Profile For Stickers

Stickers's Info

  • Location:
    Des Moines, IA

  • Driving Status:
    Preparing For School

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    7 years, 12 months ago

Stickers's Bio

27 years old, Iowa Native, and Army Vet. Served in Iraq in a Combat Logistics Unit (Truck Company).

Have worked as a trailer mechanic in the trucking industry for 1 major flatbed carrier and for a two other small companies. I am also a Welder as that was my Primary M.O.S. in the Army and have worked in that field on and off for about 8 years. I Also have my Diploma in Motorcycle and small engine repair.

I will be attending truck driving school Summer of 2016 and am planning on going OTR for my first 1-2 years or more. I will be the 2nd generation Truck Driver in my family. My plan is to go flatbed.

Stickers's Photo Gallery

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Posted:  5 years, 10 months ago

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Heaviest Weight You've Hauled?

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How do some loads get permitted over 80k ?

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You have to have a special permit for loads over 80,000 pounds. They are only legal if permitted. There are a few exceptions to this in certain parts of the country for agricultural loads.

I grossed 90k a few times (sometimes a little over ) for my one season pulling beans during harvest. In Iowa you can run 10k over on 5 axles during the fall months but the DOT watches you like a hawk.

Trailer bag blowouts are a cost of doing business.

Posted:  7 years, 1 month ago

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So I got a important question regarding training with the different transmissions and such..

Right Kurt I would be doing it twice. I thought that might be unlikely but if I do switch in 6 months to a year then like you said I would just need some hours behind the wheel of a manual as I have used manual trucks before. I had a trailer just not fully loaded. One thing I do know is that when you are going down a hill, with a manual tranny you had better make sure that it is in like 8th or 9th if you are headed down a steep grade or 3rd or 4th if it is super steep. I'm talking in 10 speed manual tranny type. 18 speed I may have to go look for a class on it or maybe get my Dad to train me a little cause I know that he has driven those from what I remember. I am leaning more to the Kenworths or the Peteebilts here in the future 6-12 months out, just because I know I have heard of their reliability. I eventually want to haul heavy equipment or flatbed so the extra gears may be of use and at the same time if I find a 12 or 15 speed then might go with that but I think they are rare. Thanks Kurt for the advice.

It is my personal belief that anyone coming into the industry should either learn and test on a manual to obtain a CDL or take the first opportunity to learn how to drive a manual when they get it. I am a little bias because my truck driving school taught me using 10 speeds and later a 13. I then worked for a O/O who had all 10 speeds and one super 10. I think it is important because although many fleets/companies are going to all automatics the change is not industry wide. For someone who is thinking of possibly changing companies in the future this could be a hinderance.

I can tell you right now that the two most common transmissions on the road are automatics and 10 speeds. You are onto something about having extra gears for heavy haul applications. using a 13 or an 18 speed is beneficial for pulling up big hills when you are heavy. You are not constantly hunting for a gear that is too slow or not enough RPM. You have the ability to "split" gears and maximize your engines RPMS.

easiest thing to remember about driving a 10 speed is that whatever gear you want to be in or need to be in you should add the numbers of your current speed or speed you should be at and your sum will be the gear you need to be in. Example: I am travelling at 25 MPH and I lost my gear so I am coasting in neutral. If I add 2+5 that equals 7. So at 25 MPH I should be in 7th gear.....get your RPMS to 1000 and put er in the hole! You would be surprised how well that works.

Also, if you are going down a steep grade, you should be one gear lower than what you climbed it in. And if you happen to find yourself at the crest of Monteagle, TN they have big sign telling you what gear you should use according to your gross. :)

All of this info aside I will say there has been times (5pm on a Friday in Chicago or Houston) I wish to all that is holy I had an automatic. And I am no super trucker by any means, I still grind gears and drop some colorful language in the process every now and then. I also float the gears and only use the clutch when I am stopping and starting, sometimes when I don't have enough rpms built up I give it a tap to pull it out of gear too. This is all stuff I picked up on my own after school however.

If you are interested in relocating to Iowa and pulling a refer to Texas and back every week my company has expressed interest in putting someone in either a Pete 587 or KW T660 with 13 speeds and cummins engines. They are willing to give refresher courses to guys who don't have a lot of experience with manuals so long as we can insure you.

Posted:  7 years, 4 months ago

View Topic:

I need help with a short girl problem

Trans-Am

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Problem I see is that you are training for stick. You could drive an automatic, of course, but would you want to? If you hate automatics, then you will be unhappy driving what your wife was trained to drive, if she got an automatic-only limitation on her license.

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Is there a company that would hire just with the auto endorsement ?

Posted:  7 years, 4 months ago

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I have so much to learn. I know I could Google but would rather it hear it from one of you guys....

