Comments By Sandman J

https://cdn.truckingtruth.com/avatars/0383273001663937405-72521.jpg avatar
  • Sandman J
  • Joined:
  • 5 years, 6 months ago
  • Comments:
  • 70

Page 2 of 4

Previous Page
Next Page
Go To Page:    

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Need advice - Backing / Week off school

If you use a pull up, use all the distance available. I see a huge number of drivers fight battles with themselves trying unsuccessfully to back in docks and parking spots due to not utilizing all the available free space.

I appreciate the advice Packrat, I will make sure I use all my space.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Need advice - Backing / Week off school

Thanks Klutch, I will try to remember turn towards your problem on the alley dock since I know to do it on the straight line.

Davy, great idea. I forgot I have ATS on my home computer, I will play around with it, thanks!

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Need advice - Backing / Week off school

Thanks for your take on it, Papa Pig. I definitely overthink and get flustered, but I don't quite comprehend the foundation yet either on the alley dock. Not getting points on straight line. Needed one pullup on mock test day and that was the first time in awhile, so I'm assuming nerves. Even though my offsets aren't pretty, I think I can get it done with one or two extra pullups which I'm working on decreasing. I do look in my mirror while pulling up on the alley dock because they said it's the tandems we need to move forward a certain amount. I will focus on what you said tomorrow.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

And count me out now

I reminded myself of that this morning before I went out for my road drive and it was the best one I've had to-date! Thanks Papa Pig!

“drive with your brain and your eyes” leave your emotions out of the equation.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Need advice - Backing / Week off school

So tomorrow closes out the second week of the three week program at Veriha Driver Academy. However, next week there is no schooling because all the trainers are in their own training class. So I will have a week off, then return for the final week, which will consist of three days of practice then CDL testing on Thursday/Friday. My backing (offset, 90) is not up to snuff, and I fear forgetting what I do know of them. I asked the instructors for advice on what I can do with this week off to try to keep improving. They said rent a Uhaul trailer and practice. Also, a driver/OTR trainer stopped in on his 34, and when I told him I'm having trouble judging my distances he recommended I use a range finder used for hunting. Sounds like good advice to me. My question here is, do you concur with these tips, and any other advice? Thanks in advance.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

I Forgot, Studying At 52 Bites. Questions Within

* Understanding that I’m not a “Trucker” until I’ve got a year OTR under my belt and more to some companies like Fed Ex or Walmart @ 30 months, I’m curious about and this may be wrong terminology but “specialty trucking” such as like driving for a NASCAR team or transporting equipment for Led Zeppelin ( one can dream ). Are there routes into those gigs or is that a you’ve got to know someone who knows someone driving job?

Jon, I'm only in training so I have very little info on it, but I know with Veriha's Entertainment Fleet, the minimum requirements vary based on the needs of the company, like how many drivers do they have on the Fleet and how many trucks/trailers are needed to haul all the concert equipment needed, but is usually one winter solo at least.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Morning great, afternoon terrible.

My road drive this morning felt excellent. I drove for probably the longest I have driven, not sure how long it was though, and covered the local town streets, country roads, and highways. The only critique at the end was don't come in so hot on the turns and roundabouts. My personal critique was I was finally smooth in turning, accelerating, and braking, and had great speed control, but I was favoring the outside of the lane on the highways. I was checking both mirrors properly which should keep me centered, so not sure what that was about. Oh well. I am confident in that aspect and in my pre-trip. When I returned to the range after the drive, I had time to knock out one 90 back, and it went fantastically! I did freeze at one point and the instructor gave me a two-step instruction then it went in the box. It was by far the best 90 I have done, and I left for lunch on cloud nine!

Unfortunately that was short-lived, as after lunch, I couldn't back for nothing. My first offset and 90 were pretty bad. Same with the next round. After that, they moved the offset/straight line to another part of the range to open a second 90 hole. I went to the new 90 and stayed there as that is my worst skill. I continued to underperform, and before I knew it, it was time to go in and fill out the log book to end the day. Wish I had more time.

One instructor wants tomorrow to be ALL backing but another instructor has to approve that. I hope he does! My next update will either be late tomorrow night or on Saturday, as I will be driving home after class due to having next week off.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Start with my training in a few weeks

I'm only in training but concur with the advice to be coachable. I struggle with my backing skills, and one of the instructors specifically mentioned to me that I'm remaining coachable, while he tried to explain something to me. I can only assume this is why they haven't given up on me. I can't imagine them wanting to spend much time on someone who doesn't know what he's doing but thinks he does, or won't listen to the experts on how to improve. Sounds like you will be going into this with the right attitude.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Today was a good day. I passed my mock test! It is the halfway point of the class by number of days in the Veriha Driver Academy.

