Expanding your car hauling business?

If you're expanding your auto transport business, you may need to get set up to accept credit cards (if you haven't already done so). The discount rate, what the processors pay themselves for getting YOU paid can vary quite a bit, especially for people who run businesses that accept credit cards over the phone.

I guess the banks figure if you don't have the card right in front of you to swipe through a machine, there might be just that much more chance of that card being stolen. A lot of times, your discount rate for these types of transaction will range around 2-3%, depending on your volume.

I put a link down at the bottom of the page for Paypal because they have a system that works pretty good. (Plus, they'll give me a finder's fee if you sign up!)

Things I like about Paypal:

Easy to process refunds
Stores your information FOREVER, so you can always go back and check on things if need be.
Doesn't cost much, plus they give you good discounts when your volume gets up there.
Easy to integrate with any sort of e-commerce website you've got going.
Can process phone payments.
Can transfer money with no fee to your checking account.
Get just about 5% annual interest on your money when you sign up for the Moneymarket.

Things I DON'T like about Paypal:

If you're a big-time Ebay seller, keep your main business Paypal account separate from your Ebay account. If you get some cranky customer who decides to complain because his wrapping paper got wrinkled, Paypal reserves the right to freeze that account until the issue has been settled. You don't want all your operating cash tied up like that.

They say they accept all cards, but they don't. We've had customers who couldn't get Paypal to process the payment using a card that we were able to process using Quickbooks.

If someone has a Paypal account, they try to force him to use it. (This happened to me when I was trying to pay a vendor using a credit card.)

Their system is cumbersome and complex... a lot like Ebay, which owns them now!

If you're shopping around, you might want to check out Google. I think they have a new payment system coming out.

Or if you need one now, you can click on the link below.

"Paypal: It's Sort of Good, Sometimes."

Experimental Car Hauler Listing

I'm not sure this particular method of using bots to harvest auto transport equipment from the web is going to work very well.

2000 2000 Peterbilt 379 exhd / 2000 Boydstun Trailer
Item number: 170010085938
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Car Hauler
Number of Axles:
Class 8 (33,001 lbs. or more)
Engine Make:
Engine Horsepower:
Fuel Type:
Transmission Type:
Transmission Speeds:
13 Speed Over Drive
Suspension Type:
Vehicle Identification Number (VIN):
Tire Size:

And you thought you had a tough car hauler job.

Crew prepares to abandon listing ship near Aleutian Islands
By Rachel D'Oro
The Associated Press
ANCHORAGE — The crew of an Asian ship listing nearly on its side in the North Pacific prepared to abandon the vessel Monday after Coast Guard officials determined it was too dangerous to stay on board.
The Coast Guard and Alaska Air National Guard were sending helicopters and other rescue craft to pick up the 22 crew members of the Cougar Ace, 230 miles from Adak Island in the Aleutians. The crew members all had donned survival suits.
"For their safety, it's best for them to come off the ship," said Lt. Mara Booth-Miller as officials waited early afternoon for the three helicopters to arrive in the remote site. She said it's "very probable" that part of the deck was under water.
Earlier Monday, a Coast Guard plane dropped three life rafts, but roiling waters shoved the rafts underneath the dipping port side of the 654-foot ship. Racing against an increasingly tilting ship, rescuers tossed an additional raft along the higher starboard side, but it was a 150-foot drop to the water and beyond their reach.
The Cougar Ace had been carrying nearly 5,000 cars from Japan to Canada when it began taking on water Sunday night.
"It's sitting on its side, basically," Petty Officer Stephen Harrison said.
A merchant marine ship crew that had been in the area reached the vessel Monday morning. The crew of that ship tried, but failed, to rig a line to the Cougar Ace to keep it from tilting further.
Near the vessel, Coast Guard officers could see a 2-mile-long oil sheen, though officials said it was difficult to say how much of the ship's 430 metric tons of fuel oil or 112 metric tons of diesel fuel had spilled. The ocean was choppy, with rain squalls and 8- to 10-foot seas reported.
Communications between the crew and Coast Guard became increasingly difficult Monday when the batteries in the crew's hand-held radio dimmed, Booth-Miller said. Crew members had to shout information to the merchant ship, which then relayed messages back and forth to the Coast Guard.
The Singapore-flagged Cougar Ace — owned by Tokyo-based Mitsui O.S.K. Lines — was carrying 4,813 vehicles from Japan to Vancouver, British Columbia, said Greg Beuerman, a spokesman for the ship owner. There were no reports of any cars going overboard. Beuerman said typically vehicles are securely fastened.

"Obviously, the primary concern for all involved is the safety of the crew on board," he said. "The vessel is of critical importance as well, but the first priority is the health and the safety of the crew."
One crew member had a broken leg, but no other injuries had been reported, according to Harrison.
Beuerman said the ship was equipped with life boats and rafts, but it would have been too risky to use them in this situation.
It wasn't immediately clear what had caused the ship to list. Its crew sent out an SOS late Sunday night but didn't know where the water was coming in, McKenzie said.
A Coast Guard cutter was on its way to the area, 230 miles south of the island of Adak in the western Aleutians. The cutter, based in Honolulu, had been on routine patrol 700 miles southeast of the troubled ship when it was diverted to help the crew of the listing ship shortly before midnight. It was expected to reach the Cougar Ace on Tuesday.
Beside the Coast Guard helicopter, two Pave Hawk helicopters, two refueling planes and a C-130 plane were en route from Kulis Air National Guard Base in Anchorage. Guard crews were carrying rafts and survival kits, including food, water, flares and radios, said Guard spokeswoman Kalei Brooks.
Copyright © 2006 The Seattle Times Company

Carhauler Parts: Carhauler Chain Warning

Seems like we've been hearing more and more about chains breaking. I used to think this was primarily a problem of cluster chains in the lower position that had been dragged, but I was talking with someone the other day who said he's seen plenty pop right in the middle of the chain. In his words, "There must have been a bad link or something."

He said he's seen plenty of chains on the top positions do this, so it is clearly not a wear or misuse situation.

The link is for a notice put out by Cottrell Trailers about their switch to 5/16" chain and their adoption of the longer winch bar.

I know some guys aren't into the heavier chains for their trailers, but since I occasionally drive down the highway behind auto haulers, I wanted to do my part to get the information out there!

Boydstun offers a new winch bar that tells you how much torque you're putting on your ratchet box. They have detailed information on their website regarding the proper use of their chain ratchets. Of course, whether you've got a JM Trailer, Wally Mo, Take 3, Kaufman, whatever, the basic principles remain the same. If you are new to hauling cars, find out what the proper technique is for chaining cars down. (Or using car hauler wheel straps.)

I guess maybe if gas keep going up, eventually the weight of these cars is going to go down, and then maybe there won't be all these quarter inch cluster chains popping.

Inspect those chains and straps. Get your brakes fixed before they cam over on the expressway. Carry a spill kit. Don't push too hard. Know how much your vehicles weigh and keep track. If you're traveling empty, don't leave your flippers out. (big fines in some states!)

Talk to some of the old-timers in the business who are actually making money. If you find one willing to talk, find out how he's filling empty positions, where he's finding loads, what made him successful. And also ask him about tie down chains and straps.

Remember: Safety is no accident.