CFI At Crowder College

Topic 22406 | Page 4

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Jeremy C.'s Comment
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The CAVs won though.

Yes, sir. I always watch the wrong game.

There was a moment when the bases were loaded and then Brantley came to the plate and put one over the fence to tie up the game. That was an awesome moment that (almost) inspired hope. But... The tradition continues.

Make today safe and productive.

Don's Comment
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5/2, Day 3.

We had a test on driving, using mirrors, safety measures on the road, etc. Afterwards, we went to continue practicing shifting on the simulators, then were tested on 2 cycles of upshifting/downshifting. I passed on my first try as did most of the others. One student was really struggling but at the last minute, he passed. While he was practicing to be tested, the rest of us practiced straight backing on the simulators. Tomorrow, we start first thing out on the pads to start straight backing in the trucks. Day 3 was a positive day to continue moving forward.

Jeremy C.'s Comment
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I wonder how comfortable that simulator gets you... Obviously it's not the real thing, but is it easier to grasp the mechanics and angles while actually moving your arms and looking around? Or is it just more like a game? Not sure if CRST has a sim or not, but it might be nice to practice on if they do.

And tomorrow... It gets real! I bet it's gonna feel awesome crawling behind the wheel.


G-Town's Comment
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Well done Don. Good luck tomorrow. Enjoy it.

Don's Comment
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Thank you, G-town. Jeremy, I definitely learned the double-clutch technique and the rpm ranges required for upshifting/downshifting. I believe it prepared me for the first phase of actual in-cab work. Driving in city streets scenarios on the simulators was an unmitigated disaster for all of us, though.

Jeremy C.'s Comment
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That's good to know! I believe they'll be training us on automatics (feel like I'm missing a huge part of trucking) but I can still see many scenarios where we might start on a simulator.

Driving in city streets scenarios on the simulators was an unmitigated disaster for all of us, though.

LoL. Let's hope that doesn't translate to real world! rofl-3.gif

Have a great night, brother. Look forward to hearing about tomorrow!

Don's Comment
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5/3, Day 4

First thing this morning we split up into 2 groups and went out into the boonies to practice straightback. After getting familiar with the tractors quirks, straightback was great! I have realized that slow and steady is key. The instructors know exactly what they are doing. A couple students had a difficult time, but they will get it. After lunch, we started range driving in the boonies on what I call the "figure 8." It is practicing right and left turns, plus up****ing/downshifting up to 6th or 7th. Some turns were tighter than others. I did 3 rotations. First was fine, second was worse and third time was much better. Biggest thing besides not hitting the barrels on the corners is keeping rpms below 800 when downshifting from 5th gear down.

On a different topic, one student in the other truck was playing the fool and standing up dancing and other stupid things. I understood from the others in that truck the instructor was angry and she was warned there won't be a third time. She also ended up in a jacknife while sraightbacking, again because she was screwing around trying to be "the life of the party." She has not been taking this seriously since she got here. Let it be a word of advice for others going to CDL training; take what you are doing seriously while inside the truck. Take opportunities to have fun, but be careful when you decide to do so. Tomorrow we will be back on the range straightbacking and practicing turns, then be tested out on straightback.


Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Don's Comment
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Oops. I meant to say "keep rpms above around 800 rpms before downshifting when in gears 5 or below." I would downshift at times around 1000 rpms before revving up to 1100, which made it more difficult to shift down.

Big Scott (CFI Driver/Tra's Comment
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Glad to hear you're doing well. Did the party girl get sent home or did she calm down?

Jeremy C.'s Comment
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Big don, trucking like a boss!

Would you say that getting behind the wheel was an anxious moment or did you feel comfortable because of the simulator (or something else?)

I imagine the first time behind the wheel to be a mix of elation and complete shock. Hope I take to it as quick as you are.

Shame about the class clown, but I suppose those are going to appear everywhere.

I'l be keeping that slow and steady in mind!


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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