Worth noting: When I worked there they did everything in their power to get you home, but occasionally (very rarely) things would happen. Sometimes you would get home on the weekend, but not long enough for a 34 (i.e. get home Saturday afternoon and have to leave Sunday afternoon). Sometimes you would just have to a run a weekend. Also, sometimes you might WANT to run a weekend here or there to make extra money. So while typically you won't have to worry about it, still know it because it will come up from time to time.

Does TMC allow you to recap from your previous week if you choose to stay out? Or if you cannot be home long enough to take a 34?

Posted:  7 years, 4 months ago

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Truck customizing questions

Ive noticed some KWs on the roads have some snorkal looking attachments to their air intakes. Are they useful? What is their purpose? Do they create a massive blindspot?

I also wanted to know your opinions on the top 3 absolutely rediculous modification you have seen or heard about. I know truck mods are quite diverse and can range from subtle to "HEY IM HERE!" from over a mile away.

The snorkels you are talking about do serve a purpose depending on their height. Typically, a snorkel that is raised above the cab is to eliminate excess road dust getting kicked into the air intake. This is especially useful if your truck runs a lot of dirt roads and or runs in convoys with other trucks that can send up big clouds of dust. They probably do create a blind spot depending on the truck it is installed on but much like driving a long hood Pete..... You might not see as well as a sloped nose Freightliner but you get used to it. I have never personally seen a snorkel affixed to KW's side mounted air cleaners but if it only sits on top of the stock air cleaners then it most likely just for looks and only serves as a cowl. You do however see a lot of snorkels on the Aussie road trains as they have to tackle hundreds of miles of thick, red, dusty roads. And you do see them in Military applications as well.

This isn't my picture but I seen a lot of these armored International tractors running around Iraq when i was there in 2008. They were used by civilian contractors hauling oil out of the fields in the southern parts of the country. Notice the air cleaners on them, they actually have a "pre-filter" called a cyclone that has a spinning apparatus that rotates even when they are shut off to spin out sand before they can clog up the filters. armored International truck used by the military in Iraq

As for top 3 ridiculous mods? I guess it really is all to opinion. One driver might say he or she cannot live without something on their truck while another driver may think it is totally ridiculous. However......

1. The mega huge, metal CB antennas that have the coil in them. I am told they can handle up to 2000 watts of power.....good luck getting your truck/radio to make that.

2. Those big ARI 140" + sleepers. I get that they are probably super awesome to live in especially for those guys who are on the road for 6 weeks at a time but whenever I see them I can't help but think that you cannot haul ANYTHING over 20k LBS and I assume the drivers who have them do little to no backing. Makes for a comfortable but useless tractor IMO.

3. Some of ultra flashy, custom paint, drop visor, drop bumper show queen trucks I have seen in person and online. Some of them are so over the top with so many custom "one off" parts on them that I can't help but laugh when the owners claim they put down 2000+ miles a week in them with a reefer on it. I've pulled reefer loads out of paved lots that would completely tare off some of those low slung bumpers and and side steps with neon lights attached. There is no way I would run a rig with parts that cannot be readily replaced out on the road. And I also believe a working truck can still be a sexy piece of machinery without staying up all night worrying about who is trying to back into the spot next to you.

Posted:  7 years, 4 months ago

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So I am Wondering What Your Favorite Truck is and Why?!

My favorite truck to drive is the one I use every day, 2016 Cascadia 113 w/52" sleeper. This example is one of about 8 non-smoking trucks the slip-seat crew uses on the Walmart account. The SMURFs are not much to look at, however they’re really great to drive. For the type of work I do, requiring numerous backs (at times 8 per day) and tight quarter maneuvering, it's the perfect setup maximizing driver performance. The shorter wheelbase and tighter turning radius enable quick work of the myriad of complex backing situations faced on the WM account. It's also lighter than the condo sleepers, allowing for a heavier 46k+ payload that typically occurs on backhauls of milk, soft drinks, water or other beverages. Would not trade it for anything,...it's a money maker and that's what really counts.

1442588992.6513.jpg1442588993.5179.jpg Now for my favorite trucks to look at? A whole different kettle of fish. Quick back story, I joined the National Historic Truck Society about 20 years ago and became an avid photographer of restored trucks like the B-61 schoolbus sleeper Dragon posted earlier in this thread. Attending about a dozen and national meets has afforded me a photo collection with examples of just about every truck manufacturer in the last 75 years. So, yes I gravitate to the older stuff from the 50s, 60s, and 70s. I have had the pleasure to drive a few of these older beasts,…and without getting into details I am thankful for current technology specifically suspensions, transmissions, and yes air conditioning. But to me, there is nothing quite like the sound of a Detroit 12V92T-2 cycle diesel exhaust note resonating through twin-stacks…unmistakable.

