Wednesday, November 25, 2015

DT466E No Start diagnostic Guide

Hello, all

The DT466E No Start Diagnostic Guide is now for sale.

Go to Ebay and enter item # 331717094147 or click the tab above the post.

Price is $34.99, shipping is free.

DT466E No Start Diagnostic for the 4300/4400

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Windows 10 Review

Hello, everyone, and welcome to The Toolbox.
I know this is a truck repair blog, but I had to write a little about my experience so far with the new Windows operating system.

Like everyone else I had been getting popups on my laptop to install the new system, free. Microsoft has been pushing hard to get people to upgrade. My Win 7 had been getting a little buggy and slow lately and it would soon be time to reinstall or purchase a newer laptop, so I decided to just bite the bullet and go ahead with Win 10.

I read some reviews about the new system and it seemed there were no major problems, and was reassured that the transition from Win 7 would be easy. We have Windows 8 on some diagnostic laptops at work, and using that system is a truly horrible experience until you learn your way around, and even then it is clunky and unintuitive, especially after using XP and 7.

Anyway I went ahead with installation and was pleasantly surprised. The download did take some time, and after restarting the install was also kind of lengthy. A screen message warned not to shut down and included some cutesy, friendly phrases to let me know something was going on.

After the install I expected to see big changes on the desktop, but everything was still where I put it and the look was very similar to the Win 7 screen. My background image and all the shortcuts were still there, as well as the Firefox shortcut and toolbar button. I did need to reconfigure the browser to Firefox as the default search engine. There is a toolbar across the bottom, a la Win 7, but it now includes a handy search box for the web and windows. Type a website or a file name into the box and results will pop up quickly on the screen.

Another toolbar button is for Micrsoft Edge, the new embedded search engine. I haven't used it a lot as it has the Bing search engine which is not my favorite. It does seem fast, and the results page is much cleaner and with more relevant results than I remember getting the few times I used Bing.

My favorite new feature is the new start window. Clicking on the Windows icon at the lower left edge of the screen brings up a fairly large start menu covering a little less than half the screen. Like Win 7 it includes commonly used programs, but also has buttons for  file explorer, settings, power, and apps. New is the group of tiles for mail, photos, Twitter, music, news, etc. I think you can add or reconfigure these tiles to include what you want, but I haven't had time to mess with it.

I have only been using Win 10 for about 5 days now, but the transition has been easy and use of the new system very familiar after Win 7.

I highly recommend upgrading to the new version if your Win 7 install is getting old or if buying a new machine. Even if you just want to give it a try, you can revert to you old system if you don't like 10. Upgrading from Win 8 is an absolute no brainer, I wouldn't hesitate a second to ditch that clunky piece of junk.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The truck mechanic wage question revisited. Again.

Here we go again. I got a link to an article in The Wall Street Journal with a freight company representative lamenting the fact that good techs can't be found in today's market.

 tech recruitment

I have written on this topic before and keep hearing the same song from the other side. Prospective techs are going into IT and engineering instead of truck repair.

How surprising! People are going into industries with better pay, better working conditions, that are more highly regarded by the public, than repair industries.

The author of this article  talks about the promise of higher wages in the future. When will people in this industry realize that the motivation for getting into any of these jobs is money? Not the promise of higher wages at some future point in time, but a competitive wage, now.

If this industry really wants to pull good people from other industries it has to offer a comparable wage. Period.

I have been campaigning on this subject for several years, but keep hearing the same tune from shop owners, truck dealers, and industry gurus. They say the problem is that high school counselors push kids into college instead of tech schools, and that the public perception of repair is that it is dirty, physical labor suited only to those unable to do anything else. Talk about having your head in the sand!

A competitive wage right now would trump all the impediments to finding good people.

However, what will happen is that things will continue the way they are until shop customers start to complain about not getting service, until new truck sales crash because there is no one to repair them, until enough baby boomers leave the industry to really put the pinch on getting the work done.

What will happen is that manufacturers will engineer enhanced (and expensive) on board diagnostics so that less skill is required to repair trucks. Not that this will necessarily make repair faster or more efficient,  but only less costly per hour at the end point.

What will happen is that it will come to the point where a 7 to 10 day wait for truck service will be the norm and the trucking industry is limited not by the number of drivers, but by the number of trucks that can be kept running.