California Dry Box

TeamCaffee

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We seem to be getting more load offers going to California and as a dry box we are seeing loads different then the reefers.

We were out there the end of last year and were able to stay running and we have been out there twice this year.

All of these times we stayed moving and within 24 hours had a load. We usually stay on the Las Angles board and have found that works well for us.

We have our clearances and those have been put to good use. We wondered how this would change since we have become white glove.

This last time we were able to get out of California using our lift gate and this was not a DoD load.
 

TeamCaffee

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I could not wipe the grip off of my face on how well this truck ran and slowed. There was some concern about us having ONLY 370 hp and 1650 torque but... the truck flew up the hills and going down the hills I used the jake on the low setting to maintain speed and did not use the brakes.

Coming from a C7 CAT this engine sounds as if it is at a idle even while pulling the hills on I-5 granted we were not loaded heavy as is usually the case.

We did test the truck on some pretty rough hills on a delivery we did in southern California to a Indian Reservation way way back in the mountains. I was very concerned about the dirt roads and the steep one way incline we were on. I held the truck in 4th gear as the transmission could not down shift fast enough and we slowly climbed up the mountain. I believe this delivery on on my top two worst places we have had a truck in.

We were both thrilled as we had a severe head wind from Las Vegas to southern California, we had the steep incline on the dirt roads, we then did the Grapevine and topped all of that off with the climb towards Weed, CA, on a new engine with less than 8000 miles and were able to pull off a 11.273 mpg. Right now our ONAN generator is pulling fuel out of our main tanks and that is something we will change next time home.
 
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ATeam

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It's a nice, happy-talk post about California but more detail would be helpful for those of us who are WG qualified, can also haul dry box loads and are newly concerned about the nature of California freight.

Diane and I could run the wheels off the truck if we ran cheap. Is that the secret? We just today turned down a run going from New York to CA because it paid only $1.59 per mile (all miles) (and also because we are experimenting with east-only freight). To us, $1.59 is cheap. Is that a load you would have taken?

Our price to run is perhaps higher than most because we include the replacement cost of a truck like ours in the future, the costs of our health insurance and retirement plan contributions in our cost per mile calculations. We do not believe in donating our truck to shippers (shippers must pay for wearing one truck out and replacing it with another). And we consider an "employee benefit" package to be a reasonable and necessary expense to pass on to the shippers.

Company drivers get benefits. We do too.
 
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jjoerger

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Great fuel mileage for those runs, especially on a new motor.
Our 06' MBE 4000 gets 10-11 on the highway and 9.3 overall. We have no generator.
Putting the ultra shift into manual works great for climbing a long uphill or to prevent shifting while crossing railroad tracks while on a Hazmat load.
Our engine brake is very strong also. We rarely have to brake coming down long mountains.
Glad to hear it is working well for you so far.
 

TeamCaffee

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Phil your cheap freight and my cheap freight are not the same.

Our expenses and are not the same and our truck replacement costs are not the same.

We also have health insurance, retirement expenses as well as a retirement plan.

Since you were offered the load it would be a light load and yes we would have easily taken it for 1.59.
 
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TeamCaffee

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What we found from talking to drivers in California was that many who were sitting did not have their clearances which has always helped us to keep moving in the area.
 

jjoerger

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Phil,
$1.59 per mile is higher than our trucks average (all miles) in surface expedite.
We would have declined because of the delivery location but would have accepted if it were east of the Mississippi.
 

BigRed32771

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We've switched to a sliding rate scale based on the number of miles in an offer; the more miles the lower the rate I'll consider taking. I call it "bulk rate pricing." $1.59 for that distance would have met or exceeded my current rate for over 1500 miles, so (other than the CA issue) would have probably taken the load. BTW, my rate adjusts upward slightly for reefer or "toll belt" area loads to allow for increased costs on those.

Our clearances have been a major factor in our work for the past couple of years. Our reefer truck, though supposedly built to be T-Val, will never pass a qualifying test due to mistakes made in the construction process, so we run Temp-Assure. Currently I'm unflagged even for that as I have a faulty sensor and am due for re-calibration, but after 4 months out of work I'm postponing additional not-critical repairs for a bit. I've been told that after the end of the year there will be only T-Val, but I've also been told by a dispatcher that she had heard nothing of the sort, so I don't know if I'll be running temp control loads or just have a heavy insulated dry box after the end of the year. If so I'll probably yank the reefer system out and hang another outside storage box where the reefer is now. Unless I go to another company that still runs reefers.

The other factor for CA runs for me is that my reefer and APU are 2004 models, and will not be CARB legal in CA after this year (or did they postpone it a year? Who knows with them.) I really can't see spending the money to upgrade the systems for just one state. Very expensive, and makes CA even less desirable as a place to do business.
 
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