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Cost of ownership • Brakes & friction • MATS new product roundup

APRIL 2013

Managing Equipment Assets

Ahead of the Curve Michelle Koch President K&J Trucking

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On the Inside

Vol. 39 | Number 4 | 2013


Columns Editorial




Heavy-duty News


Founded 1974. Copyright 2013 Babcox Media Inc.


Service & Support




Light- & Medium-duty



Fuels & Lubes



Tires & Wheels



Post Script





18 ASE Collective wisdom

20 Timely Tips Five key areas of extended interval programs

22 Industry News


IT and the Business Process | QR codes are timely and accurate


Trailer Topics | Ups & downs of trailer availability


Before & After(market) | Brakes & friction


Fleet Profile | Ahead of the curve


Equipment Management | Cost of ownership


Special report | Mid-America Trucking Show (MATS) roundup

March preliminary net orders down from February

56 Truck Products Donaldson debuts newest line of replacement filters

57 Trailers & Bodies Utility Trailer introduces new side skirt design

58 Shop Coxreels introduces HP 1125

EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD Steve Duley, Vice President of Purchasing Schneider National Inc.

David Foster, Vice President of Maintenance Southeastern Freight Lines

Bob Hamilton, Director of Fleet Maintenance Bozzuto's Inc.

Peter Nativo, Director of Maintenance Transport Service Co.

Darry Stuart, President & CEO DWS Fleet Management

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PUBLISHER David Moniz, Publisher 330-670-1234, Ext. 215


EDITORIAL Carol Birkland, Editor-in-Chief 952-476-0230 Tom Gelinas, Editorial Director Denise Koeth, Sr. Editor 330-670-1234, Ext. 274 Seth Skydel, Senior Contributing Editor 330-670-1234 D. Michael Pennington, Sr. Staff Writer 248-872-6760 Asa Sharp, Contributing Editor 330-670-1234 John Martin, Contributing Editor 330-670-1234 Paul Hartley, Contributing Editor 507-645-2200 GRAPHIC DESIGN Tammy House, Sr. Graphic Designer 330-670-1234, Ext. 256 ADVERTISING SERVICES Kelly McAleese, Ad Services Manager 330-670-1234, Ext. 284 CIRCULATION SERVICES Pat Robinson, Circulation Manager 330-670-1234, Ext. 276 Star Mackey, Circulation Assistant 330-670-1234, Ext. 242 CORPORATE Bill Babcox, President Greg Cira, Vice President, Chief Financial Officer Jeff Stankard, Vice President Beth Scheetz, Controller In Memoriam: Edward S. Babcox (1885-1970) – Founder Tom B. Babcox (1919-1995) – Chairman

6 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

Fuel efficiency, short- and long-term CAROL BIRKLAND | EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

ast month was full of industry news presented at three major trucking shows, the most recent of which was the Mid-America Trucking Show (MATS), and it will come as no surprise to you that the most common theme for all three shows was vehicle fuel efficiency. A broad spectrum of technology was presented at MATS, most of which has been designed to increase fuel efficiency. The majority of news was about tires, aerodynamic devices and powertrains. Truck and trailer manufacturers, and a long list of their suppliers, continue to roll out products to help fleets garner the best MPG.


Displayed at MATS was advanced tire technology, including lower rolling resistance, new and retreaded tires and wide singles—most of which are SmartWay and/or California Air Resources Board (CARB) certified—meaning they have passed the tests proving they can supply an improvement in MPG. Some tire makers reported 10% to 25% improvement over other models. New vehicle/trailer aerodynamic products (especially trailer fairings, wheel covers, etc.) provided some of the more visible upgrades to trucks and trailers, which for the most part can be easily retrofitted. There are many designs and lots of choices. The MPG savings for some of the products are reported to range from 5% to 6%. Most trailer manufacturers are working directly with suppliers and are offering airing packages to fleets. To get an idea of the impact powertrains have on fuel efficiency, let’s start by going back to last summer when Detroit Diesel Corp. announced its Detroit DT12 automated manual transmission as part of the Detroit complete powertrain offering. The company noted that the DT12 combines the operational ease of an automatic with the efficiency of a manual transmission, resulting in enhanced fuel economy. Also, last year Freightliner Trucks introduced the 2014 Cascadia Evolution Class 8 truck model, powered by Detroit, that featured advanced aerodynamic enhancements. According to the truck maker, the Cascadia Evolution delivers up to an additional 7% improvement in fuel economy over an EPA 2010-compliant Cascadia equipped with a first-generation aerodynamic package and up to a 5% improvement compared to a current model year 2013 Cascadia equipped with the latest aerodynamic upgrades. Continuing the move toward integrated powertrains for the U.S. market, Volvo Trucks North America announced it now offers its I-Shift automated manual transmission as standard on all Volvo-powered trucks built for the North American market. The company also reported that sales of the Volvo I-Shift reached record levels in 2012, with nearly one of every two Volvo trucks built in North America featuring the Volvo I-Shift. Fully integrated powertrains are common around the globe, but North American fleets have enjoyed the independence of spec’ing their own powertrain combinations. However, it appears that things may be changing. Not only do integrated powertrains provide optimum transmission and engine performance for greater fuel efficiency, but also they may be necessary for truck OEMs to meet the DOT and EPA Greenhouse Gas 2017 (and beyond) emission regulations that will help address our country’s dependence on imported oil, save money at the pump, and reduce emissions of greenhouse gases that contribute to global climate change. /

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Heavy-duty News


ew offerings from truck OEMs at last month’s Mid-America Trucking Show (MATS) held March 21-23 in Louisville, Ky., trended both toward the durable and the fuel-efficient. On the fuel efficiency side of the spectrum, Kenworth said its new T680 Advantage effectively integrates aerodynamics, powertrain and electronic efficiencies combined into a complete tractor/trailer package to maximize fuel economy. The truck is equipped with a 12.9liter PACCAR MX-13 engine, estimated to be up to 3.5% more fuel-efficient than the previous 2010 PACCAR MX engine. The MX-13 engine is paired with an Eaton UltraShift Plus automated manual transmission to maximize fuel efficiency. Other features include instantaneous fuel economy feedback on the dash, and an electronic speed limiter and engine idle shutdown software combined with the T680 Advantage’s Kenworth Idle Management System. The trailer aerodynamics complement the aerodynamics of the T680. A Laydon nose fairing fills the gap between the tractor and front of the dry van, providing an estimated 3% fuel economy improvement. In addition, the package includes Utility side skirts, which have been SAE-tested to provide a 5% improvement in fuel economy, and the ATDynamics TrailerTail, which has been tested to provide more than a 6% improvement in fuel economy when driven at typical freeway speeds, Kenworth said. Peterbilt Motors Co. announced the addition of a mid-length BBC (bumper-to-back-of-cab) configuration to its Model 579 product lineup, saying the new lightweight 117-in. BBC design offers excellent maneuverability

8 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

Durability, fuel efficiency reign at MATS BY DENISE KOETH | SENIOR EDITOR

and outstanding visibility while maintaining the Model 579’s aerodynamic characteristics. “The Model 579 improves customers’ bottom lines through higher reliability, better fuel economy, increased driver retention and enhanced resale value,” said Bill Kozek, Peterbilt general manager and PACCAR vice president. “The new mid-length BBC Model 579 configuration offers additional weight reduction and performance advantages with the standard PACCAR MX-13 engine as the perfect powertrain complement.” The 117-in. BBC hood is dramatically

corrosive aluminum SD cab reinforced with e-coated steel, which meets stringent A-pillar impact, rollover and back wall impact tests. Freightliner added the truck’s chassis features a broad offering of vocational suspension choices and single or double channel frame rails having tensile strength of up to 120,000 PSI and up to 5 million RBM. Rounding out the durable trend was Volvo Trucks, which introduced the VNX heavy-haul tractor designed for extreme gross weight applications. It features a Volvo-built D16 engine—the company’s most powerful in North America—that offers 600

New offerings from truck OEMs trended both toward the durable and the fuel-efficient. sloped for enhanced aerodynamic efficiency. Also, the set-back front axle position optimizes weight distribution and provides excellent maneuverability in congested environments, the truck maker added. On the durable side, Freightliner Trucks displayed its 122SD, which the company said features rugged components tough enough to handle the most grueling of applications. With numerous enhancements to the former Coronado SD, the 122SD is now the cornerstone of the SD line of Freightliner severe duty vocational trucks. With a GVWR of up to 92,000 lbs. and a GCWR of up to 160,000 lbs., the 122SD is engineered to haul heavy, oversized loads and can be configured for a variety of severe duty applications. The 122SD has a durable, non-

