Mid-America Truck Show Coverage: New developments from suppliers

May 1, 2011
Suppliers to the trucking industry unveiled an array of news, products, and services and this year's Mid-America Trucking Show. Among the developments:

Suppliers to the trucking industry unveiled an array of news, products, and services and this year's Mid-America Trucking Show. Among the developments:

Just Meritor

ArvinMeritor Inc has officially changed its name to Meritor Inc and with it, a new ticker symbol (NYSE: MTOR) on the New York Stock Exchange.

The name change reflects the divestitures of light vehicle businesses now completed. The company is focused on commercial vehicle and industrial markets in every major region of the world.

The company initially assumed the name Meritor following the spin-off from Rockwell International Corp. in 1997. It remained Meritor until the merger with Arvin Industries in 2000. Since that time, the company has marketed and sold product under the Meritor brand.

Aerofficient side fairings

Aerofficient side fairings are hinged to swing in or out to clear a 24-inch high obstacle without damage. The hinged side skirts extend all the way to the rear tandem, and can be made to telescope when moving the tandem forward or rearward. At the landing gear, one model wraps around the leg and another model can tuck in behind the landing leg. Aerofficient LLC is located in Lincolnshire, Illinois and on the internet at

More efficient refrigeration

Thermo King has enhanced its SB-30 series of refrigeration units to improve energy and operational efficiency. SB-30 series units that feature these innovations include the SB-130, SB-230 and SB-330.

The upgrades include: an exclusive fuel filtration system, a new controller that allows data transfer via USB flash drive, and an optional ultrasonic fuel sensor for more accurate fuel readings.

Two additional upgrades slated for introduction in June include: a unique new evaporator blower assembly expected to lower fuel costs up to 7% while reducing required run time; and integrated wireless technology that provides options for customers to track and control their refrigerated fleets via Thermo King or third-party telematics.

Thermo King also introduced two other products:

  • An electronic throttling valve (ETV) for straight trucks that allows them to optimize energy and operational efficiency while improving product quality on delivery. Rigorous testing completed in late 2010 demonstrated that the ETV saves up to 30 percent in fuel and reaches set point up to 50 percent faster while the engine runs up to 20 percent less.
  • Roofline application cooling solutions. Thermo King will introduce the V-520 RT for fresh applications and the V-520 RT MAX for frozen applications in June. The new units feature a low profile condenser that measures less than 7.5 inches above the roof to minimize risk of damage.

New APX refrigeration control system

New APX refrigeration control system from Carrier Transicold has the electronics package separated into modules and distributed at best point of use. The new display module here operated by Mark Fragnito, electronics product manager, has back-lit buttons and large, easily read numbers. The power control module is located elsewhere near the battery, and the main micro module is closer to the power supply, sensors, and valves. Other smaller modules can be used to expand the system for applications such as data recording, telematics, etc.

Kinedyne expands plant, products

Kinedyne announced several new products and an addition to its manufacturing plant in Nantong, China. The following items are being shown at the Mid-America Trucking Show for the first time:

  • Grip Link tire chains. V-bar and square link designs are designed for highway use, and stud chains are intended for off-road conditions.

  • Kaptive Beam Systems and Components. This product line has been expanded with the addition of new L-track solution, as well as new accessories.

  • Steadymate recreational vehicle tie-downs and hardware.

  • Steadymate motorcycle wheel chock.

Additionally, the company announced “Phase Two” of its plant in Nantong. Kinedyne recently broke ground at the Nantong facility with the intent of adding another 100,000 square feet of manufacturing and warehouse space to the site. Phase Two of the construction plan at the Nantong facility is scheduled for completion by the end of this summer. Originally completed in autumn 2009, the Nantong facility features four distinct buildings, covering more than 240,000 square feet. Along with its China plant, Kinedyne Corporation has facilities in Canada, Mexico, and the U S.

Bendix boosts brake production

Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake LLC (BSFB) will open a new production line at its Bowling Green, Ky., manufacturing plant in June to meet increased demand for its patented Bendix ADB22X air disc brakes.

Once fully operational, the automated production line will triple the current assembly capacity for BSFB's North American operation. With a nearly 120% increase in demand from 2009 to 2010 and an expected additional increase of nearly 40% in 2011, the new production line will help BSFB continue to meet the needs of OEMs, fleets, and owner-operator.

The company also introduced a new, higher performing version of its Extended Service drum brake (ES Brakes) developed to meet the new federal stopping distance requirements mandated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). New higher performing versions of the company's popular Single Anchor Pin, ES Extended Service drum brakes will be available in a variety of sizes for steer axle applications. The new brakes will phased into production and will be fully launched by Aug. 1, the initial implementation date for the new stopping distance regulations.

NHTSA requires a 30 percent reduction in stopping distance for new three axle tractors with Gross Vehicle Weight Ratings (GVWRs) up to 59,600 lbs. and produced after the Aug. 1 implementation date. Tractors with two axles, as well as severe service tractors with GVWRs above 59,600 lbs., must comply with the new mandate by August 1, 2013.

New wheels and axles

Accuride Corporation debuted its Accu-Lite lightweight aluminum wheel line, with the 22.5 × 8.25 aluminum Accu-Lite wheel weighing 45 pounds and the super single Accu-Lite aluminum Duplex weighing 59 pounds.

Accuride also announced that its Fabco division has released its new FSD-23 low-profile Steerable Drive Axle family. The new line of Fabco axles offers customers a lighter weight and lower height solution for heavy-duty all wheel drive vehicles.

The Fabco FSD-23 is developed for severe service applications such as military, oil field, construction, mining, wildland fire, and municipal utility.

Loaded quickly

Air-Weigh introduced an addition to its QuickLoad onboard scale product — a new standalone trailer scale incorporating Air-Weigh's software, and sensor technology.

The scale is designed to be mounted on the outside of any trailer in about 20 minutes with either permanent adhesive or hidden through-bolts.

It features an advanced graphics display with a completely sealed touch-screen interface as well as molded electrical and air connections. The new scale design eliminates any openings in the enclosure for buttons, switches, panels, connectors or air fittings that could allow water to seep into the electronics. The scale's industry-standard serial data interface can be set to either J1939 or RS485 data protocols, Air-Weigh added.

Hino offers new Insight

Hino Trucks unveiled a web-based location and telematics system for its line of medium-duty trucks.

The GPS-based system provides fleet management with data on driving efficiencies, safety, security, customer satisfaction and green initiatives. Capabilities include route tracking, geofencing, advanced vehicle administration. Insight units come standard with a free one-year service subscription plan and a two-year Hino OEM full product warranty.