Trucking Cribs part two

2008 December 20

Totally cool regen button

Totally cool regen button

Today we’re going to hop right in and do part two of the TruckinCribs series, but before I do I have to post something here just for Sheila cause now I know that she likes little buttons and gauges as much as I do. So this picture is of the amazingly awesome Regeneration button we have in our truck  –  it has a flip-up cover! Yup… just like in the spy movies we have to flip the cover up before we can push the attractive yellow button. Man! I seriously like pushing that button. Course the fact that pushing the button activates the Regeneration Cycle which sounds like you’re sitting under the wing of an airplane that’s trying to get up to speed before heading down the runway does put a damper on the whole experience. The button pushing part is still pretty dang fun, though.

Overhead area with cabinets closed

Overhead area with cabinets closed

Facing Forward

Today we’re going to start with the overhead compartments above the windshield. The Volvo truck had a ton of storage up there, but it was really pretty ugly. The Freightliner has these little tiny cabinets that don’t hold much at all. They do look nice, though. You would think those little doors that pop up would be better than the net-type cubbies. They certainly are more expensive. But the problem is every time you open a door the stuff inside  –  that shifted around the last time you moved down the road  –  falls out on the floor. We have little boxes in the bigger cabinets so stuff doesn’t fall out, but haven’t found any boxes small enough for the little ones.

Overhead shot with cabinet doors open

Overhead shot with cabinet doors open

1.  Cigarettes, camera, etc.

2.  DVDs, pay stubs, Hedon’s Kindle, Stace’s wallet, phone charger, loose cash, and lots of change in the box. I tried to lift the box out the other day and was afraid the bottom was going to fall out.

3.  Maggie’s fresh potty pads conveniently located for quick access.

4.  Again, this one only holds Stace’s sunglasses, a few napkins and a tiny box of Q-tips. It doesn’t even actually have the Advil in it like I said yesterday cause it kept falling out so Stace moved it one cubby over. Sorry, I didn’t know that until today.

5.  EZ-Pass, Pre-Pass and Pike Pass

6.  FMCSA Handbook, HazMat Handbook, Emergency Response Handbook, Advil, more napkins.

7.  Supposed to be sunglasses, but actually used as uber-convenient location for Hedon’s set of truck keys.

8.  Paperwork that hasn’t been filed yet.

Passenger Seat overhead area

Passenger Seat overhead area

Passenger Seat Area

This shot is taken from the driver’s seat looking above the passenger side window.

1.  Again, potty pads

2.  Maggie’s water. Yes the dog gets bottled water. I know. I know. But if we don’t get her the bottled water she gets the runs… and nobody wants that. Also cleaning rags in case Stace or I are suddenly possessed by someone who likes to clean.

3.  Fancy-pants three part light fixture. (there’s also one on the driver’s side) Has a small tightly-focused white spot light, a large powerful white light and a red light. The red light works much like in a dark-room and can be very soothing to the eyes while driving at night. Well, I find the red light soothing, but Stace doesn’t like it at all. Also, with the red light on you can eat your cheeseburger while driving at night and be far less likely to eat substantial amounts of paper wrapping in the process. Important to know, however, that you never want to pull into a truck stop for the night with your red light on. As it turns out that is a universally recognized sign that you are planning to make yourself some extra cash in the wee hours entertaining your fellow drivers over at your truck. I learned this the hard way when I first started driving. Sigh.

4.  Centrally located supply of new trash bags.

5.  Actually on the outside, but I thought I would point out the stupid mirror over the passenger door. I guess it’s so you can see if anyone is peeing on your running boards.

Maggie's chair

Maggie's chair

This is pretty much Maggie’s domain.

1.  Glove box with blank log books, trip notebooks, and a few trip packs.

2.  Door cubbie. Holds fancy-pants glass cleaner, Formula 409, a bottle of Oops-someone-missed-her-potty-pad enzyme cleaner, and an umbrella that I never remember we have until it’s too late. Damn that Fernando.

3.  Mags’ favorite blanket

4.  Potty pad

5.  12v cooler number one. This cooler is so wonderful right now — it is keeping the Diet Coke so cold that as soon as you open one it kinda turns into slush. That won’t last forever as they tend to lose their umph after a while but it sure is nice at the moment. The cooler is also used by Maggie as a launching point when she jumps from her chair onto the ‘butt shelf’ while I’m driving.

Well that’s about it on the cab section of the truck. Next we’ll make our way back into the sleeper section… or as we like to think of it… home.

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(Boobery update: So they did have a load for us after all. We slept there at the shipper all night and in the morning went over to their other warehouse (with a different pick-up number) and got a different load that was headed to Iowa instead of Michigan. Actually in the end it worked out pretty good for us cause we managed to avoid all the ice north of St Louis entirely.)

6 Responses
  1. 2008 December 20
    Belledog permalink

    I am loving this series! Had been seriously curious as to how much space you (3!) have on the road, and how it’s used.

    After you finish with the new truck, do you have any photos of the older one (which you said had more space, but not the newer technology, a la “rolling crematorium”)?

    The tradeoffs in trucking!

    Safe travels this holiday week.

    Have you decorated your truck? (Have any “Hags” readers done any cool decorating?)

