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Pre Trip Check List


alan0043

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It is interesting how the thread has taken a right turn. Some of the conversion is interesting. I am sitting back and trying to learn. It sounds like there could be two pre-trip check lists. A short one and a full length list. It probably depends on how long the truck and trailer have been sitting.

 

Al

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The long one is the pretrip before you hit the road, the shorter one is done after 2hrs of driving, at least here in BC. The shorter one is basically a walkaround, cargo doors shut, tires, load binders, lights, obvious damage plus others. Not climbing under the rig checking drivelines.

 

Those with open framework and no hauler decks can see more than those of us with decks.

 

Send me a link to your states CDL requirements, I'd like to look thru.

 

Maybe we could develop something RV oriented. ICBC clearly understands there is a difference b/w Commercial and an RV application.

 

Regardless of how this goes, I feel that in an HDT, I am safer pulling a 22.5k trailer than any 3/4 or 1 ton going down a long 8% grade. Or should I say pushed?

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My advice is to stop personal comments. At all. :)

 

The pretrip lists are fine for commercial. And I do a similar one on my truck when it has sat for more than a few days/weeks. BUT I NEVER do the in-depth commercial list if I'm using the truck every day. Yeah, I know I should/could. But I don't. I DO look it over closely every day, check the tires for defects, do an air brake test, and check dash/instrument functions. Mainly because I don't want to BREAK DOWN. I also look under the hood for the obvious stuff. Which I NEVER find...but I do look.

 

So, go ahead and do your 45-60 minute complete commercial pretrip every morning before the next days drive. It sure cannot hurt anything. And it keeps you limber.....

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I'm not saying do the complete 45 minute pretrip each day. I'm wrestling with what could be done and when or how often.

 

If going on a longish trip, do the whole meal deal. Then after 2hrs ish or a pit stop do the walkaround, visual inspection but still thump the duals and tires on the triple axle. Just a quick check for the obvious. It doesn't take much time to do that. The oil, I'd check every day. The windows get done every day so the hood is up so it isn't much trouble to check water level visually, leaky filters etc.

 

Prior to leaving on a long trip, - whole meal deal

Each day on long trip. - Visual without climbing under the rig. Thump tires

Pit stop or every 2 hrs, - Visual, thump tires.

 

Bulges on the inside of the trailer wheels can be spotted from the other side of the trailer with a bright light. That's what I do, use my blinding bike light.

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Roger, I pretty much do exactly as you describe.....

 

I don't thump tires on a walkaround since I use a monitor. But I do check the tires for visible damage/bulges, etc. I always have a flashlight on my belt so that is easy to do. Same for the trailer tires (and I have STILL had a trailer tire fail in between).

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Was the fail a 17.5 or something else? I remember a year or 2 ago saying you checked your rig over every 2 hrs. At the time, I thought that was excessive but now it is a different thing.

Don't want to be caught dragging a sewer pipe down the road.

 

I'm sure there are folks out there who have an HDT who are not Commercial truckers who could use some help in this area. I must have done the pretrip over a dozen times prior to the exam. I even went out to the yard after hrs and timed myself. The first time was an hour 10 minutes and I still misses stuff. Eventually got it down to 23 or 32 minutes but that was flying.

 

Maybe consider making the inspection process a hands on at a Rally. It took me longer than most because of my geriatric state and slowness to learn.

 

Its a thought.

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Grumps seemed to always park out away from the crowd...........all day or night EVERY time he approached the truck he would ALWAYS peek under the truck to check for leaks............If you park close to the truck stop front door the parking spots were so oily that you could not see if your truck was leaking..........way out back in the "clean" parking spots two drops of fluid would be enough to have your boy-toy-slave (me) toil into the wee hours to fix the leak...........

 

Drive on.........(Keep a eye peeled.....)

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I feel we are more in tune to our rigs than most commercial operators. We own our rig. We know all the little sounds it makes and what it feels like. If it doesn't look, sound or feel right our spidey sense tingles. we start investigating. We stop more often for our breaks so we inspect our rigs more often. We also are more likely to stop when we get tired as we have our house with us. Most of us don't have a firm deadline so we are not as likely to push the envelope and let it go and let the next person fix it. Look at how much maintenance we have done to our rigs fixing stuff that was broken when we bought it, not stuff that has to be fixed to get it down the road, but stuff that makes it easier to operate.

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Guest THE TRAILERKING

I don't have tire pressure monitors..............But I ALWAYS and constantly check the tire pressures with a gauge. Could have picked up a nail and tire going low. Never now it until too late and it does some real damage.

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Where this gets really interesting is the jurisdictions where you "are required" to have a full AZ or class one to drive our rigs.

 

At that point a full pretrip isn't optional any more.

 

Whethe you do one or not is another story, but...

 

Not doing scales is an exemption that can be removed at any time. The scales at Balzac, Alberta are a good example. They are ALL vehicles over 5500kgs. I don't go over them, but that's because I choose not to.