HP and 2,050 ft.-lb. of torque, and a Volvo I-Shift automated manual transmission. The VNX, developed for applications up to 225,000 lbs., is ideal for long combination vehicles, heavy equipment hauling, aggregate, low-boy, logging, oil field and mining operations, according to Volvo. Available in 6x4 and 8x4 configurations, the truck offers a range of heavy-haul components to ensure it’s properly spec’d for the job. Front axle ratings range from 16,000 to 20,000 lbs. with parabolic springs. Available rear axles range from 46,000 to 52,000 lbs. in regular, dual-track and wide-track tandem configurations. More details about these trucks— and the many other new products introduced at MATS—are featured in this issue. /

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Service & Support


ore than 200 independent service professionals gathered earlier this year to learn more about commercial vehicle axle alignment. Hosted by training veterans from Meritor and Hendrickson, the handson teaching session “hit home” with the pros, as they learned significant new information and strongly recom-

The single most important element of alignment is proper wheel bearing adjustment… —Martin

mended a technical session be repeated in 2014 during Heavy Duty Aftermarket Week. The single most important element of alignment is proper wheel bearing adjustment, according to Rick Martin, training manager at Meritor. It’s often said that if you asked 10 technicians about wheel bearing adjustment, you could hear 10 different opinions. One telltale sign of unattended wheel bearing adjustment is dust on the torque wrench and the dial indica-

10 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

Alignment training hits home, improves up-time BY D. MICHAEL PENNINGTON | SENIOR STAFF WRITER

tor—two important tools that must be used every time to operate properly adjust wheel end bearings, according to Martin. “Technicians are deserving of more training and attention on the proper wheel-end procedures, and in many cases, they’re simply not measuring anything and relying on feel,” said Martin. With a recommended wheel bearing end-play of 0.001-in. to 0.005-in., technicians should follow the TMC RP-618 procedure to the letter, he added. As for tire wear diagnostics, most technicians automatically blame the front axle when a complete diagnosis is called for. Look at the tire wear pattern—some are very normal wear patterns, while other patterns are clear indicators of a problem. It’s strongly recommended that fleet asset managers pay close attention to TMC’s Radial Tire Conditions Analysis Guide and the soon-to-bereleased Recommended Practice, as produced by Study Group 6. Pre-alignment maintenance inspection checks for condition and wear should include: cold tire pressure, Pitman arm, draglink, steering arm, tie rod ends, cross tube, kingpin bushing, wheel bearing end-play, tire and wheel runout—lateral and radial, and suspension torque roads and bushings. Axle alignment is necessary to set the wheels/tires in the optimum position for maximum tire performance. The axle should be aligned in a static position so that at vehicle operation, the wheels and tires are in an optimum position with the road surface. Martin emphasized the importance of adjusting steer axle toe to compen-

sate for steering component deflection, to reduce wear to the leading tire edge and to avoid road wander. The session covered the importance of also checking trailer axle alignment, since in many cases, the trailer is a “forgotten member of the family.” Its alignment is a function of three parameters: axle orientation (adjustable), axle camber (non-adjustable), and axle toe (non-adjustable). As the technicians heard at the HDAW session, trailer axle orientation is the positioning of the axle assembly relative to the vehicle on which it is installed (and to the kingpin). On a single-axle vehicle, the axle is positioned relative to the vehicle. On a multiple-axle vehicle, the front axle is positioned relative to the vehicle, and then the remaining axles are positioned so they are parallel to this axle. One overriding tip on attending all equipment training sessions: take notes and use and reference the maintenance manuals, which detail proper procedures to ensure uptime and component performance. “It’s hard to remember all the instructors’ tips and pointers in a training session, especially since a typical technician might have 8-10 different jobs in-process at any one time,” Martin said. Both of the sessions’ instructors recommended that fleet technicians make full use of the component manufacturers’ maintenance manuals (all are online) and TMC Guidelines for Total Vehicle Alignment and Troubleshooting Ride Complaints (both at /

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Light & Medium-duty


ew light- and medium-duty vehicles highlight recent OEM activity. At the recent Work Truck Show, held in conjunction with the 49th Annual NTEA Convention, several manufacturers showcased their latest vehicles and drivetrain technologies. On the show floor was an International TerraStar 4x4 truck model from Navistar. Designed for construction, utility, landscape and other off-highway applications, the sibling to the 4x2 TerraStar launched in 2010 features a 300 HP, 660 lb./ft. MaxxForce 7 6.8-liter V8 engine, an Allison Optimized 1000 Series transmission and a Fabco TC-28 gear-driven transfer case. Built on 80,000 PSI frame rails in longer 138- and 150-in. CA versions with a standard cab, the 4x4 is designed to accommodate 18- and 20-ft. bodies. The Work Truck Show also was the site of the unveiling of Allison Transmission’s H 3000 hybrid-propulsion system for commercial vehicles. The new product for medium- and heavy-duty trucks in distribution, refuse, utility and shuttle applications is a fully automatic parallel hybridpropulsion system based on the Allison 3000 Series transmission. Matched with hybrid system components, including a motor-generator, power electronics and lithium-ion cell battery packs, the H 3000 can be tailored to a specific vehicle or duty cycle. With sales of its vehicles capable of running on compressed natural gas or propane autogas reaching record levels, Ford has expanded its portfolio of CNG and LPG product offerings. “Since 2009, we’ve seen

12 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment


the number of Ford commercial vehicles sold with factory-prepped engines for CNG/LPG upfit increase by more than 350%,” said Jon Coleman, Ford Fleet Sustainability and Technology manager. The Ford lineup of CNG/LPGprepped engines now includes the all-new Transit range of full-size vans, wagons, cutaway and chassis cab models powered by a 3.7-liter V6 equipped with a CNG/LPG prep kit. The Transit joins the current compact Transit Connect, Super Duty pickups, stripped chassis, ESeries vans, wagons and cutaways, and medium-duty F-450, F-550 and F-650 models in offering factoryprepped engines for CNG/LPG conversion. Each Ford engine that is factory-prepped for gaseous conversion comes equipped with hardened valves and valve seats. The new Ford Transit chassis cab and cutaway variations feature an enclosed passenger compartment and bare frame to accept aftermarket body modules for a range of vocations. The Transit cutaway is similar to the chassis cab, but with the rear of the passenger compartment open so it can be paired with specialty body modules such as shuttle or school bus bodies. The Ford Transit chassis cab and cutaway will be offered in 138-, 156and 178-in. wheelbases and in gross vehicle weight ratings from 9,000 to 10,360 lbs. The foundation for Transit cutaway and chassis cab variants is a uniladder structure that combines the cab with a girder frame. Highstrength steel used in the frame delivers up to 50,700 PSI and the

frame can be extended with support plates, allowing an upfitted body to accommodate additional cargo. The cab area and uni-ladder frame rails of cutaway and chassis cab Transit models also have been reinforced with boron to add strength and save weight.

…industry suppliers remain hard at work meeting the needs of their light- and medium-duty fleet customers.

For 2014, Ram Trucks is expanding its work truck lineup to include the ProMaster full-size cargo van, along with chassis cab and cutaway models. The 13 configurations include ProMaster 1500, 2500 and 3500 models with 118-, 136- and 159-in. wheelbases in low and high roof, and standard, extended body and extended frame versions. As this year’s new offerings show, industry suppliers remain hard at work meeting the needs of their light- and medium-duty fleet customers. /

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Intelligence isn’t the same as wisdom

Fuels & Lubes


I’m a physicist. I like to deal in facts and figures, not fertilizer. Want to see some facts? See the chart below. What does this data mean? The cost of living has gone up approximately 35% (2% inflation, nah!) in five years. The cost of energy other than gasoline and diesel fuel actually has decreased. (I mentioned previously

cause of low carbon legislation—so it was exported to Europe. The EPA recently upped the allowable ethanol percentage to 15 over the objections of knowledgeable people like equipment manufacturers, the Society of Automotive Engineers, and the Coordinating Research Council. The European Union got so

Cost Item



Percent Increase

Federal minimum wage




Crude oil, per bbl




Propane, per gallon




Gasoline (wholesale)/gallon




Corn, per bushel







Ford F-150 pickup

that environmentalists have prevented new refineries or the upgrading of old refineries, which increases what we pay for these fuels.) But I really noticed was the increasing price of corn (which the Renewable Fuels Association says isn’t its fault). The price of corn had already started the upward move in 2007 because of ethanol subsidies. Now, it’s fatally higher. Forty percent of last year’s corn crop went to make ethanol. Milk producers in our area are going bankrupt because they can no longer afford to feed their cows. Corn planters are getting rich. For years, the ethanol lobby has teased us with the promise to replace corn-based ethanol with cellulosic ethanol. Even ethanol supporters have grown impatient with these never-fulfilled promises. And ethanol producers kept pushing the cornbased stuff out the door even though they couldn’t sell it in California be14 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

tired of cheap ethanol imported from the United States that it recently enacted an $83.03 per metric ton tariff on it. Finally, after years of wasting our money and time, the EPA is requiring ethanol producers to produce a minimum of 14 million gallons of cellulosic ethanol in 2013. They say 20,000 gallons were produced late last year. They wanted to require 500 million gallons, but an appellate court struck down that regulation as unrealistic. Someone finally gained wisdom! But how much money do we citizens have to throw away unnecessarily on intelligence without wisdom? We’ve wasted billions of dollars and years of time on imperfect exhaust emissions regulations and alternate sources of energy. If we had a national energy policy safeguarded by fact-based people with no commercial allegiances, think of what we could accomplish! I envision a team

of physicists (I know they are intelligent!) combined with engineers, chemists, and the poor souls who actually have to make the stuff work in factories, homes and cars and trucks. Do you think I will ever live that long? I seriously doubt it. I am encouraged by Congress’ recent legislation giving a 50-cent per gallon tax credit to CNG suppliers and as much as a $30,000 tax credit for those who build CNG refueling stations. Folks, we’re sitting on our energy independence. We have a 100-year reserve of natural gas within our borders. These reserves can provide total energy independence, jobs to Americans, fuel to power our progress, and

