Profile For Rob S.

Rob S.'s Info

  • Location:
    OR

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    3 years, 8 months ago

Rob S.'s Bio

Started with Swift as OTR. It's a fine company. Drove a yard goat at a distribution center for them for a few months too. Now I drive local food grade tanker for a different company.

Rob S.'s Photo Gallery

Page 1 of 23

Next Page
Go To Page:    

Posted:  5 days, 15 hours ago

View Topic:

The photo and opportunity that took almost 7 years to achieve!

Congrats and nice pic. Where are you though? I didn't think that was legal in California.

Posted:  2 weeks, 5 days ago

View Topic:

Tractor Man in Oregon?

If you're at the T/A on I5 I could swing by and say hi for a few minutes. I pass there frequently.

Posted:  4 weeks, 1 day ago

View Topic:

Short Load

I did a favor for a planner, 4 miles from terminal to customer and try to deliver a late load. The customer rejected it any forced a reschedule. The planner knew I tried and hooked me up with about a week of work that sent me away from California and ended with me picking up a brand new trailer from the factory.

Another load was 70 miles of dead-head to pick up a load at the terminal and deliver it 11 miles away. I dropped the trailer and bobtailed back. When I finished I went in to talk to the planner, I was trying to get Northwest for home time. He said there were about 20 drivers waiting for loads but since I was the one that had just done the short haul, I got the west bound load that was sitting in the yard. I was only there long enough for a shower and those terminal rats are probably still griping about no freight!

Posted:  2 months ago

View Topic:

Pop quiz mostly for newbies

All pretty good guesses, for those who suggested that it was riding to low they are correct I noticed on my walk around that it was really low on the right side. Normally I can fit my whole fist vertically between the tire and the box, on this one I could barely fit a finger.

double-quotes-start.png

Why was the trailer frame cut? That part above the tire isn't optional. That entire piece and all the rivets are important. It needs to be intact, not carved up with a smoke wrench. Although they did do a nice job of it.

double-quotes-end.png

All of our 28 ft pups come from the factory like that.

Well, I guess I learned something today, Thank You.thank-you.gif

Posted:  2 months ago

View Topic:

Here Is What It's Like Pulling A Tanker

Some other details of local milk hauling;

We are required to chain up when necessary. Parking and waiting out the weather isn't an option. My company pays hourly though so that takes some sting out of it.

We use different log book rules than when I was OTR. The 11, 14 and 70 clocks are the same but we use the local option that lets us do 12 hours with no 30 minute break and up to one 16 hour shift per week. It took me awhile to get used to it but since most days are the same it doesn't take a lot of study.

A typical week for me is five days starting at 0300 and returning to the yard about 1430. Then three days off. Lather, rinse and repeat. Last year's gross pay was about $60k.

Posted:  2 months ago

View Topic:

Here Is What It's Like Pulling A Tanker

I can add my two cents about the milk hauling. What I do is almost entirely farm pick up of raw milk.

Our trucks are purpose built for this. We have a power-take-off pump and a 30' hose for loading. The trailers are doubles and are built to comply with the bridge laws and carry the maximum legal weight, 105,500 lbs. There is no adjusting of fifth wheels or axles, just fill the front trailer and put 28,500 or so in the rear trailer. There are charts and gauges at every farm to show us how much weight we are picking up. It is possible to overload the rear trailer. The milk can't simply be put back in the farm tank either. It has to be pumped into another trailer. This would take hours to arrange and might have the driver looking for a job at the end of it. I did some math wrong and put an extra 8000 lbs on once. I dodged the scales, made the delivery and apologized/explained myself to my boss before he heard about it from anyone else.

At the farm, the driver is responsible for several things that are minor but closely monitored by the state agricultural inspectors; nothing that can't be learned in a week of training. We have to pick up at the farm within a narrow time frame. The milk tanks have to be washed (usually daily) and that means they need to be emptied. Since they can't turn off the cow, we have to empty the storage tank to make room. Because we have double trailers, we can do a u-turn in a very small space, less than our overall length (about 80'). The farmers know this and expect us to pretty much do it the same way every time. It was a strange feeling the first time I looked out the passenger window at my own tail lights. However, that's the only way it can be done; as long as I'm not making any new ruts in the mud I'm fine.

At the creameries it's a similar situation. Each is unique as to their own procedures but those procedures rarely change. So what I did last year at Creamery X is the same thing I'll do next week and next year at Creamery X. Just as at the farm, there is a narrow time frame for delivery. Most plants will have us unloaded within an hour. If we are washing the tanks that's another hour.

With two trailers, the surge isn't as bad as a long single trailer. When loaded to 105,000 lbs the front trailer is full (no surge) and the rear trailer is about 2/3 full. So while it is sloshing around, the full front trailer dampens the effect quite a bit.

Something I haven't seen mentioned is transmissions. We have mostly 10 speeds. I think that because of the surge we could never have automatics as they would be constantly shifting back and forth. I'm not sure about this though. Does anyone with a smooth bore tank have an automatic? I know that baffled fuel tankers can use automatics.

Posted:  2 months ago

View Topic:

Pop quiz mostly for newbies

Why was the trailer frame cut? That part above the tire isn't optional. That entire piece and all the rivets are important. It needs to be intact, not carved up with a smoke wrench. Although they did do a nice job of it.

Posted:  3 months, 1 week ago

View Topic:

CB lingo????

I am pretty sure it's the good buddy part that is offensive. I would explain, but this is a family show.

