Is Class B expediting the way to go?

Discussion in 'Expediter and Hot Shot Trucking Forum' started by prisonerofthehwy, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. prisonerofthehwy

    prisonerofthehwy <strong>Ball and Chains</strong>

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    The Expedited side of the trucking industry is a broader one than most of us think right off hand. I don't know about you, but straight trucks of the Class B variety jumps nonchalantly into my mind, when I hear the mere word, "Expedite."
    One of the avenues one may go through life in the expedite field, is by a regular Ol' Class A vehicle of any variety. When I worked at Toyotetsu, I was surronded by such Expediters without even knowing that the word Expedite even existed within the realm of the English langauge.:biggrin_25512:
    Toyotatesu America Incorporated has the moto, "Just in time Delivery." It is the theory of the Japanese business men, (and they crammed that saying into our tiny little skulls at every plant wide meeting I ever attended,) that in order to reduce overhead, and in turn to increase revenue, that a business must modernize and have nothing in stock.... stock is just wasted product not in transit, and thus we should have our products ready to be loaded and out the door as quickly as possible, and the most important aspect of that..... ready to be delivered to our customer which was Toyota, just in time as they became in need of it.


    Another popular mode of transit for expediters is the Class C anybody and their grandma can drive type of vehicle. It is known in the expedite field as the Sprinter van. I read that this is the most popular, and thus less profitable side of expediting. There are too many people out there in their sprinters, for it to be plausable to get a load right off the bat in most cities.

    Finally we may ponder back to the Class B vehicle..... the type that automatically, and effortlessly leaps into my frame of thought, when someone even breaths out a sound, that minutely resembles the word expedite.
    When I was managing the Ol' Inn, I had a regular customer based out of Ohio. He was the first Expediter, that I've came into contact with, that I actually knew that he was an Expediter. I used to talk to him for hrs.
    He makes more as an O/O of a straight truck, than most O/O's who drive tractor trailers do! Even if said O/O is also in the Expediting Field. I found that this is not always the case but it seems to be a pattern.
    He also talked to me about how much fuel mileage he got. I forgot now how much he said, but it beat the socks off of that Volvo I used to drive for Swift..... 6 mpg was it's average.
    He had to hand unload EVERY load, though, and I may be wrong, but I believe that is the norm in this type of Expediting..... I think most all class B vehicles are unloaded by the driver.
    So does it even out, or does the Class B expediter actually make more than the regular Ol' (and please forgive me,) but otr "Joe"?:biggrin_2555:
    The more I read, and the more I talk to people the more I begin to believe that. But then again, I once believed my Navy Recruiter, then my trucking school recruiter, and finally the stupidest one to believe of them all.......... My Swift recruiter. I know alot of these folks, like the big otr companies get bonuses for getting people to sign up. :yes2557: So I am not sure what to believe, without believing to skeptically.
    What do y'all think?
    Does anyone know if Class B Expediting is the most profitable as it seems to be? Is there ANYONE who just read my long winded story, that has done Expediting in Class A, B, and C vehicles, or atleast a combo of both? (and preferably the combo is class A and B.) So I can hear again if this is true or not?
    Sincerely,
    your beloved prisoner of the highway.
     
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  3. honor roll

    honor roll Road Train Member

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    I have a offer from a popular company driving a class c and making some good money. I am weighing my options before I jump into it I don't want to make a mistake
     
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  4. RickG

    RickG Road Train Member

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    Prisonerofthehighway , I see you live in KY . I live in Owensboro . Somebody in town here has a straight truck leased to Panther . They've had it a while and I see it at their home on a regular basis . ConWay Expedite was bought out by Panther and when it was I started seeing a former ConWay truck parked at their home also . That's the thing with expedite . You can do well and gradually add trucks and become a fleet owner . There is good potential if you are willing to work . Google expediter forums newbie paradise. Most expediters have a regular site they hang out at .
     
