New learner having a few issues with turns.

Discussion in 'Experienced Truckers' Advice' started by Mmitchell0171, Jul 23, 2018.

  1. Mmitchell0171

    Mmitchell0171 Bobtail Member

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    Jul 23, 2018
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    Hello all! I’m a student learning to get my CDL and have a question about slowing down into a parking lot.

    I recently went on a drive and have no problem shifting or down shifting using double clutch method, but when I struggle some is when we turn back into the lot of our training facility. You have to take a left turn across traffic to make it in and if it is clear, we make the turn in 6th (10 speed Eaton Fuller freight liner) since we never come to a complete stop. Once we get into the lot from the street though I have to go very slow in the yard.

    I’m struggling to get it into the right gear without stopping completely and starting back in 3rd. Since we are basically crawling in the yard I can’t really keep it in 6th. Should I downshift quickly from 6th to 5th to 4th to 3rd (there is not a lot of room for this really). Or can I skip from 6th to 3rd when I reach around 5 to 8 mph.

    Everything else I feel very good with, it’s just making these slow turns the tractor feels shaky when I’m in 6th, but I don’t want to turn any quicker due to safety reasons. Any advice would be great! I’m doing fine in everything else really. I was a yard switcher with an automatic otttowa for almost 6 years so the backing is very natural to me. It’s just mastering the right gear for going into a slow area like lots, or making very slow turns where I feel shaken due to being in 6th.
     
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  3. Aces-N-Eights

    Aces-N-Eights Light Load Member

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    Listen to the truck. Watch your speedo & tach as you upshift from a start. Make mental notes of engine and road speed for each gear. Once you learn the truck, you'll be able to drop it in whatever gear you need. Practice young Padawan... :)
     
    Puppage Thanks this.
  4. OldeSkool

    OldeSkool Road Train Member

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    Since none of us "experienced" drivers know how to double clutch I feel somewhat helpless, but I would suggest dropping into low range and a lower gear after you turn into the parking lot since its less stressful to try to figure out what gear you need in a parking lot rather than a busy highway
     
    blairandgretchen Thanks this.
  5. Brandt

    Brandt Road Train Member

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    You don't want the shift gears in a turn. You want to be in the correct gear for the turn before you make the turn.

    You want to pull the trailer around the turn. If you shift gears you letting the trailer push you around the turn. That's bad idea in the winter and bad habit to get into. The trailer always wants to go straight unless you pull it. On slippery roads the trailer will push the tractor out of the way and keep going straight. That's a jacknife.
     
    blairandgretchen Thanks this.
  6. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

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    Pick a slow speed, and make all "rolling turns" at that speed. Sometimes that slow speed will be too slow for conditions. That's the easiest and fastest way to get good at a thing, be consistent. Once you are consistent at that one thing, expand to other speeds/gears. If you want to, plan on stopping and then going. Do it the same way every time until you have it mastered.
     
  7. OldeSkool

    OldeSkool Road Train Member

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    That's good advice!!!!!!!
     
  8. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

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    Thanks. It was an accident. I won't let it happen again. ;-)
     
    tinytim Thanks this.
  9. skellr

    skellr Road Train Member

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    You probably want to shoot for 4th 5th gear when you hit the lot. 4-5 with rpms low.
    Those low gears are tough to get a feel for, don't worry it's normal.

    Slow to 5mph and try 5th, the motor should probably be at idle by then. The gear ratio, tire size, and transmission type will have an effect. but that should be a rough area to start.

    Another thing to try when you have time is start from an idle. what speed to you ide in 4th or 5th? use that to guide you. you want low rpms when shifting in the low gears, like idle +-

    Good luck, practice, practice, practice.
     
  10. x1Heavy

    x1Heavy Road Train Member

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    You aint gots room or time to hop gears down that fast.

    You are going to come through the turn off the roadway in 6th or whatever it is for your truck, once you hit the gravel and begin to slow you will see the RPM's drop close to idle. You know you cannot stay in this gear forever. Drop to low range, take her out into nuetral, wait a heartbeat and kick engine up and drop er into 3rd low. It should match up pretty close.

    If you scratch third, go to second. If empty there isnt any reason you cannot idle around in 2nd.
     
    Aces-N-Eights Thanks this.
  11. Fallen One

    Fallen One Bobtail Member

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    May 6, 2018
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    When you are in 6th gear and slowing down get your rpm down to 700 clutch put in neutral give it fuel and bump your rpm up to 1,000 let off the fuel clutch put it in 4th gear.
     
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