Profile For Phox

Phox's Info

  • Location:
    San Antonio, TX

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    2 years, 11 months ago

Phox's Bio

No Bio Information Was Filled Out. Must be a secret.

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Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Another Topic Just For Fun - What was your last load? How much did it weigh? How many miles?

After deadheading from Saskatoon, SK, Canada to Valley City, ND (around 600 miles) I picked up a John Deer seeder. It was in 11-12 pieces weighing about 40k lbs. picked up on Saturday, did a 34 in Fargo, ND and delivered in Thief Falls, MN (about 180 loaded miles) this morning.

Don't have my next load info yet as I'm at our Corp terminal to discuss leasing.

Posted:  8 months, 2 weeks ago

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Help with Current Jim Palmer drivers

I agree with you both on getting exercise... but you have to view that keep the door closed phrase from the outside view... it really does sound like your saying to just drive as much as possible and only stop if you have to.... this is the internet... what you mean to say and convey may appear much different to someone else reading it. you might mean it as dont slack off, treat this job as such, but someone else, especially new drivers may read it as only stop and get out for fuel & food / 10 hour break aka stuff they have no choice on.

the point i'm trying to make is that the "keep the doors closed" phrase is really bad to use with new drivers. They dont know the industry well enough yet to understand it properly.

Posted:  8 months, 2 weeks ago

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Help with Current Jim Palmer drivers

Keeping the wheels turing and the doors closed leads to more miles.

It also leads to various health issues... I for one am getting tired of reading that line. I am the type who prefers to stop as little as possible so i can either maximize my miles or get shut down early enough to get more sleep and have a better parking spot. That caused me to develope adema in my feet (swelling due to retaining fluid) because I was not stopping and taking enough breaks. I would go 250-300 miles before stopping and then that would be my 30 which I usually didn't even get out of truck for, then I do another 250-300 to complete my day. When my feet got so big they looked like water baloons I went to doc... they were afraid I was having a blood clot or something else more serious and sent me to er. I ended up having to take 9 days medical leave because of it. I still have the problem but not as bad and I can manage it, but I also have to stop about every 2 hours and walk around.

So this "keep the left door closed and keep rolling stuff" yeah that's bad advice. I stop for about 15 min every 2 hours or so (obviously limited by truck stop or rest area availability), 3-4 times a day is not going to kill your miles.

Posted:  10 months, 1 week ago

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Quiting CR England

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Pride only has around 500 drivers.

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Only??? That's a big carrier. It definitely puts them way up into the upper 1% of largest carriers in the nation. 93% of all trucking companies in the nation have fewer than 20 trucks.

I do indeed prefer the major carriers but I'm not just talking about the top 5 or 10. I would say anything above about 250 trucks is pretty major. That's a lot of trucks. You have to do a whole lot of things right for a long time to get to that size.

Well when I compare to companies like Knight, swift, CR, etc that have thousands, 500 is fairly small. I was with Knight for my first year, something like 5000 trucks for them and yeah dispatch to driver ratio was much much higher, shop stuff took longer, getting loads from planners took longer... just everything took longer or was not as good. I haven't counted myself but if I was to walk into our terminal where the dispatchers work (on monday because weekend staff is limited) I would probably count at least 20-25 dispatchers... so that's like 1dispatch to every 20 drivers, with knight it was closer to 1 dispatch per 100 drivers, roughly estimated. I never saw more than 5-10 dispatchers per terminal some had less than 5 and I calculated at about 20 terminals to the 5000+ drivers. just some fun morning math to get your day started haha. I personally would call Pride a medium carrier. not small but not large... but I would agree Pride is doing something right.... now if I could just get other drivers to stop comparing us to CR england JUST because our owner is related to the englands. he left them a long long time ago and started pride because he didn't like the way cr was doing things. like i said before i don't know much factual about cr because I never worked there but from what I hear.... yeah I can see why he left haha. oh and he still drives.... got himself a real nice Kenworth long nose. ok i'm going off topic so i'm gonna stop here haha.

