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JD Humm

One Maxxforce International was not enough

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Tech school I work for part time bought a 2011 International Transtar 8600 single axle day cab tractor late last fall for CDL instruction.  Had 367,000 miles on it.  Day one while student was driving it started a terrible death wobble.  So they took it back to the dealership who rebuilt the front end and put 6 new tires on it under warranty.  No more issues since until about 3 weeks ago, I drove it to the state CDL office for two students to take their tests.  It was raining when I left, everything was working fine.  Stopped raining about half way there and I turned the windshield wipers off.  A few minutes later I noticed the AC quit working.  I had a few minutes before the first test was scheduled so I looked at fuses, all appeared to be good and I even swapped spares in with no luck.  During the first student's exam the examiner came back to me and told me the windshield wipers and the highway horn didn't work either so we couldn't do our drive tests until those items were fixed.  Both students passed their pre trips and backing skills but of course couldn't take their drive tests so I drove it back to the school.  They put it in a shop ran by a shade tree mechanic who started throwing parts at it.  He never could get anything to work and that truck is still not fixed yet.

Two weeks ago the school decided we needed a second rig to teach with so they bought an identical semi tractor, same year and same Maxxforce 13 engine and ten speed transmission, it came from the same fleet as the first truck.  On the way to the school from the dealership the regen warning light came on.  We did a regen on it when we got to the school and ever since it has called for a regen every 30 miles.  So they took it back to the dealership for warranty repairs.  This truck also developed a leak in the left rear brake chamber.   In the meantime the shade tree mechanic has given up on the first truck and it is back at the school yard with a large labor and parts bill.  The second truck is still in the shop.  We now have two trucks yet nothing that will pass a pre trip exam.  

The first truck is going to a bona fide International truck dealership shop for repairs this coming week, hopefully truck 2 will be back to take it's place so we will be able to continue instructing.  

Makes me wonder what other issues lie ahead of us with these two semi tractors.

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First truck went to the Topeka IH truck dealership this past week and the electrical problem was fixed in about ten minutes.  The shade tree mechanic missed a loose fuse after replacing a bunch of parts.  We will never use him again.  Second truck (the last one we purchased) is still in the shop.

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