I Need Honest Opinons

Topic 22415 | Page 1

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Kayle's Comment
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Hi, my name is Kayle(Ka-yle). I just so happened to stumble accross these forums a couple of hours ago and spent some time looking around.

I'm 21 and spent a couple of years in the Marine Corps out on Pendleton in the 62 area San Mateo as a riflemen before being seperated medically.

I orginally moved to Jacksonville, FL but the job economy isn't that great in Florida.(No surprise since it's a state full of college kids and retired folks.) I then moved out to north Phoenix and worked construction and then moved into security at the childrens hosptial here before finally landing where I am currently in school.

I'm currently going through schooling and I actually contracted through Schneider because I couldn't afford to shovel 4k out of pocket right now. I managed to pass Combos, Air Brakes, and General Knowledge this morning and got my permit. I'm still 3 weeks of schooling out from graduation and hopefully passing my road test to get my CDL.

Anyway, my question is I'm considering jumping ship and moving over to Melton since my schooling is now paid for and paying Schneider back.

There's multiple reasons why; higher starting pay, better equipment, and from what i've been told everybody loves Melton where as you hear a few horror stories from Scheneider here and there. The biggest reason though, is because I want a challenge and i'm actually slightly concerned about my weight.

Since I got out in August of last year, I have managed to put on a cool 40 pounds. I went from hovering between 185 - 190 pounds to 220 - 225 and i'm only 5'7". I'm actually slightly concerned that if I hop into a dry van or refeer, I'll put on even more weight. So I'm hoping that the work flat bedding is helps me cut the calories down.

So with all of this in mind, should I stick it out with Schneider or if I feel like I'll be a better fit and I'll be happier with Melton contact a recruiter?



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.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Army 's Comment
member avatar


You will get many responses, from truckers much versed in what it takes. I recommend you give your current company a chance. Why not learn where you are and then after a year, move if you don't like it. They took a chance on you, I think you owe it to them.

Retired (almost)

Bill F.'s Comment
member avatar

You should disregard any horror stories you may have found on the internet. The person who posted that horror story is probably the real problem. Schneider did not become one of the top 5 trucking companies because they mistreat drivers. I would recommend you stick with Schneider since you have already started there and then transfer to their flatbed division after you get some trucking experience. Learn regular trucking first, then try flatbedding. Flatbedders are a breed apart. It takes extra everything to be one.

PackRat's Comment
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Why can't you just use your GI Bill and pay for schooling at any place then not be held to a contract? That's what I would do if I was starting out all over again as a veteran.

∆_Danielsahn_∆'s Comment
member avatar

Both are great companies.

However, Schneider was willing to pay for your classes, so you could drive for them. Yes, you could go to Melton, and drive for them, and pay Schneider back, but how would you feel, if you were a business owner, who footed the bill for training a future employee, only to have them go somewhere else.

Unholy Chaos is a Schneider driver. He may chime in.

JuiceBox's Comment
member avatar

He may not have been eligible for the gi bill after only two years but I am no expert.

I work for melton and i can tell you that there are as many horror stories here as with other companies. That doesn't mean melton is a bad company, they just have some bad drivers who lack self awareness and the ability to hold themselves accountable. They also have great drivers who will get out and help you and offer advice no matter if it's at the shipper , consignee , or truck stop. It's the same way everywhere.

You can do well anywhere you go IF, you have dedication and commitment. The Marines should have taught you a little about that I take it. It also helps to have common sense out here. Goodluck.

Why can't you just use your GI Bill and pay for schooling at any place then not be held to a contract? That's what I would do if I was starting out all over again as a veteran.


The customer the freight is being delivered to. Also referred to as "the receiver". The shipper is the customer that is shipping the goods, the consignee is the customer receiving the goods.


The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Pete B.'s Comment
member avatar

I drive tankers for Schneider, but see plenty of their dry vans at the OCs; I assure you, our equipment is top-notch. The support system is phenomenal. I can’t imagine a better ‘first company’ to work for.

I believe you are under the mistaken impression that the job you take will affect your level of fitness. Maybe I should have led with this point. If you are not in the habit of exercising and maintain a poor diet, flatbedding isn’t going to change that. You aren’t going to get your heart rate up enough often enough tarping loads to make a difference physiologically. With regard to exercising, nearly every Schneider dry van OC (and they’re lots of them) has an exercise room. And you can always walk outside. You need to fix your diet regardless of what company you drive for. 40lbs is no joke. Know what I’ve put in my stomach today? Coffee, apples, and yogurt. I’m about to fix dinner... a salad w/reduced fat Wheat Thins. It’s not that difficult. You can do it. Stick w/Schneider for one year, then re-evaluate your options.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

I weighed in @ Schneider orientation weighing 216 and within six months was down to 175. As a dry van driver. However, along with lost weight was some lost strength.

I enjoyed driving for Schneider. I only left for a Southeast regional position. I live in Florida and get home weekly.

Wherever you go you’ll have challenges. Schneider has walking routes at some of the OC’s for fitness walks. Utilize their workout facilities when you can. Walk at truck stops when you can.

Give your best and demand the same in return. Whatever you decide, make a 100% commitment.

You’ll do well.


Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Gulfwrvt's Comment
member avatar


Whatever you decide and wherever you work, give it 12 months before you leave and jump Trucks. It will show some dependability and reliability.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Kayle, welcome to our forum!

You probably didn't realize it, but your first question in here about how you're considering starting your trucking career goes against everything we teach in here. You've come up with several ways to justify your desire but none of them are really valid. I'm a hardcore flat-bedder and I can assure you there are plenty of out of shape overweight flat-bed drivers out here. Being trim has everything to do with caloric intake, and very little to do with an occasional burst of exercise such as flat-bed drivers get.

Here's the essence of your problem though. You're wanting to start your career by breaking your very first commitment. That in itself shows a serious lack of understanding concerning how one succeeds in trucking. Commitment is one of the essential ingredients for success in trucking. You'll be doing yourself a huge favor by Sticking With Your First Company For One Full Year.

I know you are saying you would pay Schneider what you owe them, but that is not what they want from you. They committed considerable resources to your training simply to take a chance on you in the hope they might get a driver out of the arrangement. They are far more interested in you as a driver than they are as a person who is paying off a debt to them. Schneider is an awesome company to work for. You will learn a great deal from them concerning this career without being exposed to all the added risks and challenges that come with flat-bedding.

I suggest you commit to working through your contracted agreement with Schneider first - make that a commitment. You will reap so many benefits by doing that. Once you've done that then you can consider some other options if you are inclined that way. Melton is a great flat-bed company, and I can assure you those jobs aren't going anywhere. They will be looking for drivers when you're finished with your commitment at Schneider just as much or more than they are now. Who knows, after a year at Schneider you may not have any desire to move elsewhere.

You can trust what we're saying. We've all been in your shoes, and we learned that sticking it out for that first year is a very important commitment that benefits a rookie driver in an inestimable amount of ways.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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