Profile For Michael

Michael's Info

  • Location:
    Evansville, IN

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    3 years, 11 months ago

Michael's Bio

I started driving in summer of 1999 after graduating from Truck Drivers Institute at Sellersburg, IN. I have drove for Transport America, A&H Inc., All American Transport, And at that time what I considered to be the best place for Nordic Express from Manitowoc, WI. I was a lease operator with only 24 payments left when I got bad news concerning my Dad and left the trucking industry. I only got to spend three months with him before he passed which made me debate heavily on deciding whether to go back to driving or not. Well 14 yrs later and finding out going to school doesn't guarantee anything except a huge bill that needs to be repaid now. Not knocking school, just make sure there are open positions in your field instead of what they say on T.V.!! I use to be an online gamer, no time for that anymore and most MMO's are very time intensive. I can't wait to get through my training at Prime and get behind the wheel again.

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Posted:  3 years, 7 months ago

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So I think I know...

Just my .02 RV, but why not start out doing tanker and learning it from the get go rather than starting with a van trailer being you will have to learn how to control the surge and also control it on exit ramps?

Posted:  3 years, 7 months ago

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Bad reviews...

Well, any time I'm considering a company to work for I will question the recruiter to death even to the point of wanting to know all about the equipment, home time, dispatch speed, is the truck assigned to you, what can be done to the truck and so fourth, etc. Most companies I know of give 1 day home per week out. Only thing I could really offer is talk with the recruiters and ask some of the drivers for that company.

Buying a truck for a longer home time could easily turn into losing your truck, but yes it does give you the freedom to make what ever customization you want.

Posted:  3 years, 7 months ago

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13 speed transmission

@ Danny yes I do.

Posted:  3 years, 7 months ago

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13 speed transmission

Don't sweat the 13 speed the instructor's will walk you through it. You will only use them for about a week and that will be it unless you get a driver trainer with a pete 379 all the other trucks are either 9 speed or autoshift

Posted:  3 years, 8 months ago

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New CDL A holder "Massachusetts"

Hahahaha, I hope you don't hit submit three times when paying a bill? rofl-1.gif

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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A different view of team driving before going solo

Wish I had some cookies and milk for this one. I can't speak for every company or student and I agree with some parts and disagree with other parts. First off if I'm putting someone in a truck that costs $153,538 I want to know that they are not gonna have an accident with it = some companies put student in truck for two weeks or how ever many with a trainer and student does all driving with trainer in passenger seat. Upon successful completion of two weeks with trainer = job offer, hired on, what ever. Like most have stated and like myself I hate teaming let alone someone else in my personal bubble area.

Secondly, you have now moved onto the second phase which involves team driving and if you look at this from a learning perspective your going to cover a lot more ground and generates a paycheck for you as well. Me personally from a learning perspective I would rather be running from coast to coast teaming until I am fit for solo driving if it's four weeks, it's four weeks.

Lastly, in the first two weeks there are situations you may have not encountered, snow, ice, 65+ mph crosswind, big hills, mountains, yada, yada. Everything you learned in the first two weeks is going to be built upon, because no matter how nice a trainer you have if he comes flying out of the bunk slams into the shifter your going to see a side of them you do not want to.

No matter what the situation you still have someone in the truck to help you along. Whether you have to yell, kick'em, slam on the brakes what ever to get them awake and say here's what going on. I know i'm rambling again, but for that company that you desire to work for, reverse the rolls each of you is playing. Some trainers may get woke up and others will get to sleep until shift change.

But, if the trainer is constantly having to be woke up during there sleep time do you really want them driving $153,538?

And while i'm on that subject a dear friend of mine who is still driving got to encounter what happens when a student can't read bridge warnings signs because he wasn't paying attention and drove right into an eleven footer in 5th gear throwing her into the windshield. All he had to do was stop the truck and the two of them could have figured something out instead of driving when not sure of the bridge height. There went $153,538 with a trainer on board(teaming).

Some you remind me of myself when I first started out, I'm gonna grab the bull by the horns and ride which I did. My training time while driving for Transport America was a total of four weeks, two weeks with trainer awake, two weeks teaming to prove yourself. I was so happy to go solo and get my own truck, my first load was to Michigan and all the questions you had never thought of are now coming to mind and no one to ask and if you ask over the cb are they serious or just steering you in the wrong direction.

Sure it was back in the 90's when I first went through school and here it is going on 2016 and I still see the same things happening now that I did back then and now companies require longer team driving periods, does it help I don't know. I have rambled on enough and I will close my rambling with this note, I once go to pull a brand new trailer and I was on a designated truck route mind you and had two more deliveries to make before heading to the house. On my way to Milwaukee and on this designated truck route there was a tree with a tree growing out of that tree that looked to be about 3ft in diameter. While on this truck route you would think everything would be 13'6" at least, not so. I smacked that thing at 15 mph and it pretty much stopped me and there went the front right corner of that brand new trailer. This was 7 months after going solo which really butt hurt me and took any pride I had and the comments coming in over the cb ugh.

My point is this you may hate having to team drive for X amount of miles or this or that and just be ready to go solo and when you do your going to be the safest driver, be on time all the time and yada, yada, yada and then BAM! You get lax or what ever. I had to tell the company what road I was on so they could verify it was a truck route. Funny thing was others knew about the tree, just never bothered to inform me of it. I know I wandered off topic, but just think about it for a minute and if you don't like your trainer or what ever ask for another one, but if you can view the teaming experience as a prep to going solo and that is what it is leading to, your just getting yourself closer to the prize. Your own truck.