We’ve wasted billions of dollars and years of time on imperfect exhaust emissions regulations…

money to reduce the deficit should we desire. Current legislation prevents oil marketers from exporting oil to foreign countries, but China, India and Japan will pay dearly for our natural gas. We need to repeal the current legislation and quickly approve the building of LNG export terminals at our ports (it’s more cost-effective to ship LNG than CNG), then we can begin to turn this country around. /

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Tires & Wheels


t’s common knowledge in our industry that all tire guys preach the benefits of maintaining proper truck tire inflation. With recent steep escalations in tire pricing, coupled with alltime high emphasis on the best fuel economy possible, most fleet managers are now devoting more time to reviewing and possibly revising inflation maintenance programs. Old school inflation maintenance recognized that very slow but consistent air diffusion through casings, slow leaking nail hole punctures, seasonal ambient temperature differences and other issues called for regularly scheduled pressure checks and adjustments. The primary goals of these programs have been to avoid the inconvenience and expense of in-route roadside or tire service and to minimize safety issues associated with emergency or unscheduled maintenance. Today, those goals are evolving to selecting and maintaining constant inflations that optimize tire performance, especially treadwear and fuel economy. Modern radials have finelytuned footprint pressures designed to optimize resistance to irregular wear and to minimize rolling resistance. These footprint pressure distributions within the tire/road contact area, however, vary primarily with load and inflation pressure. Consider load first: For example, a tanker fleet, which leaves at max GVW and returns empty, must have tires inflated to carry the maximum load, recognizing that tires on the empty return are overinflated and more susceptible to irregular wear. While the ultimate tire guy dream would be to have on-board systems that could be programmed to con-

16 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

Truck tire inflation— clearing the air BY ASA SHARP | CONTRIBUTING EDITOR

stantly match inflation to load, these do not presently exist. Current generation automatic tire inflation systems (ATIS) for trailer axles do at least maintain the fleet selected inflation pressure compromise, and are gaining a solid reputation of reducing unscheduled downtime and roadside delays. Meanwhile, fleets are awaiting similar systems for power units, a daunting task for the free-floating drive axles currently used on all mediumand heavy-duty trucks. Next, consider “cold” vs. “hot” inflation pressures. All tire industry

trucks/trailers have been sitting for a minimum of two hours. Newer generation tires are trending to lower profile, wider tread designs, which are generally more susceptible to any inaccuracies in vehicle alignment, since wider treads amplify the physical displacement of tread edges due to off-spec or wider tolerance camber and toe settings. Wide-base singles, designed to replace dual assemblies, represent the current extreme of this advancement. Likewise, slower wearing tires and especially wider tread tires can be more likely to develop late-life irregular

Many fleets are now documenting the advantages of extending takeoff mileages. load/inflation rating data is based on “cold” inflations, which really are defined as at-rest ambient inflation, not including pressure buildup common when tires are operated at highway speeds. This buildup is normally in the 8 to 18 PSI range, depending primarily on speed, load, road surface temperature, tire size/type and initial “cold” inflation. Cold inflation is approximately 68 to 70 degrees F. So, if a fleet is setting at-rest inflations in a yard at 10 degrees F, adjustments of approximately 2 PSI per 10 degrees F should be made. Setting inflation pressures based on inbound tire checks can be misleading, as there is only an approximate, not exact, relationship between “cold” and “hot” pressures. Most tire manufacturers recommend checking and correcting “cold” inflations after

wear and rolling resistance variation if inflation pressures close to optimum are not maintained. These relationships have existed for many decades. Some things that have changed are that tires are now much more expensive, and casing durability is more important than ever, since retreads are less expensive than new tires and technology advancements in retreading ensure many trouble-free miles with low rolling resistance comparable to new fuel-efficient tires. The two primary keys to achieving these cost-saving advantages of extending takeoff mileages are optimum inflation maintenance and precision vehicle alignment. Many fleets are now documenting the advantages of extending takeoff mileages. /

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Training Techniques Will low viscosity engine oils provide benefits for my engine and my bottom line? The reasons to switch to using lower viscosit y, full synthetic or synthetic blend motor oils continue to build. The tried and true SAE 15WBy Dan Arcy Shell Lubricants 40 conventional motor oils that many use has competition from lower viscosit y grade oils that promote better fuel economy and other benefits. A number of diesel engine manufacturers recommend lower viscosit y lubricants in their newest engines, and the move to lower viscosit y lubricants is reinforced by the recent announcement that one of the focus areas for the next generation of heav y- dut y diesel engine oils will be fuel economy savings, which lower viscosit y oils have demonstrated the abilit y to provide. This is particularly important as the first- ever fuel economy regulations for heav y trucks will begin in 2014. Less energy is consumed when starting a cold engine when it is lubricated by a synthetic SAE 5W-40 than is consumed with a conventional SAE 15W- 40. Lower viscosit y oils also help reduce friction in an engine, which can result in fuel savings. Anti-idling laws mean the days of 40 percent idle time are over. Idle times of 10 percent or less are now common, meaning more start-ups. The better cold temperature flow of a lower viscosit y oil such as SAE 5W- 40 full synthetic or SAE 10W-30 synthetic blend versus SAE 15W- 40 will provide easier starting and faster lubrication in colder weather.

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Low viscosit y oils, Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic SAE 5W- 40 or ® Shell Rotella T5 Synthetic Blend SAE 10W-30 have been shown to deliver fuel- economy savings, extended- drain capabilit y, enhanced engine cleanliness, and excellent wear protection.

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18 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment


Everyone involved in training for the 21st century faces challenges we couldn’t even have imagined 20 years ago. Today, it’s not just about keeping up with changing vehicle, powertrain and materials technology, you also have to cope with several generations of workforce experience and, in some cases, vastly different mindsets about how an individual wants to learn. Now add to this the critical role training plays in personnel development, recruitment and retention, and it often seems a bit overwhelming for those tasked with managing the training process in any organization, particularly a large fleet operation. Fortunately, it’s a challenge you don’t have to face alone. The positive power of teamwork is something we all know and employ every day on the shop floor. It’s through the collective wisdom of all employees that a service operation succeeds. The same is true of those engaged in training these employees, and tapping into the vast experience available from others who share that training responsibility provides the knowledge and insight necessary to cope with those challenges. Good ideas are meant to be shared, and having the opportunity to network with peers produces the kind of teamwork we need to identify and leverage best practices in today’s fast-changing world. One such collection of training wisdom resides in the Automotive Training Managers Council (ATMC), scheduled to meet in Englewood, Colo. on April 15. This non-profit training think tank has been serving the industry since 1984, helping to promote the advancement of training and professional development.

Recently reorganized as a member of the ASE Industry Education Alliance, the ATMC continues to help members stay abreast of innovations in automotive training by facilitating interaction among its members. If you’re looking for training teamwork, this is it. ATMC uses the collective wisdom and experience of its members to look into the foreseeable future on how people will learn, and then help prepare for that future. It’s a diverse group with about a third of the members coming from the OEMs, a third from the Aftermarket, and the rest from entities that serve the training industry, such as software developers, publishers, educators, and tool and equipment manufacturers. They share a common goal of improving the quality of training and development in the transportation industry. This year’s ATMC meeting will take a deep dive into the power of collective wisdom with a focus on best practices for helping the group share, learn and help each other by tapping into their collective knowledge and experience to address many of the issues mentioned above. From finding trainable technicians to improving the way information is shared, the discussions will cover such diverse topics as how to use current and future technology to balance training costs, and how training can improve technician retention. They’ll also offer insights into how to apply these best practices within an organization. It’s the kind of watering hole you’re looking for to make sure your training keeps pace with the challenges. /

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49019

Timely Tips Five key areas of

extended interval programs


xtended service interval programs, such as the one offered by Wix ecolast, can not only reduce cost in the short term, but can pay huge dividends in a much larger way, the company notes. According to Jerry Parker, district sales manager for Wix Filters, by simply doubling an oil change interval, a 50% reduction in oil consumption on both sides of the ledger can be attained. “The reduction on the waste stream of used lubricants represents a cost savings and it also has a significant impact on the environment,” Parker said. “By working with knowledgeable, qualified vendors, this transition can be completed with no disruption to daily operations. The rewards outweigh the effort.” In order to implement any extended interval program, five key areas must be addressed: 1. High quality lubricants 2. High quality filtration 3. Full spectrum oil analysis 4. Establish best practices for maintenance 5. Training for all personnel, technicians, drivers and fleet managers For more detailed information, visit

Selecting tractor/trailer air lines Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49020

When selecting air lines for a tractor/ trailer, the experts at Phillips Industries say it is recommended—and is sometimes required by law—to choose them with the following features: • Airline assemblies that display the appropriate markings, which signify compliance with DOT regulations (required by law). • Swivel fittings on the tractor end to avoid corkscrewing during installation. • Spring guards to protect the hose or tubing from a sharp bend at or near the fitting.

