Profile For Aubrey M.

Aubrey M.'s Info

  • Location:
    Battle Creek, MI

  • Driving Status:
    Rookie Solo Driver

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  • Joined Us:
    1 year, 4 months ago

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Posted:  17 hours, 47 minutes ago

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Preparing for a Trucking Career with Roehl

Congrats

I think roehl is just running short on trainers, but they will get you one.

You may see a manual at some point. My truck, 2nd truck, is an auto, but i just had a loaner last week that was a manual and also recovered a truck that is a manual. So they're still around and it still pays to have that knowledge or skill.

Posted:  18 hours, 8 minutes ago

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Reset or recap?

11x62mph =682 miles per day.

Your math is way off, and the compared distance between the two ways of running is going to much closer in the real world. You'd be lucky to get even 600 miles everyday running your full 11 hours. Traffic, terrain, weather, shippers and cons, and timing and mileage of the runs themselves are all limiting factors. This is why if you actually turn over 600 miles in a day you're exhausted at the end of it. Three or four consecutive days of 525-600 miles will often mean using almost all of your 14 hour clock, unless your company somehow has loads that are 600 and whatever miles on a daily basis that all pick up and deliver perfectly with your ten hour resets.

The advantage to doing 34 hour resets and just running your clock to the max for six consecutive days is you don't have to worry as much about on duty time eating into your drive time. Running recaps, on duty time can end up costing you the drive time you need to get to a destination that day. So you're off duty a lot more running recaps, if you want to turn miles and earn that is.

Starting out, just run as the company dispatches you because they are already going to try and maximize your efficiency. As you go you'll learn the routine and what time you spend doing certain tasks and how to become more efficient in those tasks. You'll also learn how to keep your hours more consistent (as far as sleep schedule) which in my opinion is more easily done running recaps because you typically only have 5-12 hours in a day.

I have run mainly recaps since going solo on February 20th, 2019. I just hit 120,020 miles on January 28th, 2020. My fellow classmates running weekly with resets are 10000-30000 miles behind me. I'll post my paychecks and miles to date within the next week for people to get an idea of your first year. This is with roehl but other companies should be similar.

I kind of veered off topic there, but the point goes to Old School's advice of being a top tier driver. He or other experienced drivers on here could probably give individual examples of running pretty much the same weekly mileage whether they run recaps or do 34s.

Another advantage to running recaps in my opinion is you expose yourself to more load availability. You're available while the guy doing a 34 misses out. Also, you're staying in dispatches mind because you're running more often through more shifts and they know you need miles and are willing to run.

Posted:  1 month ago

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Possible to be an online student while a full time OTR trucker?

Pick one or the other to go with because either your productive, and probably safety, is going to suffer in driving, or your school work will suffer. This job cannot be done full time with another full time job, or even part time job on a daily basis. This is especially true in your first year of driving.

Posted:  1 month ago

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How to keep from stalling

If you can find a good spot to do it, you can shift from third all the way to tenth without touching the fuel and the truck will not stall. If you can do this it should give you a little better idea about what was said here and by your instructor.

Posted:  2 months, 1 week ago

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Dry-Van vs. Reefer

I did the GYCDL program with Roehl and am dry van National. I went solo the last week of February and am currently "officially" at just under 96000 miles, but have actually put in just over 100000 miles total on the two trucks I've had (40 some thousand on the first and 61000 on my current one). However, I stay out for a month or longer and run recaps. Two friends I went through the school with are about 10000-20000 miles less than me running dry van dedicated regional, but have 2 days off a week. I take a week off for hometime. The dedicated routes typically seem to run a steady average of 2500 miles per week, but can be higher with back hauls or filling in on other routes if you are a productive/efficient driver. For me, my weekly miles run from around 2400-3400. As I become a more efficient driver, my weekly mileage is staying more toward 2700 or higher, but I'm running my 14 hour clock out or down to less than two hours over 75% of the time.

As stated, flatbed and reefer typically run less miles but it depends on the drivers you're comparing, as Old School points out. That being said, I've confirmed by talking to both experienced and new drivers that in the end the pay comes out very close to the same regardless of the division you're in, as Brett points out. So if you're just asking about strictly logging miles, you have a better opportunity in dry van with this company, but that means taking people's advice off of here for being a top tier driver...which means long days, erratic sleep cycles, and a steep learning curve as a newbie. Flatbed and refer are the two divisions who will typically run over the rockies, dry van barely gets past the Mississippi as a company driver.

