Besides The Info On TT, Do We Have Any Jim Palmer Truckers Here?

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Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
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Looking for info other than what I have read on this site about Jim Palmer trucking. Any help out here?

Rob T.'s Comment
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Have you read the diary from Dave?Jim palmer diary . He is the only one i know of currently working there.

Dave (formerly known as K's Comment
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What would you like to know? I will answer what I can. If I don't have the answer, I can try to find the info.

Looking for info other than what I have read on this site about Jim Palmer trucking. Any help out here?

Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
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I have been talking to Logan and have filled out most of my application, been in trying to get all the pre-trip and airbrakes stuff in my head for this morning's cdl test. I have been looking into Jim Palmer for some time even before I found this site. Anyway I'm babbling. If I get through today's testing and get my CDL A, what can I expect from the rest of the training? I know they have some Peterbuilt's but do you get a choice when it's time for upgrade to "A seat?" I'm trying to get myself out of California and the only way is to go OTR. Lots of companies here in California, but I would prefer to go OTR for now.

Really enjoyed your diary. Really inspiring.

Thanks Dave for any help.



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.


Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
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Almost forgot, what about staying in and training in a manual Transmission. Autos don't seem practical. But I could be wrong.

Old School's Comment
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Autos don't seem practical. But I could be wrong.

C'mon Man! What do you even know about them?

Why would every major carrier in the country be switching to them if it wasn't a reliable and practical piece of equipment?

Grumpy Old Man's Comment
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I'm just the opposite. I'm hoping for an automatic. I have driven a stick and double clutched, etc., granted for a short distance, and I have no desire to be doing it all day every day if a machine wants to do it for me.

Double Clutch:

To engage and then disengage the clutch twice for every gear change.

When double clutching you will push in the clutch, take the gearshift out of gear, release the clutch, press the clutch in again, shift the gearshift into the next gear, then release the clutch.

This is done on standard transmissions which do not have synchronizers in them, like those found in almost all Class A trucks.

Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
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OS and Grumpy

I like sticks! What is the point of driving a big rig with an automatic.

OS, I always enjoy your practical point of view. It is always spot on. But let us agree to disagree. Remember I used to drive them. That was the point I thought of having a stick for a big rig. Anyway, this can be debated just like some of the other things here at TT, with opinions on both sides. But as they say, if you haven't tried Lima Beans how can you say you don't like them. So I have never driven an automatic big rig, so point taken. The only good thing would be in town, going from stop light to stop light. But climbing and downgrades, I want a a stick so I feel more in control for safety. Now this is my opinion, I have driven a few mountains, maybe not as many as some seasoned truckers out there but a few. I know if my downgrade is 3% or more I can downshift to a lower gear and be fine. But like I said before I would prefer a stick over an automatic.

Old School's Comment
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Okay, let's talk about these fancy new transmissions. First thing you have to square up with is that they are not automatic transmissions like we have in automobiles. They are still a standard gearbox as durable and rugged as their predecessors, maybe even more so. The only thing about them that can be considered automatic is that they shift the gears instead of you. There's no torque converter or transmission fluid like we have in our automobiles. There is a clutch just like a standard gearbox has, but it is engaged and disengaged amazingly smoothly by the computerized system. It will even burp the engine slightly at times to cause the gears to engage smoothly just like an experienced driver does when floating gears.

I have been driving the Volvo auto shift (called the I-shift) transmission for well over a half a million miles now. I've been up and down all the well known mountain grades, and through just about any pass you can name. This thing handles these sometimes ice covered grades considerably better than I did when driving manual shift trucks. It is absolutely amazing how they have the transmission synched up with the Jake-brake. If you have the Jake's on at even the slightest setting that truck will hold it's gear on a downgrade. And if you decide your speed and RPM are getting too high you simply slow it down with the service brakes, and it seems to know what you're doing because it will then downshift one gear and hold that gear until you slow it down sufficiently to indicate you'd like to catch a lower gear. It's incredible how efficiently it downshifts on a grade if needed, but it will not run away downhill and start upshifting as long as you set things properly. Just like when driving a manual transmission, you are the one in control.

These things also can be placed in "manual mode" which means it will not shift until I hit a button on the shifter. You simply pull the shifter back to the manual position and use one of two buttons, one to downshift and another to upshift. It absolutely will not shift while in that mode unless I give the command. On really nasty slick roads this is my choice of options while driving. I can use the brakes on all the wheels that way and it stays in gear or it shifts gears at my command, and it is much smoother and quicker than I ever was on a manual. It even has a special setting for the Jakebrake that keeps the Jake's off until you put some pressure on the service brakes, and then it will also engage the Jakes very slightly which is a pretty awesome combination on slick roads.

I find it hard to accept an opinion which is uninformed and without any actual experience with these things. Opinions are fine, but they need something to back them up. If they are just a personal preference based on nothing else then I like to point out the facts. If I don't there will be a thousand poorly informed readers who read what you said and be thinking their lives are in danger if they get stuck with an automatic transmission in their truck.

Old truckers easily get comfortable with what they are familiar with and they kick and scream everytime something changes. Goodness, we've had cameras in our trucks for years now and they are still screaming about them. It doesn't seem to matter to some of us that they have improved our driving. I know that camera in my truck has made me a much better driver, and I'm going to be so bold as to declare this I-shift automatic transmission in my Volvo has accomplished the same goal. Once I got familiar and proficient in it's use I have been both safer and more productive.

Floating Gears:

An expression used to describe someone who is shifting gears without using the clutch at all. Drivers are taught to "Double Clutch" or press and release the clutch twice for each gear shift. If you're floating gears it means you're simply shifting without using the clutch at all.

G-Town's Comment
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Get over it Raptor...2018 this is how it is. Ditto 100% on what Old School wrote.

Auto shift transmission, in cruise; is a breeze to control descending a grade and maintaining full control on the interstate. Once you understand their capability, I firmly believe you have better control than with a manual. Over time I’ve mastered the auto-shift trans; dry roads, wet roads, backing and of course going back

The major point; I am way less fatigued at the end of a 13 hour day wrestling with North East Region, congested urban traffic in an auto-shift truck. I am no less of a trucker for it...this is a tough job, auto-shift tractors make it a bit easier.

I do not miss manual shifting at all...


Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

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