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Author Topic: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016  (Read 10212 times)

Oso2

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226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« on: April 17, 2016, 12:19:39 PM »
Two years ago I went to Truck World for the first time; I wasn't expecting much, but came away quite happy and impressed. Imagine, an entire convention centre full of trade show hosts and salespeople who were there to answer all of my nerdy technical questions, if not respond to my every capricious whim; a captive audience to my geekdom if you will. I haven't felt so loved since Ma tied a steak to my neck so that the dog would play with me!

So I went back this year feeling somewhat hopeful - although I worked hard to keep my expectations low. Having said that, there were a few disappointments. Let's get these out of the way first. Number one, I couldn't find a free truckers hat to save my life. Last year I walked away with 5 or 6 for my collection. This year: nada. Maybe I came at the wrong time?

Trailer manufacturer Trout River was also missing. I was looking forward to hearing if they had solved some of the problems with their shuttle floor design. The shuttle floor could be an amazingly versitile unit if it wasn't limited to light loads.
http://troutriverindustries.ca/shuttlefloortrailer

On a personal note, a few of my friends had to cancel, so I did the show solo. Still, I managed to run into a couple of people that I knew. An old co-worker of mine told me that head office had gone on a firing binge, and had fired hundreds across the continent, including all of my old managers and supervisors (who I actually liked very much.) As a result, the place has changed drastically: it's gone from being a nice place to work to... your typical slimy carrier. It's sad to hear of yet another decent carrier being wiped out.

On to the show! First stop was Western Star where I waited in line to sit in a new 5700xe. The 5700xe was a popular truck at the show, and given how many I've seen lately, I think that Western Star might actually have a hit on their hands. From my brief "test drive" I found the interior to be very nice. I wonder how all the "wooden" cabinetry will hold up though. Rattles are not the driver's friend. I wonder how it handles on the road.

Speaking of jumping into cabs, it was a lot harder on Saturday with all the kids around. (I also dropped by on Friday afternoon.) I'm not proud of what I did....but it's in the past now.   ;D

I chatted with the WS reps about how they would spec a 4-axle bulk hauler. They said that unless you are moving the full 63.5kgs gross weight (or higher) through the Rockies, stay away from the dd-16. For 125,000lbs gvw, stick with the DD-15 set at 505hp/1750lbs. This also gives you better versatility to run tandem loads.

I also went over to Volvo (surprise!) and had a long chat there. Actually I had no intention of chatting at the time. I was just passing the through area when the cute 20-something saleswoman started talking to me; and when I started asking technical questions she passed me off to the senior sales rep. Very smooth, I thought: bait and switch.

The senior salesman did a very fine job of pointing out the Volvo's strengths; safety and crash-worthiness in particular. Anyway the surprising part of our chat was just how low the suggested revs were on a D-13: 1300-1350rpm. "For a 4 axle bulk hauler?" I asked. "Yup." I'm a bit skeptical; but he did say that with a d13 you can get a 455/1750, a 455/1850, and a 500/1850. 475/1750 is the best money/value proposition, and the most versatile as well (if you start pulling 80k vans.)  Extended warranties start to increase dramatically once you go over 465hp. All this was with an iShift, of course. Oh, and the new one-box scr system and engine ratings will be out in October.

Best of all: Volvo was handing out free coffee. Now if I had managed to get a free capuchino out of it, I would have been a parody of my own lifestyle! And yes, they had matching Volvo napkins too.


Well I suppose that Volvo can afford it. You see, the other thing that was driven home was the skyrocketing price of new trucks. I talked to the Mack rep about a bulk hauler (13L Mp8, 455/1750, 1850 driveline, 14.6+46k axles): he said with a pto it would be about 170k(!) That's not a super-heavy spec, is it? Oh well, I'm sure I wouldn't be the first o/o to live on a diet of KD in his shiny new truck. (Don't worry, I'm not that dumb. Although it is a debatable point, I'll grant you.)

I then had another long chat with a flatbed roll-tite salesman: nice guy. This was one of those conversations that I fell into just by hanging about. He was a big believer in aerodynamic improvements and had multiple stories about how he pulled his hair out with customers who either couldn't do math (basic ROI) or didn't spend more than 2 minutes spec'ing their trailers. And this poor sod has to explain how proper roof heights and curved front trailers will save the company money over the life of the trailer.

