Advice about what truck and trailer for trucking ocean containers and flatbed

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Kyle H., Nov 19, 2020.

  1. Kyle H.

    Kyle H. Bobtail Member

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    Nov 19, 2020
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    Hi there I’m new to the forum and need advice on starting to haul sea containers and flatbed loads of steel sheets. So here’s the deal;First off I have 20 years experience driving Dumptrucks and a bobtail with a 5th wheel tilt deck equipment trailer locally in southern California. I have had my class A and medical for 20 years. That’s the extent of my trucking experience. I have an opportunity to haul steel for a local company and would like to give it a try but have no knowledge of container “chassis” trailers or flatbed trailers. I also am out of the loop on what trucks have this emissions deal worked out and are not going to be a lemon. I want to start as cheap as possible but don’t want a turd of a truck either. Can anyone offer advice on this? I know there’s some gray knowledge on this form, thanks in advance for any help!
     
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  3. OldeSkool

    OldeSkool Heavy Load Member

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    Hey bud put check out the intermodal forum on here and repost this question. Lots of good advice about container hauling on there.
     
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  4. MTN Boomer

    MTN Boomer Medium Load Member

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    Check out Truck Paper, has Trucks and Trailers. A step deck trailer with container locks would work for containers and steel. I have hauled containers on a flat without the locks.
     
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  5. Kyle H.

    Kyle H. Bobtail Member

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    Thanks for the reply, a step deck that could also have container locks sounds great.do you have any trailer brands you would recommend or ones to stay away from? I’ll look into that. Do you have a truck recommendation?
     
  6. Daycabinit

    Daycabinit Bobtail Member

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    You can’t haul containers from the port with your own step deck. You have to use container chassis. As for trucks you need a carb compliant tractor, trucks with epa 13. years 2014 and above are ok still have problems tho. Stay away from epa 10 engines tears 2011 thru 2013.
     
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  7. Kyle H.

    Kyle H. Bobtail Member

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    Nov 19, 2020
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    Thanks for your help. So Long Beach or any port for that matter will only load containers on a chassis? I have to figure out a cheap way to get started here and I don’t feel good about buying a used truck but it is the only way I can afford it
     
  8. ZVar

    ZVar Road Train Member

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  9. Daycabinit

    Daycabinit Bobtail Member

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    Ya you can’t afford a new truck on what containers pay lol. You can lease on to some container companies hauling out of port of LB to get started. Container rates are not the best but you can make a living
     
    Kyle H. Thanks this.
  10. Kyle H.

    Kyle H. Bobtail Member

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    Nov 19, 2020
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    Thanks for the link, I really had no clue how bad the container haulers had it. I have no experience in full time trucking but I live two hours from the ports in Southern California and have a line on steady work from a metal importer/ sales company dealing in sheet steel and aluminum. It sounds like I should stay away from the ports and just try to do their flatbed work, but I was just trying to see how I can be a full serve type of an asset to them. They have
     
  11. MTN Boomer

    MTN Boomer Medium Load Member

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    At one time I hauled Containers out of Rail yards. We did go to the Ports on the East Coast. The company leased Chassis. That might be an option. As far as the Flatbed, a 53 foot Combo is less expensive than an all Aluminum. If you set up an account with a trailer leasing company. You would be able to get started with less $$ also would be more flexible service and load wise.. I have zero experience with Carb related trucks. From what I have heard from other drivers , they tend to break down a lot. Probably get more information in the O/O area or mechanics forum on which ones are more reliable.
     
    Kyle H. Thanks this.
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