Commercial trucking costs
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  1. #1
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    Default Commercial trucking costs

    I thought perhaps a dedicated thread on the subject might be in order.
    Here is an interesting graphic that I think is pretty much on the mark:
    http://www.thetruckersreport.com/inf...t-of-trucking/
    Of course the $1.38 figure needs doubled if you plan on "dead heading" half the time. This puts you right at the prevailing trucking rate of $2.75 to $3.00 per mile. It is a lifestyle choice to live on the road as well. Some like it most don't though.
    I hear and agree with the sentiment that it is difficult to get trucks where you want them when you want them, frankly it's one of the biggest headaches I have in managing a migratory operation. I keep my phone full of truckers numbers and start calling a few weeks ahead of our projected move date. I tell each one that I am making lots of calls and the day that they can guaranty me a truck is the day I will promise them a load. It helps to own a few nets as well, it's not unusual to find a willing trucker without the equipment to haul bees (I will loan or sell them a bee suit). Ideally it takes a truck a day for a week though it usually drags into more like a week and a half. That's a schedule that I couldn't begin to meet if I owned a single tractor trailer. Regardless of your situation and how you go about it, I absolutely agree with the sentiment that it's critical to the success of any migratory operation for bees to be moved in a timely fashion, delays can be very, very expensive.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Getting my last of nine loads in today Did not get a chance to go to our state meeting in tahoe because of trucking issues.
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    ....and so it goes. Hopefully they will fare better making it back into the land of promise than the Donner party.
    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Jarrett View Post
    Getting my last of nine loads in today Did not get a chance to go to our state meeting in tahoe because of trucking issues.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Well, I have always said that I don't know 'nothing about 'nothing, but I'm pretty sure this thread is aimed right at me. I guess since I'm the only one here who owns his own semi, I need a lesson about how much it costs to own one from someone who does not. Anyone who thinks we did not run a whole lot of numbers before we bought one is flat out wrong. Unless we blow up an engine or something like that we will save over $20,000 this year alone just making the run from Colorado to Texas and back.

    And yes, I have been shipping bees for over 30 years. I called every trucking company in the country 6 weeks in advance, plus every truck broker in the country. There are no loads in Colorado to back haul, and no one would do it. This has been a problem for years, but it has gotten so bad we had to do something radical. We had several truckers promise to haul a load, only to have them cancel the day they were supposed to be there.

    But it looks like I have stepped on the toes of some of the kings of the commercial forum, so its time for me to back out again and say goodbye. There is nothing any of you can learn from a guy like me. You clearly already know it all.

  6. #5
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    I just hope that everyone is checking in early with their trucking companies for loads headed out to almonds.
    A friend of mine here in Oregon has been using the same "Ma & Pa" trucking outfit for years. He called them and they told him that as of January 1st they will be no longer doing business in California due to CARB.
    In a panic, he called another outfit that he has used as a back-up or to beat weather. They told him the same thing.
    It's hard to imagine a trucking business that does not go to California but these small 2 - 5 truck outfits are not going to buy all new trucks just to satisfy some cockameme, pie in the sky rules.
    I called my trucking outfit and they told me that they are 100% compliant and not to worry.
    If you are using a small outfit it may be well worth your while to check in early just to be on the safe side.
    I have exactly ONE more hive than you.
    That makes my opinion beyond dispute!

  7. #6
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Quote Originally Posted by John Lockhart View Post
    Well, I have always said that I don't know 'nothing about 'nothing, but I'm pretty sure this thread is aimed right at me. I guess since I'm the only one here who owns his own semi, I need a lesson about how much it costs to own one from someone who does not. Anyone who thinks we did not run a whole lot of numbers before we bought one is flat out wrong. Unless we blow up an engine or something like that we will save over $20,000 this year alone just making the run from Colorado to Texas and back.

    And yes, I have been shipping bees for over 30 years. I called every trucking company in the country 6 weeks in advance, plus every truck broker in the country. There are no loads in Colorado to back haul, and no one would do it. This has been a problem for years, but it has gotten so bad we had to do something radical. We had several truckers promise to haul a load, only to have them cancel the day they were supposed to be there.

