Comments By Kramer avatar
  • Kramer
  • Joined:
  • 7 years, 7 months ago
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Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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What does Prime check before approving you for orientation?

All of this is on your DAC report and you can request a free copy from HireRight once a year. You can also request a copy of your MVR, usually for a minimal fee (in VA it is $7 for an online report, $10 for hard copy).

I highly recommend that everyone preparing to begin training or change companies start by getting both reports.

I did and (so far) have had no surprises.

Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Thought that I was overpacking

Also, and as an addendum to my over packing question:

I'm wondering if I need to pack my bib overalls. I have two pair sitting here - one insulated and one non-insulated.

How often, or how likely will I be out in the elements long enough to need to dress for long exposure to cold weather?

I'm thinking about events like chaining tires, replacing mud flaps, lights, reflectors, etc. An hour or so in the weather with just jeans and a heavy coat may not be so bad (although a change of clothes after the event will likely be needed), but longer than that might require better outer wear. That is why I'm wondering about my overalls.

I also realized that I don't have any thermal underwear (long-johns) packed.

Is there any consensus regarding winter wardrobes during training?

Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Thought that I was overpacking

Nancy asked:

The sleeping bag liner, that accounts for bed sheet?

Yes, more or less...

It is just a single layered micro-fiber sheet, cut the same size and shape as a sleeping bag (also has a zipper like the bag). Like a sheet, it keeps the bed, or in this case the bag, clean - and is easier to wash and dry than the bag (or bed...). It also provides some extra insulation and warmth if needed and when rolled and stored it is not much bigger than a beer can.

My sleeping bag is a warm weather bag - rated for only 36° F max (45° F comfort) - so the extra insulation provided by the liner is important in the event that the bunk heater in the truck is unable to keep the cab warm (as is often reported by members of this forum). That is also the reason that I have packed two extra micro-fiber blankets.

The blankets are both the sized for a full bed, but store about the size of a half roll of paper towels. By themselves, the blankets don't provide a lot of warmth, but as part of a layered sleeping system along with the bag and liner, just one blanket can add another 10° F of warmth (from my observations and testing). The entire ensemble packs into the space of half a milk crate or about 800 cubic inches and is very light weight (I don't have any notes on weight and have already packed my scale into storage so I cannot report the weight).

Oh, and within that half a milk crate is my two compressible pillows! I like them more than inflatable pillows, even though the take up more space (each one is about 1.5 times the size of a beer can).

Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Best personal vehicle to let sit.

For what its worth:

I would not replace the car. For the few days each year that you will be needing a car, why not just rent one?

Save yourself the cost of insurance, license fees, maintenance, etc.

At $75 per day, it should cost around $3300 per year to rent a car rather than own one. How does that compare with your cost of owning your vehicle?

Of course you should be able to rent a car for less than $75 per day and that may reduce the yearly cost, but I'd rather work from the high end of the equation to avoid under bidding.

Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Thought that I was overpacking

Thanks Errol,

I'll only be in Indianapolis for 5 days before I begin my 10K miles with a trainer (finished driver training at the community college and have my CDL in hand).

My deluxe atlas, dry-ease markers, tool bag, CB and ham radios, file box, storage bins, cooler, and additional items, are already packed and loaded (or installed) in my car.

I selected my training items and bags, as well as my solo items, based upon the lists and many discussions here on Trucking Truth.

Do you have any thoughts regarding the number or size of the bags that I've mentioned?

Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Thought that I was overpacking

Isaac replied:

That's a lot of clothes. You can do laundry on the road.

Too many socks? Or too many hats?

Could you be more specific?

Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Thought that I was overpacking

It is now less than a week until I report for orientation at Celadon.

In preparation for the journey (and in anticipation of sharing space in a truck with my trainer) I've been packing, sorting, paring-down, and repacking my gear into two, 3-day backpacks. Each pack is about 22" tall, 15" wide, and 8" deep, yielding about 3000 cubic inches of storage each (for a total of 6000 cu in). Strapped to one of the packs, in a piggy-back configuration, is a 1000 cubic inch day pack where I currently store my laptop and writing supplies, but which will also serve as a shower bag to carry my change of clothes and dopp kit.

When both of these bags are filled:

5 pair of jeans (plus one pair on me)

6 oxford shirts (plus on on me)

10 long sleeve t-shirts (plus one on me)

10 pair boxers (see the pattern?)

10 pair socks (and...)

10 bandanna's (and...)

2 light weight jackets (heavy coat will be on me - January in Indianapolis!)

2 pair shoes (boots will be on me)

spare belt

2 fold-able hats (plus one on me, and then I'm dressed)

1 scarf (might be on me...)

1 balaclava (I hope it won't get that cold...)

eyeglasses and spares

shower shoes

sleeping bag (on outside of pack)

sleeping bag liner

2 compressible pillows

microfiber blanket

microfiber towel and washcloth

laundry bag

dopp kit

meds bag

laptop and charger (12V & 120V)

notepad and pens

water bottle

cellphone and charger (12V & 120V)

flashlight and multitool

they seem very big and bulky, so I pulled a 32" duffel bag out of storage: 32x15x15 yields 7200 cubic inches.

Everything except the day pack with the laptop, notepad and pens, and water bottle fit in the duffel with room to spare.

I think the consensus on TT is to bring a single 26" duffel, although it seems that some have suggested packing in two 26" bags.

I therefore think that my two 3-day bags (with the day pack) should fit the bill.

I'm hoping for some comments and/or feedback.


Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Texas CDL skills test fail

In Virginia, after your third failed attempt, you must attend and pass a refresher course before you can retest.

Bill is correct in that your local DMV office or CDL testing site is the best place to go for accurate information.

Good luck.

Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Congratulations on getting your CDL A.

Did you attend a training program, or do it on your own? The question is relevant since most companies will not hire new (inexperienced) drivers unless they have completed an accredited training program. You may find that any company that offers you an opportunity, may also require you to attend some type of training - at the minimum, their refresher program; and quite possibly a full training course.

Finally, only driving and safety violations will appear on your DAC. Rejections from your employment applications will not.

So the short version is:

Apply to any and every company that you can. You may get lots of rejections (you may get none!) but you will almost certainly get some approvals. But if you never ask, you will never get a positive response.

Good luck!

Posted:  7 years, 2 months ago

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Prime Inc. CDL training. Springfield, Missouri

Congratulations Turtle!

Well done.

Keep working to bring the BP down... the trucking part will be easy - your on the right path with the right attitude.

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