A Closer Look At Synthetic Motor Oils For A Diesel Engine

For years the only decision a truck driver needing oil for a diesel engine had to make was which brand of 15W40 to purchase. But the trucking industry has slowly and surely been making the adjustment to synthetic oil. Now, 10W30 is an option and there’s even talk about 5W30. How did this happen? Engine manufacturers are under the gun from the EPA to improve fuel economy and friction is eating into their efforts. The solution is a move [...]

It’s Not A Revolution. The Autonomous Truck Has Been Developing For More Than Two Decades.

This year, Freightliner and Peterbilt demonstrated their autonomous trucks to an eager trucking industry press corps, and Google showed its self-driving, computer-connected passenger car. All got a lot of press and sparked a good deal of discussion about the future of transportation. These self-driving vehicles are the result of a long line of developments in computerization. Back in 1975, Gordon Moore, the founder of Intel, predicted that computer chips would double their capability every two years or so. He was [...]

Today’s Trucks Require A Far More Refined Fuel Than The Green Diesel Of Old

Growing up on a farm afforded me the chance to operate tractors, combines and trucks. I remember the green color of the fuel that we used in every dieselpowered engine we had. That fuel was not very refined. Back then, diesel-powered equipment used low pressure fuel pumps and diesel injectors that were effective but not very sophisticated. Heavy black smoke blew from the exhaust and the engine surged. Nobody was concerned that there was also a huge loss of fuel [...]

Downspeeding Engines Make It Easy For Drivers To Enjoy The Ride While Saving On Fuel

The vast majority of CDL holders today came into our industry learning certain fundamentals about operating a large truck. Starting in the late 1970s, we learned that if you drove much above 1800 rpm, (2100 in some engines) you were up against the governor and you had to either shift up or back off the throttle. At the lower end, there was a change from earlier practice. The power band was no longer between 1800 and 2100 rpm, and [...]