20 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

• Added handle grips at the trailer end to provide protection from kinking of air lines during gladhand connection and disconnection. • Coiled assemblies that extend to their maximum expected service length and return to their retracted position without sag. However, the biggest factor is that proper overall working length should be used. In all cases, the length of the assembly must be adequate enough to ensure that the airlines are not stretched beyond a safe degree at their maximum expected service length, but must also be short enough to be protected from abrasion, snagging or tangling when in a relaxed state. To ensure that these standards are met, you must determine the proper length of the air assembly based on a number of factors. These factors include the lead length, whether straight air lines or coiled assemblies are being used, the type of airline suspension method, and the positioning of the tractor/trailer when taking measurements. According to SAE J702, the tractor connections on newer vehicles must be mounted low to allow easier access. This makes hook-ups more accessible but requires that the lines have a longer lead and some type of suspension system. Lead length is usually 12, 40, 48 or 72 in.; the most common is 48 in. Lead length on the trailer side of the assembly should generally be between 6 and 12 in. Since the installation locations on trailers are usually very low, the use of leads that are longer than this will likely cause sagging of the lines. After determining lead length, other factors need to be taken into consideration, although it should be noted that lead length does not necessarily always need to be determined first. For more details on this two-part topic series, visit Click through “Resources” to “Tech Tips.” /

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IndustryNews March preliminary net orders down from February Act Research reports that Class 8 net orders were above 20,000 units for a sixth consecutive month in March, but fell below February’s intake. Classes 5-7 net orders were down month-over-month and yearover-year. The final numbers, which will be released mid-April, will approach 22,100 units for heavy-duty Class 8 and 15,200 for medium-duty Classes 5-7 vehicles and trucks. The preliminary net order numbers are typically accurate to within 5% of actual. “While down month-over-month, March’s Class 8 net orders were up 10% year-over-year and were the fourth best in the past 13 months,” said Kenny Vieth, president and senior analyst, ACT Research. “For medium-duty, the tough year-over-year comparisons mask an otherwise solid order month. March’s medium-duty order volume was the fourth best in the past 20 months. Historically, March has been the second strongest order month of the year for MD vehicles.” Vieth added that orders continue to track generally in line with expectations underlying the MD and HD forecasts in ACT’s NA Commercial Vehicle Outlook report. As such, when the April Outlook report is released, expectations for 2013 should be basically unchanged from the past several months. For more information, visit

Mitsubishi Fuso introduces 2014 Fuso Canters

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49022

New 2014 model year Fuso Canter FE and FG Series medium-duty trucks from Mitsubishi Fuso Truck of America Inc. (MFTA) feature several new options. In addition, the company expects its 2014 model year Canters to meet EPA GHG standards beginning in April 2013, two years ahead of the regulatory compliance mandate. For the 2014 Class 3 Canter FE125, MFTA is offering a longer 169.3-in. wheelbase to allow the use of bodies up to 20 ft. long. The model has a GVWR of 12,500 lbs. and a body/payload capacity of 7,095 lbs., which according to the OEM makes it suitable for high-bulk applications like furniture delivery. Also new for 2014 on the MFTA Canter FE Series is an optional side-mounted fuel tank, which can be specified to replace the standard rear, in-frame tank on any model with a wheelbase of 133.9 in. or longer. This option, the company notes, is suited to delivery trucks that require tuck-under liftgates or for rollback or stinger type auto recovery applications. A Clarion Bluetooth radio is now an option on 2014 Fuso Canter trucks, as well. 22 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

PFC brake pads certified 100% copper-compliant PFC has announced that its CarbonMetallic brake pads were among the first to become certified as 100% copper-compliant by the Automotive Manufacturers Equipment Compliance Agency (AMECA). PFC said it was ahead of the curve of the new California and Washington “Better Brakes” laws that require the phase-out of copper and other harmful materials from brake pads, adding that it was one of the first brake pad companies to submit data from copper testing to AMECA and be certified 100% copper compliant. In order to attain certification, testing was done by a thirdparty laboratory, registered through a registrar while also providing the information publicly and marking the friction material’s environmental compliance level on the brake pad edge code. The compliancy levels include the “A,” “B,” and “N” edge codes. Each edge code represents a different level of legal maximums of the different friction material weight percentages, which include: copper, asbestos, chromium, lead, mercury and cadmium. PFC said its pads have an “N” rating, the lowest amount of allowable materials, including containing less than 0.50% copper. PFC said new “Leaf Marks” created to designate the compliancy level will be required on brake pad packaging starting in January 2014. This mark will give consumers and installers the ability to tell if the brake pads are environmentally compliant straight from the box, the maker added.

Marangoni earns SmartWay approval

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Two Ringtread Energeco tires from Marangoni Tread North America have been SmartWay verified. The tires for use in linehaul applications, and now available from independent retreaders throughout North America, include: Energeco RTA-E for trailer positions with a tread depth of 12/32 in., and Energeco RDA-E for drive positions with a tread depth of 25/32 in. “Marangoni is committed to supporting the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency SmartWay program to promote fuel efficiency and will continue to submit treads for approval,” states Giampaolo Brioschi, MTNA product marketing manager. The Marangoni Energeco product line, part of Marangoni’s Performance Specific Ringtread line, uses the company’s spliceless, precure Ringtread technology, along 23

IndustryNews with compounding and tread design engineering to lower rolling resistance and improve tread life and reliability, the manufacturer says.

Thermo King TriPac CARB certified Thermo King is the first and only auxiliary power unit (APU) manufacturer to receive California Air Resources Board (CARB) certification for the diesel particulate filter on its 2013 less-than-25 HP

TriPac Evolution auxiliary power unit engine. Thermo King said it also is among the first transport APU manufacturers to receive Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and CARB certification for its lessthan-25 HP TriPac auxiliary power unit engine. The TriPac Evolution APU lowers overall truck fuel consumption, reduces emissions and provides driver comfort. This solution, which can be ordered in May for shipment in July of 2013, meets Tier IV

EPA final regulations requirements while leveraging new patented technology to drive unit performance, efficiency and user productivity, the maker added. The updated TriPac Evolution is the industry’s only solution featuring software that can be customized to enhance the customer’s operating profile. Thermo King said it developed this feature in response to customer feedback. The APU also features an extended maintenance interval of 1,500 hours, an updated flash-loadable control system and improved service access for easier maintenance. This solution delivers unrivaled performance, providing virtually unlimited heating and cooling power and a new control system to accurately diagnose issues should they arise. Customers can obtain CARB and EPA certification documents from their local Thermo King dealer.

Detroit Diesel Corp. celebrates 75th anniversary

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Detroit Diesel Corp. kicked off its 75th anniversary festivities at MATS with an interactive exhibit at its booth. The company showcased a selection of its most recent innovations, including the Detroit DT12 automated manual transmission. The truck maker noted that its complete portfolio of model-year 2013 Detroit engines is fully compliant with Greenhouse Gas 2014 (GHG14) regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Detroit achieved compliancy a full year ahead of the mandate, underscoring parent company DTNA’s overall commitment to improving fuel efficiency and emissions, the company said. 24 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

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erational cost data that for-hire motor carriers provide will be kept strictly confidential. For more information, visit

New Alliance parts website Alliance Truck Parts, a provider of allmakes replacement parts for the commercial transportation market, said it has launched an updated website focusing on expanded product information and content to help customers access the parts information they need. Visitors to will find improved navigation and expansive information on product lines, as well as improved parts lookup access, the company said. “As an aftermarket parts leader, Alliance continues to develop new ways to get parts information to our customers when and where they need it,” said Todd Biggs, director of Aftermarket Parts and Service Marketing for Daimler Trucks North America. “For the immediacy of on-theroad repair and replacement, that means digital technology. Our new website delivers critical parts information as well as more dynamic content, including product videos and news to inform and entertain.” Alliance Truck Parts catalog information is now available online in both traditional downloadable PDF format, as well as the active Zmag digital publishing platform, allowing customers to page through the catalog online. The new website, which can be accessed at, is optimized for mobile devices, an important consideration for parts and dealer location information that often needs to be viewed from the road.