Posted:  4 months, 3 weeks ago

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Microwave size?

I have a 2020 Freightliner Cascadia and am using a .9 cu ft, 900 watt Sunbeam microwave from Target for less than $60. That fills up the cabinet for the microwave and runs just fine with the 1500w inverter, but i also don't have any other large wattage draw appliances ( like a fridge).

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Posted:  5 months, 1 week ago

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In truck driving school, need some clarification on up shifting and downshifting for test

Take off in whatever gear gets the truck moving without giving it fuel. That is usually 3rd with a ten speed and an empty trailer.

How can you impede traffic that is stopping at the same time as you? It's much more important to stop safely and smoothly, so concentrate on that at first.... And slower is always better than too fast.

If a light catches you and you have to stop quickly you can't always downshift, so stay in the gear you're in, brake until the engine chokes way down without bucking, and push in the clutch as you come to a stop. Even if your in 9th you should be able to almost stop before clutching and coasting to a stop. You will certainly only have to coast less than a truck length. Wait until you are completely stopped, hit your range selector and shift to third so you are ready to take off again. Doing this you've stayed in control of the truck instead of possibly missing a gear and coasting too far out of gear. Downshift when you have time though To whatever gear you can make it to comfortably.

Turns are really the only place where you have to worry about getting to the low side so you can go slow and controlled as well as smoothly accelerate out of the turn all while keeping both hands on the steering wheel when not shifting.

Posted:  5 months, 1 week ago

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Jake Brake?

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Most all of the parameters can be enabled or disabled by your company, some even over there air via satellite. So like mine, you may not have manual mode on the transmission nor be able to change the over and under speeds for cruise, etc, but you should still have the cruise descent control which works pretty well and it's not so jerky on downshifts. Also when in cruise you should just be able to turn on the engine brake and it will slow the vehicle until you turn it off or give the truck fuel. There is a noticable delay when using this method though.

Posted:  5 months, 2 weeks ago

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I LOVE the newer Freightliner Cascadia's!

That upper bunk ventilation issue is for real in the dog days of summer. My plan for having some chance at air moving up there is to work small ducting from one of the two vents near the control panel of the bottom bunk. Might not be much but better than nothing.

My company does that standard now and puts a vent in the upper cabinet. It does help a good bit.

27250 miles so far and no leaks. However, you will get drenched if you have to roll the window down and it's raining given the shape of the cab and door. Despite being a company truck i put vent visors on mine to stop this as well as to help keep my convex mirrors visible/usable in rain when driving over 55mph.

Posted:  6 months, 1 week ago

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Offset backing technique

Strictly for the cdl test left offset, we were taught: pull all the way forward to your boundary line or cone, turn your wheel all the way to the right, back until you just barely see the down tube of the right side of your landing gear come into view on your West coast mirror (sitting Straight in the seat), stop, turn wheel all the way to the left, back until your tractor is straight with your trailer, stop, you should now see the right front corner cone in your right West coast mirror.

From here you now have to use your right convex to get your tandems past and around that cone. Might have to back up straight a few feet before turning the wheel left to start your trailer turning. Just go slow and don't oversteer. The slower you go the faster you can catch your trailer when you need to and leave yourself more room to correct if needed without a pull up.

Posted:  6 months, 3 weeks ago

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Fridge, 12V cooler, or Ice cooler?

Coleman 12v cooler here, but i got a thermostat to put in line off of eBay for about 6 bucks so i don't have to worry about unplugging it. Now it seldom ices up on the cooling fins and doesn't freeze things in cooler weather.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Trucker 'drones on' with unique approach to teaching driving skills

I watched several of his videos both before and after school. They are a good visual of how the trailer reacts and moves in given situations, better than just using a toy semi.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Christian truck drivers

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Ok, the last time I got off topic here, I really took a lot of heat, and deservedly so. Don't want to stir the septic tank again. But I do respect those who have Christian values. Must be hard to find places of worship while OTR.