Six of us left in class, we were split into groups of two, and we currently have three instructors. While the instructors each gave the pre-trip and LABs (brake test) to one student, the rest of us went to a truck to practice backing. We would be tested on the straight line back and the offset back. My practice backs for both went great. Then I was called over for the pre-trip. I was told to do the front of tractor, driver side engine compartment, front axle of the tandems, and coupling components. Pre-trip went great and I didn't miss a thing. Next was in-cab and LABs. I got in my head and froze when thinking if the engine needed to be on or off, which sucked because I practiced a lot and was confident. After thinking through it and calming down, I got through it all and passed everything.

Back to the truck as a group of six to be tested on our backs. Straight line which I've been doing great on I used a pull-up but no points there. Offset which has been hit or miss for me didn't go as smoothly as I hoped but it wasn't horrendous and I racked up two points. Also saw by way of another student the importance of following the examiner's instructions to a T. We are supposed to honk the horn when the back is complete. He honked after passing the first set of cones where you'd honk for the offset, but he was on his straight line. Automatic fail. For the offset he was supposed to be to the right of the yellow painted line but was on the right. Automatic fail. Pay attention, I will remind myself! Anyone who failed anything will be retested on Friday. Luckily I passed all my tests today.

Tomorrow should be road drives in the morning, and backing practice in the afternoon. I'm hoping to improve on my 90, all of them really, but that's where I need to focus. I understand the concept of the offset even if I can't always execute it great. Til tomorrow...

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

Start with my training in a few weeks

Good luck Etch! And good plan to study the pre-trip on here before going to training. Even though I am training with a different company, having that foundation made it a lot easier than having come in completely blind. I just had to tweak some things, add or subtract some items, to fit the company/state I'm training with/in.

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

Semi-Retired ;-) CDL B to CDL A, Lord willing!

Day 6! Ok, note to self; bring gloves to the range.

I agree, for aiding in the pre-trip. Pulling on the belts and slack adjuster, even just opening and closing the hood. Glad to have gloves!

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Hanging in there, FR8TM4N! You do the same!

Today was good, in my head anyway, haha... We rotated between the straight line back followed by an immediate offset, then the 90. All my straight line backs were good, my first offset was terrible, but then my next two went great. My first 90 was horrible, followed by a decent one, with instructor guidance. Early in the day, I thought, man I'm never gonna get this. I don't know what changed, but my mind got in the right attitude, because even though my offsets are inconsistent and my 90s are bad, I started feeling like, you know what, I'll get this. So that made me feel good. While we were doing that, the two CDL holders did some backs with us and did their road tests to test out, and one of them did. He headed home and will meet up with his road trainer tomorrow morning. That's gotta feel great!

After lunch we were in the classroom going over Powerpoint slides. Tomorrow will be the mock tests, which I did not know would include the straight line and offset backs, I thought it was just the Pre-Trip. But I'm still excited for it!

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Will do, PackRat, that doesn't look like a position I want to be in!

Today started with a road drive, I got a bit more time because I was with the trainer who can only take one student at a time. No complaints from me! Overall it went pretty well. My speed control has greatly improved, just need to keep focusing on smoothing out my turns.

Back to the range with one of the CDL holders, and the two of us rotated doing Offsets. Again, more practice which I specifically asked for, no complaints. I would have one good one then one bad one and back and forth it went. The good ones felt so great getting them done! I know once I set myself up properly for the straight-back to finish it out, it ends well. It's getting to that point that is the challenge. I will continue to learn and practice.

After lunch, it was everyone do one offset, and if they liked what they saw overall, we'd move to the 90s. Well mine and a couple others left a lot to be desired but off to the 90s we went. That blew my mind. The cool parts were seeing the tandems actually pivot vs roll, and the lug trick! Lug trick being to approach the box, GOAL, pace off how many steps from your ICC bumper to the middle of the box, then watching the lug nuts on the driver side steer, reverse as that many lug nuts passes the place of the one you started looking at. I'm sure that could be explained better so if anyone familiar with it wants to smooth out that explanation for readers please do. Two reps of that, one guided and one on our own with guidance as needed, brought us to the end of class.

Due to tomorrow's forecast, we are likely doing our classroom day. Wednesday or Thursday is our mock test for Pre-Trip, and I am excited for that! Something I am actually pretty confident in.

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Thanks Old School! I read the article you linked. It is very encouraging. I knew the backing up would be hard and will take a very long time to feel comfortable at, and I'm willing to put in the time and effort so I can be out there on my own enjoying going forward!

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

Semi-Retired ;-) CDL B to CDL A, Lord willing!

Good luck in your training, FR8TM4N! We started on the same day. Hope you're enjoying it as much as I am.

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Thanks for the encouragement George. I won't let it get me down.