    If you see any cool or outlandish (garish, even untasteful) holiday decoration/lighting displays, please share! On trucks or encountered during your travels.

    Cheers.

    Belledog

  2. 2008 December 20

    One Christmas I saw a guy with a small tree on his dashboard and lights all around that flashed. I always wondered how he could drive with all that crap going on. And I’m sure that they loved it at the coops.

    Since I was originally a designer my bunk area was pretty tricked out. I had one of my favorite fabrics pinned over the bed that had two mattresses, a feather bed and a custom comforter over that. I’ve got some photos around somewhere, I’ll try to find them.

    So Hedon, are you liking the new truck?

  3. 2008 December 20

    That is one cool hidden button there! I thought my Jeep was cool and had alot of buttons…but damn….you are SO frickin lucky. That truck is a compulsive button addict’s DREAM!

    OH! If I had a super secret button like that? I’d rig it into an ejection seat…for like hitchhikers that are weird or something. Do truckers really pick up hitchhikers still?

    All those nooks! Crannies! I’m getting goosebumps! If we could have had something like that on our trip out west, I bet it would have been a more joyful trip. A place for everything. So clean and new! Ahhhhh.

    I never really knew that those big trucks were so nice inside. Great post!

  4. 2008 December 20

    You guys have the funniest posts! I am absolutely LOVING this blog guys. Is that a Cascadia that you guys have now? It looks like it from the compartments and the way the air brakes are sideways instead of up and down. Cant wait to get my Cascadia. :D

  5. 2008 December 20

    Belledog,

    We don’t have pictures of the old truck. I had meant to take some then we were out of it in such a surprising way that I didn’t even think of it before it was too late.

    The old truck had tons more built-in storage, but we are making this one work pretty well with lots of work-arounds so to speak.

    We haven’t seen too many decorated trucks this year. We never decorate our truck for holidays. Not sure why… probably we’re just slightly grinch-like.

    When I first started driving I did have the COOLEST thing on my truck though… ok… many big trucks have lug-nut covers on the lug-nuts of their wheels. They are almost always chrome, but occasionally you will see some colored ones that were obviously chosen to match the truck color. Well when I started driving we were so damn poor I could never have afforded something as frivolous as lug-nut covers.

    But I did find a complete set for the front wheels by the dumpster at one of the company’s terminals. They were a really unique shape, too. Most covers are pretty short and come down to a point, but these were very long and shaped like a tiny top-hat. Unfortunately some of the “chrome” had started to come off so they were pretty ugly. I picked them up anyway although I didn’t know what I was going to do with them exactly. If Stace were here right now we would probably be seeing the words “pack” and “rat” somewhere right in here.

    Anyway… it came to me in a flash of wonder. I took the lug-nuts and painted them bright primary rainbow colors. Two of each color arranged in rainbow order on each front wheel. They looked really cool just sitting, but I was told by many drivers that they looked even better moving down the road. They certainly started tons of conversations on the cb… and led to me hearing more times than I can count how “very very cool” lesbians are… :)
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    Decorina,

    I always wonder about those trucks at coops, too. Do you think they shut them off when they hit the ramp? I think they must. We don’t really decorate our trucks. Boy my trainer had her truck all tricked out, too. She had lots of fancy (girly)stuff to make it more cozy. I bet yours looked awesome. Hope you do post some pics.

    We are getting more used to the new truck. There are some things that are MUCH better than the Volvo. Like dramatically better headlights. Much better jakes now that they got them set where they aren’t on all the time. And mostly that the damned air horn is a cord where it’s supposed to be not a big button on the steering wheel. :) But we still really miss the microwave.
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    Sheila,

    I dream of a hidden button that controls a battering ram… I’m just saying. Stace wants a hidden button that controls LED light displays on all four sides of the truck that say, “Nice job, Dumbass” to be turned on as needed. I told her I couldn’t imagine why she thought we would ever need an “off” switch. :)

    Most company drivers don’t pick up hitchhikers because it is almost always strictly forbidden by their company due to insurance requirements and liability issues. If you’re a company driver, you usually can’t even take a family member on the truck without advanced notice, paperwork, deposits, etc. I do still hear owner operators giving people rides if they are stranded at truck stops, but I don’t think it happens all that often what with it being crazy and all.

    Don’t get me wrong, if I happened upon a broken-down four-wheeler in a blizzard with a bunch of kids freezing in the snow I would stop and let them get warm in the truck until the police or a tow truck got there, but that’s about it… Ok, fine, I would do it even if there weren’t any kids involved… but that’s it.

    Yeah big trucks are pretty awesome. And we are just in a company truck. Granted, it’s a pretty nice company truck, but you should see some of the large cars out there. They would blow your mind. Some of them have bathrooms with showers, cooking surfaces and frigs… course they have to be a pain in the ass to try to park because the tractor is so long. I think I could get used to that though. :)

  6. 2008 December 20

    Hey PrimeTime!

    Thanks man! Glad you’re liking it around here. Yes it’s a Cascadia. I didn’t know the brake buttons were on sideways as a rule in the Cascadia… I just thought TWMNBN had screwed them up somehow and were too lazy to fix them. :)

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