Does your truck ever get hung up on an abrupt change of grade?

Discussion in 'Questions To Truckers From The General Public' started by Moose Holland, May 12, 2022.

  1. Moose Holland

    Moose Holland Bobtail Member

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    Ideally, motor vehicles and roads should be engineered to fit one another like a glove. Railroads ensure that rail vehicles and train tracks fit one another precisely. My grandfather was a civil engineer by trade in the specialties of road construction and excavation and infrastructure has always fascinated me. This is why I dig Surveyor (the layout building feature in the Trainz railroad simulator that let's me construct my own virtual model railroad world) so much. I think I would be a civil engineer if I could start all over again. I made this short video of virtual model railroading and virtual model trucking as a demonstration of how roads and trucks should fit one another.




    Who here has gotten their trucks or other vehicles stuck over railroad grade crossings and other places where vehicle and road did not fit one another perfectly from an engineering standpoint? Are the changes in grades on the hills of San Francisco so abrupt that a trailer truck could not feasibly negotiate them? I'm a firm believer in uniform standards in any human society.
     
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  3. Tall Mike

    Tall Mike Road Train Member

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    I haven't gotten hung up, yet...

    It's most certainly something I need to be aware of being so low to the ground..I can air up the trailer from a switch on my dash, but that is going to raise it up so far.
     
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  4. D.Tibbitt

    D.Tibbitt Road Train Member

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    i think those cows have mad cow disease with the noises they are making
     
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  5. Moose Holland

    Moose Holland Bobtail Member

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    The bridge in my video has a height of 19.50'. The double-decker cattle trailer has a height of 17'. I checked them both with my vertical ruler tool while constructing the virtual layout. Railroads have tight control of infrastructure-to-vehicle fit because they own, maintain and operate both the train tracks, right of way, and the trains that run over them. The motor vehicle industry, unfortunately, doesn't own the public roads and private toll roads too. Do road builders have to conform to automobile design specs or do motor vehicle designers and manufacturer's have to conform to the design of roads? Do civil engineers and carmakers have a set of national standards they both agree upon?
     
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  6. D.Tibbitt

    D.Tibbitt Road Train Member

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    well the states set rules for how tall a truck can be. for example out west you can run up to 14' high. everywhere else its 13'6".. there used to be a length law which is why cabover trucks took over... im not exactly sure about your questions, thats above my pay grade... but i think they are good questions. it would definatly make this job easier, if every corner and street was designed exactly the same. and the roads were laid out exactly the same in every city.. it would take the character away, but it would make it easier.
     
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  7. Moose Holland

    Moose Holland Bobtail Member

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    Of course I understand most people here are drivers and not civil engineers, automotive engineers or government authorities that set vehicle and road design regulations. Some drivers may know more about these standards than others. I certainly believe how things are designed and laid out over America's great landscape certainly affect a driver's and/or motor carrier's safety, efficiency in operation, time management, operating costs, overhead, profits and level of comfort over the road.

    I prefer road and vehicle SAFETY over CHARACTER any day. I find a circa-1970 W-925 Kenworth tractor about one of the prettiest commercial trucks my eyes have ever beheld. I'm constructing a 1/25 scale model of one right now in custom purple paint. The geeky new-model trucks' "aero-Euro-look" exterior designs certainly lack that classic 20th century bold, tough American character in style in the name of being pleasing to government bureaucracy, fuel economy, perhaps safety and being ecologically green. Today's OTR drivers might find the new geeky trucks to have more comfy features on board as well. Air conditioning could still be installed on a "spartan" 1970 W-925. The more classic-look trucks are favored in logging, heavy haul and construction as well as by some old-school O/O's. Most freight trucks in mega carriers have that modern geek style, winning no blue ribbons for looks, and they lack traditional style character.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2022
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  8. wis bang

    wis bang Road Train Member

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    Moved construction equipment using a Rodgers 'Croucher' lowbed.

    The entrance to the company area dropped off the outside edge of a curve.

    Never has a problem until I tried leaving with a cat trac loader and the trailer grabbed tight on that drop off.

    Found out, for the first time, that day that I needed to go to the right instead of turning left leaving with the heavier equipment..

    Thankfully the boss pulled up and explained the use of the funny little blocks laying inside the gooseneck.

    Adding them to the bottom of the gooseneck locks raised the main rails a few extra inches and I was able to back up.
     
  9. Tigerfishinc

    Tigerfishinc Light Load Member

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    Forward control cabs - euro style - offer better line of sight and maneuverability than the old style cabs, especially on narrow roads. I think drivers prefer the engine in front from a safety point of view - but working the engine on a tilt cab is so much easier! The other advantage is a shorter wheel base - provides more torque. A longer wheel base provides more comfort.
    I drove the forward control Mercedes 4850 pulling oversized heavy projects on multi axle trailers - and the torque and power band of that engine and ZF tranny were just amazing
     
  10. homeskillet

    homeskillet Road Train Member

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    I thought your grandfather was a "union cat skinner", Tom.....

    Oh, geeez......he's BAAAAA-aaaaaack!
     
  11. Florescent-android92

    Florescent-android92 Light Load Member

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    Can't speak about usa but in canada they use TAC guidelines for road design to help determine lane widths, speed limits and curve radii, but these are just GUIDELINES, and we all know that cheapskate local and regional governments love to cut corners (like for example, reducing that recommended 500m merge lane down to 300m). If the roadway crosses provincial or state boundaries then the design gets more scrutiny from the federales, thank god.

    Rail design is a bit like interstate highway, in that it requires federal STANDARDS be met. Design is based on roadway type, but the gradient must not exceed 2% across 10m on most public crossings.

    I'm super into cities skylines and like reading about highway design ####.

    As for whether or not a vehicle is suitable for the road it's on, that's almost entirely the responsibility of the driver, afaik. I don't know #### about auto design but I assume engineers follow similar guidelines within their industry, as well as abide by government standards.
     
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