Schneider - Diesel Driving Academy

Topic 22914 | Page 3

Page 3 of 4 Previous Page Next Page Go To Page:
Army 's Comment
member avatar

Jamie

Sounds like things are going well. I look forward to continue to follow your progress.

Chris

Jamie's Comment
member avatar

Day 7:

I honestly don't remember what we did this day; pretty sure it was going out shifting and what not. Sorry everyone!

Day 8:

The day started out as it any day, meeting in the class room going over any questions we have; telling some jokes and what not. We was supposed to go out driving this day, but for some reason we didn't; so we stayed at the yard going over our pre-trip, and skills. So there isn't a whole lot to say about this day; as nothing interesting really happened.

Day 9:

The day started out as it any day, meeting in the class room going over any questions we might have, etc. But things was a bit different this day. Small note: Everyone going to this school from Schneider, is supposed to learn on an auto. But our instructor wanted us to learn on a manual. Our instructor told us that he was told; Schneider called the school to say something about us driving on a manual, and not an auto. All of this started, because the guy who I mentioned a few times in this thread; called Schneider and said how we was learning on a manual; and not autos. Now, our instructor told us we wasn't going to drive an "auto-ass-matic ", but when it comes down to it; he would let us if we was serious about it. So this guy went out of his way to try and ruin it for everyone else; rather then speaking up and telling him how he wanted to drive an auto and mean it.

Other then the interesting morning; nothing else was interesting that day; that would be worthy of putting into this thread. We was again supposed to go out driving but we ended up staying at the yard going over our pre-trip and skills.

Now at this point, I'm able to do all the skills(straight line; off-set and 90) with little mistakes. Now I'm not perfect by any means, I'm just able to do it without getting extra points for pull ups or going out of bounds, or with only getting very few points. So I'm glad I have came this far so far.

Day 10:

The day started as it always does, with everyone meeting in the class room. Again this morning our instructor told us about how Schneider wanted everyone here from Schneider to train on an auto, and he asked everyone if you want to drive an auto; raise your hand. No one raised there hand, not even the guy who called his recruiter about it.

First thing in the morning, we went over our air brakes test. Some people are having problems with the air brakes test, remembering the names of each test and what to say. Some of the guys got out this week, so that's no problem. But a few of them have been out for over a week and a half now; so we should know it by now.

After the air brakes test, we was split into two groups. My group stayed at the yard during the morning hours, and we went over our skills(straight line, off-set and 90). The four of us that was at the yard during the morning was ahead of the other 4 a little bit; so we was doing our skills with little to no problem; maybe a few points here and there. Nothing really interesting happening, we was just talked about everything going on, and telling stories while we was waiting for our turn.

After lunch, it was finally my groups time to go out. We went out to drive the course, and everything was going good but after a few of us started grinding gears a little bit; our instructor decided we would head back to the school. I was a little disappointed, because I felt like we haven't been getting a lot of actual drive time. Sure we have our skills down, and could use some more work on it. But our testing dates are only a week away, a few of the guys will test out next Friday, me and 3 others will test out next Monday(not this Monday). I just feel like we aren't getting enough drive time, so we can get the up-shifting and down-shifting down. Sure, everyone is doing better including myself. But how are we supposed to pass our test next week, if we are still missing some gears; or grinding them at times. Now I have nothing against our instructor, he has been great. He is always teaching us new things when possible, and helping us correct our mistakes.

But at this point in time, I don't feel comfortable enough to pass the road test when my shifting is where it is right now. I don't know how I'll feel Monday, and over the next week. But I hope we get more drive time this week, so we can improve on things we need. Because right now, due to the people who got out there late; they are learning things we learned in the first week. So they take extra time, making it so everyone else has less drive time; even with our skills. There is nothing wrong with that, but everyone else also needs the extra time when possible. You know what I mean?

I might consider taking my test in an auto, and have that restriction on my license. I can always get it lifted at a later date; but for now, I really need to pass this.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

Jamie's Comment
member avatar

Day 11: We went out to the driving course today. There was only 3 people in our truck, and 4 in the other.

I went last out of the three. The first two did pretty good other then small mistakes, and they hit one curb that's a tight right turn. It was finally my turn, and I was feeling good. But that went away quickly when I stalled the truck as I started to go. Because the previous person that went before me, forgot to flip the spliter down. It was my fault, I should have checked. I just got used to everyone doing it. I stalled the truck a second time due to me pushing it over a little to far and going to 5th gear when starting out rather than 3rd gear.

But other then those mistakes, which would have failed me I did good. I made all the turns correctly without hitting thr curb, etc. I did miss some gears, and had trouble getting into some.

