Slick roads 101

Discussion in 'Experienced Truckers' Advice' started by TripleSix, Feb 21, 2015.

  1. TripleSix

    TripleSix God of Roads

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    There are threads upon threads on when and how to operate a power divider. Someone teaches rookies to only engage the power divider at a complete stop. So you will have a rookie climbing a hill, feel the tires start to spin, come to a complete stop to engage the power divider, because that's what his trainer told him. So now, you have a rookie stuck on a hillside blocking a traffic lane.

    "But my trainer taught me to do it this way...."
     
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  3. Dragon88

    Dragon88 Light Load Member

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    You sure about that?

    Axle-interlock(power divider) and differential lockers are completely different.
     
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  4. texasbbqbest

    texasbbqbest Road Train Member

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    So obviously driving technique is very important, but what are some things to look for so I can gauge whether it's probably okay to drive or not? What conditions should I sit out no matter what?
     
  5. Dragon88

    Dragon88 Light Load Member

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    Whatever conditions your not personally comfortable with.
     
  6. TripleSix

    TripleSix God of Roads

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    1. Major route closure. If the main routes are closed, STAY PARKED. secondary routes are always worse. You can find out on the states websites or 511.
    2. If you can see traffic sitting on the highway, STAY PARKED.
    3. Check the weather. If the weather is bad, but weather radar shows worse weather is on the way, STAY PARKED. if the worse of the weather is behind you, then decide. I like to give it a few hours after heavy snow and ice so the snow plows can get caught up.

    Now here's the thing...if you park because of bad weather, you have to be ready to move when the weather breaks. Whatever time the weather breaks. Some drivers park and write off the whole day. Say for example it snows 0600 Monday. It stops at 1200 and the next system is coming in early Tuesday. Get out of there ASAP! Even if you can't avoid the path of a big storm, move. Go down the road as far as you can and then park again. It's sort of like playing that 1234 Redlight game with Mother Nature.
     
  7. Tonythetruckerdude

    Tonythetruckerdude Crusty Deer Slayer

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    This ^^^^^ Me , I would do as my skills warrant , you know what you are most comfortable with. Never let anyone dictate to what your skill level or comfort zone is. You will always be the one held responsible for that decision. Read Six's post # 65 , he covered the answer pretty well. I will say that in order to get to the level that some drivers have achieved , you have to actually drive in some bad , and sometimes terrible conditions. The old saying " you can't get a little bit pregnant " goes well here.
     
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  8. TripleSix

    TripleSix God of Roads

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    The thing that you don't want to do is caught up in one of those 60 mile backups where a major highway gets shut down by the DOT because if weather. In 1993, an ice storm hit the South. I was coming back from New Orleans, up towards Knoxville,TN. Ran into bad weather in Meridian,MS, and it got worse from there. Bama shut the roads down at the 459 loop. Traffic was backed up all the way to Tuscaloosa to mile marker 77. I had heard about the backup when I was still in Meridian. Heck, I made it to the south side of Tuscaloosa and grabbed a motel, hit the grocery store for some groceries and a case of beer.

    A few days later, the roads were opened. Black ice. Couldn't see it, but it was there. Slick as hell. A section of the 459 loop was banked. There were a couple trucks lined up waiting to take this banked section one at a time. This truck was trying to crawl around a banked highway at walking speed. Suddenly, the trailer started to step out, and then the whole truck slid down to the guardrail. I decided to go, but I went down the hill and hit the banked part with speed. Not only did the speed allow me to get across the banked section, but I was able to climb the incline on the other side. When the other drivers saw this, they did the same thing and were successful.
     
  9. texasbbqbest

    texasbbqbest Road Train Member

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    Thank you! Very helpful!
     
  10. Lepton1

    Lepton1 Road Train Member

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    Another reason to stay parked is if your customers aren't going to be open. There's no reason to move if you can't make a delivery or a pick up, unless you want to simply put yourself in position at the shipper or receiver for such time as their employees make it to work. Phone ahead.

    Right now I'm sitting in the Walmart DC near DFW and word is they won't allow any shipments out the gate until road conditions improve. YakTrax on my shoes were a nice thing to have to walk over to use the restroom. Inch of ice over everything. Ice covering my 5th wheel, headlights, top half of my tires, etc. It'll take some work to get road ready, but I'll report to the office this afternoon and see if they'll have anything that's top urgent. Gotta be some momma somewhere needs some diapers.
     
  11. pullin trains

    pullin trains Light Load Member

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    do you understand what the power divider and locking rear ends are and do?..going down the road..you have ONE tire on your back rear driving...you put in your power divider..as most trucks have..you have one side on your back AND the opposite side on your front rear end..then there are lockers..witch MOST trucks do not have..you put in one locker you have dive on both sides of one rear end..you put in both lockers ALL drivers are in gear...they are only good when you are stuck,in mud or soft material..if you are in full lockers driving in slick conditions like snow or ice..you will have steering problems as all of your back wheels have power to them...like lockers. Your power divide is used on times when you CANT get traction with that one driver in the rear..you can use it in the snow if snow is on the ground.BUT and I said BUT..it WILLheat up the temperature of your rear ends...AND is not meant to be used for anything over about 20-25 mph..and only for very short distances..or you can damage them... They aren't needed to be engaged on flat land or going down a mountain pass..but only to get started in area where you can't get traction aka truck stop. Or going up a slick upgrade..you can engage them BUT yoiu can't have power going to the rears in motion...and you can also disengage. Again with no power going to them..as in your foot is completely off the accelerator..and your engine is at a neutral power.best is to push in your clutch..switch the divider in or out..wait a second or two..let out clutch..or you will do damage..power dividers are not meant to be driven down the road at highway speed..most companies are..burn up the rear end..you get fired..if you have any questions about them..ask your company mechanic..not some wrench turner at the truck stop..
     
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