Bunch Of Misc Questions From A Chronic Overthinker

Topic 31412 | Page 1

Page 1 of 2 Next Page Go To Page:
Davy A.'s Comment
member avatar

I read of folks like two sides and others who seemed to have jumped right in, maybe to tough weather and or difficult paths. I by comparison tried to take a very cautious and careful approach, taking baby steps with nothing too difficult rather very slowly increase difficulty.

Wondering if I would have made it through what they go through, perhaps I short changed myself on experience by taking the slow cautious approach?

Another question, I have absolutely no compelling reason to leave Knight, they have given me everything I ask for, I make decent money, very flexible scheduling, love my truck etc...yet I find myself looking at other companies offering considerably more money but with similar qualities of flexible home time, no forced dispatch etc. Is it normal to look? I love the folks in the office and have been establishing a great reputation at Knight, but it keeps hounding me.

Every week we've been having accidents and incidents with adverse weather. I'm set up nicely in the south and southeast now, but like the first question, should I be taking more difficult loads? I don't want to but I feel like I should be. Like I should have more experience with it by now.

And one final one, is it normal to think about going owner op even though I'm new, kind of obsessing a bit on it? I'm nowhere near ready, but slowly collecting information and such. I feel that entrepreneurial bug calling me. I know I'm new and have absolutely no plans on changing anything, but I just find myself thinking about options down the road more and more.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Anne A. (Momma Anne) & To's Comment
member avatar

Davy;

This is one of my all time favorites. I recite this often: Dreams.

Best always,

~ Anne ~

Pianoman's Comment
member avatar

I’ll take a stab at it lol.

Wondering if I would have made it through what they go through, perhaps I short changed myself on experience by taking the slow cautious approach?

Based on your posts here I think you would’ve been just fine. You’re obviously a hard worker and have some grit having been a successfully business owner in a competitive market. Shortchanged yourself? I don’t think so at all. There are just different approaches and while the reward may sometimes be higher jumping right into the fire, the risk is also higher.

Is it normal to look? I love the folks in the office and have been establishing a great reputation at Knight, but it keeps hounding me.

Totally normal. Everyone here including myself will encourage you to put the blinders on and stay at Knight for a year before switching. I started with Swift 6 years ago and stayed with them for almost 2 years and then moved on because I found something paying significantly better. I would’ve stayed at my second company forever probably if I hadn’t screwed myself over and lost my cdl.

I’m finding it way harder to stay with System for a year now that I’m back in trucking. I make considerably more than I did 6 years ago when I started but I’m more impatient now looking around and seeing how much better some other companies pay but I only want to make one switch if I do switch and I know I’m wanting to get into oversize and heavy haul (which we don’t do on my fleet). So I’m going to stay here for at least a year if not 2 and make the switch when I’m eligible for a company that does that type of freight and pays what I want. It’s all about the long game. If you switch too early you switch again and again and limit your earnings and never really settle in anywhere. So it’s normal to look but you’re better off not even looking until you’re at a year so you don’t get tempted and jump ship lol.

And one final one, is it normal to think about going owner op even though I'm new, kind of obsessing a bit on it?

Totally normal and a bad idea to go O/O so early on. Even if you had the money and experience now is a bad time anyways because the trucks are ridiculously expensive right now. I’ve been toying around with the idea but it’ll probably be a couple years before I can do anything so I’ve got time to weigh the idea

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.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Sid V.'s Comment
member avatar

As far as being an o/o, here are things you can work on while your company.

You need at least 2-3 yrs of experience. Anything less you won't be insurable.

You need to have at least 50k saved in cash. No credit cards, lines of credit, loans. Cash. If you can't save this up in 2-3 years as company than don't come out on your own.

You need to understand and be able to do split breaks.

You need to keep a pulse on the trucking market. On rates, you need to come in on a good year. Timing is very important.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Everything Sid says should make you think. He knows what he's talking about because he has been an independent trucker for some years now. He knows how volatile the rates can be. He knows how much trouble it can be to find profitable loads during times when the rates are low. He knows the expenses involved and the capital it takes to stay afloat during the difficult times. He also has his own reasons why he takes the risks he does. He makes it work for him, and that is what is important. He's telling you that you need experience, cash reserves, and a good understanding of the log book rules. There are probably a couple of other boxes you need to check off too.

You seem very cautious with your decision making. That's good. It is perfectly normal to do all the things you mentioned, just don't make any irrational moves without making sure you know what you are getting into. When someone tells you that you need to have fifty grand in reserve, that means there is a distinct possibility you may lose that money. Are you prepared for that? Can you afford that kind of risk?

Trucking is plagued with the grass is greener syndrome. That might just be because there is so much opportunity out there. There are a million different ways to earn a good living as a professional driver. We have guys in here who love to make the same run every night, and they make some killer money doing just that. We have others who love to cross the country and see the sights. Some of them would go nuts as Line-haul drivers. There is ample opportunity out here. There is no guilt in trying something new every once in a while. I have switched companies one time in my career. It was such a good move for me that I have never regretted it. I am still doing that job. Sometimes we find our niche quickly. Sometimes we search for a while. My best advice is to hang on to what you have if it is working well for you. Don't quit one job until you are sure you've got the next one nailed down. Then you may discover that the new job is really something special, or you may discover that you fooled yourself. Take a good long serious look before you leap!