Posted:  10 months, 1 week ago

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Inverter to power skillet

Not going to happen... most you can get is around 260-300 watts. to figure out what your 12v outlet can put out you need to take the 12v then multiply it by the # of amps fuse it has. usually it's around a 20 amp fuse so 12 x 20 = 240 watts. even though there's 300 watt 12v inverter and even 400 unless you have a fuse that can do that much you won't get it and going much past 20amp fuses you are risking a fire because the wiring was not designed for that much power. you would need a hire gauge wire installed on top of hire amp fuse. your company will probably allow a direct to battery inverter before they re-ire your truck haha

Posted:  10 months, 1 week ago

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Quiting CR England

And what is it that Marten and Pride offer that's so incredible?

Well I can say as a "current" employee of Pride that it is a decent company, I can't compare to Marten, nor cr england as I have not worked for them. I will admit Pride has it's share of negatives but far less than my previous company. Here's one good thing in particular: Pride takes pride in their trucks, we have a working truck wash at our terminal plus an account with blue beacon. they also expect us to get our trucks into shop at least 2x a month for PM service and our shop is open 24/7 so unless it needs one of our truck specific (aka freightliner guy) guys to work on it it's usually taken care of in a couple hours. When I was with Knight a simple PM could be an all day thing if you were lucky and assumed they actually did the pm. I know brett prefers the major carriers based on one of his blog posts but I prefer smaller ones and Pride only has around 500 drivers.

those are just a couple things that make Pride awesome, but to be fair here's a couple negatives as well. #1 we mostly run i80 / western 11. sounds nice and all to some but for me it has gotten boring. we can run all the lower 48 but it's not likely. mostly you'll find yourself on the 80, up in washington, or down in so cal. #2 pay is meh for reefer div. also pay raises are kind of a joke, looking at 10 months min at a time per half cent raise. based on career points, every 10k you get half cent raise but you can only get a max of 1k per month. that's hard to do as it is, I avg around 650-700 a month as it's based on mpg, productivity and being on time. mpg is the hard part because reefer does a lot of heavy loads and our lanes have a lot of hills and mountains, plus summer temps are not taken into acct for mpg requirement. productivity should be easy but quite often things i cant control lower it, such as not being able to deliver a load till a day later than needed, or pick up till the next evening (having delivered in same time the prior day morning)... stuff like that makes it difficult. so yeah pride has it's negatives too but it's still a good company.

Posted:  10 months, 1 week ago

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Proper use of triangles

Yeah I would say 90% of the time I see something wrong with the placement of triangles... everything from # of them, distance apart, sometimes they're in a straight line, sometimes they are angled towards truck n trailer as opposed to away (by angled I mean if you were looking at them from above the line of triangles most of the time s going towards truck when it should be going towards road). heck sometimes there's not even any put out at all!

it seems a great many drivers don't know proper triangle placement.

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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Rearward facing cameras for backup

So now it's out: we are just bytes in a computer that is trying to find the answer to Life, The Universe and Everything.




-42-?

no... butter... 42 sticks of butter to be exact

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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Who loves a good steak occasionally on the road?

Soooo many better options on the road than ta/petro steaks. I don't care how high your standards are there are much better options than those. that one in ontario may cook it good but there's more to a steak than cooking.

Boise stage stop in Boise Idaho... good quality meat, good cooking and good flavor plus they have some seriously high grade steaks but I haven't had them cause they're like $50 each.... little more than my trucker income can afford haha.

Not as easy to find with nearby truck parking but Texas roadhouse has really good steaks too.