 

Geo

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Jack has an open topic somewhere where it can be added to or modified by contributors. Why don't we make three checklists up with not only the check itself but maybe with pics on powerpoint and an explanation. Example, may show leaking fuel filter, where it is and or non leaking filter so there is a point of reference.

 

When checking the air compressor, where is it? Maybe a picture with an arrow. yes I know there are different makes and models but there needs to be a starting place.

 

A good shock vs one with stains or leaks and what both look like.

 

How to check slack adjusters, most of ours will be automatic so we are told not to touch them.

 

Show pics of rear end with no excessive leaking and one that is leaking excessively.

 

Demonstrate what is or is not excessive play in the driveshaft or steering components.

 

There are a lot of common denominators for HDT's locations may vary.

 

Same for the trailers. A visual reference, picture, is a lot better than verbal instructions.

 

It's an idea.

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I don't have tire pressure monitors..............But I ALWAYS and constantly check the tire pressures with a gauge. Could have picked up a nail and tire going low. Never now it until too late and it does some real damage.

TK, that's why we have the monitors. You can't thump your tires 10 minutes after you thumped them and then picked up that nail!

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I saw the link but didn't open it. That is exactly what I'm getting at. The explanation means a lot to someone not knowing what to look for or where to look for it. At least on that make and model of truck.

 

Thanks

 

On edit,

I went thru all the cards, good stuff. His checklist gives more detail in several areas for instance the steering components in naming all the parts. This may or may not be necessary in your state. It is a lot more to learn and would in my case take longer to memorize. His pretrip with all the extra components and his verbal explanation of them to the examiner would take me longer than the requirements for ICBC in my Province of British Columbia.

 

From all that info, I'd want to make 2 shorter lists. One done daily on a longer trip and one enroute inspection every pit stop or couple of hours.

These do not include modified inspections for the RV trailer compared to a Commercial trailer. Electric brakes instead of air, Moreryde IS if you have it instead of air bags, reflective strip, cargo door latch or hinges plus others.

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Jack has an open topic somewhere where it can be added to or modified by contributors. Why don't we make three checklists up with not only the check itself but maybe with pics on powerpoint and an explanation. Example, may show leaking fuel filter, where it is and or non leaking filter so there is a point of reference.

 

When checking the air compressor, where is it? Maybe a picture with an arrow. yes I know there are different makes and models but there needs to be a starting place.

 

A good shock vs one with stains or leaks and what both look like.

 

How to check slack adjusters, most of ours will be automatic so we are told not to touch them.

 

Show pics of rear end with no excessive leaking and one that is leaking excessively.

 

Demonstrate what is or is not excessive play in the driveshaft or steering components.

 

There are a lot of common denominators for HDT's locations may vary.

 

Same for the trailers. A visual reference, picture, is a lot better than verbal instructions.

 

It's an idea.

 

I like your idea about a topic for the different rallies. It would be nice to see a pre-trip check list topic at the ECR. The reason for the ECR is because I can not make the national rally. Any thoughts about this idea.

 

Al

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Was the fail a 17.5 or something else? I remember a year or 2 ago saying you checked your rig over every 2 hrs. At the time, I thought that was excessive but now it is a different thing.

Don't want to be caught dragging a sewer pipe down the road.

 

 

I documented the flat on my 17.5 here last Spring. It was a failed Pressure Pro sensor that allowed/caused a tire to go flat...and I then ran on it and destroyed it. It was not a tire failure (Goodyear G114). It was a failure of the PP sensor. Which is the primary reason I now run TST on the trailer. PP is still on the truck.

 

I stop about every 2 hours. I do a walkaround at that time. I previously discussed what I check., My main focus on that walkaround is inspection of tires and checking for any heat at the trailer axles/brakes. I also look for the obvious visual things on both truck and trailer. And inspect the hitch for any possible failures, as well as my airlines. But that is about it for that walkaround. Of course I check the car tie-downs as well.

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Alan, If your asking me, I won't be at either rally. There is a plan in the making for a trip b/w 1 and 3 wks to a Habitat build in Pt Townsend. Then a 3 month trip to Florida starting in early December. Fuel is an expense but getting on and off this rock is about $700 return. Besides my mom is 88 and going down hill so my brother and I share the load.

 

I wouldn't mind seeing this through in one form or another. It has a lot of views so obviously there is some interest. Some considerations are

- State and Provincial requirements.

- Specific wording not for an examiner but to make sense when you do the physical check, ie re driveshaft as you wrap both hands around it and twisting it left and right from underneath when your on your back, saying " no excessive movement". Same with the steering column.

- Full meal deal inspection.

- Daily inspection for an RV application.

- Enroute or bi hourly or at a pit stop inspection, basically a visual.

- Modifications for different trucks.

- Checklist for the trailer

 

Something put together asap which can be modified as we go along. Sean Penn and someone in your Military said, "We can't wait for a perfect plan, there comes a time when you go with what you have" Sean Penn was referring to the debacle in Haiti.

 

Clearly whatever is put together will be of assistance to anyone new to the scene with no HDT training and the proud owner of a 500 hp 20,000lb monster.

 

This is not your fathers Oldsmobile.

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