Feeders, what do you carry with you?

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by brown67, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. brown67

    brown67 Active Member

    After 3 years of being a package/feeder driver I'm finally moving into feeders full time on Oct. 29th. I'm trying to put together a list of things I should always carry with me. So the question I have is what do you keep in your tractors.
  2. #1 cell phone. Don't leave home without it. If you don't have one, find a way.

    #2 satellite radio. I move heaven and earth to make sure mine works BEFORE I start work.

    #3 a good, reliable flashlight. Gloves of course. Spares if you can afford them.

    #4 If you are in cold weather, extra gloves, blanket etc. Survival stuff. Really.

    #5 lot's of water.

    #6 get some cheap tools and keep in there. Come in real handy.

    #7 some guys carry an extra light cord or maybe an airhose assembly(blue/red) or perhaps a flasher(ask your mechanics if you don't know), electrical tape, duct tape,plastic zip-ties.

    #8 Windex and some type of cleaner-409 or such and extra paper towels.

    #9 spare pair of underwear and socks........you never know. BTW-an overnight kit if the weather turns bad......you never know. We had a feeder driver get stranded for 3 days! With no extra clothes, toothbrush etc.
  3. barnyard

    barnyard KTM rider Staff Member


    I have several pairs of gloves. I only use them in feeders because they get greasy and nasty. I added a pair of yellow dishwashing gloves to add as liners when it is wet or really nasty out. Get in the habit of always taking your gloves off, before you climb in the cab. You do not want grease on the steering wheel.

    I have a flashlight that I carry on my belt.

    I found a large, adjustable wrench in the road and use it to thump the tires and would also use it if I would ever need to swap gladhands. Our regular guys also carry extra rubber seals that go in the gladhands. Mechanics seem to like handing those out.

    One of the feeders that I cover has a can of Off in the cab. Mosquitos get pretty thick at dusk and dawn. A little spray around the ankles is pretty nice.

    Everything else I carry are things that I carry in a package car. #1 on the list is Imodium. Saved my day more than once.

  4. All great ideas. I forgot about gladhand seals. Needing imodium is the worst. I used OFF bug spray just Thursday. Mosq. get ya during that nap with the windows open ; ) I also carry migraine meds and ibuprofen for feeling lousy.
  5. 104Feeder

    104Feeder Phoenix Feeder

    Gladhand seals are called grommets.

    I'd add to the list:
    -small first aid kit
    -electrical, duct, or friction tape.
    -food, snacks, maybe a Red Bull for if you start dragging.
    -antacid, allergy medicine, Kleenex, toilet paper and/or wipes
    -waterless hand cleaner like Gojo is good for truckstops or rest areas that don't have soap
    -Sunglasses even if you are working nights as when the sun comes up it will be brutal

    Plan for being stuck 5 or 6 hours in the worst possible place they could send you and you will ride that out in style.
  6. bluehdmc

    bluehdmc Well-Known Member

    I also put a roll of that plastic tape the center uses, I use it to wrap around the glad hands particularly the kite if it's a chassis type without the little bar to prevent it from coming off. If it does come off creats a big cloud of blue smoke :surprised:. (don't ask how I know). Occasionally I'll put it on dolly glad hands, had one of those come off on the Cross Bronx Expressway once. I've seen some guys put wire around glad hands also, or duct tape, elec tape, etc. I like the plastic because it's clear, I was told a driver got a ticket for using wire ties, don't know how true that was.

    Also some wire, sometimes the shifters have some for holding open swing door trailer doors when the chains are broken.
  7. brown67

    brown67 Active Member

    Thanks, all great tips for the road.

  8. I think the guy getting a ticket is because the gladhands are SUPPOSED to break away i.e. apply the spring brakes in case something comes loose. If you tape them or worse wire them, is a big no-no.

    My story of a chassis trailer hose coming off(red hose) was quite a ride! Big, long skid marks. I ended up about 6 inches from a highway sign as I slid on the grassy shoulder. I was out looking at the trailer and sign and a State Trooper appeared by my side! He looked at me and said "are you ok?.......you were very lucky" and walked off. I'm not quite sure if he was talking about not hitting the sign or my health. BTW-the tires were flat spotted down to the cords(but were empty). I was told to find a safe place(a business close by) and drop them(they were towed) and bobtail home. Never heard another word.
  9. kingOFchester

    kingOFchester Well-Known Member

    Not feeder here but:

  10. Dracula

    Dracula Package Car is cake compared to this...

    I use a black plastic tie to make sure my red glad hand doesn't come off. Sometimes those glad hands just won't a good seal. Especially with the sort rail boxes. That tie will keep the glad hands tight enough to avoid coming off easy, but not so tight that they won't break off with a lot of pressure. The rail boxes are notorious, esp, on the back of a set, for bumping that red hose loose. That is a easy fix, but a real scare when you look in your mirrors and see nothing but smoke, all because of a bumpy ride and a loose hose.
  11. barnyard

    barnyard KTM rider Staff Member

    I was given the same advice about rail boxes from many other senior feeder drivers.

  12. OK. Ask your mgt team if taping or tying the gladhands is LEGAL? Make them give you a definitive answer.....not "well some do...."
  13. barnyard

    barnyard KTM rider Staff Member

    It is definitely not legal. It is one of the things the DOT uses in their state fair booth to illustrate inspection horrors. Except their photos show vice grips clamped on the glad hands and the vice grips wrapped in tape.

  14. Then beware! If anything ever happens(and it will, and you never know when) and your gladhands are that way.....they will blame and hang you(UPS/DOT). That said, I see tape all over dollies trailers etc. every night.....by senior, experienced drivers. And if you mention this to those drivers.......I guarantee they will tell you to f-off.
  15. What'dyabringmetoday???

    What'dyabringmetoday??? Well-Known Member

    Have any of you ever worked anywhere else? Just sayin' (sure hope I don't get negative rep) (lol)

  16. Talking to me?
  17. barnyard

    barnyard KTM rider Staff Member

    I did not start at UPS till my mid 30's. Yes, I have had a few other employers.

    Thanks for quoting him.
  18. Dracula

    Dracula Package Car is cake compared to this...

    Well, I'll talk to some of the more experienced drivers about this. I don't tape or lock on the glad hands. We have those black plastic ties that look like large garbage ties. The guys in the yard use them to tie off swings doors, because if they aren't secured and the door swings loose the spotter gets written up. The road drivers use them to keep glad hands tight that feel like they slip real easy. I mean, when I break down the trailers, all it takes is a good hit upward on the glad hands to break that tie. In other words, these ties aren't going to hold if something breaks.

    But I didn't know it was a violation of DOT rules to use these ties. If I have to, I guess I can head to the shop every time they are loose. The mechanics hate me anyway, because I'm very picky about my equipment, but I'll look into it. The guys who told me about the ties aren't the shortcut kind of drivers.
  19. Monkey Butt

    Monkey Butt Dark Prince of Double Standards Staff Member

    You sure that's the reason?
  20. trickpony1

    trickpony1 Well-Known Member

    If a trailer breaks away, whether the gladhands released will be the least of your worries.

    I would think the severed airlines would serve the same purpose as a released gladhand and apply the spring brakes.