I don't really like shifting, my up shifting is fine. But.. My down shifting is terrible. That's normally when I have trouble getting It into gear.

I'm doing good with everything else from the pre-trip to the skills and driving part. but not doing great with shifting. we are testing on Monday, so hopefully I pick it up faster. Sorry for any errors, typed this up on my phone.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Day 12: The day started as normal, but this time we met out in the yard as we previously been doing.

We found out today that 3 people decided to go to the auto. I almost decided to go myself, but my instructor told me not to think about it. And I'm glad he did.

We was split into two groups, one on the auto and the second(my group) on the manual. The first two guys who went did pretty good, other then some grinding. The third guy who went, he had some problems. He has been trying to do everything to fast, he wouldn't be in the ideal RPM range and things like that.

It was finally my turn, I was feeling good. The truck we was driving is a old swift truck that was given to the school. So its govened down to 1500 RPMs max, and 65MPH max. The clutch and gears was smooth compared to the 1999/2000 year trucks. I did great, my up shifting and down shifting was on point. I didn't grind many gears, or miss any shifts. I almost tried going from 5th to 6th without flipping the spliter, but I caught it at the last moment. if this was my road test, I would've passed.

I'm glad I didn't switch to the auto, we are testing in the same truck Friday. and oh yes, my testing was moved up to Friday.

Sorry for any errors, typed this on my phone.

dancing-dog.gifgood-luck-2.gif

Junkyard Dog's Comment
member avatar

Sounds like you're doing great Jamie. I think it's good your training on the manual because if you ever have to drive one you will be able to. I got my CDL driving a manual then went during training on an automatic. When it came time to get my truck it was a manual. I was kind of freaked out at first because I also struggled during my CDL School with downshifting. Been out on the road by myself for 2 weeks and my shifting is much better. My down-shifting is great which I cannot believe. Only thing that scares the hell out of me is if I would have to drive in the mountains because I wasn't trained on that. I never even went up or down much of a hill during my schooling. Keep up the good work brother. Enjoy reading your diary.

CDL:

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.
Jamie's Comment
member avatar

Sounds like you're doing great Jamie. I think it's good your training on the manual because if you ever have to drive one you will be able to. I got my CDL driving a manual then went during training on an automatic. When it came time to get my truck it was a manual. I was kind of freaked out at first because I also struggled during my CDL School with downshifting. Been out on the road by myself for 2 weeks and my shifting is much better. My down-shifting is great which I cannot believe. Only thing that scares the hell out of me is if I would have to drive in the mountains because I wasn't trained on that. I never even went up or down much of a hill during my schooling. Keep up the good work brother. Enjoy reading your diary.

I'm doing a lot better for sure! I have had my ups and downs while training on a manual, and I have thought about switching to an auto many times over the past week. I'm good with the driving part, I have yet to hit a curb or anything alike. I like to believe my problem was that we took a different truck every time we went out driving, but of course that's not the issue. Because shifting is basically the same in every truck, besides small things such as some trucks require more RPMs, less RPMs, etc. But when we took that truck out today, I did amazing. The clutch and gears was so smooth, and more forgiving when you make small mistakes. Over all, I'm glad I decided to stay on a manual.

smile.gif

I'm sure I'll be in the same boat if I some how get a manual when I get done with my training with the company. Which is common, since right now I'm used to someone being there when I make some kind of mistake, but out there; you're all alone. Of course with more experience, the less problems you'll have. :p

But keep up the good work! I'm sure you'll do fine driving through the mountains if you ever have to! The place we're testing at has some pretty hilly areas, going up and down. Nothing like a mountain but yeah.

rofl-3.gif

CDL:

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.
Jamie's Comment
member avatar

Day 13:

The day started off as it always does, besides everyone meeting outside as we have been doing recently. Our instructor decided we would stay at the yard/driving pad and go over our pre-trip inspection and skills. So there isn't a whole lot to really say about this day really.

I mostly only did the 90, because I have the straight line and off-set down. I would say I'm doing pretty good on my 90 as well, with small problems here and there. Of course I know I'm only backing up between cones right now. rofl-3.gif

I normally always "break the plane" on every try, so then I just pull up X amount of times and work my way in without trying to go out of bounds. Because on the actual test, it's worth pulling up then going out of bounds. Simply because pulling up is only worth one point(you get 2 free pull ups), and going out of bounds is worth 2 points; and you only have a total of 12 points for the whole skills tests. So ideally... You don't want to get any points for the straight line/off-set (or any of them really, but we're still new at this..).