Truck-Lite to offer custom LED headlights Custom-engineered LED headlights for Class 8 trucks will become available from Truck-Lite. Initially developed for military use, the LED headlights were first offered on the Freightliner Cascadia and made available as an aftermarket retrofit option

from Freightliner dealers. The company now plans to develop custom headlight options for other truck makes and models.

LED headlights, according to TruckLite, offer improved daytime visibility and object recognition at night. The LED beam pattern also reduces eyestrain and headlight glare to oncoming traffic. An additional benefit, the company notes, is a reduction in amperage draw, freeing up power for other uses and resulting in longer lighting system life. /

For-hire carriers asked to participate in operational costs survey

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The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) is asking fleets to participate in its Operational Costs of Trucking report. The online survey seeks to capture basic cost information from for-hire carriers such as driver pay, fuel costs, insurance premiums and lease or purchase payments. Carriers are asked to provide full year 2012 cost per mile and/or cost per hour data. The results of the ATRI survey, combined with previous Operational Costs of Trucking reports, will yield five full years (2008–12) of trucking cost information derived directly from fleet operations. 25

IT For Asset Management How fleets are leveraging information technology to streamline the business process and increase efficiencies BY SETH SKYDEL | SENIOR CONTRIBUTING EDITOR

QR codes are timely and accurate In any IT environment, the benefits of automating information management are readily apparent. Eliminating redundant data entry alone speeds processes and improves accuracy. Perhaps it’s not as apparent, but automation can play a role in enhancing the efficiency of vehicle inspection and maintenance programs, and in turn the management of service and repair information. At the center of that activity are QR (Quick Response) Codes, the unique matrix bar codes familiar on consumer products. QR Codes can be used on any type of commercial asset to streamline inspection and maintenance processes by enhancing communication and the management of key service event data in real time. At the 2013 TMC Annual Meeting & Transportation Technology Exhibition, Decisiv, provider of a service relationship platform that is being Using management used by more than 750 fleets, anQR Codes nounced that Saia is now deployto streamline ing QR Codes on 17,000 tractors, converter dollies and forkinformation trailers, lifts at its 147 terminals in 34 states. management The initiative at the LTL carrier for commercial represents the largest deployment QR codes at a commercial fleet vehicle service of using ASIST, the Service Relationship Management (SRM) platform developed by Decisiv for Volvo Trucks. Decisiv also is the developer of the MVASIST version of the platform used by Mack Trucks and the newly renamed WheelTime LINQ (formerly WCSP) platform in use at the WheelTime network of 18 Detroit Diesel-Allison truck service providers with nearly 200 North American locations. Saia has been using ASIST internally and to manage breakdowns across its service network, including its 36 shops and three trailer yards. “Our technicians are now using iPad tablet computers to scan QR Codes on vehicles and access and conduct pre-loaded inspections,”

26 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

said Charles Rozelle, regional maintenance manager at Saia’s shop in Dallas, where 175 tractors and 312 trailers are domiciled. “The QR codes take away the possibility of data entry errors, and by automatically transferring inspection results via a Wi-Fi network to the shop, we can instantly see if service or repairs are needed. The platform also gives us easy access to inspection histories for DOT and internal use.” QR Codes also are being adopted by OEMs. Mack and Volvo have both announced that beginning in April, all new trucks will be factory-equipped with a QR code tied to the vehicle’s VIN to help speed service event activity. The codes also are in use at WheelTime locations. “Using QR codes saves us time,” said Bryan Best, service advisor at Smith Power Products in Salt Lake City, in a WheelTime newsletter. “Using existing QR codes, and even applying new QR codes to vehicles that don’t have them, is a significant time savings for our service writers and diagnostic technicians.” Best went on to explain that on average, four to seven minutes is the combined check-in and job creation time per vehicle. “When you are checking in 20 vehicles, the time savings by using the QR code can be as much as three minutes per vehicle,” he added. “This equates to a significant increase in our productivity.” On all versions of the Decisiv SRM platform, scanning a QR Code with a smartphone or tablet computer automatically launches a mobile application and immediately loads asset information, service history, customized inspection details and pending work. The application also allows technicians to add odometer readings to trigger and send pending preventive maintenance operations, and simultaneously send any operations based on inspection results to the shop and parts counter. The QR Code-driven process eliminates the potential for errors that can occur with paper-based service write-ups. The solution also cuts check-in time and the time technicians spend completing and accurately documenting inspections and service activity. In all fleet operations, including maintenance and repair programs, entering correct information into IT systems is crucial for ensuring data accuracy and saving time. /

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Trailer TOPICS


Ups & downs of trailer availability A ccording to Jeff Weber, vice president of sales and marketing for Ervin Equipment, “Over-the-road trucking is currently at the bottom of an up-down, supply-demand cycle, especially in dry vans. Fleet managers are not only dealing with the effects of recession of 2008-10, but also the downturn of 2001-03. What is happening, and what will happen over the coming three to five years, becomes easier to understand when you look at new trailer production in and between those two timeframes.” It’s important to remember new trailer models are a full year ahead of the calendar year. That means trailers that started coming off of the line on Jan. 1, 2013 are actually 2014 model year trailers. The core of what most carriers want to buy in the used market is the 4- to 10-year-old trailer. Because of the weak economy, many carriers lost money from 200810 and into 2011. They either have been hanging onto their equipment longer or have looked to the used market. Now, more loads are becoming available and new production has made a comeback—however, even though recovery is in full force, fleet managers who need to replace equipment are finding themselves trying to make a tight turn in a rushhour intersection. Fleet managers are now looking for trailers built between 2004-10, and the more recent, the better. But there weren’t many trailers built from 200104 or from 2008-10, so those models are hard to come by. That leaves 2005, 2006 and 2007 models. It’s a 28 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

narrow lane, and everyone is trying to get through it at once. They have two options. They can buy a trailer that is 8, 9 or 10 years old, or they can buy new. Just as carriers have been ramping up again, so have manufacturers, but new trailers don’t just start rolling off the line overnight; it can take several months to produce one. Combine that with a huge backlog of orders, and fleet managers are looking at a four-, six- or even eight-month leadtime. In the used market, demand is high and the prices are even higher; from January 2010 to January 2013, for example, used trailer prices skyrocketed 40% or more. New or used, trailer availability follows the same pattern: availability goes down, so prices go up. Used trailer availability is tight right now, and will remain that way for a while. Demand for new trailers is projected to remain strong, so barring an unseen disaster or circumstance, used trailer prices are going to stay elevated for the next three to five years. The market will start to even out around 2017. At that time, the carrier that wants to buy a 6-year-old trailer will be looking at 2011 models, the year production started to climb again. And, since availability will increase, prices on that used equipment will level out, as well. Some fleets have found a way to source good used trailers with the right specs and more palatable prices between recessions. Weber contends, “It’s all about working with a good supplier that deals in volume to get the best price

on trailers with the right specs at convenient pick-up locations. A typical trailer dealer in the United States sells 300-700 new and used trailers a year. Approximately five suppliers in the country sell more than 2,000 trailers a year, and only one consistently reaches the highest volume in the industry, around 8,000 trailers annually.” Larger suppliers generally cover broader geographic areas than smaller competitors, which means they can find and retrofit almost any model year and type of trailer. Larger dealers also can provide one type of trailer, one brand, a specific model year and a specific set of specifications. This can be beneficial particularly in terms of projecting a positive image and providing customers with confidence. In terms of maintenance, getting the exact trailers will save the carrier hassle and money, as well. The company will only have to stock one kind of brake pad, one type of trailer door, one trailer lock, and so on. It keeps maintenance consistent and efficient and, ultimately, lowers the cost of ownership. Taking that a bit further, lower cost of ownership, both initial and longterm, is one of the greatest benefits of working with a large supplier. For example, when the supplier purchases 3,000 used trailers, the supplier is able to negotiate the absolute lowest price based on the volume. So it doesn’t matter if the supplier’s customers are two-person owner-operators or a carrier looking for 1,000 trailers; both benefit from the large supplier’s buying power. /

