Comments By Brian F.

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  • Brian F.
  • Joined:
  • 3 years, 4 months ago
  • Comments:
  • 68

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Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift school first week.

Thanks all. I am 101% focused and determined.

We have to memorize the entire pretrip not just the in cab part. 5th wheel instead of skid plate = wrong, yellow lens instead of amber = wrong. You get the idea. That's the reason I say that studying before getting here was a mistake because I have slightly different terminology stuck in my head now. Not the end of the world.

For anyone coming into it get a jump on recognizing the parts by sight in a pretrip but don't dwell on terminology or even what exactly is part of the pretrip because that changes regularly as well.

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift school first week.

I was gonna wait for the end of the week because not much is happening so far but my sleep schedule is all screwed up soooo. Dateline Indiana. You're allowed to check into the hotel on Sunday, any earlier and you pay for the extra night. Class starts at 0600 Monday, don't be late. I strongly urge you to drive your own car if at all possible as opposed to the bus. People not from Indiana were required to get their permits and DOT physicals in their home state before coming which is what I wanted to do anyway. For some weird reason Indiana residents were not supposed to and they are sorry they couldn't. First 2 days of class so far, after a drug screen and basic paperwork, is prepping for permit test but enough new information for us permit holders to keep it interesting and review is never bad either. I'm surprised to hear myself say this but I had hammered a pretrip video into myself for a week prior to starting this but I think now that maybe it did more harm than good. I say that mostly because of specific verbage they want you to memorize for the test with the DMV guy. I keep tripping up so far over what I ingrained from the video but it's only day 2 and maybe it's just me. Anyway, so far so good, very happy to be here. My attitude is that I am giving myself to this school for 3 weeks and will be happy with whatever they want to throw at me no matter what.

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

I don't recall my HTML tags well enough to play with quotes. Just wanted to clarify fear as in taking it seriously not like drooling on myself while I pee my pants. :)

Erol says

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Brian is afraid

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Brian says

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I wouldn't say fear

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Brian, I like to tag quotes to identify who says what. But I like to add a bit of silliness, too. Absolutely, (to dissect and kill the humor) most "fear" is truly respect.

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

Makes me dream of that ONE last $100 barn find that has to be out there somewhere.

A friend of mine recently bought a 67 Camaro Z28. Nice car, but nowhere near a complete restoration. $34,000. Boys and their TOYS!!

smile.gif

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

Exactly.. Pitiful

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I know, right? I watch Mecum, every time an RS or SS or Z is on the block, I suddenly become preoccupied... I am in my late 50s and cannot afford to buy a car I owned in my twenties...

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

Makes me cry considering those cars are selling for $30k+ now.

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

I wouldn't say fear, I think more like an appropriate amount of nervous respect. Yes I have met a number of truck drivers who made me think "oh geez this should be a cake walk" haha. Then again I can say the same about some nurses I've worked with. Even worked with a few doctors who made me think maybe that route would have been easier than I thought.

Brian is afraid:

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Yes, that's my biggest fear of this [trucking] career choice, that and some of the near impossible backing situations I've seen videos of.

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Brian, keep in mind that over 20 million Americans chose trucking for a career. Nothing "wrong" there! Check out the kind of people who switched careers to trucking: What did you do before becoming a truck driver?

As for backing that trailer up, yes you'll need some practice to get your brain wrapped around that. Here are a few situations you may run into. This link is a search result on Backing Practiceâ„¢

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

I owned a 69 ragtop with a stock 400, Muncie 4 speed, Tach in the hood, rubber front end and hideaway headlights. With no upgrades other than headers it would pull the wheels in 2 gears. I also had a 70 1/2 Trans Am with a 389 which was very cool till I put a rod through the side of the block. There were 3 different Goats among my friends back in the 70's and my garage was the engine rebuild (mostly bent valves due to plastic timing gears) and clutch replacement gathering spot. We went through a lot of clutches, more breaking them than wearing them out. lol Don't even ask me what happened to the car I don't want to talk about it. :(

GTO? Are you "Pontiac" guy? "68 Goat is one of my favorite muscle cars.

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

Yes I understand it's not the same as a manual in a 69 GTO but I've been driving manuals my whole life and enjoy it so it will be a shame. On the other hand a manual trans really cuts into the coffee drinking soooo. But seriously I've seen where a few guys have said they appreciate the auto in the city where there is plenty to focus on without shifting and that makes a lot of sense to me. More than a few times over the years I've watched guys making turns in cities with a tractor trailer and asked myself "who the hell would want to do that for a living"? Yes, that's my biggest fear of this career choice, that and some of the near impossible backing situations I've seen videos of.