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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I just don't get some people

Depends on division.. dry van freight slows down a lot in the winter season, reefer does as well but not by a huge amount, more so the freight type changes as well as shipping lanes. I was dry van with Knight from Feb 2016 to jan this year and def noticed dry van freight (with them at least) def slowed down a lot. Now I'm with Pride which is like 95% reefer (sometimes we'll do a dry load but it's really rare and usually things like pallets or something) and freight was plentful in the winter months, slowed down a bit in April and early may, then picked up. took a week off for home time in early july and still managed over 10,400 miles. nice thing about reefer, a lot of our loads are food based and food is always needed thus that division always has freight. dry van can be dry food, paper brooms even! (yeah I shipped a load of brooms once from el paso to stockton, ca, super light and epic miles and it was drop n hook). those things except the food are not always needed so dry van freight can and does dry up at times. I don't know anything about flatbed, that's the next division I am looking into exploring, either that or LTL (doubles / triples).

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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Oops, messed up on a delivery! [Gas Tanker Edition]

There was a situation last year I think, where one of the big 5s got def pumped into the truck diesel tanks... a good many trucks were damaged as a result...

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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I need some advice on endorsements:

I got my TWIC card before hazmat it didn't take long for background check, actually I filled out app online, scheduled the in person part for a time during home time and they had card in the mail by the end of the week. if you have hazmat already though they lower the price of twic card. I think it works the other way around too but not sure. my company doesn't require twic or hazmat but I figured it never hurts to have at least one in case they ever want to do a load out of ports or military base, it's one more driver they have who already has what's needed. I'll be looking into getting hazmat on my next home time. Once again not needed, but if company wants it makes me that much more valuble an employee or if I switch companies to one whom does require it or does have a need for drivers with em, I'll already have them.

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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Rearward facing cameras for backup

I can see a camera being beneficial in that scenario but I'd rather not rely on it and get my skills better. Next back after that one though was great. As for a magnetic cam that can be switched from trailer to trailer and take with you no way. I'd forget it at some point. What I have wondered though is why don't trailers have back up lights? And maybe a license plate like light at each curbside corner on the rear pointed down toward the tandems to better illuminate tight turns.

The bakkab has a system in place to let you know if you forget it. I don't know how it works (my guess is once your wireless device loses signal with it it tells you on your device). They already thought of that problem and made a solution haha.

As for the lights and what not... added cost. there probably are trailers with that kind of setup, either after market or before but it's an added cost that most companies don't see the value in, just like driver's side hood mirrors. not needed so quite a few companies opt out since they're like an additional $400-500 per truck for that one hood mirror. lights on the trailer like you mentioned are not "needed" so not something carriers want to invest in.

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Rearward facing cameras for backup

Here's the camerai was just talking about... it's called bakkab

https://bakkab.net/

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Rearward facing cameras for backup

There's a company currently developing a wireless magnettic camera that you can just stick to outside of trailer... or inside if you wanted to use it for security / cya purposes (monitor what loaders are doing, catch them red forklifted (think red handed) if they damage something, etc.

I'm not sure how it's spelled but it's pronounced "back cam"... think it's like bakcam or bakkam... or something along those lines... they had a demo of it at MATS this year. has the range to reach from back of trailer to cab of truck, wide angle lens, and magnetic so no perm mounting required... just slap it on, turn it on and there ya go. my only concern though is it'll become a crutch to some drivers, sort of like gps units. to many drivers who can't read an atlas rely on gps, then if that fails they're up poo creek without a paddle... well same thing may happen with this... drivers get in the habit of using it, next thing they know device breaks or something and all the sudden they don't know how to back anymore. it could be a very nice "tool" when you have to back into more narrow places or between trucks in tight docks, but not something you want to rely on or get to "used to" using.

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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Opti-idle and regen

I have that kind of truck and when i use opti idle it has 2 higher rev moments, one where it goes just below 10 on the rpms which i've been told it does to charge batteries faster and then a different one where it goes above 10 which I believe is a regen.

regens suck :(

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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Urine Nation

Not all truck stops are as bad as you describe but I would agree the big 5s (loves, pilot j, ta/petro) tend to have a higher probability. also location makes a difference too, the south east gets very hot and humid in the summer so it amplafies the stench much worse than other parts. also places that don't get as much rain.