One customer in particular ordered "the same trailers as his buddy." Then he ordered the roll-tites through the salesman. It was discovered on day one that he had purchased a fleet brand new roll-tite trailers that couldn't fit his loads: the tarp was too low. "Well my buddy's company has the same trailers." "No sir, your buddy has a Mac - you bought a Trailmobile. They are different heights." How do you deal with stupidity like that?

I heard a rumour that the MTO has been asking to see your stick (or device) that holds the brake pedal down for pre-trip inspections, and that they also ask to see your tape measure and chalk for your mark and measure. So I went over to the MTO booth and asked if this was true. Nope. They might ask how you inspect your brakes if something is amiss (and you should be prepared to show them); but a brake buddy is not required. After all, you could have had a co-worker operate the brakes while you inspected.

I also asked about my favorite topic: multiple minor defects (marker lights out, no reflective tape, tire wear, etc.) I was told that as long as you mark it down in the report, it's fine. If the carrier doesn't fix it, and these faults are reported over and over again, then a ticket will be given to the company - not the driver. This is a problem I have with crappy carriers.

So I asked about that. "I happen to know of a couple that I wouldn't mind reporting." "Sorry, we don't investigate." What??? "We're not the police. We can only stop a truck that we see either on the road or in the scales." Ugh. And we wonder why wheels come off.

The highlight of my day was talking to the Bedard trailer rep about streamlining dry bulk tankers and improving aerodynamics. As it turns out he had already been working on 3 of the specific areas that I mentioned. So I'm humbled. But (strangely) he was impressed with me and wanted to know who I was and what my background is. I think he must have thought that I was a fleet manager (HAH!!!) Nope - just another schmuck behind the wheel. I felt kind of awkward actually. And then I found out that he was the VP of the company. I told him about my white collar work back in the day.

A big shout out should go to Mr. Doug McKenzie who was recruiting at the Midland booth. I inadertently tortured Doug with a series of mixed messages: "No Doug, I'm really not thinking of going over the road again; but if I WAS going to go over the road, it would be with a company like Midland. BTW, how much do you pay?" Luckily, he didn't kill me. Thanks for the coffee Doug!

And then, as the booths were being rolled up and everyone was going home, I spotted what I was looking for all day: a genuine Schneider's trucker's hat. The last one.


See you in 2018.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2016, 12:36:20 PM by Oso2 »
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226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« on: April 17, 2016, 12:19:39 PM »

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doug mckenzie

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2016, 02:00:54 PM »

Don't worry

I wouldn't kill you Oso. You're too entertaining.

LOL.
Right-wing Old School.

charlie

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2016, 02:05:46 PM »

Don't worry

I wouldn't kill you Oso. You're too entertaining.

LOL.
I agree 100% Doug........maybe you & Oso2 can run team for Midland? ??? ;D ;D

Rob Archer

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2016, 03:43:57 PM »
You must've got there on Saturday as I was leaving around 15:30.
I was looking out for you.
Did you get in the Volvo high-rise tractor?
I got in the midroof.
Like you say; it's hard to sit in anything on Saturday.


Zeprome

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2016, 06:06:23 PM »
I was there on Saturday. Came around 1PM, went from showroom 5 to showroom 1. Left around 4:30PM.

I took a lot of pictures so I am in the process of uploading them and sharing with you guys very soon.

Paystar

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2016, 06:25:39 PM »
This subject we were talking about:
I heard a rumour that the MTO has been asking to see your stick (or device) that holds the brake pedal down for pre-trip inspections, and that they also ask to see your tape measure and chalk for your mark and measure. So I went over to the MTO booth and asked if this was true. Nope. They might ask how you inspect your brakes if something is amiss (and you should be prepared to show them); but a brake buddy is not required. After all, you could have had a co-worker operate the brakes while you inspected.

Two guys in the Sault had a stern warning and tongue lashing for not having chalk and a tape measure.
Just another fine example of how each MTO officer wants to enforce his laws, his way.
I use Brake Safe stroke indicators and love them. and I also carry a hockey stick cut to hook my Star's dash and the brake pedal.
The New Generation: 'You have what we call an irrational sense of entitlement. It won't kill you, but it will cause you to believe that you deserve top pay for doing nothing.'

doug mckenzie

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2016, 06:31:51 PM »

Don't worry

I wouldn't kill you Oso. You're too entertaining.

LOL.
I agree 100% Doug........maybe you & Oso2 can run team for Midland? ??? ;D ;D

Not a chance Charlie.

I gave up running team when I stopped riding with my Father and got a job. LOL!
Right-wing Old School.