So below is my favorite dump truck of all time. Dump configurations will always have a special place in my heart because at the ripe young age of 18, my first truck driving experience was in a dump truck, a single screw 1968 R-190 all-wheel drive with only a power assist on the steering. A workout. I then learned how to drive a 10-speed twin screw 1974 International Fleetstar 2070A, an original IHC truck before the re-org. The Robin Egg blue Pete is my ultimate dump truck…built in 1970, it’s a 359 wide nose dump & transfer box trailer combo. Owned by John Guss of Salt Lake City Utah I photographed this truck about 16 years ago when the ATHS had their National Meet at Valley Forge PA. I shot every truck that day, over 200. The photos do not do it justice. Many of the owners flatbed their prizes but John drove his from Utah with a following vehicle.

1482674354.033.jpg1482677924.6079.jpg More of my favorites to follow…enjoy.

G-Town,

I'm glad to know that you are not only a trucker but a truck enthusiast....AND A DETROIT FAN!!!

I honestly tell the other young guys that if they have never heard the roar of a 2 stroke Detroit then they must you tube some runners that have those power plants. Not to mention the old 2 strokers were the soundtrack of Rubber Ducks Mack and the Western Star Gobblin Truck in Maximum Overdrive.

I think it is really neat they allocated some set back axle tractors for your account, that says miles about how well your FM's listen to their drivers IMO. I only ever see them pulling tankers around but man, those things can damn near get at a 90 like a cab over! Running some of the grocery store accounts up here with a columbia that had its 5th wheel permanently stuck in the far hole made for some difficult backs. Had to throw the steers over the curb more times than I can count....Not all of us have daycabs!

I think someday I am going to buy and restore an old single axle tractor. Considering the massive startup cost and commitment to be an O/O I really just want the toy. Perhaps a W900A if I could find one but anything with a 2 stroke, big butterfly hood, and 5+4 twinstick ought to be a fun beast to take the misses out to dinner in HAHA!!

P.S. Ever make it to Walcott? I got made it there this last summer and got some really good pictures at the show and in the museum.

Posted:  7 years, 4 months ago

View Topic:

First 6 months in trucking pictures and video

Thanks for the replies everyone. I have decided to move on from the O/O I was driving for but I with the OTR experience I have now the job market is a little more promising. I will be sure to keep everyone updated! Happy Holidays!

Posted:  7 years, 4 months ago

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So I am Wondering What Your Favorite Truck is and Why?!

I noticed gliders were mentioned, i thought glider kits were banned from cali? As well as older model trucks without emission systems?

I am not entirely sure but I think anything that does not meet the 2000-2007 emissions requirement cannot run in California. Most gliders are built with rebuilt engines pre dating this emission laws so they do not have to have DEF systems. S long story short, yes, they probably are banned. At least cannot be registered in the state. Just don't have one break down on you the wrong side Nevada.

Posted:  7 years, 4 months ago

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I need to decide between Prime, Schneider or Maverick

I'd say go be a tanker yanker. That way you get the endorsements and experience. I've been pulling a reefer since I started and there really isn't much to other than how to set the reefer to whatever you are carrying (basically push some buttons) and put fuel in it. Not much different than dry van as far loading, unloading, and driving characteristics.

Once you learn how to back one trailer you can do em all IMO. You can always revert back to pulling a box around if that opportunity arises. And I think Schneider has a lot of great dedicated tanker accounts that give good pay/bonuses.

I have only experienced tanker surge once hauling totes of pesticide inside my van...holy cow!

Posted:  7 years, 4 months ago

View Topic:

First 6 months in trucking pictures and video

Have had a lot of experiences in my last 6 months so here are some of my pictures! I made a youtube video too, enjoy!

Squeezing an empty trailer into a spot at the packing plant in my first tractor.bright blue semi-truck tractor trailer backed into tight spot inches awaybright blue semi-truck tractor trailer backed into tight spot inches away

Pete 379 loaner truck I used for a week.black Peterbilt 379 at fuel island

view from the Pete waiting to get loaded by grain cart. truck driver's view out the windshield of Peterbilt 379

Combine fire this harvest season.....it was supposed to load me when I got there :( farm combine on fire in wheat field

My black Freightliner that I upgraded to.black freightliner and red Volvo bobtail sitting in parking lot

Picking up at a pumpkin patch right before Halloween 2016semi-truck picking up pumpkins at a pumpkin patch for Halloween

VERY tight dock north of St.Louis grabbing a back haul of eggs to take home.semi-truck picking up a load of eggs

Just came over Monteagle, TN and snapped this pic before bedtime at the fireworks shop before heading through Chattanooga the next morning. And no I didn't beat rush hour lol. picture of a fireworks store at night in Tennessee

My last fill up before heading home last week. I had just sat North of St. Louis for several hours on HWY 61 due to glare ice/ freezing drizzle. I decided to take a 10 hour break rather than drive all the way back to central Iowa and got this picture the next morning. The whole lot as well as my entire tractor was sheet of ice. black Freightliner filling up at fuel island after ice storm

And my super trucker selfie! young truck drivers selfie in the cab of his truck

And here is the YouTube link for the video!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8iGWs-UQuI

Merry Christmas everyone!

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