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Brakes & friction

TMD Friction

Buying for optimum stopping distance


aving met the requirements of the first phase of new stopping distance regulations for commercial vehicles, brake system and friction materials suppliers are now focused on the next set of requirements. Phase two regulations that will take effect on Aug. 1, 2013 cover loaded stopping distances for two, three and four or more axle vehicles in specified GVWR ranges. “Over the past few years, we have been working on new formulations and friction materials to satisfy the upcoming requirements,” said Tom LeBlanc, OE sales manager at Fras-le North America Inc. “We have also been developing new materials that address regulations covering copper and heavy metal content.” The regulations LeBlanc refers to are now in place in California, Washington and Rhode Island, with other states expected to follow suit beginning in 2014. Other aspects of the content rules go into effect in 2015, 2021 and 2025. The goal is to reduce and eliminate particles that enter storm drain systems and ultimately impact fresh water supplies and surrounding habitats. “Copper was traditionally a popular material in brake linings,” LeBlanc related. “Most of the linings we produce today do not contain copper, so there should not be a change to the formulation, or in stopping distance or lining life. Where copper and other metals were used, these goals are significant but also achievable.” Fras-le heavy-duty friction materials are exclusively distributed by Meritor for aftermarket use on new and remanufactured brake shoes in North America, a supply partnership that has been in place for 16 years. The company also offers its line of aftermarket disc brake pads directly to warehouse distributors and fleets and is the OEM friction provider on a majority of North American medium-duty work trucks. Fras-le 30 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

Fleet challenges At the recent TMC annual meeting, TMD Friction identified brake issues that are still proving to be a challenge for fleets. “Many fleets don’t fully understand or track their brake life cycles, especially as they relate to their different types of vehicles, loads and routes,” said Jim Clark, director of engineering for North America. “Fleets also have concerns about new stopping distance rules that require larger drum brakes and higher friction linings, and about old problems that are still around, like brake balance. “Additionally,” Clark continued, “mechanics don’t always have proper gauges for measuring lining wear, and don’t understand the minimum lining thickness for letting a vehicle return to service. Finally, not all fleets recognize the value of premium linings. If a single brake reline can be eliminated from a vehicle’s brake life cycle, then the small added cost of a premium brake reline kit is easily justified.” TMD’s presentation also served to introduce its new Textar Fleet Assistance Program, Haldex which includes direct communication with TMD engineers to help fleet managers analyze brake life cycles and costs, select the appropriate friction for each application and answer other brake-related questions. Offered in the program are free, custom-made lining wear gauges for both drum and disc brakes for any fleet using Textar products.

The Textar Fleet Assistance Program starts when a fleet manager fills out an information sheet that breaks down vehicles into smaller “mini-fleets” that likely have different brake life cycles. Examples of mini-fleets could be tractors versus trailers, or long haul sleeper tractors versus short haul day cabs, or flatbed trailers versus van trailers. TMD engineers use the Stemco wave process fleet’s information, Clark explained, to calculate if life improvement from its linings would push relines out for the life cycles of each minifleet, and how many total relines would be saved. These calculations are based on wear testing of aftermarket linings on specialized dynamometers. “If a fleet will try Textar products as part of the program, TMD will supply free lining wear gauges that have been customized to the fleet’s brake life cycles,” Clark added. “With these gauges, fleets can avoid wasting linings as a result of a lining being removed prematurely because the mechanic is not sure it will make it to the next inspection.” TMD Friction also introduced a new friction material for heavy-duty air disc brakes. The new material is designated Textar T3080 and is engineered for applications where high torque levels are required to meet FMVSS121 Stopping Distance Regulations. In addition, Textar T3080 already meets the 2014 and 2021 “Better Brakes Rules” environmental regulations for heavy metals and copper content.

sures that all replacement parts replicate the original equipment in terms of quality, fit and form. Another friction maker, Haldex, offers comprehensive product support through a nationwide network of brake shoe relining facilities. Relined with the company’s GreyRock brake lining formulations, the shoes undergo over 30 quality checkpoints and inspections for table, web, anchor and roller end, shoe stretch and collapse wear and damage. Checked as well are rivet holes, coating coverage and lining fit and rivet torque. The company said it also offers technical assistance, as well as installation and maintenance training.

Like-for-like Universally, brake friction material manufacturers agree that fleets can avoid reduced stopping power by replacing brake linings with those specified by the OEM. Committing to a like-for-like replacement is the only way fleets can maintain the same high level of safety NHTSA intended by mandating improvements in stopping performance, noted a technical report from Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake LLC (BSFB), and it’s a certain way to

Precise measuring

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“The friction materials are certainly important, but the manufacturing process is also a very key factor,” said Mac Deal, brake products segment leader for Stemco LP. “The friction production process begins with a thorough and precise measuring of raw materials to exact proportions by formula. The raw materials are then mixed and diffused in industrial hoppers, weighed precisely into long metal trays, and formed into long slabs. It is at this time that friction is transformed into brake lining by way of a number of manufacturing processes.” To manufacturer friction materials, Stemco employs a patented “Wave Process” that begins with the cold mold cycle, which creates the unique wave pattern. Hot molding then forces the waves to condense under heat and pressure. Aligning the friction density into column structures ensures less heat susceptibility, which results in quieter, longer lasting brakes, Deal added. Another friction manufacturer that offers a range of products for fleets is Abex, a Federal-Mogul brand, which supplies heavy-duty commercial-grade brake products, including pads, linings and shoes. Abex also packages multiple products in kits containing all the parts needed for specific brake repairs, and according to the company, en- 31



Allison retarder: taking the heat off brakes It’s a simple equation: every time the brake pedal goes down, brake temperature goes up. And it stays up, thanks to modern, wind-cheating vehicle bodies. Their lower stance means less resistance, but it also means less airflow over the brakes, depriving them of their only cooling source. The only sure way to keep brakes cool is to stay off them—and an Allison retarder can help you do that. Allison Transmission said its integral hydraulic retarder is basically a vaned flywheel in the transmission housing. The transmission directs oil into the retarder housing to absorb the vehicle’s energy through the drive shaft. The absorbed energy is converted to heat and dissipated through the vehicle’s cooling system. Resistance to the flywheel, augmented by stators on the inside of the housing, delivers braking power to the driving wheels. More oil in the housing means stronger braking. And since there’s no mechanical friction or wear to shock the drivetrain, there’s better control of maintenance costs, too. Available on Allison 3000 and 4000 Series fully automatic transmissions, Allison’s integral retarder is ABS compatible and can handle virtually the entire braking demand in most situations, the maker said, adding the service brakes are only needed to bring the vehicle to a complete stop or as a safety backup. Tests conducted at the Transportation Research Center in East Liberty, Ohio, proved the Allison retarder’s effectiveness in a taxing, level stop-and-go duty cycle. Without the retarder, front brake temperature reached 266 degrees F, while the rear linings topped out at 390.2 degrees F. With the retarder applied, brake lining temperatures on the front brakes only reached 120.2 degrees F, and 172.4 degrees F on the rear brake pads—less than half the increase measured without the retarder. For more information, talk to your truck dealer or contact an authorized Allison distributor.

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maintain compliance with new federal standards designed to improve highway safety. However, the report continued, many fleets remain unaware that the routine maintenance decision for specifying replacement friction can negate the technological advancements of the brakes, and potentially compromise safety. “Relining today’s high-performance drum brakes with typical aftermarket friction, and not the linings specified by the OEM,” it stated, “can significantly reduce a vehicle’s braking capability and lead to longer stopping distances.” In its recommended practices, Bendix also noted, the Technology and Maintenance Council (TMC) of the American Trucking Associations agrees, “It is essential that the replacement brake linings function as well as the material originally supplied on the vehicle.”

Engineering teams from brake and friction materials manufacturers, in concert with vehicle OEMs, continue to invest in designing and specifying brake packages for longevity and safety. /

Resources Abex— Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake— Fras-le— Haldex— Stemco— TMD Friction—

32 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

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K&J Trucking is making effective equipment and technology choices


Michelle Koch President K&J Trucking

34 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

f you ask Michelle “Shelley” Koch, president of K&J Trucking Inc., to describe the most pressing issues she sees as a challenge for her company, the answer comes swiftly and directly. “It’s one 100% about drivers,” she says. “We can work within any regulation and any industry issue that arises. The only real ongoing problem the trucking industry faces is attracting, training and keeping good drivers.” Founded in 1979, Sioux Falls, S.D.-based K&J Trucking provides 48state refrigerated service from facilities in South Dakota and Oklahoma. The carrier mainly hauls fresh and frozen meat products, as well as ice cream and produce. “All of our loads are time and temperature sensitive,” Koch states. “For example, we haul meat from the Midwest to West Coast ports for export. If we miss a delivery window at the ship, it can cost us over

$25,000 to have that freight shipped by air to its destination. Driver satisfaction and equipment reliability are absolutely essential to our success.” Koch goes on to relate that the top consideration when specifications for K&J Trucking’s fleet are being written is drivers. “We spec a better than average fleet truck, what some would call an owner-operator rig,” she says. “We try to give drivers what they want, within reason. For example, we have some drivers who have been here for 10 or more years, so we are happy to supply them with extra large sleepers. Also, we add Espar Airtronic bunk heaters to our tractors, and we spec convenience items like refrigerators.”