If you know any Ex-Marines, ask them for the definition of a buddy. :)

The term Ex-Marine is what I find offensive. Lee Harvey Oswald is the only Ex-Marine. The rest of us are Marines. Although some of us are older, slower and fatter.

Posted:  3 months, 1 week ago

View Topic:

Frozen Brakes

When there's a chance of freezing brakes at night, stop using the engine brake several miles before your shutdown spot. This means you'll use your service brakes more and heat them up. It's kinda like driving in the truck stop but when I see a space I can get into at the truck stop I'm grabbing it right now instead of driving around further. Also, backing up will sometimes loosen the brakes, we used this trick a lot when hostling at the DC.

Posted:  3 months, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Unable To Make The Back?

Another tip, if the receiver is around, ask them how other drivers backed in. These folks work there and get to see every driver's technique.

Posted:  3 months, 3 weeks ago

View Topic:

Boot brush

I agree about hating thieves. As for the brush, a few bucks at a Walmart for a household brush, then some zipties to hold it on. It's not thief-proof but it doesn't cost mush either. Also, if it looks like it's only worth two dollars nobody would steal it.

Posted:  4 months ago

View Topic:

Hit the range today

That seat adjustment is called the pendulum. I'm not a fan of them unless I am using cruise control on a long stretch of dry pavement. Don't be afraid to ask the instructor how to correct it. One of the first things we were taught was how to adjust the seats. Having a properly adjusted seat may seem trivial but when you get to the CDL exam with the state tester you're going to need everything as right as you can get it. You're going to be nervous enough. With a swinging seat you're trying to work the throttle to match rpm's and double clutch too. My back hurts just thinking about it.

About the diary; keep one even if it's just for you. I used an app on my phone. It's pretty cool to read through it and think, "Wow, I really did that!"

Posted:  4 months ago

View Topic:

I'll be driving your brand-new truck before you do!

Oooh I HATE you!!

Just kidding of course. I'm jealous. I talked with a guy doing that and it sounded like a blast. I only had a few months experience so I wasn't qualified anyway. Nowadays I'm home and my family likes that.

One of the things I dislike about my current gig is that we slipseat daily. I haven't seen an odometer reading with fewer digits than a phone number in two years.

If I send you a Mason jar will you fill it with New Truck Air for me?

Posted:  4 months, 1 week ago

View Topic:

Flatbed Variety

One of these days I'll find some straps to throw over my tanker/take a picture and finally post in this thread.😁

rofl-1.gifrofl-1.gif Yes Sir, four wing nuts on the dome lid, 10 seals on all the openings and that load is secured. Tarps? Straps? Chains? I'll have to google these terms...

Posted:  4 months, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Walmart

I did a few Walmart loads for Swift in Colorado. I used a Swift trailer with swinging doors. I'm not contradicting Gtown, just suggesting that your load might have some variables. The vast majority of Walmart folks I dealt with as a driver were very helpful too. Enjoy your day.

Posted:  4 months, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Weird Work Assignment

I had a similar experience once. A planner wanted my empty but didn't have a load for me. I politely asked my DM if she wanted me to give up my trailer without a pre plan to get rolling again. She was pretty unhappy with that planner. I kept my trailer and kept rolling. I wouldn't refuse the order or start freelancing but sometimes a respectful request for clarification is appropriate.

Posted:  4 months, 3 weeks ago

View Topic:

Keep a journal and a map

I'd like to strongly recommend that folks keep a journal or diary of the adventure of trucking. I went to school in my late 40's. For me, like many, this was not just a career change but the fulfillment of a childhood dream. That's when I bought my first modern phone too. One of the things I did right was to download an app for keeping a journal.

Another tactic, (learned from this site), is to use Google to recon every pick up and delivery. I'd save the address as I did my trip planning. On most runs I'd also map this out in my road atlas with a dry erase marker.

The third thing is a large (3'x4') laminated map of the United States with the interstates on it. When I came home every month or so I'd trace my trips on the large map with a sharpie.

So now I'm a local driver and don't have the adventure of travelling new roads every day. However, one of my most treasured trinkets is the map on my wall that shows all the roads I traveled in my 13 months of living like a Gypsy. I read through my old diary, look at the map and think back to my first time through Indianapolis. I planned so well but didn't know that I would be ejected from the company drop yard so I spent the night on the shoulder in a bad (to me) neighborhood curled up with a tire thumper. Or being assigned the mission of re-powering a load from another driver. His tractor broke down and I had to finish the delivery. He's a great guy and we've stayed in touch ever since. Oh, the good times...

So here's my advice/suggestion/recommendation. Keep a diary, make a map. When time fades the memories, the pictures will tell a fine story.

Posted:  4 months, 3 weeks ago

View Topic:

80 hour tanker class

I pull double tanks. I doubt I would notice 400 pounds. Companies that hire right out of school seem like a better way to get the proper training.

Posted:  4 months, 4 weeks ago

View Topic:

Turning radius for truck with 53' trailer (U-Turn)

I second the notion of waiting on the big purchase until your course is more stable. Also, do you really need a u-turn? Can you back in off the street or road in front? If it looks tight now, it probably won't after you're on the road doing it a couple times a day. Then you'll only need a parking pad the size of a Pilot parking space. Maybe a little wider in front. The larger base rock would only need to be under the tire tracks.

Posted:  5 months, 1 week ago

View Topic:

Help! How is anyone supposed to 'accurately" read an Air Pressure gauge like this one?

Hi all. I passed all the DMV tests!dancing-dog.gifdancing-banana.gif

This is all that matters. Congratulations. The next thing that matters is don't hit anything.

Page 1 of 23

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