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Hotshot Flatbed Equipment

Discussion in 'The Newbies Paradise' started by hapearce1, Oct 12, 2017.

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  1. hapearce1
    Pacman

    hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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    My employer has bought a Truck and Gooseneck Trailer to do Hotshot Flatbed Loads that I will be driving.

    The Trailer is 30ft long. The max weight will be 9,500lbs. (I have Class A License)

    He asked me to make a list of all I will need, and I have never done Flatbed before.

    I figure that the most pallets that could be placed on it is 7, so I am thinking requesting 7 3inch straps. I still have a number of straps from my Sprinter Van days, so I will have extra if needed. Would that sound about right for straps?

    Will I need chains and binders?

    What size tarp or tarps should I get?

    Again, 30 foot gooseneck trailer (brand: Gator), max potential carrying weight 9,500lbs.

    Thank you for any and all help.
     
  2. Treadmill
    Caffeine Fix

    Treadmill Veteran Expediter Owner/Operator

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    Sounds like logging and sleeping in hotels since no mention of what type of truck you will be driving ( I'm guessing a pick up with dual tires.
     
    • hapearce1
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      hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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      The truck is a 2018 3/4 ton 4x4 crew cab diesel dodge.
       
    • Treadmill
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      Treadmill Veteran Expediter Owner/Operator

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      Yep logging and sleeping in motels. Not unless it has a DOT sleeper then just logging.
       
    • hapearce1
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      hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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      Yes, DOT approved sleeper.
       
    • Treadmill
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      Treadmill Veteran Expediter Owner/Operator

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      Got pics of your truck and trailer?
       
    • hapearce1
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      hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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    • hapearce1
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      hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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      Only one I have in my phone
       
    • Greg

      Greg Expert Expediter Owner/Operator

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      Why only 7 skids? Couldn't you have 14? Also, I am in a straight truck, but if I am not mistaken, on an open platform (flat,step,etc,), aren't you required to have 2 straps on the front skid(s) and also 2 on the last skid(s)? Plus you would need extras, ever see those on the highway, someone lost them.
       
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    • hapearce1
      Pacman

      hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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      I never thought about that, you could put skids side by side all the way down.

      I have 5 straps so adding 7 would be 12, so I actually thought 7 was overkill.

      Again, I can only carry 9,500lbs but do you think I need to have a 4 set of chains and binders as well? And I’m clueless on tarps.
       
    • crich
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      crich Expert Expediter Fleet Manager US Navy

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      you might want more than one set of tarps as they can be pretty heavy I mostly use 2 16' tarps with 4' drops. really don't like to tarp. but if you want to open to more freight get some 8' drops. depends on how much you want to lug around they seem fairly heavy and I am kinda lazy make sure to get a couple hundred extra every time you use them. they are not cheap I end up replacing them about every 6 months. not to mention your clock is running while your tarping.

      as far as chains and binders 4 would be the minimum I would start out with 8 would be better as the point of open deck for me anyways is to get more than 1 load on at a time.
       
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    • Greg

      Greg Expert Expediter Owner/Operator

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      hapearce1hapearce1 , don't forget to reweigh after adding all your equipment. It will reduce your 9500 lb payload.
       
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    • hapearce1
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      hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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      I've been put on hold for another 2 weeks. Seems the insurance agent put down 500k liability, not 1 million, which throws off this week. Next week I have some personal going on.

      I ended up buying 10 straps, and adding my extra 5, should be plenty of straps.

      The weight is why I actually was wanting to avoid getting chains. I was, and still am, hoping the straps will be sufficient but if they are necessary, then they are necessary.

      I have asked the owner for a long time now to ask the broker if he is pricing loads to be tarped, or do some loads request chains only.

      I appreciate everyone's help in this thread. I honestly am not happy that I agreed to do this now. My lack of knowledge on flatbed, the owners lack of knowledge, the constant delays that have sidelined me for weeks already and will be weeks more now is just pushing me to look at other options. I just got my Class A CDL, and I'm afraid I'm going to go down the road and get ticketed on something that I just don't foresee. It was one thing to fly blind with a sprinter, but this is ridiculous, too much inexperience going on here.
       
    • Moot
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      Moot Veteran Expediter Owner/Operator

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      ¾ ton seems kinda wimpy for this type of operation. I would think a 1 ton SRW at a minimum and better yet a 1 ton DRW.
       
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    • crich
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      crich Expert Expediter Fleet Manager US Navy

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      Have your owner give me a call I have my own number started in 1997 running cargo vans then straights and then tractors.in 2012 got my first hotshot. really this is not the site for flatbed hotshots at least not yet.most of these guys live safe within a box and if your owner is thinking anything less than 2 per mile is going to get him by. but todays rate is more like 2.70 + . and just like these van expediters their is extra pay for extra work. oh and you will be a target as its pretty easy to preform a inspection on a hotshot and dot gets a lot them ushippers that try to pull 26k trailers with no cdl ,medical card or even a log book. but your owner needs to have them break out a tarp rate and you need to get 100% of that.that is your clock running not his.
       
