Born free....at least I think so.

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by dancecanyon, Apr 11, 2021.

  1. dancecanyon

    dancecanyon Light Load Member

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    I have an o/o who has a 1998 International, Detroit engine, who is offering me it for $12k. I would add onto it an apu. It's not fancy and I'm considering it because I can pay for it in cash and thus, more easily considering financing a used conestoga or open step deck....or I just remain a power only. I have been saving for a maintenance fund and its pretty healthy. It would be my first foray into being o/o after being only company for the past six years...and I know that no matter how much research I do, there will be a certain amount of trial by fire...but I'm tired of being a company driver. I stay out for 49-50 weeks of the year and want to float around and check out different parts of the trucking industry. I also do research for a university degree plus enjoy checking things out on the road as personal interest. Buying everything new and being up to the neck in debt as a result would interfere with these other motivations as much as being force dispatched.

    As a company driver only, certain sectors disqualify me because I ride with my dog but some of those same sectors shrugged to her if I were to come on as an O/O (mainly pulling for entertainment shows). I don't have massive debt except for an SUV I upgraded to in order to pull a small RV to live in...but that could be knocked out of the way in two years or more depending on how sparse I want to live. I'm a dual citizen but would base myself out of the US just because I prefer the trucking in the US compared to Canada(I've been based out of Canada since I started trucking).

    That said, I'm seeing a couple of different strains of thought about 'starting out'(not including Don't Do It!).

    The first being, "lease to a carrier to learn more the intricacies of what's involved with running a trucking business". This makes heaps of sense because I don't have to think about much of the running of the business as a company driver...just get the freight there safe and on time, be professional. There's more of a cushion with leasing on with a carrier, apparently?

    The second being, "Get one's own numbers and have more of the money reserved from the load. Insurance will be a killer tho." Is this such an issue with a paid off truck and maybe $30k in financing for a trailer? Actually, I could pay half that in cash so, that would be so much less.

    Also, has anyone used fuel solution software such as the larger carriers do? Ok, I'm being lazy and that was on my to do list to research and will get on that...but just in case someone has. :)
     
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  3. AModelCat

    AModelCat Road Train Member

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    23 year old truck. You better be half decent with a wrench. Labour adds up fast at $120+/hr.
     
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  4. Lonesome

    Lonesome Mr. Sarcasm

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    With a 1998, there are a few companies that won't let you lease I'm sure.
     
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  5. slow.rider

    slow.rider Road Train Member

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    It would be welcome at Landstar as long as it's ELD capable and passes inspection, and the driver meets the requirements.
     
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  6. dancecanyon

    dancecanyon Light Load Member

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    Landstar is somewhere I've been eyeing up. I've talked to one of the agents and she sent me the initial pay package breakdown; hence why I would prefer to bring my own trailer. I don't think the truck is ELD compliant though as he was runs paper logs and said that was a bonus I could too. I wonder if it could be a good starter truck? keep my costs down...I can live cheeeaaaap for myself; cook my own food, do my workouts outside or in the back of the trailer, go for walks with my dog....cash flow my university....bank everything else. Pre-covid I did like to treat myself to one nice "Friday night" dinner and some live music. Haven't done that save once since last March and that was three weeks ago in small town Indiana. All that to say, bank hella cash to move up in truck style within a couple of years.

    AModelCat--yea, I'm not the most handy with the wrench other than switching out bulbs and lamps, flaps...probably could replace the hood mirrors and some hoses....but anything truly mechanical, nope. Anything newer would have me going to a shop anyway for the computer read-outs.

    The guy who is offering me the International has also suggested Admiral Merchants.

    I may also just say no and move down anyway....start company again after a nice long break on the Island I live on in Georgian Bay.
     
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  7. slow.rider

    slow.rider Road Train Member

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    If you're just going to bring your own regular dryvan, you get a higher percent but might lose out on quite a bit of nice paying drop and hook loads. The real advantage to bringing your own would be if it has things company vans don't have - blankets, ramp, liftgate, side door,, etc. That way you open yourself up to different nice paying loads which most drivers can't touch.
     
  8. 77fib77

    77fib77 Road Train Member

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    You could buy it , keep working at your current job. Apply for landstar. If they say no (about 3 weeks). Get your own numbers, that's under a month. Insurance is the big hurdle for your own numbers.
     
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  9. S M D

    S M D Road Train Member

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    I’m gonna get backlash but Idc.
    Run somewhere where you can run pre eld if you can. And run that thing

    I run older trucks and here’s where I stand
    This week from Saturday last week to currently( today) a load I’m
    Under I’m grossing $15.5k (reefer)
    Granted I had two small breakdowns that cost me about 2k parts with my labor.

    so if that truck doesn’t break down for a month let’s say. There’s no way you won’t have enough funds saved up to set you for whatever maintenance might come up or breakdown. As long as you get a good start I wouldn’t sweat it. especially a 12.7 detroit. Parts are cheap and they are pretty bulletproof.
    I would do it, just to start somewhere. You won’t regret it.
    You CAN ALWAYS go back to being a driver at any company. But not many opportunities to o/o come up. you can work two years and buy any truck you desire. If you manage your finances.

    Running a truck isn’t too hard. Just gotta fall under the right people if you’re gonna lease onto someone. .
    Landstar takes 75% of your money. I’m highly against that. I have friends that work there and are happy. So I guess it works.
    landstar is actually a good place for someone to start up. But, a lot of Russians will run you hard for 10% which is rather do.
     
  10. Midwest Trucker

    Midwest Trucker Road Train Member

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    Do the Russians allow anything other then white Volvo’s and flip flops? Are you required to have one foot up on the dash?

    How much did you ACTUALLY make?
     
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  11. S M D

    S M D Road Train Member

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    Probably not but worth a try. Maybe the international is white and they’ll never notice.

    not sure yet. Havent crunched any numbers after fuel. But when I get back home I can update.
    Fuel cost doesn’t mean #### to me cuz it’s part of making money. I drive a 800hp wind pusher at speed limits by the time I get back to California by Friday if all goes well. ill gross around 20k. Let’s say I spend 5k in fuel. Worst case.
    That’s a solid two weeks of work. I have more than one truck. Btw.
     
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