It may actually be the last time you drive a class 8 truck equipped with a manual transmission.

Good luck!!!

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

Relieved, thanks both of you. I'm not so much against an auto, I just don't want to start off with a restriction.

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Swift question

Starting the Swift school in Indiana on Monday. I was just re-reading some old training diaries and noticed a lot of talk about auto transmissions. My question is does anyone know if they are they still training on manuals? I sooo don't want to have the automatic only restriction on my license.

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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Anybody left a higher paying job in corporate America for trucking? How did it work out for you?

I'm leaving in 2 days to start company CDL school monday the 28th so can't tell you how it ended for me but I am taking a pretty big pay cut. I've been a travel RN off and on for 24 years and enjoyed it for the most part but the manufactured stress level steadily increases every year. I'm at the point that doing something I like is more important than the money. I will miss the money a lot but looking forward to actually doing something I like.

Posted:  3 years, 1 month ago

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What did you do before becoming a truck driver?

As an ER nurse I will attest to this. Nursing staff and doctors pretty much ignore housekeepers to the point they are essentially invisible at most places I've worked. Yes they work hard and even when they are caught up they don't get to lounge around like everyone else does.

I'm currently a housekeeper in the emergency department for my states main hospital. This job is horrid for pay (barely scraping by 275 a week but I get paid biweekly) management treats us golden employees (ones who care and get stuff done) like crap and ignores any bad stuff the crappy employees do. I bust my butt ridiculously hard to be treated and paid like this. Honestly even when my dad was a regional trucker and he unloaded his trailers at 80 percent of his stops, he still never worked this hard for this crap pay.

Posted:  3 years, 2 months ago

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Snowing....and now scared

Reminds me of driving a Dodge stratus through the WY mountains West bound on 80 a few years ago. It was snowing so hard visibility was barely past the end of our own hood. I've been driving in snow my whole life but that night scared the **** out of me. What I remember most about it was a tractor trailer flying by me in the left lane doing 2-3 times whatever slow speed I was doing. I tried pulling off the shoulder at that point just to catch my breath (Yes I know that was a bad idea) till my passenger said Umm no don't, it's a bottomless drop off with no guard rail. Luckily we found an exit shortly after that and spent the night in a teeny motel. The next morning we must have seen 30 cars in the ditch in the first 5 miles.

Posted:  3 years, 2 months ago

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Live feed dash cams

I would guess you would need a huge amount of data on your cell plan. Another option might be to record to a memory card on the camera then upload it to her at the end of the day via email. Don't forget to narrate. :)

Posted:  3 years, 2 months ago

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Old Trucker

Awesome

Posted:  3 years, 2 months ago

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Old Trucker

So I go to the truck stop a mile down the street from my house for an emergency Belgian Waffle with strawberries and a scoop of Ice cream. Anyway, sitting next to me at the counter is an old guy in a bomber jacket telling stories. The guy is 83 years old, lives alone, fought in the Korean war in 1951 and still drives his own restored Freightliner pulling MRI and CT vans from hospital to hospital in central NY. I'm a little surprised they would have a guy his age with a stroke in his history pulling million+ dollar vans around but Good for him.

Posted:  3 years, 2 months ago

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Swift travel lanes

Same here lol. As soon as you say NY everyone assumes the city. I live in an ocean of maple trees and have one traffic light in about a 12 mile radius

Me, I'm from upstate. Just over an hour north of Albany in Washington county.

When most folks hear I'm from NY, one of the first questions is often " what's it like living around all those people in the city?" In fact I'm way out in the sticks on a dirt road. Nothing but maple trees in cow farms in my hood haha

Yeah G, I'm not very close to Johnstown, but when the time comes, I'll be looking into all kinds of options for dedicated

Posted:  3 years, 2 months ago

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Swift 11-28

Thanks all for the well wishes. I find that now it's an actual reality I have butterflies but for the huge life change it is for me not so much fear of the process.

Posted:  3 years, 2 months ago

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Swift 11-28

If you do well with the TT training the actual test is a cake walk. One question I guessed at was something not covered, the few others I think I missed were a matter of different terminology. I'm not actually sure of which ones I missed because the NY system doesn't tell you. There were actually 3 separate tests for "core", Air brakes" and "Combination". I missed a total of 4 or 5 between all 3 tests which was well within what was allowed. Very easy. I also did Tankers and doubles/triples which were also very easy. There is so little to the tanker endorsement I wonder why they think it even needs to be an endorsement. If you understand bulkhead and baffle, the effect of surge and the benefit of slowing down to avoid rollover you got that one.

Congratulations! I can't wait to get mine and post here, too! I'm slowly making my way through the training here, but I think I'll be very well prepared thanks to the material here!

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