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  5. otr500

    otr500 Light Load Member

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    Feb 9, 2008
    Pitkin, La.
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    There are some downfalls to expediting that can be fatal if it is not for you. There are some good things for some people.
    My wife and I ran teams for tri-State out of Oh. and made great money. We NEVER touched our freight to load or unload. Most of the time we hauled a couple of thousand pounds of usually auto industry related freight. We were in a 28' single rear axle Freightliner that was fantastic. It had 300 horses and governed wide open, a six speed auto, and a 98" sleeper. We had a full size bed, micro wave, flat screen TV, an RV refridgerator/freezer, sink, heated floor, generator with 5000 watt inverter, satellite radio and TV, and lots of storage room. We also had our laptop with air card.
    If we ran somewhat conservative we could get 11 to 12mpg but did not let any grass grow under us so averaged 9 to 11 mpg. The only way we could see making any real money was to run the truck as an O/O which meant we paid for the fuel. The owner took a percentage of the freight and we received 100% of the fuel surcharge. Some owners would pay for the fuel and this would have averaged about $.49 cpm and that was not good enough.
    There is really good money if you own the truck of course but we found that single drivers as a whole were not happy.
    Most companies dispatch at 45mph so a driver could only drive 495 miles max in a day. Yes you could drive more but they were strict on the q-comm. If a single driver received a load that went more than 495 miles he(or she) would not get to deliver it but would have to give it to a team truck. This was extra work with no pay and happens a lot. There can be a lot of deadhead if freight slows.
    There is a hugh hurry up and wait attitude. During pick up and delivery you were expected to be there ASAP but might have to sit all day and sometimes until the next when unloaded.
    A lot of the freight goes to the same places. Those places use expedite a lot. There may be as high as 10 or 12 trucks waiting in line and this does not account that a lot of shippers use different companies. You may be sitting at a truck stop with 4 or 5 trucks from your company and 3 or 4 from another. You can elect to make an empty move to another board. This pays a few pennies and may or may not be a benefit. If you sit an extended time there they may offer an empty move again. You might be able to see that this is not lucrative.
    The companies usually dispatch by 1)- size of load. 2)- length of haul and teams get preference. 3)-class of truck. and 4)- first in first out.
    There is suppose to be no forced dispatch but if you are offered a crappy load and don't take it you will be sorry. There are vans, single rear axle, and double (some are drop down axles)rear axle. Both size box vans can haul a van load but they will only pay van rate. A double axle with a drop down is listed in a different catagory and not on your load screen but will be in line for the next load. If you are offered a load and they feel you do not have a justifiable reason not to take it you will be taken off the dispatch board for a period and dropped to the rear of the line. You can refuse a load but it may cost you anyway. There was almost no dock time but in and out.
    A lot of the expediting companies haul auto or equipment related(union) freight so a strike can be very bad. Also a down turn in the economy slows things.
    This is just things I know from one company but have chatted with other drivers.
    I hope it helps.
     
  6. moparnewt

    moparnewt Bobtail Member

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    West Bloomfield, MI
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    I drive for an owner in a sprinter signed on to a carrier in Toledo Ohio. 80% or better are no touch freight. Myself, even in the van, I have never loaded the truck,although I have helped unload it,attaching a pull strap or pushing it back far enough for the forklift driver to grab it.It's best to drive for someone else until you learn enough about the business before buying your own truck. Just jumping in with a large payment and not knowing where and how the freight lanes operate can be a costly mistake. I'm at the point now where I've figured it's time for me to get my own truck because I really like the challenge and adventure of it, it's not for everyone but it satisfies my wanderlust.
     
