Hot shot setup-will this work?

Discussion in 'Expediter and Hot Shot Trucking Forum' started by respond2us, Jun 11, 2022.

  1. respond2us

    respond2us Bobtail Member

    Jun 11, 2022
    Hey all! I’ve been reading this forum today. Lots of great info. I haven’t found any posts specific to what I need to know, so thought I’d just ask.

    I’m a truck driver now, driving for a company that doesn’t care even a little bit about safety. The owner dispatched me 4 days this week for loads that took 16 hours a day, with 2-3 hours of rest between and wants me back Monday (I just started working here about 3 weeks ago.) I’m done with this dude. Doesn’t matter what he pays if I’m dead.

    So, I’m very interested in setting up a hotshot company and finding my own loads. Drive to the states I want, etc.
    I have a 99 Dodge Cummins 2500, 5 speed, under 160k miles. If I picked up a good trailer, would this truck be acceptable for hot shot loads? It’s not a dually and it’s 2wd unfortunately. That said, could I still find enough work and the truck get me by? Or do I really need a 1 ton dually? I assume 4wd is important if I’m driving North in the colder months (I just wouldn’t), and maybe it’s needed if I’m driving loads into oil fields (I could skip that also).

    What do you think? I thought I might drive that one just to get going and I could always upgrade later if I thought I needed to.
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  3. Chieftains

    Chieftains Medium Load Member

    Jul 18, 2021
    The whole Trucking industry is in a bad shape. Forget about hotshot.
    If you have a Cdl go work for class a companies and make some money.
  4. MacLean

    MacLean Heavy Load Member

    Sep 12, 2017
    Seems like a quick way to destroy the Dodge. At best sell it to some guy looking for a 24V to put in a GM and put the money towards a 4x4.
  5. Judge

    Judge Road Train Member

    Mar 19, 2014
    Newport, Ar
  6. Todd727

    Todd727 Light Load Member

    Jun 7, 2021
    You don't need 4x4 unless you are planning on doing off road work, in fact, it hurts your weights a little.

    From what I can find, the maximum GCWR for that truck is 20K with the truck GVWR of 8800. Max trailer weight of 13,900. As I recall, a 14K trailer weighs about 6K. So, you are going to be left with about 8K payload.

    If you got a newer 3500/350, you get get a 10K GVWR truck and pull a 16K trailer, although, you have a CDL, so I don't see why you'd limit yourself. Usually, hotshotters don't want to get a CDL.

    If you really want to do this, find a truck and a drop deck, but as others have said, it's a mess right now.

  7. GYPSY65

    GYPSY65 Road Train Member

    Nov 16, 2012
    SW FLA
    I don’t think you have enough truck

    4 wheel drives don’t keep vehicles out of the ditch in bad weather as much as most believe

    Sounds like you have a plan to run all over??
    If so that truck gets pretty small in short order

    If you plan to run local in like Texas then it’s a different situation but still don’t think you have the right vehicle
  8. SMK Shoe

    SMK Shoe Bobtail Member

    Aug 24, 2012
    Your truck will limit you to much. I ran a 3500 ram with a 40' PJ trailer and still only had 15K capacity. Hot shotting is a mess right now as others have mentioned. 2-2.50 a mile is top end of RPM and with fuel price now, it is awful. Get a job as a company driver and make what you can until things even out. Or sell the truck and get into a semi. Our O/O pulling skateboards are doing pretty good right now. Our Hot Shotter's are struggling.
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  9. Brandonpdx

    Brandonpdx Road Train Member

    Dec 27, 2007
    Elkhart, IN
    getting into any sort of trucking venture right now is probably a bad idea. Freight is slowing down and fuel is 6 bucks. At some point it will get better but right now forget it. Find a better job and ride it out for a couple years and see what happens. The Dodge I’d just hang onto as a personal rig and go straight to a big truck if/when the opportunity presents itself. You’d have an easier time making a living. But I wouldn’t buy a big truck or a hotshot trailer right now anyway with the bad situation and high prices on used equipment.
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  10. Brandonpdx

    Brandonpdx Road Train Member

    Dec 27, 2007
    Elkhart, IN
    About the only thing a 3/4 ton single rear would be good for, if you were hell bent on putting it to work, would be convincing one of the smaller RV hauling companies in Elkhart County to let you lease it on. (The larger ones won’t because of the age of the truck). Arguably those are ideal specs for hauling small to medium size campers and probably can do 20-22 MPG driving back empty with an old 24v Cummins and 2wd. About the only major investment would be a 60-70 gallon slip tank in the bed. But, RV’s are going to be slowing down pretty quick if they haven’t already and the rates haven’t seemed to keep up with the fuel prices IMO. $2/mile isn’t enough when fuel is $5.50-6. You need more like $2.50 to be able to drive back empty and still make out okay.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2022
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