trucking items

Discussion in 'Experienced Truckers' Advice' started by davidbonkers, Dec 9, 2013.

  1. Moosetek13

    Moosetek13 Road Train Member

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    Nov 1, 2010
    Burnsville, MN
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    I'm a Swiftie, so I'm limited.

    I can have a plug-in inverter, which limits it to 150W of power.
    No microwave.

    I have a Coleman cooler to keep things cold. Spend the little extra for it and you will be happy.
    I have a laptop computer, which means I don't need a TV or CD player because the laptop can do it all - including most games.
    For TV I have a TV tuner that connects through the USB port. About $90.
    Internet is through Verizon. It can be pricey if you want to download and stream videos a lot, but it's usually very reliable.

    For cooking I use a lunchbox oven.
    I can cook baked potatoes, rice, vegies, chicken, fish... it just takes a little planning and insight.
    A typical meal might be a baked potato with steamed broccoli and chicken. (I like to get a $5 whole baked chicken from Walmart. The new 30 minute break is the perfect time to get it.)
    Or maybe baked salmon with asparagus and some rice-a-roni to go along with it. (Put the salmon in last, as it needs less cooking time. And, Walmart for the salmon as well. They have frozen salmon for $5 that will do for 2-3 meals.)
    Take a can of chicken veggie soup and add 1/4 cup of rice and cook it for an hour and I have a nice casserole.
    If I'm really simple, just place the can of soup in the oven to heat for 45 minutes. Add a peanut butter sandwich and a glass of milk and I am set to go.
    And that is all with a little lunchbox oven.

    Swift is one of the most restrictive companies out there, but I can make do just fine.
     
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  3. SlowPoke44magnum

    SlowPoke44magnum Medium Load Member

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    May 3, 2009
    Walbridge,Ohio
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    If you want to save money being on the road, definitely invest in a good 12v/110ac refrigerator, not a cooler. Most of the coolers only cool the items 30 degrees below the surrounding temps. I had a Coleman years ago that did a pretty good job, had to replace the motor once in 18 months. Now I run a Koolatron, (when I have to overnight) http://www.amazon.com/Koolatron-AC-...6660306&sr=8-20&keywords=koolatron+12v+cooler
    that cools much better, it's MUCH more expensive at truck stops @$239. The only drawback is the thing is pretty big compared to the others out there. I would also second the comment about an invertor big enough to run a microwave and a real coffee maker, a microwave just makes things so much easier because you can heat up your food so much faster than a lunch box oven. I used a lunch box oven for years but it takes a bit more planning because it takes more time to heat things up with it. I can spend weeks on the road, I don't have to now as I'm home nearly everyday, without spending any money in a truck stop for food because I can bring it with me or buy real food items at a grocery for much less money. I used to have my ex freeze leftovers from dinners she made for the kids while I was gone to take with me the next week. I'd also take lunch meat, PB & J, Cereal, cans of soup, etc. so I could eat wherever I was, no wonder I got chubby:biggrin_25523:
     
  4. davidbonkers

    davidbonkers Bobtail Member

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    Would satellite radio be worth it just starting out?
     
  5. stonestatue

    stonestatue Bobtail Member

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    Feb 25, 2013
    Huntsville, AL
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    If possible, get an actual mattress (and box spring) and ditch the prison mattress stuck in the bunk. It makes a world of difference.

    Yes. FM radio signals are line of sight and typically don't radiate beyond 50 miles. I have SiriusXM set up on my tablet to stream through my internet connection so I wouldn't need an extra device. The tablet is used for many different things.
     
  6. davidbonkers

    davidbonkers Bobtail Member

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    Jul 15, 2011
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  7. Lepton1

    Lepton1 Road Train Member

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    Nov 23, 2012
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    Get a hotspot then. You can purchase a hotspot at Walmart and buy a prepaid card. I first started by buying a T-mobile hotspot and purchasing 5GB of download for $50, which was fine for me. When my wife joined me on the truck or when I had home time she liked to stream video, which gobbled it up big time.

    However, T-mobile had a HUGE problem. Being OTR it was seldom that I could get good internet connection. I changed to Verizon (actually totally changed my phones for my wife and I and got a hotspot on a monthly plan) and I think there has only been about three times in the last three months I couldn't get 4G connection. Verizon is great for OTR... but pricey.
     
  8. marineman227

    marineman227 Dock Waterer

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    Jan 26, 2008
    Neenah, WI
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    I use foxfi (also called PDAnet) on my phone which can create a wireless hotspot using your phones internet if you have a smartphone without having to pay the phone companies monthly fees. I use a 12v cooler and a microwave for my cooking needs. Before I got my inverter installed it was cold sandwhiches, ravioli (chey boyardee is precooked and not terrible cold) and a ton of fruit snacks and other little things. Now when I'm home on the weekend my fiance cooks a bunch of extra food and packages it up for me for the week. I have thought about bringing a crockpot but I've been eating pretty good with just leftovers so I'm not to keen on making that big of a mess in the truck. I'm only gone for 5 days at a time though, if I was one of the 3-4 weekers I might be looking at more options.

    I can't believe one of the old timers hasn't come in here yet to tell a story about baking a potato or heating a can of soup on the turbo while driving. If you're creative you can eat pretty decent without needing an inverter. Also a lot of shippers have a drivers room where you can wait for your load and they typically have a microwave in there if you don't have one in the truck.
     
  9. Moosetek13

    Moosetek13 Road Train Member

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    Nov 1, 2010
    Burnsville, MN
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    I spend $130 per month for my Verizon connection, but that is for a 20GB data plan.
    Compared to $50 for 5GB, it is a pretty good deal.
     
  10. marineman227

    marineman227 Dock Waterer

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    Jan 26, 2008
    Neenah, WI
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    I still have unlimited on my phone for $29.99 because I have an old plan :biggrin_25522:
     
  11. stonestatue

    stonestatue Bobtail Member

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    Feb 25, 2013
    Huntsville, AL
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    I too am grandfathered under the unlimited plan and use FoxFi as well. I used 70 gb of data last month, but don't tell Verizon that.
     
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