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  7. otr500

    otr500 Light Load Member

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    Pitkin, La.
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    This is concerning box vans. Just some examples that could happen to you.
    We ran mostly Central to Eastern U.S. with a couple of trips to the west and some fantastic empty moves.
    If you pick an owner that has his(or her) truck and yours you may have problems. He(or she) has weekly and monthly bills(insurance, Q-com, maybe a truck note) and can not afford much down time. A smaller company will micro-manage you and you will probably quit. A smaller company will probably have a generator and not care if you move to a bad location and have to sit a couple of days. He(she) will monitor you and will call if you turn down a load he thinks you should take. His(or her) help a little in the biginning may be ok but a couple of free weekend passes in a bad location and you will not want this. If you are not moving on fri. there is a good chance you will not move until mon. and you certainly would have thoughts about taking a load to a board with 10 trucks on it, specially during a slow time.
    If a couple has the money(or credit) to invest in a good used truck the money is more. Also, as a contractor you have to go thru the owner for everything including pay information. If an owner screws you---you have ---------ZERO--------- recourse thru the lease company.
    Also transportation to orientation, new physicals, and if your truck is not there a hotel, is your responsibility, as is eats.
    Oh! and pick a company(may not be possible) somewhat close to where you live or in a travel lane. You will be under contract and if you are not making any money and have to quit you will still be required to take the truck back to an agreed upon place---at your expense.
    ALSO--some owners use you to make their money and will pay you after they get paid. If I wanted that I would buy a truck.
    Home time: If you own a home and want to see it without quiting(or long deadheads to and from) live near a bigger, central eastern city. Preferably within 200 miles of the companies home office. West past eastern Ia is bad, as is anywhere in Fl. except near the northern boarder, Eastern ks. is ok. All the north central, central, and eastern central states are good, Extreme north eastern is bad. Too far south is somewhat iffy.
    Scenario(teams):
    You finish orientation with 8 other teams at 12:00pm on a thursday. The idea thing would be that your truck is cleared, both drivers are cleared, and ready to dispatch. If the owner of your truck is not there it will be your responsibility or you will be screwed.
    Let's say the truck you are assigned gets 9.9 mpg.
    You(the truck and both drivers) are put on a load board in some unfigured-out order and you(of course) draw last place. One truck was not ready so you are #7, EXCEPT, you check the load board(as advised by others) and find there are 2 other teams. This makes you #9. You are in the yard and mention this to another driver and he says to check the class above you becase they may have a drop axle. You do, there is 2, and you call dispatch. Dispatch says that one is a drop axle. He can haul his class, as well as yours. Now you find you are actually #10 on the board.
    Dispatch offers an empty move to a board 200 miles away. It is 1:00pm There is one truck due in at 5:00pm. You can not make it before then so you will be #2. I know your truck will run 90mph or better but at 45mph dispatch you can not make it. However, as the dispatcher is offering this you are already in route and accept the move. You run like crazy and make it in 3.25 hours. A load board check(and update) shows you are #3 so you call dispatch again. One driver came off home time at 3:45pm and the other driver was early because his truck runs faster than 45mph also. #3 does beat #10 though.
    The next morning you are up at 6:00am, route your primary contact to the cell, and go eat breakfast. At 7:00am, back in the truck, you get a load offer on the Q-comm(so much for routing to the cell) for a van freight load going 388 miles. You refuse this as below rate. While typing the refusal dispatch calls to try to plead with you to take it. Of course there is no extra money so as you push send to refuse on the Q-comm you refuse on the phone. A message comes across that you refused. You are still #3. At 8:15am you get a load offer for a load going back to where you came so you refuse. The board now shows you are #4 so you call dispatch. It seems that if a load is 200 miles or more away and pays freight you can not refuse it and apparently another truck unloaded and came on the board ahead of you because the refusal bumped you for 2 hours. You call the driver manager stating why you would not want to back where you came from so he puts you back to #3.
    By 11:45am you are #1 and get a load offer. It is going 945 miles, picks up a 2:00pm, 6 miles away, and delivers at 11:00am the next day. Things are looking up. You call the shipper and are informed that you can pick up any time so you head out. You are loaded and on the road at 12:30pm with one pallet. Dispatch updated your delivery time to 9:30am the next morning.
    15.25 hours later you deliver at 3:45 am. Things are looking better until you have to sit the weekend because of no freight.
    Pay; 40/60 or 60/40
    Truck rate; $1.20 per mile
    1)- 40/60--pays 40% of the paid milage at rate. This would be $.48cpm for paid milage. Tolls, fuel, and other expenses are paid by the owner. Any ancillary pay is split the same 40/60. Thsi would include layover, detainment, and such.
    2)- 60/40--pays 60% of the paid milage at rate. This would be $.72 per mile plus fuel surcharge. The driver(s) is responsible for fuel, tolls, and ancillary pay is at 60% to the driver(s). Fuel surcharge is $.19 to $.35 cpm.
    3)- Taxes-- Most owners pay contract labor and issue a 1099. If drivers elect the 60/40 keep receipts for everything, especially fuel. A 1099 will split 60% of all revenue to the truck between the two drivers and two 1099's will be issued. You can take deductions for cell phones, equipment, office supplies and other standard business expenses.
    Option 1)- would pay +$453.60 to the drivers. The 200 mile empty move and 6 mile deadhead would pay $.20 cpm or $40.00=+$16.48 to the drivers. The total= $470.08. --all estimates
    Option 2)- would pay $680.40 to the drivers. The empty move and deadhead will take 20.80 gallons of fuel(206 miles), plus 95.46 gals(the run)= 116.25 gallons. Lets say at $2.89 per gallon= -$335.96 cost. Empty miles @60%=+$24.72. Fuel surcharge @ $.26 cpm= +$245.70. Total=
    Total= $590.14. This is $120.06 more than option 1).
    On Friday at 4:30pm you get a load to salt Lake City paying rate plus $.35cpm fuel surcharge delivering monday. Now you will make some money. Don't forget that there may not ever be any freight in SLC and you will have to empty move to Davenport, Ia.(1235. miles est.) or Las Vegas(420 miles est.), or Los Angeles(639 miles est.). Figure those at $.20 cpm minus 40%. Good thing, unless you have family there, that you can refuse freight. If you have been running hard and made some money you can always take the freight, empty move to Las Vegas, and take two days off.
    A lot of drivers do not run West but then with the U.S. auto industry in trouble expediting may have a weed out time.
    Please note(other than milage estimates) the figures are made up to give examples and a person must research current figures and pay rate.
    I need to mention one more thing. If a contract driver comes up on a random, he(or she) has to pay. I think they pick clean drivers more randomly.
    This is with one company so check them out good. I am not sure how the economy will hit the expediting but fuel prices are at least a little lower.
    WE NEVER LOADED OR UNLOADED A TRUCK. Most freight was light. If you have never hauled a box van remember to put the landing gear down--LOL.
    I see one on here with van experience. He can answer on those--LOL. I have seen some owners using vans that are not sprinters but conversions and I would run from them.
    Remember if you are contract labor you need to earn enough to make a living and account for taxes.