    But it looks like I have stepped on the toes of some of the kings of the commercial forum, so its time for me to back out again and say goodbye. There is nothing any of you can learn from a guy like me. You clearly already know it all.
    John: Actually it wasnt aimed directly at you at all and I have no idea what difficulties there may be in getting trucks book in or out of your area in Colorado. I wanted to continue the trucking discussion but felt we were trashing the other thread where the guy was looking for flatbed advice. But it is an important subject for beekeepers to think through. BMAC has openly discussed buying a semi as well. Quite honestly your numbers are pretty much in line with the numbers in the link I provided as well and your observations of the hidden costs of not getting trucks in a timely manner are also quite accurate. I would hope my input as a fellow commercial operator with a similar base of experience has gotten you thinking about how others operate as well. I sure dont see any reason to be offended by a thread about trucking costs, its my second largest annual expense.
    BTW I had no idea anyone considered me a "king of the commercial forum" Thanks.......I think.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Quote Originally Posted by HarryVanderpool View Post
    I just hope that everyone is checking in early with their trucking companies for loads headed out to almonds.
    A friend of mine here in Oregon has been using the same "Ma & Pa" trucking outfit for years. He called them and they told him that as of January 1st they will be no longer doing business in California due to CARB.
    In a panic, he called another outfit that he has used as a back-up or to beat weather. They told him the same thing.
    It's hard to imagine a trucking business that does not go to California but these small 2 - 5 truck outfits are not going to buy all new trucks just to satisfy some cockameme, pie in the sky rules.
    I called my trucking outfit and they told me that they are 100% compliant and not to worry.
    If you are using a small outfit it may be well worth your while to check in early just to be on the safe side.
    Good suggestion Harry, just what we need. Something else to muck up the process. Unfortunately my experience is that there arent a lot of truckers who can deliver on a promise more than a couple weeks out. The whole trucking scene is pretty fluid and a trucker usually wont make a flat out promise until the truck actually has a load booked into your area. Seems like anything longer than 2 to 3 weeks just turns into kind of a hollow promise.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Yes so it is a consideration of buying to buy a semi. Been pusing numbers around and I am very unsatisified with the cost and timeliness of commercial trucking. I know a beekeeper in Ga who owns a semi and uses it whenever he needs to use it and its parked most of the time. He told me he saves enough money in shipping by owning his own semi that its far worth the cost. Who says the truck needs to be registered and insured all year long? BTW I checked into insuring a semi. Litterally is 800 more a year than insuring my Ram 5500. Ag plates on it and I am not seeing where its a bad thing. I also see Marks point of a 10 wheeler where I would use it more often. Plus I could moonlight hauling heavy equipment for folks in down time.
    Last edited by BMAC; 11-22-2013 at 11:44 AM. Reason: brain worked faster than fingers

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Sounds like a business void for a beekeeper wishing to expand! Not me, I'm sure some might like to put honey sales, pollination services and bee hauling on their business card? Seems an empty niche of opportunity!!

  11. #10
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    John, will you haul for other keepers as well?

  12. #11
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Quote Originally Posted by John Lockhart View Post
    But it looks like I have stepped on the toes of some of the kings of the commercial forum, so its time for me to back out again and say goodbye. There is nothing any of you can learn from a guy like me. You clearly already know it all.
    Easy does it John, sir King Jimmy is very easy going well thought out keeper, we were talking about trucking just this last week it's been on alot of our minds lately.
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  13. #12
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Quote Originally Posted by John Lockhart View Post
    But it looks like I have stepped on the toes of some of the kings of the commercial forum, so its time for me to back out again and say goodbye. There is nothing any of you can learn from a guy like me. You clearly already know it all.
    Ha,ha,ha. Ain't nobody here that's all that sensitive.

    Apparently it fits your business. Good for you. Your profile is kinda sparse. How many colonies do you run?
    Mark Berninghausen

  14. #13
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    I am of the like mind set as BMAC. As I will be retired from my m-f job next oct, I am also looking hard for a good used semi and flatbed. I know it is more involved, there will be extra costs, but i have considered it all and we have pretty much decided to upscale for cross country transport, and not rely on someone else. I still have my 1 ton and gooseneck for local moves.

