Profile For Minnis B.

Minnis B.'s Info

  • Location:
    Chapmanville, WV

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    8 years, 4 months ago

Minnis B.'s Bio

Just a dirty ol' coal hauler taking it a load at a time.

Minnis B.'s Photo Gallery

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Posted:  2 years, 3 months ago

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After 4 years I finally got my first ticket

Where in wva? I lived in Slaty Fork. Population 56. Up in the hills.

Chapmanville in Logan county. About 4 hours from ya.

Sid and Bird, I appreciate the responses. Slightly less worried about it now.

Posted:  2 years, 3 months ago

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After 4 years I finally got my first ticket

Well y’all it finally happened. 4 years driving a truck in places and scenarios I could only imagine all around southern WV, I got pulled over and issued 2 tickets within 10 miles of my hometown. They’re demolishing an old wash plant just a few miles down the road from my house and they still had around 800 tons of coal they wanted to ship out. Naturally, since I’m so close and keep my truck at home, the boss put me on it along with a few of my buddies. The first few days went wonderful. It was an easy trip we could turn in roughy 2 hours and the pay was excellent. Yesterday, I had just gotten under way and settled back for my last load of the day. About 10 miles from the loading spot I saw blue lights flashing. Pulled over, exchanged pleasantries with the officer, handed over all my paperwork(truck and trailer registration, license, insurance, and CRTS overweight permit), he checked all my lights and tires and went back to the car. Now usually when we get loaded, the loader operator gives us a little ticket that looks much like a gas pump receipt that states the coal company name, our truck number and driver name, how much weight they loaded on us (according to the usually very inaccurate loader bucket scales) and a ticket number. On this particular haul, the mining company told our boss since they were shipping less than 100 loads, no ticket was required and I relayed this to the officer. About an hour later he walks up to the door and says he’s issuing me 2 tickets but they were actually fining the company and not me personally although he had to put my name on the tickets.

This is what he hit me with:

No Bill of Lading (he said this is what took the him so long, apparently the 100 load law was actually changed the first of this year)

Unsecured Load (the loader operator apparently got just a couple tiny clumps of coal on the top of my passenger side bed rail and the tarp didn’t cover them, not really anything I could have done about that one personally, there’s nowhere to stop and check everything out aside from a narrow emergency lane until about 18 miles from where we were loaded)

Now I tell you all this to ask a question. The company is absolutely covering the tickets, by them “admitting guilt and paying the fines”, will this affect my personal dmv driving record and insurance costs since technically the tickets are in my name?

Posted:  2 years, 5 months ago

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I T-called A Load To Myself

That’s what I figured but I appreciate y’all clearing it up. Ya never know, one of these days I might hit the big road and learn all this first hand.

Posted:  2 years, 5 months ago

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I T-called A Load To Myself

Old School, please excuse this local drivers ignorance. I know you guys are paid per mile, when a load is T called (and you don’t pick your load back up yourself lol) how is the pay calculated? I would assume the company runs the actual pickup ZIP and the actual drop ZIP through a computer and the result is your pay then do the same thing for the driver that picks up the load.

Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

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Best engine for a Kenworth

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Always awesome to see ya stop in, Minnis !!!!

Don't be a stranger! Stay safe,

~ Anne ~

ps: Does the impeding 'winter' affect your work, in the coal industry? Sure did when we hauled asphalt. Just curious, thanks!

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Only slightly. When the temperature drops below 25 we have to treat our beds before each load so that slows us down a bit. Sometimes the mining machinery doesn’t want to cooperate when it gets cold enough. Road conditions are the major factor. Being that pretty much everywhere we drive is mountainous and curvy, and the weight we carry, special considerations are made. For the most part things run as normal but there’s some days you’d be more profitable staying in bed lol.

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Thanks for the reply, Minnis! Yeah, some days in this whole INDUSTRY it's more profitable to stay in bed, haha!

Your side of the business intrigues me, though. I don't know anyone that runs a set up like yours. It's cool~!

Stay safe, & stop by more!

~ Anne ~

If enough people were interested I’d start a topic covering my day to day for a week or two along with trying to shed some light on this little cog in the American machine. I only haven’t because the forum seems to be more geared toward the OTR life so I keep to myself and try to answer questions that I have some knowledge on lol.

Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

View Topic:

Best engine for a Kenworth

Always awesome to see ya stop in, Minnis !!!!

Don't be a stranger! Stay safe,

~ Anne ~

ps: Does the impeding 'winter' affect your work, in the coal industry? Sure did when we hauled asphalt. Just curious, thanks!

Only slightly. When the temperature drops below 25 we have to treat our beds before each load so that slows us down a bit. Sometimes the mining machinery doesn’t want to cooperate when it gets cold enough. Road conditions are the major factor. Being that pretty much everywhere we drive is mountainous and curvy, and the weight we carry, special considerations are made. For the most part things run as normal but there’s some days you’d be more profitable staying in bed lol.

Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

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Best engine for a Kenworth

I’ve driven just about every engine there is, from the old 3406B Cat engine and 400 “Big Cam” Cummins all the way up to the C15 Cat and X15 Cummins along with several Detroit and Paccar engines. A C13 is a decent engine, pretty reliable but as others have said they can be expensive to overhaul. In my opinion there is a rule of thumb, Detroit’s generally provide the best fuel economy but have less power than the others and the engine brake isn’t much more than just a noise maker. Cummins generally has the worst fuel economy but the most power and the engine brake will put you through the windshield if you aren’t careful. Cat engines and paccar engines are generally a happy medium, decent fuel economy, decent power, and a decent engine brake. Of course every rule has an exception and in this case it’s the variables of the transmission and gear ratio. Running all highway you’d be just fine with a 10, 13, or 18 speed transmission. I’d recommend a 3.42 or higher gear ratio. If you’ll be doing much in the way of off road or heavy hauling (such as going in the field to load the grain trailers or being loaded over 100k gross) I’d recommend a 15 or 18 speed transmission with a 3.73 gear.

Personally I haul coal in WV. My average gross weight is 123,000-126,000 and 90% of the trucks in this niche are equipped with C15 or X15 engines and 18 speed transmissions with 52,000 lb rated rear ends and 4.10 gears. That is for the on road trucks. We have off road trucks that never leave mine property that can gross as much as 180,000 lbs and those are generally an X15 with a 15 speed trans, 60,000+ lb rated rear ends that are planetary drive with 5.13 or lower gears. You wanna talk about a mule, there’s not much those bad boys won’t pull but that’s way too much overkill for this application.

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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Switching to Dump truck driving

I pull a 38’ triple axle dump trailer daily. They are tons of fun. No 2 loads are the same just as in OTR. That being said, please do yourself a huge favor and make sure to get adequate training in whichever you try a hand at. A lot of your loads in a straight dump truck are extremely top heavy and dangerous especially on curvy roads. There’s also a high likelihood of being put in areas of little or no traction. Can be challenging at times. As far as the dump trailer goes, the most important rule is when dumping make sure you are 100% level. These things will turn over in half a heartbeat. On our 38’ trailers, being one inch off level with the bed on the frame equals out to being six inches off level with the bed fully raised. You get 40,000 lbs of material over 40’ in the air, it doesn’t take much more than six inches off center to topple you. It’s even more dangerous in winter and your load freezes to your bed.

I know all that sounds very daunting but honestly with proper training and time on the job all these things will be like just another day at the office. Keep your head on a swivel when dumping, use reference points to make sure your bed is going up straight and don’t worry about a single other thing than the load you’re trying to shake off and you will be fine. If you do get into this niche and have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. I generally lurk 3-4 nights a week.

Posted:  3 years ago

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Eye Candy

Well the other day the boss man decided he wants a show truck for parades and such. She needs a little love to get back to her former glory but meet Big Sexy.

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Posted:  3 years ago

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Dump Truck Driving

A few questions about driving a dump truck.

What is the upside/downside of driving a dump truck all day compared with driving a tractor trailer? Are the issues of being an O/O any different in the dump truck world? Any less risky? Is driving dump truck harder on the driver's body? Is the sleep apnea/CPAC issue the same? And HOS regulations are not applicable to dump truck drivers, correct?

Yeah I got a couple years experience on both sides of the fence. I’ll answer what I can for you.

1. The upside of the dump truck is it’s much easier to maneuver in tight quarters, that’s pretty much it. The downsides are you are much more top heavy which in my opinion makes the truck harder to control on narrow 2 lane roads. You have a much higher chance of being overweight as most quarries/asphalt plants etc will load you to 80,000 lbs gross and have your truck listed as a tractor trailer in their computer system to avoid direct fines. Dump trucks also ride much more roughly especially empty.

2. I wouldn’t recommend O/O with a dump truck. As was already mentioned it can be very seasonal but also you’re very limited to what you can haul ie dirt/sand/gravel/coal/asphalt and that’s about it. At least being an O/O with a tractor you can hook to pretty much any kind of trailer and haul pretty much anything you like. Of course I don’t recommend going O/O in any truck.

3. I do feel like the dump truck was much harder on my body personally. Imagine being in the ring with mike Tyson for 12 hours a day. That’s pretty much how I felt.

4. I’m not sure on the CPAP issue because I’ve never been diagnosed with sleep apnea.

5. As was already said yes you’re exempt from keeping a detailed logbook BUT we have a sheet of paper that covers an entire month that asks your start time, your stop time, total hours worked, and how many total hours were driven. Also asks for company headquarters.

If you have any more questions I’d be more than happy to help ya out.

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