     
  8. Sacred Feline

    Sacred Feline Light Load Member

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    Oct 17, 2007
    Anywhere but FL
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    I might be stupid or something but I do not really understand how you cannot make 200 miles in 4hrs, all you gotta do is average 50 mph which is easy to do...the 45mph dispatch thing I do not understand...

    I realize loads are dispatched at 45mph but what difference does it make if you get there a lot sooner..so you gotta wait for your appointment time....we get would get to our appointments early most times and then we take some time to eat and shower etc at a truck stop just down the road to the delivery.

    Thanks
     
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  9. RickG

    RickG Road Train Member

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    The driving time may be under 4 hours but you have to figure the time from the time they get the call until they get rolling , maybe need to fuel , etc . They may have just ordered a meal , started laundry , etc .
     
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  10. Sacred Feline

    Sacred Feline Light Load Member

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    Anywhere but FL
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    Yes that is true but from reading the original post I got the impression that they could not get to any delivery early even if they had plenty of time....

    Most companies dispatch at 45mph so a driver could only drive 495 miles max in a day. Yes you could drive more but they were strict on the q-comm. If a single driver received a load that went more than 495 miles he(or she) would not get to deliver it but would have to give it to a team truck.

    The above does not seem right...??
     
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  11. Sixwheeler

    Sixwheeler Bobtail Member

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    [​IMG]Just don't get panicked by long layovers and lots of deadhead miles.just remember that is part of it.
     
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