CDL Exam Woes; Yep, I Took The Retest, Retest, Retest

Topic 24086 | Page 1

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James Daniel's Comment
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So finally passed my driving test. Here's the story :-)

In our previous episode...

1st try: Passed pretrip and incab, backing was close but blew it out when the examiner (Keith) noted that I wasn't totally straight in the alley. My bumber was in the box as I was taught but my tractor/trailer (although straight in relation to each other), wasn't straight with the alley. That was 10 points, blew me out of the running.

One week later...

2nd try: Passed the backing with points to spare (went really well).

Driving went good, (doing a manual trans), got back to the test site and Keith (examiner) said you passed on points but I have to disqualify you because you were going 32 in a 25 mph zone. Rats.

One week later...

3rd try: On a Sunday, different examiner (Don, a 30 yr trucker).

Same result, passed on points but speeding AGAIN. "AAAAHHHH!" I. Can. Not. Believe. It...

I drove home calling out loud every street sign and continued this for a week (wife quit riding with me until I get my CDL because I continue to say all the speed limit signs out loud).

I drive around every day calling out signs and pointing to them and checking my speed, every day, 2 to 3 hours.

"Hi, I'm Dan and I'm a speeder."

Isn't funny.

But I had an epiphany, I cannot reach my goal of no accidents, no citations, if I speed like in a car. You just can not do it.

One week later...

4th try: On a Sunday again and Don again, passed with almost no point deductions.

But the lesson on speeding has stuck.

The owner of the trucking school told us once that he drives like an old man and I understand why now. Although he does own several race cars and races around the county as a hobby but on the street, old man style.

After you get your CDL, my school then takes you out and teaches you about sliding tandems , landing gear and such, so I will start that after Christmas.

If I hadn't been speeding I would have graduated by now but God wanted to address my speeding issues, He knows best.

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.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Doug C.'s Comment
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James,

I like your tenacious spirit.dancing.gif

James Daniel's Comment
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Thanks Doug

I can not, will not, quit. I must do this thing.

I get my 160 hr cert next week, then will start applying.

I like Halvor Lines, not too huge but not too small.

I liked how they laid everything out and were honest about their expectations and pay.

Cheers.

Doug C.'s Comment
member avatar

James,

Just saw your reply to me. Where is Havlor Located? I haven't heard of them before. I will be taking the permit test in mid February, and then if I get accepted I hope to go with Millis Transfer in Wisconsin by April. Like you I am compelled to do this. I am excited and nervious, but more excited. Anyway good luck to you. Keep us updated.

James Daniel's Comment
member avatar

Halvors home terminal is Superior, WI. They have a brand new terminal in Inver Grove Heights, MN and one other but forget where.

They have about 500 trucks, about 1500 trailers, and four-year recipient of “Best Fleets to Drive For” but I didn't know about them till they made a presentation at my school.

They don't pay the top dollar but are in line with most, especially as a new driver, I want to be trained the best, safest way, money is important but training is forefront.

They were up front with what they pay and all the bonuses and whatnot.

What really struck me was how they emphasized that they want you to stay with them so their aim is to be totally transparent with expectations.

Five weeks mandatory with trainer, trainer is not allowed to drive.

https://halvorlines.com/about-halvor-lines/trucking-transportation-logistics-company

James

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

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