Day 14:

The day started off as it always does, everyone met outside to get ready to go out driving. But instead we had to go into the class room to watch a short clip about Truckers Against Trafficking, before we did anything else. After we watched that, we filled out some paper work asking for suggestions and our opinions about this phase of training, and things like that. I personally had nothing bad to say, because our instructor Jerry has been doing a very great job. I'm glad we got him as our instructor, because he is always to pin point the problems you're having, or things you're doing wrong. He will let you make the mistakes at first, and have us look at it and explain to us what we did wrong and what we can do to fix it, and things like that.

The only bad thing I had to say about the school at this point is the class is a little big, I mean it's only 8 people and the only reason I have a problem with it is simply due to us having very limited seat time. Because when we go out driving, we only get to drive once, some people get to drive twice since the driving course is like 40 minutes long. We normally take two trucks now, since 3 people are testing on an auto and 5 on the manual. So by having smaller classes, I feel people would catch on better. I mean I'm doing pretty good at this point, and I feel I can pass the test Monday. But some students are still having problems and they are testing Monday or Tuesday. And that's another problem with bigger classes, because some of us can finish the skills and things quicker; we have to wait 30+ minutes for some of them to finish, and there are about 3-4 people who takes quite a bit. So we're standing around a lot or seating/etc. Alright I'm done ranting about that... Sorry. I only included this part, so people can get an ideal if they attend DDA(Diesel Driving Academy), other then what I said above, everything has been going great. Most of the instructors we have talked to are pretty good people, some of them aren't as helpful as our instructor Jerry; but they are good in their own ways I suppose?

Anyways after we got done filling out paper work, we went out driving around the driving course we will do for our test. So we're getting a jump on it, the driving course is pretty simple; but it's long and has a lot of lights. Which can be a problem, since if you roll through a yellow light it's an auto fail. I mean there are some lights where you can see some trucks have locked up their wheels trying to stop; so they rather you slam on your brakes then roll through the yellow light here. I don't know if that's every where, but that's how it is here.

Anyways skipping to me driving, I did stall the truck one time... It was due to me not pushing the trucks brakes all the way in before taking off, I hit it and heard the air... But it didn't go all the way in, I was like ohh man... Such a simple mistake, and I would have failed my actual road test. Since if you stall the truck during the test, it's an auto fail. I only have this problem on one truck(one of the older trucks), because the clutch catch point is so high up, I tend to let off the clutch to fast. But by the time it catches, my knee is touching the back of the steering wheel, so I can't really go up much more. My seat is adjusted right, as if I go back anymore I won't be able to push it all the way in to get everything started. But fast forward after that problem(and my rant...), my shifting was good; even on that truck which I had big problems on before.

After everyone got their turn with driving, we stayed there later then we normally do simply so we could do the actual skills on the testing pad at the CDL testing place. So we brought our own cones, and set them up. There really isn't anything different then the setup back at the school, besides it's all flat and on pavement, while at the school it isn't all pavement, and it's rough in some places. So you can actually do better at the testing place. After about an hour or two there; we decided to head back to the school so everyone can get home.

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

CDL:

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.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Jamie's Comment
member avatar

Day 15:

The day started off differently then it usually does, simply because 3 of us had to get to the school by 6:15am since we was going to be testing today. Now I wasn't set to test today, as my official date is Monday. But our instructor was going to try to get me in, which it would have happened. But there was only one testing instructor and he had a doctor app at noon, so sadly I didn't get to test today. But I'll be testing Monday morning around 8:45am, I'll be sure to let everyone know how I did.

Anyways, we was told to be at the school by 6:15am so we can get to the testing area about 40-60 minutes away by 7:30am(give or take). But Jerry didn't show up untl a little later, so we got a late start heading over there. We finally got there around 8am or so, which isn't to much later then we planned.

Now after a little talk, the first guy was up to test. He completed his pre-trip inspection with only missing a few things, so he started doing his skills after the testing instructor explained each one and the "rules". He did a great job on the straight line and off-set, getting no points. So we thought he was going to blow the 90 out of the water, but sadly that wasn't the case. He started the 90 off pretty good, but he started to cut it to early near the area and hit a cone, so he had to pull up and reset. The second time, he broke the plane but he went out of bounds on the right side. Now this is where his problems started, rather then pulling up far enough to let the trailer react and do what you need it to do, he only pulled up a few feet. So he kept going out of bounds on the right side, since he didn't pull up far enough. I felt bad for him, simply because I want everyone in our class to pass regardless of how I feel about them. I'm not hoping anyone fails, as we are all here for one reason or another.