And yes, I can't stand the fact that I get talked to like I have never drove a truck before, but I just bite my tongue and listen when the instructors talk and do what I'm told as to not make any waves, but when my orientation is over and the teaming portion starts ugh. Yes, just having someone else in the truck will aggravate me to an extent, but on the up side i'm getting closer to getting my truck and if all goes well you have someone you can call upon when needed and can also speak up for you if asked how you did and yada, yada.

And no, i'm not saying this to promote any companies or anything just offering a different view point and lastly even after being solo for over a year and switching companies (back in the 90's) there was no training at A&H you took the truck and a load out with the owner sitting in the passenger seat and waited for a ya or na.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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What it's like to be a trainer

The town driving and dealing with the stop lights always has me uptight, sometimes when I would try to stall the light it didn't and then other times think i'm fine and the light changes.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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What it's like to be a trainer

Awesome post Bud, I should have requested you for a trainer, but didn't learn of the website till I had already started. I would have just been asking questions like where did all the volvo's come from, how come everyone is driving with high beams, and why are there no stacks on the truck, how fast does yours go, and complaining a lot about onguard, don't know who Tom Brady is and don't care for football so that wouldn't be an issue. Yes, I'm being stupid rofl-1.gif

Really good post

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Questions about flatbed

Thank you for the replies, I can't see the photo either, and on the upside I did get my pre hire also are there anythings that the company does not supply, but help you with securement or after you get unloaded that they recommend you get?

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Ohio License transfer info.

Earlier this week when I went to transfer my CDL to Indiana, I had to take the operator's test and the knowledge test.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Should I go with an OTR Trainer???

Black mountain is a 6%. I was putting a lot of emphasis on the mountains being I got comfortable on a 8% grade. First time down it was around 78k, the second time down it I was at 79,998 and if I would have used my head I would not have been in the situation I was in. That was 15 years ago and I have no problem remembering that night. I second guessed myself on the gearing that night and instead of going one lower thought i'll be fine, 30 seconds in and I was not fine. I just consider myself very lucky to still be here.

It's just a stupid mistake on my part, because I lost respect for the down grade and wound up second guessing myself.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Going to CDL school, new to the industry

I don't know what I am talking about here, but it would be worth a shot with the industry and new warehouses being built you might be able to land a yard jockey job just shuttling the trailers around at the warehouses.

But, I don't know anything about that and don't know if they consider that running local either.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Wasted hours

rofl-3.gif Just remember when your in the truck stop sitting at the bar eating or drinking coffee and you happen to slip with gas, just make sure you can fit it into gassing on it and all will be well. lol

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Should I go with an OTR Trainer???

The way I understood it was he only needs 10k miles, and wants to stay local till he hits 5k, leaving him only 5k more miles to go. If they team one sleeps other drives he will hit the remaining 5k if they both cover 1k miles a day allowing him to go solo.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Should I go with an OTR Trainer???

I don't mean for this to come across as being smart or anything, but really if this is your first time and your wanting to go solo don't rush it because if they do a team drive thats only 5 days or less of OTR for you. You got to experience over heating the brakes, what mountain was that if you don't mind my asking? Yea,I'm being a care bear right now lol, but on a serious note, we'll just assume it was a 6% grade you smoked them on and only had 40k in the wagon. You go solo and hit the this mountain that is 9% you have 45k in the wagon and the speed limit is 25 mph with hair pin curves in it, that is a real mountain out east btw. How will you go down it? Next you have your calculating, where your going to shut down for the night, will you make it there before it gets full, or you have a multi stop load/unload, how much time can you give each before it jeopardizes the rest of the stops and my favorite they send you a preplan with a deadhead of 250 miles and 4 hours to get there and delivers 455 miles away that night. I'm not picking just letting you know when first starting and you miss an apt time they might let the first one slide, the second you will probably notice fewer miles.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Should I go with an OTR Trainer???

I don't know anything about Celadon and yes your missing out on a lot, when 350 miles turns into 620 miles there is more involved. Also want to throw in it is always nice to have someone on board when doing the Mountains especially if there is snow, ice and chains involved, but I am just going off of what you posted.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Questions about flatbed

Thank you for the replies, I had been looking on youtube as well and couldn't find anything showing what technique was used they just always appeared with the tarp already in place laying in front of them.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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It's not only the four wheelers

rofl-3.gifrofl-1.gif

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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Questions about flatbed

I am finally going after my dream of pullin flat bed and not dry van or reefer and had the enjoyment of talking with one who was telling me about how heavy the tarps can be and basically starting giving directions of how to tarp the load, folding corners and such. This went on for about three hours and also gave me a load securement book and suggested another. To my surprise when asking about weight distribution and mentioned 34k on the drives and was informed that you better check your trailer axles because your over? So how do you distribute the weight with a spread axle trailer? Secondly, when it comes to lifting the lumber tarps, I have been reading and hearing there is a proper technique that makes lifting those heavy things a piece of cake.

Posted:  3 years, 9 months ago

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In Cab cameras on the driver

Lol, don't know about the rest of you all, but I always liked driving in my undies and I guess if my truck has a camera in it and it's rollin when I come out of the bunk oh well rofl-3.gifrofl-1.gifrofl-1.gifrofl-1.gif

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