Davy A.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the insights. I for sure will take the same cautious approach that I have so far, its served me well, even if I get in my head about things. Im nowhere near ready to contemplate making a move let alone, going owner op. I do plan on saving up and having resources in place, contacts and relationships established, and making that transition in as logical and informed method as I can. I think its a long way off. In the meantime, Im finding out all the good, bad and ugly I can about it, specifically doing power only for Knight depending on their programs. As far as I know, its owner op, not lease op, which I have absolutely zero interest in doing. The Mrs and I have equity saved up, but not enough yet, and there is so so much that I need to learn. Im very comfortable with running split berth, but I also know that I make a ton of little mistakes on my logs, I think I have a long way to go until I feel comfortable enough to not view it as a risk for sure. Just because Im comfortable with it doesnt mean Im doing it correctly if that makes sense

I dont really think here is the appropiate form for learning about owner op as were geared towards people getting into the industry , so my apologies if its drifting into that, but I really appreciate the advice. It confirms things that Ive heard from our guys that are currently contractors for us. Although I do keep eyeballing other companies, rest assured, I have no intentions of leaving Knight, and certainly wouldnt unless I had very compelling reasons to, another job for sure lined up, secured and knew it was the right move. I really enjoy where I run, how I run and the relationships I have with Knight. Weather its luck or them responding to my work habits and ethics or both, They are absolutely wonderful to me. My current DM is leaving, to go into the military in a month, but Ive gotten to know our other DMs and have good working relationships with them.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

Without reading all of the replies, I'll try to answer from my personal perspective.

I started with CFI and love them. Like you they take care of us. Having been here almost 4 years and proven myself, they work hard to keep the reliable, experienced drivers. This is true for most companies.

The grass is not always greener. Be careful when looking at money promised. Sometimes they give you numbers that include all bonuses. So, those numbers are not real.

Stick where you are if they're meeting most of your needs. If you feel you need a change look to Knight first.

Good luck.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Davy,

One example for keeping an eye on the market is the current rates for power only loads. Right now, there's an extreme shortage of trailers. What that means is a lot of people have just the tractor and no trailer, which in turn is sending the power only segment rates into the toilet. Places like amazon, jb hunt, fed ex arn't paying much to pull their trailers.

And even if the market corrected itself, in my experience power only usually only pays around 1.08-1.15 a mile. Usually on a sliding scale at a mega.

It doesn't hurt to have an open mind and knowing your options in the future.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

I read of folks like two sides and others who seemed to have jumped right in, maybe to tough weather and or difficult paths. I by comparison tried to take a very cautious and careful approach, taking baby steps with nothing too difficult rather very slowly increase difficulty.

Wondering if I would have made it through what they go through, perhaps I short changed myself on experience by taking the slow cautious approach?

Another question, I have absolutely no compelling reason to leave Knight, they have given me everything I ask for, I make decent money, very flexible scheduling, love my truck etc...yet I find myself looking at other companies offering considerably more money but with similar qualities of flexible home time, no forced dispatch etc. Is it normal to look? I love the folks in the office and have been establishing a great reputation at Knight, but it keeps hounding me.

Every week we've been having accidents and incidents with adverse weather. I'm set up nicely in the south and southeast now, but like the first question, should I be taking more difficult loads? I don't want to but I feel like I should be. Like I should have more experience with it by now.

And one final one, is it normal to think about going owner op even though I'm new, kind of obsessing a bit on it? I'm nowhere near ready, but slowly collecting information and such. I feel that entrepreneurial bug calling me. I know I'm new and have absolutely no plans on changing anything, but I just find myself thinking about options down the road more and more.

1. You started with a plan and it worked. CONGRATULATIONS! We all start with our own perspective, knowledge and experiences. You did what works for you and that’s a success.

2. Looking around is okay. As long as you recognize the marketing gimmicks. As for better $$, many here probably make much more than me. But I’m okay with the $ I’m making and the family time I get. And my house is a place of refuge from “the world.” I love it there and no amount of $ is enough to get me to spend more time away.

3. No matter what business you think about, gather as much info as you can, BUT DO NOT make your decisions based on the advice of those who stand to profit from your decisions.

I hope this helps.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

TwoSides11's Comment
member avatar
I read of folks like two sides and others who seemed to have jumped right in, maybe to tough weather and or difficult paths. I by comparison tried to take a very cautious and careful approach, taking baby steps with nothing too difficult rather very slowly increase difficulty.

Honestly Davy I did not expect to be thrown in the fire like I was. It is very difficult for me right now with my situation. I'm frustrated, stressed and feeling lost at times. I think being careful and cautious in this career is what you need to do. Driving these monsters are no joke, no matter what you are hauling.

I don't believe you short changed yourself on experience. I believe you are doing the best thing necessary for you to gain the maximum experience. I wouldn't call it baby steps either. For example, you have to go through grade school to middle school to high school right? Did you jump right in and learn the drums? You are a good drummer so how did you get to that point? Step by step and each step you take prepares you for the next level.

If the time comes and you feel you need to graduate then do so bro, take on more miles, do the more difficult loads if you feel you are up to it. Ask yourself what type of driver you want to be and what is necessary to become that. If you are satisfied with where you are and what you do, that's all good my man. If you feel you want to challenge yourself then go for it...

I also look at other companies and think what it would be like working for them. I look at the drivers and wonder how much training did they receive. A lot of thoughts run through my head as well, I too am an over thinker lol. But I know I am exactly where I need to be right now. The adversity I'm facing is a learning experience. One day it will pay off. Learn the skill, practice it, master it, then move up.

Stay safe out there Davy, oh and I have listened to your tunes and they are awesome. Had it on repeat a couple weeks ago from Detroit to Cressona in PA. I have your songs in my Playlist rotation on the road. Good stuff...

Page 1 of 2 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

This topic has the following tags:

Advice For New Truck Drivers CDL Endorsements CDL Qualifications Entertainment First Solo Months On The Road Safe Driving Tips
Click on any of the buttons above to view topics with that tag, or you can view a list of all forum tags here.

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