After the first guy failed on his 90, it was the second guys turn to test. He did everything good, he completed his pre-trip inspection with only missing a few things like the first guy. Now moving on to his skills, he did the straight line back good. He did the off-set good, he did go out of bounds once because he couldn't tell if he was in far enough on his right side(they have the cones setup, so you can't use them as marker points), he had two get out and looks, but he only used one because he thought he only had one. But no problem, only two points. He did his 90 with no problems, he got one point since he used his 2 free pull ups, and used an extra one. So no bad at all! I was happy for him.

Now we obviously couldn't go with him on the road test, but he passed the road test with only a few points for grinding some gears, and having trouble getting into gear at one point. So we was both happy for him! The first person in our class to get his CDLs.

-------------

Now skip to after lunch when we got back to the school, the other two guys went home early. I decided to stay with everyone else who was there that didn't test that day, so I could go over my skills one last time before my test Monday, since we won't have time Monday morning. Everyone else was doing a pretty good job on their 90, that's all they really did. So we all kept taking turns we had two trucks, one manual and one auto.

I did the 90 - 3 times, and I got it in all 3 times with only 0-4 points. So I'm feeling pretty good about that, I did do the straight line back and off-set; and did those without getting any points. I did get the chance to do the 90 degree back on the auto for the first time, this is my first time driving the thing. It rides so smooth rofl-3.gif. But that didn't change my mind about testing on a manual, I know the first thing I did when I got into the truck was reach for the clutch... rofl-3.gifrofl-3.gif

So now I will be at the hotel over the weekend, since I live 136 miles away; I don't really have the money to drive home, as I went home last weekend to spend time with the wife. I'm totally ready for my test on Monday! I'm going to be studying my pre-trip over the weekend, as I have the air brakes down. I'm a little worried because Jerry isn't going to be there Monday, and another instructor that will take me to test said we might take another truck(not the swift truck, which is by far my favorite truck and the truck I do my best on), and the one she said we might take... Is of course the truck I hate, and I have stalled... I know I will do fine, but just a little worried. Maybe we'll take my favorite truck. rofl-3.gifI hope everyone has a great weekend, and thank you for reading my trucking diary!

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

CDL:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
member avatar
The only bad thing I had to say about the school at this point is the class is a little big, I mean it's only 8 people and the only reason I have a problem with it is simply due to us having very limited seat time. Because when we go out driving, we only get to drive once, some people get to drive twice since the driving course is like 40 minutes long. We normally take two trucks now, since 3 people are testing on an auto and 5 on the manual. So by having smaller classes, I feel people would catch on better.

Hey Jamie, this is a great diary! Thanks for taking the time to do this.

I just wanted to point out that your observation on limited drive time is typical for private truck driving schools. It's not unique to Diesel Driving Academy. It's important to make wise use of the time you spend waiting by observing the student who is driving. It's all part of the training. You can absolutely learn a lot just by watching the other students.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Jamie's Comment
member avatar

Hey Jamie, this is a great diary! Thanks for taking the time to do this.

I just wanted to point out that your observation on limited drive time is typical for private truck driving schools. It's not unique to Diesel Driving Academy. It's important to make wise use of the time you spend waiting by observing the student who is driving. It's all part of the training. You can absolutely learn a lot just by watching the other students.

Oh yeah I understand that, and understood it even before getting here. So I make sure to use my seat time wisely, I just wished we could have gotten a bit more seat time. But that's no problem, I have learnt everything I need to know to pass the test. And yeah I agree, I always watch other students as you're always learning. smile.gif

Page 3 of 4 Previous Page Next Page Go To Page:

New Reply:

New! Check out our help videos for a better understanding of our forum features

Bold
Italic
Underline
Quote
Photo
Link
Smiley
Links On TruckingTruth


example: TruckingTruth Homepage



example: https://www.truckingtruth.com
Submit
Cancel
Upload New Photo
Please enter a caption of one sentence or less:

Click on any of the buttons below to insert a link to that section of TruckingTruth:

Getting Started In Trucking High Road Training Program Company-Sponsored Training Programs Apply For Company-Sponsored Training Truck Driver's Career Guide Choosing A School Choosing A Company Truck Driving Schools Truck Driving Jobs Apply For Truck Driving Jobs DOT Physical Drug Testing Items To Pack Pre-Hire Letters CDL Practice Tests Trucking Company Reviews Brett's Book Leasing A Truck Pre-Trip Inspection Learn The Logbook Rules Sleep Apnea
Done
Done

0 characters so far - 5,500 maximum allowed.
Submit Preview

Preview:

Submit
Cancel

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