Oso2

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2016, 08:34:26 PM »
I agree 100% Doug........maybe you & Oso2 can run team for Midland? ??? ;D ;D

Not a chance Charlie.

I gave up running team when I stopped riding with my Father and got a job. LOL!

I have too much respect for Doug. Anyone else, I'd murder. But Doug? I'd let him murder me! (There's a twisted Winston Churchill-ism in there somewhere!)

I have a basic rule against team driving. As I've always said, I didn't become a trucker because I actually like people.
« Last Edit: April 18, 2016, 04:51:19 AM by Oso2 »
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Oso2

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2016, 08:49:54 PM »
You must've got there on Saturday as I was leaving around 15:30.
I was looking out for you.
Did you get in the Volvo high-rise tractor?
I got in the midroof.
Like you say; it's hard to sit in anything on Saturday.

Actually Rob, I wasn't referring to you as the friend who cancelled. I had two others who didn't show (albeit for very good reasons). BTW, I got there at 2pm on Saturday.

I did sit in the Volvo 780 as well as the 630; but I had to share the 780. I even showed a mother where the bunk ladder was so that her son could climb up. But I've noticed that I've lost my capacity for instant appraisal: back when I was OTR I could look at an interior and immediately know if it was compatible with my stuff. Perhaps that's because my stuff is now in my closets at home. I found the 630 cozy, btw.

I sat in a few different trucks actually. I found a Prostar with an interior that was very similar to my 2nd truck, the "Company X" Prostar; it brought back a few memories. International did always have good sleepers. The Pete 579 daycab was roomy; and I LOVE the large rear windows, which make blind-side backing a breeze.

I found the Mack old school cool - I like the cabs but wonder about the amenities (read: storage space) of the sleepers. One important tidbit: I found out that Mack will put a Rawhide interior into a Pinnacle axle-back. Neat! And you don't need to have a lot of chrome to do that: you can have a vanilla truck with a premium interior if you wanted it. I don't care for the dead cow/steer head motif however. It's not bad, but I wouldn't seek it out. Having said that, I think that Mack should take a page from the Western Star 5700xe and make a premium (very) aerodynamic o/o truck. The could call it: "The Superliner."  8)

FYI, the dead cow:


« Last Edit: April 17, 2016, 09:03:49 PM by Oso2 »
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Oso2

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2016, 08:51:42 PM »
Two guys in the Sault had a stern warning and tongue lashing for not having chalk and a tape measure.Just another fine example of how each  MTO officer wants to enforce his laws, his way. I use Brake Safe stroke indicators and love them. and I also carry a hockey stick cut to hook my Star's dash and the brake pedal.

Why am I not surprised? Anyway, I've decided to get some kind of a tool, just to be safe. (I should have done that at the show!)
« Last Edit: April 17, 2016, 09:02:36 PM by Oso2 »
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doug mckenzie

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2016, 03:44:36 AM »
I agree 100% Doug........maybe you & Oso2 can run team for Midland? ??? ;D ;D

Not a chance Charlie.

I gave up running team when I stopped riding with my Father and got a job. LOL!

I have too much respect for Doug. Anyone other driver, I'd murder. But Doug? I'd let him murder me! (There's a twisted Winston Churchill-ism in there somewhere!)

I have a basic rule against team driving. As I've always said, I didn't become a trucker because I actually like people.

I'll agree with that logic.
Right-wing Old School.

Wee Willy

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2016, 06:12:05 AM »
Quote
I heard a rumour that the MTO has been asking to see your stick (or device) that holds the brake pedal down for pre-trip inspections,

Please tell me more about these sticks, and why anyone would need one.
I'm a little behind the times and don't get it.
The first rule of the road is:
"If anything can happen, at any time, it will!"

Oso2

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2016, 09:28:38 AM »
It's pretty simple Willy. To check the brake stroke on the tractor you need to to release the parking brakes and then apply the service brakes with the brake pedal.  The stick is used to jam the pedal down so that you can hop out and eyeball it.

I'm pretty sure you guys had an old hockey stick or 2x4 for the  occasion.
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Zeprome

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2016, 09:31:38 AM »
so I assume you wedge the hockey stick between the brake pedal and the chair or steering wheel? How do you even fit a hockey stick?

Oso2

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Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2016, 09:46:14 AM »
so I assume you wedge the hockey stick between the brake pedal and the chair or steering wheel? How do you even fit a hockey stick?

Cut it to size.
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Hank's Truck Forum

Re: 226. Greetings from Truck World 2016
« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2016, 09:46:14 AM »

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