A RADICAL new platform trailer design, new manufacturing facility, and new services were among the announcements made during a session of the National Trailer Dealers Association convention.
Allied members of the NTDA had a matter of minutes to inform their audience of trailer dealers about their company and products. Here is a summary of what they had to say:
Alutrec introduces lightweight platform
Alutrec Inc traded in crossmembers for weight savings when it designed its new Capacity platform trailer.
Instead of standard crossmembers and main beams, the Capacity is built upon a structure that vaguely resembles the bottom half of an airplane's fuselage. Based upon five years of research, the resulting design improves aerodynamics, strengthens torsional resistance, while slashing tare weight. The Capacity weighs as little as 6,950 pounds, according to Brigitte Bernard, U S sales and marketing director of Alutrec, a Canadian manufacturer based in Saint-Nicolas, Quebec. www.alutrec.com/
MAC Trailer opens new plant
MAC Trailer of Alliance, Ohio, has increased its production capacity with the recent acquisition of the former Ravens trailer plant in nearby Kent, Ohio.
MAC acquired the 200,000-sq-ft facility from Fontaine Trailers, the plant's most recent owner. MAC produced its first trailer — a tank — in the facility October 7.
After discussing the new facility, Mike Conny, president of MAC Trailer, then reviewed the company's product lineup, including its half-round dump trailer that offers 60-cu-yd capacity with a tare weight of under 10,000 pounds.
MAC was formed in 1993 as a dump trailer manufacturer. The product line has expanded significantly since then. The company now manufactures flatbeds, transfer trailers, and (most recently) tanks. Conny ended his presentation by thanking the dealers in the audience who have helped his company grow. www.mactrailer.com
New and used trailers from Fontaine
Fontaine Trailer provided details on its three latest platform trailer designs — the Velocity steel trailer, the Infinity premium combo trailer, and the Revolution aluminum or aluminum/steel hybrid.
The Infinity is available in flat, drop, and twist lock drop designs. The routed side rails are similar to those of the Revolution. They are one-piece aluminum that are routed for pockets and load securement openings.
The Revolution touts a low tare weight — 8,960 pounds for the Revolution H Combo; 8,620 pounds for the Aluminum Revolution 60; 8,348 pounds for the Aluminum Revolution 52; and 9,300 pounds for the Revolution Hybrid Dropdeck.
Fontaine also presented details on Fontaine Renew, its trailer remanufacturing program. The process revitalizes old trailers into “like new” condition. Under the program, Fontaine shotblasts the trailer, applies zinc-based primer and a premium topcoat. The trailer also receives a new floor, air components (excluding tank), and electrical components. The finished trailer receives a warranty from Fontaine covering trailer workmanship, paint and new parts. www.fontainetrailer.com
Tiremaxx Pro inflates and deflates
Hendrickson Trailer Suspension Systems explained the capabilities of the company's Tiremaxx Pro automatic tire inflation system for trailer tires.
Tiremaxx Pro continuously monitors and adjusts tire pressure by inflating or deflating tires based on changing environmental conditions, as well as, balancing tire pressures at every wheel position. The product became available during the first quarter of 2011.
The system draws from the trailer air supply to keep trailer tires properly inflated and rolling smoothly. If the ambient temperature increases, the system will relieve air when necessary to prevent over inflation. By keeping pressures balanced, scrubbing between dual tires can be greatly reduced and tire life improved.
Tiremaxx Pro requires no electronics, transducers or pressure switches, and it be maintained without special tools. It operates on either 12- or 24-volt electrical systems.
Tiremaxx Pro may be combined with an extensive array of Hendrickson approved wheel-end configurations on any Hendrickson primary suspension system or trailer axle. http://www.hendrickson-intl.com
Keeping liftgate batteries charged
One of the challenges for liftgate users — especially on trailers that can be 60 feet away from the tractor's alternator — is keeping the liftgate battery properly charged.
Maxon Lift Corporation has a solution, according to Howard Smith. More accurately, the company has multiple solutions, because as Smith told trailer dealers, one size does not fit all applications.
With a tractor output of 14 volts and a primary battery pack of 13.5 volts, the voltage typically drops below acceptable levels by the time it reaches the rear of the trailer. However, Maxon now offers Trail Charger, a DC/DC converter that amplifies the voltage it receives so that the charge again meets the requirements of the battery.
The Trail Charger comes with an electronic module that enables it to continue charging for up to 30 minutes after the tractor engine has been turned off. The module includes low-voltage protection for the primary batteries to make sure the tractor batteries retrain an acceptable level of charge.
Maxon offers the Trail Charger in multiple applications for dry-freight trailers, reefers, and straight trucks.
For additional information, visit www.maxonlift.com.
Check out who moves your trailers
With new federal safety requirements making it more important than ever to do business with truck operators that have good safety records, onewaytrailers.com offers Carrier performance Check (CPC).
CPC is an online method for providing background checks on motor carriers, said Lyn Simon, president and CEO of onewaytrailers.com. Trailer dealers and other companies that need to reposition trailers can use the service to monitor a potential carrier's insurance, CSA scores, authority, and/or safety ratings.
CPC offers a choice of three levels of details. The base report includes FMCSA authority and insurance information, CSA scores, basic carrier information, and safety ratings.
The second level adds a personalized database of the company's favorite carriers and generates e-mail notices whenever there is a change for a carrier listed on that database.
The third level includes the features of the others, but it also offers proof of insurance and insurance monitoring features.
Shurco introduces SmaRTransmitter
Mike Krajewski announced the availability of the Shurco SmaRTransmitter, a wireless control system for grain trailers and tarps. The handheld transmitter, roughly the size of a cell phone, has a flip-top cover that deactivates the controller when closed. Flipping the cover open provides access to the buttons, including five channels that can be used to control the tarp system, the front and/or rear hoppers of the grain trailer, lights, and auxiliary applications.
In addition, Krajewski provided background information about Shur-Co, a company known foremost for its Shur-Lok roll tarp system,
Along with the company's manufacturing facilities in Yankton, South Dakota, Shur-Co has eight service centers throughout the central United States. www.shurco.com
Meritor expands supsension offerings
Curtis Wormington, director of sales for Meritor Trailer Suspensions, introduced the newest additions to the Meritor line of top-mount suspensions — the MTA25 and the MTA30. The MTA25, rated at 25,000 pounds, is designed applications such as platform trailers, liquid and dry bulk tanks, bottom-discharge dumps, transfer trailers, end dumps, and side dumps.
The MTA30 is rated at 30,000 pounds. It is targeted at liquid and dry bulk tank fleets, transfer trailer operations, end and side dump trailers, and logging chip haulers.
The two new models build upon the MTA23 suspension that was introduced last year. The suspensions include features such as a patented pivot bushing, patent-pending axle wrap design, and large-bore high-damping shock absorbers. www.meritortrailersuspensions.com