Today's road drive went pretty well, the instructor said afterwards was the only thing to pick on you for was not steering smoothly on the turns, and some on the pedals. We could be in different trucks each day so I will have to adjust accordingly, and obviously improve my skills. Back to the offsets. I feel like after my first try, which wasn't pretty but I got there, I started to understand the concept more. Also, adjusting some things to work better for me, like them saying, "When it looks like it's two feet away..." well, for me, that kept me hard-right on the wheel too long, and I found when I think it's four feet away is putting me in a better spot. I asked for some additional instruction as one guy got today, which helped him, and they will try to facilitate that. That said, I'm not doing as bad as I think I am, because he said we would've had a conversation about that. I'm not the best (which is clear to anyone with eyes) but I'm not the worst, so that made me feel better. I also know I'm hard on myself, I don't like feeling incompetent which is unavoidable when taking on a new endeavor, especially one such as this.

The forecast for Monday means the roads are supposed to be more like swimming pools, so that may be a classroom day if that happens. But at some point we will start the 90 backs. We are all ready for a weekend off, but sounds like most will still be heading over there to work on pre-trip and also doing some computer assignments we got before starting out.

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Today was the same layout as yesterday. Pre-trip for an hour, where I focused on the LABs (brake tests) since that's when we have keys to the trucks. The other stuff I can work on whenever I see fit 24/7, so that was my focus. I have it down pretty good, just gonna get it smoother so I'm not stumbling my words. Same for a good chunk of the pre-trip, gotta hammer down the details so I don't sound like I'm fumbling for words, and get a better handle on the parts I don't have locked down yet. I'd say for day four, I'm doing pretty decent.

After that was the road drives. Same three students from yesterday but swapped instructors. I drove second today. We all got to drive around town dealing with turns, some tighter than others, and traffic. That was fun and I feel like I learned a lot. Can't wait to get out there again!

Back to the yard to break for lunch, then offset back practice again. Started with two groups then combined into one. I got three backs today. It doesn't come natural for me, so I try to learn from my mistakes and from my fellow students' successes and mistakes. On my third go at it, I finally didn't need instructor assistance to make it happen, and although I did two GOALs and was told I encroached at one point that I wasn't aware of, I got it in the box. Even the straight-line back part went better, after following the advice of once I'm in the box, stop worrying about the cones on my sides and focus on the two cones on the back. I knew that was the key to success, and thought I had been, but apparently not. Regardless, that part felt great! I believe tomorrow is the same, before starting 90s next week, so hopefully I can get to a point where I'm feeling better about it tomorrow.

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Today was filled with ups and downs. When I hopped up in a truck for the in-cab brake test, called LABs here (Leaks, Alarms, Buttons), and turned the key to the On position, the windshield wipers immediately went on. Me and the guy I was working with couldn't figure it out, after putting that lever in every position it could go in, so I ran inside and asked the instructors. They told me about the power button on the driver side left floor. Ran back out, turned it to on, and like magic the wipers finally went off! I learned I was more confident in the LABs in my head versus in the truck. But I will get there. We have an hour to practice each morning.

They switched up the plans for the day, and I didn't know how glad that would make me until later. The instructor showed us the lot by a movie theatre that is used for the backing test, I believe. If I misunderstood, but don't think I did, it's at least got paint on the ground to facilitate the backing tests including the 90 box. After that, he drove us to an industrial park in a nearby town. After he drove us around, it was our turn, and I was first! Did a series of left turns, right turns, crossing intersections, and typical new-guy stuff. That was followed by leaving the park, through the small town, and onto the highway at 65mph. What an adventure! Back to the industrial park, switch drivers, and the second and third guy got their turn. The instructor estimated we each got about 45 minutes. That had us all feeling great, even though we all need to pay more attention to our speed and smooth out our turns. Tomorrow we are supposed to switch to the other instructor and try it again.

Back at the yard is where things went south for me. After lunch, which I ate quick then practiced pre-tripping a truck, we each did a straight line back just as another practice. I don't think anyone made it without one pull-up, and some including myself needed two. We all had some rust on our newly-formed/practiced skill from yesterday. But for me it got worse. Time for the Off-set back. I did terrible! I didn't understand the concept, and got my movements guided by an instructor. After paying attention to what others were doing, talking to those that were catching on, and what the instructor was telling others, I started to get the concept, I think. But in practice, it wasn't coming out. So after another guided effort, I got it in the box. Then I couldn't straight-line back for the life of me! Nerves and repeated failed attempts kept blocking my thought process. After several pull-ups, I finally realized my mistake. I wasn't keeping my elbows tucked. So in they went and I finally got it back there, still not too pretty though.

