us newbies. Sometimes as a female of middle age I tend to have my doubts about my decision and then along comes the positive threads and I feel better. Thankfully the folks at my school are also very encouraging. As has been mentioned the possibilities are endless and I plan to keep an open mind for the decisions I will be making here soon.

I really congratulate your decision to stay local for your son and his father. Cancer really has a mind of it's own and for the survivors that support is everything. Also for the family of survivors support is everything. Never forget to take care of your feelings while going thru this as well Debby. You are a strong woman to have made the decision to stick around and deserve a whole bunch of kudos for it! :-)

Happy Memorial day/weekend, Boots

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

I made it THROUGH!!!! Whoo Hoo!!!!

Congrats! Yeah for another of us girls OTR!

Boots

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

The World of Readymix Trucking

Cheers Deb!

Thank you for the post. When I told my Dad about me getting my CDL for some reason he went OFF about not being able to handle driving a cement truck. He hammered me with questions about the equipment and pointed out how a previous surgery makes me "handicapped" for performing the duties. This was all before I explained that cement truck was one of many options for me once getting the CDL. I will take pleasure in being better informed if he brings it up again. At first I thought I would prefer the seasonal jobs you mentioned. Now upon considering my lack of experience and current financial needs I will probably go OTR with drybed or reefer. Thank you again for the lady point of view and thanks to Brett for providing the safe place for it!

Boots

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Question about being away for weeks at a time..

Hello Gary,

I also have a similar situation. My post office will hold mail for me and I can set the hold up online. Just enter the dates and even select if I want them to deliver on a certain day or go down and pick it up myself. Most of your utility companies now days will offer to bill you online if you pay online to help keep some of the clutter down.

This time of year it is imperative my landscape gets water and the lawn in front is mowed so as not to look abandoned. I figure I will have to fork out the cost of having someone do that for me. I see this as a plus to have someone keeping an eye on the outside at least a couple times a month. I'm a little bummed but the many houseplants will be going to a new home. :-( The winter is when I will have the water shut off outside and as far as the inside, for me I'm not coming home to having to shovel snow out of the way to get it back on....so that means keeping the utilities up and running albeit on "vacation" mode. I am planning on lining up my neighbors with my contact info in the event of something tragic.

Now I just need to figure out what to do with the Bludog until I can get him on board the truck. I'm currently in a private CDL school and have a bit of time to scope things out but darn if it isn't looking expensive.

Hope this helps and good luck with your endeavors!

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

DAY ?? My apologies, I've lost track. Funny how the time is flying by and yet it seems as if I've not learned a whole lot. When it gets down to it I've come to realize I can now do the majority of the pre-trip with out messing up. I've been able to practice the straight back up, side by side backing up and the alley dock. One of the biggest revelations was that I did not have a clue how to properly use the mirrors. Once I got that better understood things started going better.

Our school currently has only one running truck. This is getting frustrating. Happily 6 students obtained their CDL's ...however about 8 more have signed up. Due to the heavy rain we've had more class time. I am doing well in that thanks to The High Road from here. I've got a lot more studying to do as I want to get as many endorsements as I can. Just seems like the best approach.

I am out of words for the night.

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

A Primer on Prime (get it?)

Congrats to you Jopa! I hope your back is feeling better. Maybe the driving will take your mind off it? When I read about the TV selection my first thought was "note to self; bring earplugs for training!!" I often see little fans in the top sleepers, maybe that could work for some "white" noise.

Boots

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

One other thing I want to mention is that this school will let students come and go as they please. Very often the day starts out with a handful of students and throughout the day many come to get behind the wheel time or practice pre-trip and T-salt tests. This is kind of fun but also contributes to less one on one time.

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

B&B you sound like me in so many ways and I haven't even started school yet. I love the fact that you heard about the program at TT and put it in your tool belt. The HIGH ROAD program is wonderful!

I look forward to your future posts. I need all the inspiration I can get from a fellow Trucker in training.

Cole

Well thank you Cole! Happy to oblige, lol. The High Road has helped me daily as well as the videos and well just everything on this site!

DAY 5

Woke up late but managed to make it on time to school ...6am. And I drove there safely. I have to admit I am much more conscientious of my driving after all the reading here there and everywhere to get my CDL. First thing we (5 of us) start the pre-trip with instructor. Today we decided to break it down. First the passenger side items...10 in all. Each of us got to repeat it until we got it correct with out help. I really liked doing it that way. Unfortunately I only got to the other side and then had to leave for my drug test and physical for the dmv. That would be a basic urinalysis and pretty basic physical. I barely passed the eye test so that means getting my behind to the eye doc for an updated prescription. I kind of thought that might happen.

