Obtaining A CDL? - Dodge Cummins Diesel Forum
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post #1 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 12:06 PM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Obtaining A CDL?

I'm looking into obtaining a CDL and had a few questions that I figured many of you guys could answer.

I'm currently only 19 but Ive been towing trailers for four years, I regularly tow 12' - 30' trailers and am very comfortable doing so.

Many of the jobs I want to acquire require a CDL, other than that I would like to have on just in case.

I'm currently in WA state but will be moving out to AR more than likely.

Whats the best method for getting my CDL? I don't have access to a truck big enough to take the CDL test with, am I better off just taking the class ( Its just so damn expensive ).

Other than that, what else do I need to know? What steps should I be taking or reading up on to get this license?

Which state is going to be easier to get this license in?


Thanks in advance!


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post #2 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 05:53 PM
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Your age is going to be the main thing. you can only get a intrastate cdl and not a interstate cdl. The test was easy, read the book and took it, i have the truck so no problems getting that done. You mite be able to rent one that will work..

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post #3 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 08:48 PM
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The difficulty I see with renting a rig is you have to have a way to get it to the testing facility so you can take the test.

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post #4 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth View Post
The difficulty I see with renting a rig is you have to have a way to get it to the testing facility so you can take the test.
A lot of places that advertise the rental of vehicles for that purpose more then likely provide a driver or a way to get it to the test facility..

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post #5 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 10:46 PM
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The difficulty I see with renting a rig is you have to have a way to get it to the testing facility so you can take the test.
You can always drive it.
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post #6 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 01:38 AM
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You can always drive it.
And how would you explain that with no CDL? There was probably a time you could get away with that but not anymore. Another thought is how do you get the experience to be able to even pass the test without using a school unless you find a company willing to train you? I know how all that happened with myself but that would probably not be at all possible now. I started driving before CDL's were thought of and it was called a chauffeurs license.

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post #7 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 01:49 AM
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Read the book, make sure you know about pre-tripping, you will more than likely have to blindside/sight side parallel park, alley dock, or do a backwards serpentine, along with straight line back which is cake, for the skills part of the test if its anything like it is here in PA. All in all its pretty easy. I took the class though so I got alot of road time in before I actually took the test. If you can swing it though and find a rig to take the test in I'd probably go that route. It's a little cheaper lol. The other thing is with you being under 21, I don't believe you will be allowed to drive out of state.

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post #8 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 01:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin324 View Post
I'm looking into obtaining a CDL and had a few questions that I figured many of you guys could answer.

I'm currently only 19 but Ive been towing trailers for four years, I regularly tow 12' - 30' trailers and am very comfortable doing so.

Many of the jobs I want to acquire require a CDL, other than that I would like to have on just in case.

I'm currently in WA state but will be moving out to AR more than likely.

Whats the best method for getting my CDL? I don't have access to a truck big enough to take the CDL test with, am I better off just taking the class ( Its just so damn expensive ).

Other than that, what else do I need to know? What steps should I be taking or reading up on to get this license?

Which state is going to be easier to get this license in?


Thanks in advance!
Once you're old enough read the book and take the written test. A monkey can pass all the tests.
Then either rent a truck, most rental places bring the truck to the DPS office for you to take the test. Or use your own truck and trailer if you have both. If it's your pick up you won't get the air brakes on your license. Your truck and trailer MUST have a GCWR of 26,000 LBS+ in order to use your own.

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post #9 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Russ Roth View Post
And how would you explain that with no CDL? There was probably a time you could get away with that but not anymore. Another thought is how do you get the experience to be able to even pass the test without using a school unless you find a company willing to train you? I know how all that happened with myself but that would probably not be at all possible now. I started driving before CDL's were thought of and it was called a chauffeurs license.
My brother just did it the oither day. He had a class B and wanted to upgrade to a class A. So he took his bosses pickup and picked up a 20k gooseneck trailer and drove it in to take the test. The examiner wanted to know how he got there.
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post #10 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Delmar View Post
A monkey can pass all the tests.
Agreed. The tests are to easy really.

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Your truck and trailer MUST have a GCWR of 26,000 LBS+ in order to use your own.
And the trailer needs to be over 10k GVWR.
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post #11 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 10:56 AM
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be sure to know your pre trip like the
back of your hand. thats the hardest
part of the test.

jason

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post #12 of 74 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 01:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin324 View Post
I'm looking into obtaining a CDL and had a few questions that I figured many of you guys could answer.

I'm currently only 19 but Ive been towing trailers for four years, I regularly tow 12' - 30' trailers and am very comfortable doing so.

Many of the jobs I want to acquire require a CDL, other than that I would like to have on just in case.

I'm currently in WA state but will be moving out to AR more than likely.

Whats the best method for getting my CDL? I don't have access to a truck big enough to take the CDL test with, am I better off just taking the class ( Its just so damn expensive ).

Other than that, what else do I need to know? What steps should I be taking or reading up on to get this license?

Which state is going to be easier to get this license in?


Thanks in advance!

If you don't need air brakes on your CDL you can do it in your rig if you can find a trailer with a GVWR of about 16K or more (26K - the GVWR of your truck). Which means that a dual tandem flat bed trailer like you often find with pintle hitch would be fine. Buy a cheapo pintle hitch that goes in your receiver from Harbor Freight for $35.

Yes. I know that you would never want to tow that same trailer loaded with a $35 hitch and the receiver on your truck (and maybe not even with your truck at all). But you would be legal. The gov does not care about the GCVWR specified by Dodge (with the possible exception of BC). They care that you aren't exceeding the individual ratings of hitch, axles, or wheels with actual load which you won't be.

I'm thinking that someone should consider renting dual tandem trailers on a 2" ball so people could take the CDL test with their passenger car.

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