Investing in technology K&J Trucking, Koch notes, is both small enough to provide vehicles specified to help gain driver acceptance, and large enough to invest in advanced technology that it believes will enhance customer service and the efficiency and productivity of its operation. About one year ago, the company selected the R:COM Fleet Management solution from Blue Tree Systems to meet customer needs for better visibility into loads and to provide

K&J Trucking Tractor Specifications Model: Kenworth T660; 72-in. Aerodyne AeroCab sleeper Wheelbase: 230 in. Engine: Cummins ISX15; 485 HP Clutch: Eaton Easy Pedal Transmission: Fuller 13-speed Front Axle: Dana Spicer Power Steering: TRW TAS65 Rear Axle: Dana, tandem; 3.42 ratio Rear Suspension: Kenworth Air Glide Hubs: Dana LMS Brakes: Bendix Spicer RSD ES ABS: Bendix Wheels: Alcoa Tires: 275/80R22.5 Michelin XZA3+ steer; 295/75R22.5 Bridgestone M720FE drive 5th Wheel: SAF-Holland, air slide Air Compressor: Cummins 18.7 CFM Air Dryer: Bendix AD-IS, heated Fan Clutch: Borg Warner Fuel/Water Separator: Davco FuelPro, heated Batteries: (4) PACCAR 2800 CCA

food safety data that is increasingly required to meet safe handling regulations. “We chose Blue Tree’s R:COM solution initially for location tracking and temperature management in transit,” Koch says. “One of our goals was to get ahead of the curve when it comes to the latest food safety regulations our customers are facing.” The R:COM solution provides K&J Trucking with accurate up-tothe-minute temperature data through direct connections to trailers’ refrigeration units. The live information and alarm notifications also are enabled to alert the fleet’s managers via text message if a problem arises after hours. Historical temperature data also is available to customers and food safety agencies. While K&J Trucking is using Blue Tree System’s trailer tracking and

Starter: PACCAR Alternator: Bosch 160 amp Block Heater: Immersion, 1500 watt Fuel Tank Heater: Arctic Fox Mirrors: motorized, heated Lighting: Truck-Lite Seats: Sears Atlas Series Fuel Tanks: dual aluminum, 120-gal. 35

Fleet Profile


temperature management features to enhance customer service, the carrier is finding that the systems lower its refrigeration unit fuel costs. “We’re seeing refrigeration unit fuel use drop,” Koch states. “Our fuel costs are down enough that we expect the systems to pay for themselves within a year.”

Fuel savings

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The largest source of refrigeration unit fuel cost savings for K&J Trucking is the ability to monitor and shut down refrigeration units when trailer doors are open. “A pre-cooled trailer that is unloaded quickly actually holds its temperature more efficiently, especially on multi-stop loads, because a running refrigeration unit pulls in warm air,” Koch explains. “R:COM data confirms that this practice protects loads, so even skeptical customers have been impressed with the Blue Tree technology.” K&J Trucking’s maintenance technicians have been outfitting its trailers with the Blue Tree R:COM solution since June 2012. Based on the carrier’s three- to four-year trade cycle for trailers, the entire fleet will be fitted with R:COM systems within two years, although Koch says the savings from lower fuel use may lead to retrofitting existing trailers sooner. The K&J Trucking fleet currently includes 165 refrigerated trailers, split evenly between Great Dane and Utility models. Until this year, the fleet has been equipped with Thermo King refrigeration units, but new trailers are being specified with Carrier units, as well. “We’ve had good experience with both makes of refrigeration units over the years,” Koch says. “However, changes in our customer base put our equipment on different lanes, so we opted to make some changes to be sure we can access dealer networks wherever our vehicles are operating.”

Choosing tractors Tractors in the K&J Trucking fleet include between 18 and 25 companyowned units and 25 vehicles that are leased. The carrier also utilizes the services of about 100 owner-operators.

36 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

K&J Trucking Trailer Specifications Model: Utility VS2RA Length: 53 ft. Refrigeration Unit: Thermo King; Carrier Landing Gear: SAF-Holland Atlas 65 Axles/Suspension: Hendrickson HKANT; air, sliding; Quik Draw slider pin release Oil Seals: National Air System: Haldex Anchorlok chambers; Phillips Qwik-E gladhands Brakes: Hendrickson ABS: Meritor WABCO Automatic Slack Adjusters: Haldex Tires: 295/75R22.5 Bridgestone Ecopia Wheels: Accuride steel disc TPMS: MTIS with ThermAlert Anti Dock Walk: Hendrickson Surelok Lighting & Electrical: Grote, LED Company tractors are primarily Kenworth T660 models with Cummins engines, along with a few Freightliner Cascadias fitted with Detroit DD15 powerplants. “Our tractor choices, after considering drivers, are based on how efficient they are to own and operate,” Koch relates. “Also, with trade cycles of three to five years or 400,000 to 500,000 miles, we are always looking closely at resale values. Almost everything we operate is under warranty, so our own shop mainly handles preventive maintenance. For warranty work we use dealers, and for road calls we access manufacturer help lines. “First and foremost, we are accountable to our customers,” Koch adds. “Service is always our number one priority, from their first contact to the delivery of their load. To accomplish that goal, and avoid problems before they happen, we continue to focus on people and on the equipment we need to get the job done.” /

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Cost of owne Especially for a private fleet, this is a figure that’s important to know, but not one that’s easy to calculate

38 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment


he cost of ownership. For a private fleet, it can be as much as 5% of revenue. It’s an important number to know for any fleet operation, but it’s a number that’s not always easy to determine. Too often, in total cost of ownership calculations, people overlook or decide to omit expense items they incur only because they operate an owned fleet. Were they instead to operate a full service leased fleet, many of these costs could be absorbed by the leasing company. “Most small- to medium-sized fleets do not have the infrastructure in place to determine many costs accurately. As a result, they tend to overlook a lot of relevant costs, for example, the cost of capital, the real cost of maintenance and the actual increase in costs over a period of time,” said John Deris, senior vice

president of national sales at Ryder Systems. To help business leaders make good business decisions, a team in the Advisory Services division of Ernst & Young recently conducted a total cost of ownership (TCO) study. In a published report of that study, its authors said, “The TCO study revealed that many companies do not have a strong sense of their truck fleet total cost of ownership and actually have systematic biases when evaluating fleet options.” When delivering results of the study during a presentation titled “An Expert’s Guide to Total Cost of Vehicle Ownership,” Donna Stella, principal of the team, said, “Fleet managers were often in a very difficult situation because they did not have the information they need to completely evaluate the financial aspects of fleet ownership.”

rship Economies of scale Such a situation could prove to be very important because the study also indicated that it was smaller fleets that did not have a complete handle on total costs. Stella said, “Economies of scale definitely play a significant role in thinking about the cost of ownership of the fleet. Small- to medium-sized fleets can potentially save 5% to 36% by outsourcing acquisition and maintenance operations to large companies having a lower cost of ownership. The 5% figure applies to fleets in the 500 vehicle range. The 36% applies to smaller fleets of one to 100 vehicles total.” (See Table 1) The Ernst & Young study considered four major cost categories: cost of capital, maintenance costs, licensing costs and vehicle administration. Suchet Singh, a senior manager in the study team, indicated costs associated with capital and maintenance are those

most influenced by economies of scale. The result is a decreased cost of ownership with increasing fleet size. This, as the written report suggests, makes intuitive sense since larger fleets have greater negotiating power with dealers and have greater potential to realize maintenance efficiencies, including through improved shop utilization. In particular, the greatest decrease in cost per mile existed as fleets moved from the 25 to 99 fleet size range into the 100 to 499 fleet size range. Ryder’s Deris expressed a similar position, saying, “As we look at small- to medium-size fleets, we see that they generally could benefit from economies of scale by purchasing equipment more effi- 39

Equipment Management

Table 1. Ernst & Young, “Own or lease: Are you making the right choice for your truck fleet?”

nitely vary directly with the fleet size. More miles mean more fuel and tires. More vehicles mean more financing and higher maintenance costs. The Ernst & Young study report presented a breakdown of the various components of the total cost of fleet ownership by vehicle type. (See Table 2)

Impending changes Changes on the regulatory scene and in equipment technology are affecting,

and will continue to affect, fleet ownership costs. FMCSA’s Compliance, Safety and Accountability regulations promulgated in 2010 are now fully operational, and activities like random roadside inspections, warning letters and interventions are being fully enforced. Fleets that have had efficient maintenance operations have not been particularly bothered by these new safety and maintenance requirements. They

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ciently, realizing a better resale value, forecasting future costs more accurately and utilizing better trained maintenance technicians.” Cost of ownership, like most other costs, also can be divided into fixed and variable costs. Here again we can easily see that administrative costs— personnel, accounting, etc.—are going to be relatively stable no matter how the size of the fleet changes. Operating costs, on the other hand, will defi-

Table 2. Ernst & Young, “Own or lease: Are you making the right choice for your truck fleet?”