I prefer independent truck stops more because they either take better care (not all of them) of their property and or less rookies / nasty drivers park at them. the only problem is they tend to be smaller than the big 5s so you may need a backup plan in case it's full. that's part of good trip planning though.

Posted:  10 months, 2 weeks ago

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Lesson to be learned

So my wallet and I are learning just how important getting out of the truck and at least walking is.

I had to go to the ER today.

For the past 3-4 days I have been noticing my feet were getting swollen, like a lot (feet are like baloons at least 2-3x the size my feet normally are) I was on a load from PA to ogden Utah, companies terminal is in Salt Lake so I decided that after I delivered the load I'd go to my terminal, rent a car and go to Urgent care to have it checked out.

Well the DR at urgent care couldn't run all the tests necessary to give a proper diagnosis and he was concerned it could be a clot or some heart issue so he had me go to the ER. he was so worried he didn't even want me to drive myself (my mother is a full time passenger on truck with me so she drove me)

Hospital did standard vitals a couple times, ran an EKG, took blood (after 4 tries to get a vein) and tested it and did an ultrasound. the tests all came back good so the diagnosis given was that (this is lamens terms) my feet are retaining fluid due to the lack of exercise i'm getting and long hours spent in the truck, particularly the drivers seat, driving. DR wants me to take at least a week off from driving, keep my feet elevated as much as possible and do a lot more walking so help get the fluid to drain from feet. I also need to do a follow up with a regular dr, which the er is helping me with setting up an appt with one.

so yeah.... get off your butts and out of the truck more guys.... your health, especially the heath of your feet depend on it. that is the lesson to be learned. good news is i'm not going to die, yet, but the bad news is a week of not working... that's gonna really hurt the bank, i mean we're talking at least 1400 gross in income.

This is one of the reasons I am looking at switching to flatbed division next year. did my first year of trucking as dry van, then jan of this year I switched to a company that does only reefer. with a better company than 1st one but still don't get out enough and reefer has much tighter delivery schedules so i can't la-de-da and get the exercise needed to be as healthy as i should be without losing time on other things like food prep time (I cook outa truck mostly), time for showers and most important sleep. I try for at least 8 hours sleep at min. I am no stranger to hard work and I think flatbed would help get me back in shape and get me outa truck a lot more.

Posted:  10 months, 3 weeks ago

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Trip planning practice??

If you want I can post some of my recent trips. Won't mess with it tonight but if I remember I can post some tomorrow.

my company has pre planned routing fuel stops, however fuel card is unlocked for all the big 5s if I need (read as "want") to fill up else ware.

Posted:  11 months ago

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How do you do dishes on the road

As a driver who eats out of his truck (and not boring meals like sandwiches and soup every single day either) I think I can offer some good advice.

First off a disclaimer, I do have a 2k watt inverter and about every appliance you can put in a truck, you name it I can cook it. Only thing I don't have is a bbq grill. used to have a small charcole grill but took too long to preheat coals, then cook then cool the coals to wear I could dispose of them.

On that note I cook things like steak, seafood, pizza, ribs... doesn't matter.

As for clean up, it's quite simple. Roll of paper towles and clorox wipes. I'll use a couple of paper towels to get the large messy stuff wiped clean then I'll use the clorox wipes to disinfect and 1 more paper towel to dry the dishes.

My mother is a full time passenger with me so we take turns cooking and cleaning (cook for the night cleans up after him or herself).

We have also started a series on youtube around cooking, cleaning up and storage on the truck. The series is called "18 Wheeler Cooking" and channel name is Colonel Phox... in case anyone was interested. I'm actually editing a video right now on a seafood dish which also talks about how to get rid of the seafood smell.

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