Back to school I go. DISCLAIMER. Now here's where I want to say upfront I LIKE my school. It is humble and in my eyes having some struggles right now. The owner is doing his best to handle it so I by no means do I want to sound as if I am bashing anyone. This is a tough economy for most of us so I understand and am OK with what is going on. I just want to point this out as some might not be able to handle a school like this and should be on the look out for it if it would not work for them. When I signed up there were three running trucks and one parted out. "White" ...street legal and the one that goes to DMV for testing. "Blue" ...stays in the yard but used for and by all for any and everything but seems to be limping along with quite a bit of leaks. "Pink" ...stays in the yard and used like Blue. "Red" ...dead but handy for the pre-trips and provides good shade and parts? Now unfortunately some how some one damaged the hood on Pink so it has become very limited. Blue somehow has just up and lost the tranny use? At first they thought it was the clutch. Fixed that and turns out it is more likely the tranny. So in order to save money ??? They are pulling the tranny from Pink to put into Blue. I probably have some of this not correct so I'll just get to the point. And that would be basically we are down to one working truck for hopefully only a week. This severely limits the students on practice. Most everyone has previous albeit limited experience with truck, trailer, class B or military except me :-( These last two days I no sooner get behind the wheel take 5 minutes to attempt the task (today was alley dock) and then it's over and out for me and on to the next student. I am not very good at learning this way. I'm the sort that needs to do it over and over and critique what I did right and what I did wrong to get the skill down. Now this sounds really bad but I'm laughing about it now. My first attempt at alley dock went smooth as butter with the instructor coaching me all the way. Now after watching 6 other guys get it pretty well with hardly any coaching it's my turn again. The instructor is no where in sight. I am STRUGGLING. At first a couple try to help me but next thing I know I'm almost jack knifed and look around and all the guys are yacking it up WAY across the yard or on their cell phones. Geez! Finally the instructor appears and helps me out but by then my clutch leg was toast! WE decided I just need to work on straight backing up and getting familiar with the handling of the truck next try...hopefully tomorrow. I really hope I improve quicker than today suggests. I also look forward to the day when I'm driving newer trucks.

All in all a good day and looking forward to the next day "on the range.

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Concerned about Mechanicals

Deb, I also am not mechanically inclined but what I am learning is I don't need to BE the mechanic I just need to identify the issues. Redgator nails it when she says you will be taught. So much of what you learn will make more sense once you get in school and are more "hands on." I am just starting and just today the parts are starting to come a little more in focus as in they all don't look the same, haha. Seriously though you will get a chance to go over and over it and it really does have a bit of a flow and a LOT of it is repetitive so it starts to sink in with practice. I also stress to keep plugging away on this site with all the valuable information and support. Cheers to us treehuggers! ;-)

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

DAYS 3 & 4

I am tired. LOTS of information overload going on here. I am especially grateful to be able to come home and digest and look things up online that I may not have understood so well. This is EXACTLY why I wanted to start with a private school before the fast paced company schooling.

I thought I was struggling with the air brakes but that is nothing compared to the pre-trip. I do not have any experience with mechanical things so it's a whole new beast to learn. I have to admit it IS fun to learn. At first it all seems so jumbled and nothing really made sense. By the end of today I am finally able to recognize some things. And with that it is starting to connect how it all flows together. A lot of the pre-trip is repetitive. I am thinking I heard there are 47 different things to identify but there are over 200 items that have to be pointed out to DMV in order to pass. By the end of today I was able to go from start to finish with out nearly so many hints.

Not sure if this is of any help or interest but for my own sake I'm going to write about the following. So far we've had one instructor besides the owner. They each have very different styles of teaching. At first I found it difficult to retain much since everything was so new. Just as I'm feeling like I'm getting the hang of identifying things yet another instructor is brought in. I ended up with the latest instructor. Not being too happy about it I managed to learn even more! What I am most proud of is that I was able to adjust to the change and benefit from it. I find this to be my biggest accomplishment for the day. I figure if I'm going into an industry that is full of things changing up with little to no notice than I better get used to it and learn to deal.

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Roll Call: Springfield, MO this week

It would be really sweet if someone did a bit of video to post here on this "party." You know so we don't feel left out. ;-)

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Backing In The Yard - HUMBLE PIE

I hear ya Bill! I had the same experience just today myself. Humble Pie nails it, and the challenge feels addicting. I am hoping that will outweigh my frustrations with taking so long to get it right. Good job! Boots

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

DAY 2.

I did a straight back up with a couple of pull ups. It was the short trailer which gets really squirlly but I did it. The rest of the day was class time. Aced the General Knowledge thanks to the studying the High Road on here. Air Brakes managed an 82%. I wish I would quit struggling with the wording about the air brakes. Only 5 students and lots of questions but also a LOT of interruptions by students coming in announcing that they had passed. Thursdays and Fridays are the drive test days at DMV. It is good to hear that there is a good success rate coming out of our humble school.

Posted:  6 years ago

View Topic:

Private CDL school starting 05/08/14

Day 1. Not too eventful. Filled out paperwork. Went to do a pre-trip inspection but was interrupted by my funding counselor to sign even more paperwork. Had a school BBQ which happens every Thursday. The rest of the day was going over how to fill out manual log books. Boy am I ever thankful for the technology that makes it unlikely I will have to keep a manual log. It was still very helpful to get the knowledge in my head about driving hours, off duty hours, sleeping berth and such. Also it was good to visualize on paper how ones day is spent on the road. Lots of interesting stories came up about a whole variety of things in driving. There were only 5 of us so it was all very casual conversation. Actually 4 as one guy didn't have proper eyewear so he kind of checked out. I swear he was napping! Note to self...dress in more layers as classroom time gets cold.

Page 1 of 2

Next Page
Go To Page:    

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More