Could use some perspective, maybe even some encouragement!

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Willocouple, Sep 26, 2008.

  1. Working Class Patriot

    Working Class Patriot Road Train Member

    Jan 17, 2008
    Wherever and Whenever...
    Just hang in there, even seasoned drivers can have trouble backing in sometimes, especially when you have a shipper/receiver who has a tight dock or wants you to back in "Blind-Sided" between cars ect...
    As far as the down shifting goes, has that trainer taught you guys how to tack shift?
    Double-clutching is "by-the book" but one of my buddies used to own his own truck/tractor repair shop. He would take his accounts' drivers out and teach them how to tach shift. If done properly, it saves $$$$$ on clutch plates and it also teaches drivers to "feel" for the gear. You can't get the "touch" by double-clutching, at least that's been my experience.
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  3. milestogo

    milestogo Light Load Member

    Dec 13, 2006

    I see by your age that you've some experience in life. Rest assured that relationships with trainers are interesting to say the least. Every trainee has their great, good, bad and or ugly experience. I had 3 different trainers, and to this day, feel the same about them as I did when I left their trucks a year and a half ago. One, I hope I never see again, another I'm totally indiferent about, and the 3rd and last, I'm still in touch with, love him like a son. In retrospect, having multiple trainers was IMO a good thing. When training with just one person, as is your case, the risk of getting who is best for you is HIGH.

    You wrote that in 40 days you only have 15 backings, and that you sat as long as 5 days. Five days of sitting while training is ridiculous in itself, but could have been used for range type training. Shame on your trainer for not using that kind of downtime for honing your skills. You could have had every type of backing scenario with tandems at different locations with down time like that, and be pretty good at them.
    What's done is done, but if you have down time again, make use of it.

    Hang in there, it'll be over before you know it.
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  4. im6under

    im6under Heavy Load Member

    Feb 13, 2007
    off topic???????


    5 days down, 15 back-ups in 40 days, 2 years and super trucker is a trainer...

    stay 90 days + 1 or 2 and quit this chicken outfit and go get you a real job driving.

    tell the new employer the old company wasn't a good fit for your needs.

    miles and money...

    man what a horror story !!!!!!!!!
  5. Boo'sdad

    Boo'sdad Bobtail Member

    Aug 10, 2008
    Little Rock Ar
    Heres the scoop the only way to learn is hands on, and practice. A good trainer is someone with patience, and knows there not perfect. I'm getting hands on w/ my fellow workers, and they know they aint all that. We work on a hazmat team, and small mistakes happen the trick is, yu learn from your mistakes. You'll learn what you need over time. I thought I'd have trouble w/ down shifting, but practice makes perfect. I was taught to float the gears, but I found out that the examiner requires
    you to double shift. So I got 2 hrs to relearn to double shift. OH YEAY!!!!.
    To sumerize your questions, patience it'll come to ya both.
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  6. Jonny1

    Jonny1 Medium Load Member

    Jan 14, 2007
    Nashville, TN

    Its great to see you both back on the radar!! I loved your posts while you were in school, I'm so glad your health is doing better.
  7. Lurchgs

    Lurchgs Road Train Member

    Feb 13, 2008
    Denver, CO
    So far, nobody's said anything about perhaps getting a different trainer. Should be a "no problem" request - just tell your trainee manager that you and the current trainer are not a good fit.

    on the other hand... long time sitting like that... sounds like a less than adequate company.

    Probably best to just hang on and live through it.

    Shifting and backing? I'm fortunate, backing comes relatively naturally to me... even so, I've had days where I couldn't put the truck in the right lot, much less the right dock. Shifting... shifting. Shifting is not my friend. Especially downshifting. My biggest problem is I still have a tendency to grab too much clutch (up or down shifting) which, of course, results in loud noises. I don't much mind, but the small critters and other neighbors complain.

    When I get it right, it's when I'm working on being 'smoothe'. Light on the clutch, and so forth-what I'm trying to do is make the whole process undetectable by somebody in the trailer or even in the sleeper. A bit of a challenge for me, but I can do it more often than not, these days.

    (only been in my own truck for about 4 months)

    Stiff upper lip!
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  8. TrooperRat

    TrooperRat Medium Load Member

    Dec 29, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    Well, when you've got some guy breathing down your neck and looking to find fault with everything you're doing, that doesn't exactly create a good atmosphere for learning or performing well. The trainer's attitude sounds very counter-productive. He doesn't sound like the sort of person that should be training anyone - a teacher has patience and doesn't sit there and rack up his own, grand, superiority every time you make a little mistake or don't do it the way he wants it done.

    In reality, backing takes practice - and a lot of it. The longer the wheelbase and the longer the trailer - the harder it is. If you stick with it long enough, you'll get it. I remember getting into a truck and practicing backing maneuvers for hours on end. Set up cones and force myself to back around a course, or make myself back into a "cone-dock" from a 90 degree angle, all kinds of things. I made it harder and harder on purpose.

    Downshifting is probably easier to learn - also takes practice. In fact, it's pretty simple once you figure it out. Neither maneuver comes to you naturally, it's a learned art - especially backing - and you WILL get it eventually if you keep at it.
    Working Class Patriot Thanks this.
  9. Big Don

    Big Don "Old Fart"

    Sep 8, 2007
    Utah's DIXIE!
    Keep in mind that "this too shall pass." When you get to the point that you want to choke the living XXXX out of your trainer, remember that he is probably "compensating for his own real or perceived shortcommings."

    In other words, he's trying to make himself look good when someone else screws up.

    Keep telling yourselves that "it won't matter a bit, a year down the road.":biggrin_25525:
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  10. desert_son

    desert_son Light Load Member

    Mar 27, 2008
    Liberty Hill, Tx
    I had a trainer who I did not get along with requested a new trainer, got a new one in 2 days (had to return to terminal then fly to St Louis from Dallas). As for backing I have seen many old timers have issues and of course I have had a few my self. Tight areas and/or bad setups, as you get more backing time you'll improve. When I trained and had newbies have difficulties with shifting I tell them it all about rythem. Once you find your rythem it becomes easier.
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  11. EBO

    EBO Bobtail Member

    Sep 28, 2008
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Hows it goin? Im slated to start training at the Swift school in San Antonio on 10/08/08. Ive wanted to drive OTR for a long time now and they made the first offer for a kid like me with no exp at all. Just lookin for some pointers from those of you out there with experience. Ive read through my cdl manual 5 or 6 times in the last few months and think ill get through the written test with no problem, I have heard some horror stories though about new students gettin sent home for some ridiculous things? Anyway, Im as new as a newbie gets and any info I can get would be appreciated.

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