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    • crich
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      crich Expert Expediter Fleet Manager US Navy

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      you are correct I use a f 550 drw. the cummins is great but not sure how his rear end will hold out.

      I watched a video of a guy hauling 20000 lbs of gravel pulling a dump trailer that had an empty weight over 12,000 so over 30k using a ford f-150 srw with a eco boost. he went about 20 miles with it no overheating and got up to 60 in no time. I don't know what these new 150s are rated at but if he is legal I am gonna have to get me one of those.
       
    • crich
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      crich Expert Expediter Fleet Manager US Navy

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      got to see a pic of that 3/4 ton with a dot approved sleeper. if its a factory quad cab it wont be a dot sleeper even if he takes the back seats out and puts a mattress the dims will not work. you can sleep in the backseat but you have to log off duty and not sleeper birth. that eliminates running team.
      what is that 2 single axles must be using the 3/4 to try and stay under 26k to avoid irp and ifta fees.are those axles 6 or 7 k/ gator has some nice trailers but they did not have air ride in 2015 when I purchased mine so went to pj. today I believe they will make you an air ride if you want to add it
       
    • BillChaffey

      BillChaffey Veteran Expediter Owner/Operator US Navy

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      My Ford Super Duty 1999 F 250 is rated for over 12,000 lbs. I used to tow a 28 ft fifth wheel to New Hampshire and back. Western Maryland and parts of West Virginia were slow going. I'm at 400,000 miles now on the 7.3. Replaced the cam sensor & 1 injector so far. I had a 24' PJ for 14 years great trailer.
       
    • hapearce1
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      hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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      Thank you all for responding. Give a quick update:

      First, I was told it was a DOT approved sleeper, it obviously is not. I honestly don’t know what to do about this...

      Second, I do have class A cdl and running a logbook, always putting myself out of service, Never I’m sleeper birth, hopefully that will save me some headache in the future...

      Third, seeing that this is all a first, things have gone fairly smoothly, only issue that has frustrated me is a wrong tarp was purchased, cheap grey plastic tarp from harbor freight, and it has been a nightmare. Beyond that, all has been smooth sailing.

      I have stopped at every weight station hoping to get to talk to someone. No, I don’t want a ticket. But I would like some clarity, if you’re picking up what I’m putting down. Anyway, they just keep waiving me through.

      I actually enjoy getting out and getting some exercise, and I love the regulations of 10 hours of sleep, no more 30+ hour runs for me, in fact I kind of laugh at people who act like driving 11 hours is hard.

      For anyone also seeking similar information, here’s the best I can offer so far:
      I’m dealing with 9,500lbs, so chains are necessary, but majority of the time you will not use them. I would suggest 5 chains and 5 binders, the owner actually bought 6 of both, but so far I think that’s overkill.
      I have 10 2” ratchet straps that work great, also 20 corner protectors. I also had 5 2” ratchet straps from my sprinter van days, so I have 15 overall. While this is really overkill, it’s come in handy having the wrong tarp.
      I also have 50 rubber straps, can get 20 packs for $10 at Harbor Freight. I honestly don’t know if this is enough since I have a wrong tarp.
      Tarp size that was ordered is 27x15 with a flap, I believe is a metal tarp, not a lumber tarp. I’ll fill in when I know more.
      Something I would suggest is a speed winder for your ratchet straps to roll up and put away quickly. Takes a while rolling up this many by hand.

      Maybe I’m the oddball, but doing a log book actually helps me keep things organized, that is “if” I’m doing it right.

      All in all, pulling a 30’ trailer around all the time has it’s stresses, but you get used to it quickly. I just wish this was a little more black and white because you get a lot of opposing answers on the same questions so I’m going to be learning this the hard way.
       
    • hapearce1
      Pacman

      hapearce1 Seasoned Expediter Owner/Operator

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      Updating in case anyone wants to read the process of getting into Hotshot.

      In a few weeks now, kind of got it down, a few weak points, but overall, rolling a LOT smoother now.

      The chains and the straps 6/10 have been appropriate.

      I have gotten away from paper logs and am on electronic logs now, Keep Truckin app, Very handy, after a little practice very easy to use.

      I keep receipts at all fuel/food stops, make sure your log book is matching correctly. Was pulled over by DOT and inspected, no issues.

      Overall, like everything in life, so many positives and negative.
      The biggest positive is the ease of getting loads. I’m not used to being asked “Where do you want to go?”

      The biggest downside is parking, because finding a spot in those truck stops can become very time consuming and gets stressful.

      All in all, to this point I would call it a positive experience but I’m not sold on moving to this myself as a owner/operator.
       
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