Nope, it is not necessary to be in any particular place to worship God and the fact that we are talking about Him on this forum is considered church.

I am Also a Christian.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Researching who to train/drive with

The agility test with Roehl is just a crt machine test. They have a video of it on their site or YouTube. I saw guys in their 60s as well as guys who weighed well over 300 lbs (not muscle) pass it with no problem aside from being out of breath.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Nervous!

Everyone else who will be there with you is just as nervous. Just don't let the nerves overwhelm you and use school to find out what helps you settle them, cause you will need that skill out on the road once you're solo and dealing with crowded truck stops, traffic, bad weather, tight shippers, wrong turns, etc.

For me it helped watching others and identifying (to myself) the mistakes they were making and either realizing oops i do that, or at least i don't do that. Even once out solo.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Companies with Best Trucks

I’m at Roehl and we really have the best equipment. Late model internationals and cascadias. They keep them well maintained too.

Eh, maintained to run reliably yes... Maintained for comfort, not necessarily. Apu and truck ac problems (especially in high mileage trucks) don't always get addressed. I speak from personal experience as well as first hand info from fellow drivers. I lucked out though since my truck had over 440000 on it when my ac went out. I only had to run for a couple weeks before getting a new one. I and many others i know also had ongoing battery issues with the older trucks that led to fuel mileage issues (from idling too much) or interrupted sleep. However, Roehl did buy a ton of new trucks this year and i think you'll be getting one at a time when there aren't many old (i say old but mean highly used) ones left. My new one was completely new with only 60 miles on the dial.

Before catching any crap... I know I'm whining, but apus and comfort was part of my criteria in choosing a company. If it were like the old days with a coffin size bunk or way back with Armstrong steering then i wouldn't be doing this otr. Not at 43 at least.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Company flipping me from day driving to night driving over and over

I've also managed to get unloaded 8-12 hours early by getting to the consignee for my 10 hour... And being very nice to receiving. This usually only works for smaller places though. Big DC's sometimes penalize a company for early deliveries. So find all that out before just showing up early.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Company flipping me from day driving to night driving over and over

For instance yesterday I had to go pick up a load at 8 PM qnd have it back to the yard that night, finishing my run at 1 30 am. Today my load is from the yard starting at 10 PM and apt time time at location 460 miles out is 10 am.

Is the load actually not going to be to the yard until 2200? If it is there by about 1200-1400 I'd run it down the road 5 hours or more, do my 10 then run it the rest of the way. Or, this is an instance where if you can park at the consignee, I'd just run it all the way there and do my 10, plus then you'd have your full clock on the day of delivery to use on the unload and a follow up load. Either way you're day driving for the most part. Of course if the load really isn't to the yard until 2200 then your stuck running at night.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Company flipping me from day driving to night driving over and over

As old school said, it's just the nature of the business. He also has some great info on here about time management. I've used his tips and advice to avoid running at night sometimes and stay on a more consistent or at least less drastic sleep change. However, you can't be scared to end late in the day or sometimes at night to accomplish that.

Personally, one of the first things i check out is if the shipper and or the consignee allow overnight parking. Already being where you need to pickup or deliver, or knowing you can do a ten once you get there can make a big difference in the start and stop of your drive clock.

Also, check pickup and delivery windows, there's usually one of them on a load that is flexible and will allow you to adjust your run time.

Doing these things isn't a cure all and there are still weeks where you will just flip flop back and forth if you want to be productive because of how the loads fall.

Also, maybe some of the pros on here can speak to this, but it seems to work out that if i run like that for a week or so then i end up with a really open run that allows me to catch-up on some rest with a better schedule but still run every day. Is this common, or do i just have an awesome fm and planners?

Posted:  8 months, 1 week ago

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What do you guys think about Roehl ?

Oh, and we're governed at 65 with a 67 passing bump that varies in time or distance allowed depending on whether you're in a Freightliner or international. And the new tractors are all automatics/automated... Only rgn (heavy haul) is going to get manuals.

All 2017 and newer tractors have power inverters and all tractors have an epu for heat and ac. Trainers get double bunk ( condos) but there are some solo hand me downs with condos. But I'd expect a mid roof single bunk if i were you. So taking someone out with you after you are solo isn't really a thing like they say.

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