  15. #14
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    OK, sorry guys. I really, really never wanted to buy a semi. But sometimes you have to do something rad. Now as for RAK's question, no I do not haul any other bees or anything else on my truck. I have farm plates on it and a "not for hire" sign on the door. If you start hauling for someone else for money, you are opening a whole new can of worms.
    My tags and insurance are not all that much.
    I too am a bit worried about Cal. this season. I hope getting trucks will not be too much trouble, but I'll bet anything that you can count on a big price jump on freight. If trucks do get very hard to find, the almond growers will scream murder when they cannot get bees. And they do have some power.

  16. #15
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    All bow down to Sir King Jimmy, king of the commercial bee forum! Ha Ha
    Watch out John, if you step on those toes he will CRUSH you !!! Lol

  17. #16
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Bowing also! Any tithes due? Oops, shouldn't have asked that.

  18. #17
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    So far the reign of King Jimmy has been merciful, but that's before John pissed him off ...

  19. #18
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    [


    This should make for an interesting year, I talked top our trucker who is In Utah about getting his trucks into California next spring. His comment was that several states has threatened to sue caif, if this was enforced.as federal funds. Go to california as well as other states. So if California wants to impose these regulations on ca if based trucks that's ok. But if they attempt to enforce this on out of state trucks there will bee a problem. I am not in charge of getting the trucks with the operation I go with so I hope we don't have a mess,cause we got strung out last spring pretty bad as it was.will be interesting to see what shakes out. Best to all GB



    QUOTE=HarryVanderpool;1021808]I just hope that everyone is checking in early with their trucking companies for loads headed out to almonds.
    A friend of mine here in Oregon has been using the same "Ma & Pa" trucking outfit for years. He called them and they told him that as of January 1st they will be no longer doing business in California due to CARB.
    In a panic, he called another outfit that he has used as a back-up or to beat weather. They told him the same thing.
    It's hard to imagine a trucking business that does not go to California but these small 2 - 5 truck outfits are not going to buy all new trucks just to satisfy some cockameme, pie in the sky rules.
    I called my trucking outfit and they told me that they are 100% compliant and not to worry.
    If you are using a small outfit it may be well worth your while to check in early just to be on the safe side.[/QUOTE]
    George Brenner @ www.valleyhoneyco.com
    Mesa, AZ

  20. #19
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    George, It's going to be a nightmare for anyone unaware and / or not in compliance.
    If you go to the CARB website and read the enforcement pages you will get the drift.
    A semi load of bees pulled over and found to be out of compliance will be immediatly placed out of service, bees and all and the fine is up to $10,000.00 PER DAY!!
    It will sure be interesting to see this all play out as it affects all commerce, not just bees.
    But as it stands right now, there are no ifs, ands or buts about it.
    CARB is ready to bring California commerce to a complete stop if necissary to support it's little rules.
    I hope every one that plans to run diesel trucks of any size into California after 1/1/14 is doing their homework.
    This is drop-dead serious business at this time.
    I have exactly ONE more hive than you.
    That makes my opinion beyond dispute!

  21. #20
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    Default Re: Commercial trucking costs

    Quote Originally Posted by John Lockhart View Post
    OK, sorry guys. I really, really never wanted to buy a semi. But sometimes you have to do something rad. Now as for RAK's question, no I do not haul any other bees or anything else on my truck. I have farm plates on it and a "not for hire" sign on the door. If you start hauling for someone else for money, you are opening a whole new can of worms.
    My tags and insurance are not all that much.
    I too am a bit worried about Cal. this season. I hope getting trucks will not be too much trouble, but I'll bet anything that you can count on a big price jump on freight. If trucks do get very hard to find, the almond growers will scream murder when they cannot get bees. And they do have some power.
    John, I have been considering a semi that is clean idle certified. I got thoughts of hiring a driver and start hauling for other folks. Beekeeping freight is almost double of the typical cost. Don't know if its a good idea to stick my foot into another business... very close friend owns an operation of 30 trucks buts its mostly dry van.

    My thoughts are that it might be worth getting a new truck and hiring a driver to haul other loads. Its always good to have a business inside of a business. But thats when 1 truck won't be worth it. It has to justify workmans compensation for the hired drivers. Good drivers are very hard to find...

    Having a farm truck is a great way into it just for your own use but how many years will it take to justify 100 thousand bucks? I don't send to texas but to Cali so theres no way with an uncertified truck, but boy those older trucks will run for millions.

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