I spent almost an hour and a half after class pre-tripping a truck and am feeling much better about that. Here, it's broken down into many sections, thirteen I think I counted. I am pretty confident in front of tractor, passenger side engine compartment, and coupling. For this personal session I worked on driver side engine compartment, back of cab, front of trailer, and am feeling pretty good about those, and okay on side of trailer. I quickly reviewed rear of trailer and also spent some time on "Budd Wheels, Drive Axles, and Rear of Tractor." Now I'm at the library to check in on TT and go over the CDL Skills Test Guide paper they gave us today.

Hopefully tomorrow I will show some improvement. I want this to happen.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Day two complete. We started the first hour doing pre-trip in random groups of two or three, and will continue that every day for now. My group had one of the instructors show us some parts we weren't sure of, which cleared that up. Think we'll need that again with a few other parts tomorrow but that should be it.

We did straight-line backs today. Seven of us in class, two CDL holders without experience. So one of them in each group. My group had four, and we each got in two backs before lunch. After lunch, we all joined up and just randomly rotated between two trucks. I was eager but cautious of overstepping, don't wanna screw anyone else out of their turns, but man I wanted to just stay in that seat! I improved throughout the day, and can somewhat-confidently do them with zero or one pullup. Others seemed to catch on a bit faster, but I figured that would be the case, and it doesn't bother me or slow me down, just moreso mentioning it for future readers. You don't have to be the best, you just have to get to the place you need to be. Tomorrow is supposed to be the hour of pre-trip practice followed by offsets, then an instructor-driven trip to a nearby town's industrial park where we'll get some seat time on real roads. I can't believe how fast this is all happening! I am covered in grease and couldn't be happier! Any hard parts I run into, and I know there will be a ton, I will just remind myself, "I finally escaped my last job that I hated and finally doing (training do do) something I've always dreamed of!"

I will be following also. Good luck. Pretrip pretrip pretrip!

Back at the library to memorize some more parts!

This is a company that has always intrigued me and I don't think there has been much information here on TT about it. It's beautiful that we have a trainee putting out a training diary on Veriha.

Not many on here. I believe Bill M's was the last one from earlier this year.

Thanks for reading.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

A rook's attempt at a Veriha training diary

Drove up to Marinette, WI, yesterday to start my training at Veriha's Driving Academy today, Monday, October 17th, 2022. Day one in the books! Maybe not as overwhelming as I thought it would be, but it still kinda was. All paperwork stuff was done in the main building through the Driver Pulse app. Didn't take long. They have a driver lounge with laundry and two bathrooms with showers, and laundry. I heard it's available 24/7 but that the office is not always open, so maybe not. Then we headed to the training building across the lot for the rest of the day, and where we'll spend the remainder of our time reporting to.

The hotel is a one-story with about 20 rooms and no front desk/lobby area. I believe the company owns it but also does not have exclusive use of it. I have a roommate. The bathroom is decent, the kitchen is lacking in space (tiny fridge, no stove but has a plug-in cooktop, but it will serve its purpose for why I'm here. Guess that'll prepare me to make do with what I got while on the road!

We talked about the history of trucking in America which I found interesting. We went over the Pre-Trip in slide-form inside before lunch, finished after lunch, then went outside to see it done for real. That part definitely had some overwhelming moments. We should be outside working on that and straight line backs tomorrow. Yes, just got here, and tomorrow I should be going in reverse already! I am glad I studied Daniel B's Pre-trip before starting this adventure but I will have to tweak some things, as I figured I would. The biggest is instead of PMS, I have to say properly mounted, not damaged. PMND in my mind now. And add in Not Leaking, if it can leak. I am at the public library now which will serve as my study place. I'd like to learn a section at a time, their way, just as I did using the one on here.

The trainers expressed something debated much on TT and it mirrored the overall sentiment here. Out of seven students, two came in with CDL in hand. The trainers flat-out said instantly that he is afraid of what they already know, or something to that effect. Basically, he'd prefer if they had no experience because he doesn't know what bad happens they learned and what he will have to break them of. As a background, they both went to 160 Driving Academy, just different locations. One paid out of pocket, and said he should have used the grant but didn't know about it. One used the grant, but said he probably should have just come here first, since he signed the same contract we did. He is still on the hook, and I don't mean that in a bad way, for the 12 months AND 120,000 miles, or the $12,500. That is a very high number, but mentioned by the experts in several other threads, it doesn't really matter because we're not here to fail. Focus on passing the CDL, which Veriha is using these three weeks to get us ready for, then focus on honing our new craft for the first year plus. A trainer basically said the same thing, almost word for word how it's expressed here.

That's what I got for today, looking forward to tomorrow, now time to study. I will report back as I can.

Page 2 of 4

Previous Page
Next Page
Go To Page:    

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More