40 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49122 

Don’t Wait to Replace do, however, have the potential of affecting operations. Darry Stuart offers the example of a truck that is scheduled out of a terminal at 2 a.m., a time when the maintenance shop at that location is not open. The driver, while doing his pre-trip, finds a marker lamp out on the top of his trailer. In times past, the driver might well have pulled out of the yard and taken a chance on the unlikely possibility of a ticket. Now, however, he might choose to delay the 2 a.m. departure because he might get points charged against him personally if he is stopped. Because of the new regulations taking effect and the introduction of so much new technology in the same time frame, increased training is being required for technicians. Ryder’s Deris said, “We’re seeing a great deal of change in training requirements. Many companies that have run their own maintenance facilities for many years have technicians very familiar with the vehicles that the fleet has purchased.

Some fleets have a policy of delaying vehicle replacement until after they are fully depreciated in hopes they can bank the money that had gone into financing. The Ernst & Young Total Cost of Ownership study found the cost of maintenance increases exponentially as vehicles age. The company’s researchers found that the highest average increase in maintenance costs occurred in years one and seven. The least was in year six. Their conclusion was that “it is very hard to offset the cost of financing by keeping trucks longer because the exponential increase in maintenance after year seven more than compensates (for saved) financing costs.” Editor’s note: If you would like to read or download a copy of the Ernst & Young report, go to As new equipment comes into the fleet, managers realize it’s necessary to train technicians every time they upgrade their equipment. “There are also some revolutionary opportunities entering the marketplace today,” he added. “The use of natural gas and other alternative fuels is just one example. If you consider entering into that arena of technology, you’re going to have to make some tremendous investments in infrastructure, as well as technician training. It’s not like in the past when we had small

changes in engines and other vehicle systems. We now regularly see dramatic leaps forward, and most companies simply do not have the resources to develop and train their people as they go forward.”

Use real numbers If you plan on calculating your cost of fleet ownership, use your fleet’s numbers. Stuart said, “When people put numbers together to calculate their cost of ownership, they too often do so using numbers that they believe to

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Equipment Management

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be accurate, but more often than not wind up using numbers that say just what they want them to say.” By way of example, a fleet manager might find it expedient to use an outside source for some data. For instance, it might seem reasonable to use figures supplied in a leasing company’s proposal for maintenance per mile instead of determining that number from the fleet’s own maintenance records. Un-

42 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

fortunately, the fleet will usually not be able to maintain its equipment at such a figure because the leasing company enjoys economies of scale compared to a smaller, private operation.

Unrecognized expenses Besides using figures in a cost of ownership calculation that are not directly applicable to a fleet, some costs are simply forgotten or not recognized,

and therefore not included. Stuart offers the following scenario as a possibility: A fleet is having some problems with an emissions control system on a relatively new truck. Because it’s a recent addition to the fleet, the system will still be under warranty, so the fleet manager makes a rather reasonable decision and arranges to have the truck taken to the dealer for repairs. The dealer, however, happens to be 35 miles away and the truck gets about five miles per gallon of fuel. It’s a seven gallon trip. He also sends another vehicle along to bring the first driver back home. Unfortunately, the only vehicle available is another tractor that also will consume seven gallons of fuel—each way. The total so far is 21 gallons. Double that for the return trip to bring the repaired tractor back. By this time we’ve used 42 gallons of fuel at $3.50 per gallon, or $147. Now add in the labor time consumed by the two technicians. Being realistic, that 35-mile trip is going to take as much as an hour each way. Two technicians would use two labor hours for each round trip. The total is four hours at about $1 a minute, or $240. The result is a total expense of almost $400 for a warranty repair, an expense that will most likely never be captured. The Ernst & Young team found that some small- and medium-size fleets that were able to purchase equipment with cash did not include the cost of capital in their cost of ownership calculations. Their belief was that, since they did not have to finance their purchases, they did not have to include interest expense in their calculations. They did not understand that when they used reserve funds for new equipment, they lost the opportunity of using that money for other ventures that might have brought a more desirable return, which needed to be considered in their calculation. It’s important to know how much it costs to own your fleet. But when you decide to make a cost of ownership calculation, do it carefully. Use your own numbers. Try to capture all your expenses, and look to the future of your operation as well as you can. /

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OEM truck technology

Kenworth T680 Advantage package designed to maximize fuel economy

Peterbilt introduces mid-length Model 579 Peterbilt Motors Co. announced the addition of a mid-length BBC configuration to the all-new Model 579 product lineup. The new lightweight 117in. BBC design offers excellent maneuverability and outstanding visibility while maintaining the Model 579’s exceptional aerodynamic characteristics. “The Model 579 improves customers’ bottom lines through higher reliability, better fuel economy, increased driver retention and enhanced resale value,” said Bill Kozek, Peterbilt general manager and PACCAR vice president. “The new mid-length BBC Model 579 configuration offers additional weight reduction and performance advantages with the standard PACCAR MX-13 engine as the perfect powertrain complement. This combination of performance attributes optimizes the vehicle for weight sensitive customers, such as regional and bulk haul applications.” The new mid-length Model 579 can be configured as a day cab or with the full range of detachable Peterbilt sleepers. The 117-in. BBC hood features a durable, low-cost-of-repair three-piece design. It will be available with the 2013 PACCAR MX-13 engine June 2013.

Kenworth unveiled the Kenworth T680 Advantage truck, which the company said effectively integrates aerodynamics, powertrain and electronic efficiencies combined into a complete tractor/trailer package to maximize fuel economy. The T680 Advantage is equipped with a 12.9-liter PACCAR MX-13 engine. The T680 was selected as the Advantage vehicle since it already possesses a number of standard features that make it Kenworth’s most aerodynamic model ever, the truck maker said. The 2013 PACCAR MX-13 is estimated to be up to 3.5% more fuel-efficient than the previous 2010 PACCAR MX engine. The MX-13 engine is paired with an Eaton UltraShift Plus automated manual transmission to maximize fuel efficiency, the maker added. Other features include: instantaneous fuel economy feedback on the dash; an electronic speed limiter and engine idle shutdown software that goes hand-inhand with the T680 Advantage’s Kenworth Idle Management System; and the Bendix Wingman Advanced System with adaptive cruise and SmarTire Tire Pressure Monitoring System.

Volvo Trucks reveals proprietary Volvo D13-LNG Engine Volvo Trucks showcased its prototype D13-LNG engine, the first integrated natural gas solution for the North American market. The Volvo D13-LNG compression-ignition engine utilizes liquefied natural gas (LNG) to deliver increased range and significant fuel efficiency improvements compared with other natural gas-powered offerings. Customers also will be able to specify a Volvo I-Shift automated manual transmission. Volvo showed the prototype LNG solution in a Volvo VNL daycab at the show. Volvo’s D13-LNG engine is a continuation of its comprehensive Blue Power natural gas strategy for North America, joining previously announced spark-ignited NG engine options for the Volvo VNM and VNL model daycabs. 44 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

New 122SD from Freightliner Freightliner Trucks displayed its new 122SD at MATS. The truck features rugged components that are tough enough to handle the most grueling of applications. With numerous enhancements to the former Coronado SD, the 122SD is now the cornerstone of the SD line of Freightliner severe duty vocational trucks, according to the company. With a GVWR of up to 92,000 lbs. and a GCWR of up to 160,000 lbs., the 122SD is engineered to haul heavy, oversized loads and can be configured for a variety of severe duty applications such as logging, oil/gas field services, concrete mixing, specialty/heavy-haul, crane, dump, vocational on-highway and towing/recovery. The 122SD has a durable, non-corrosive aluminum SD cab reinforced with ecoated steel, which meets stringent A-pillar impact, rollover and back wall impact tests. State-of-the-art adhesives and Henrob rivets further reinforce the ergonomically designed cab’s durable structure, the maker added. The chassis features a broad offering of vocational suspension choices and single or double channel frame rails having tensile strength of up to 120,000 PSI and up to 5 million RBM.

International ProStar begins production of MaxxForce13L SCR Engine Navistar International showcased its initial production build of the International ProStar truck equipped with MaxxForce 13 with SCR at MATS. The company announced that customer deliveries are beginning in April. ProStar with MaxxForce 13 with SCR offers fleets and drivers the efficient power of a big bore engine with lighter weight components to maximize payload, the company said. Its design and compacted graphite iron block construction make it one of the lightest weight 13-liter engines in the industry. Horsepower options range from 365 to 475 with 1,250-1,700 ft.-lbs. of torque, and the engine delivers excellent fuel economy and performance, International added. The MaxxForce 13 features the Cummins Emission Solutions after-treatment system and includes numerous improvements to the turbochargers, EGR valves, high and low temperature coolers and exhaust bellows. The electronic control module recalibration to the SCR system will help the engine deliver more advanced fuel economy and improved overall power and throttle response, the company said, adding that its remaining lineup of International heavy-duty truck

Volvo I-Shift now standard on all Volvo-powered trucks Volvo Trucks now offers its I-Shift automated manual transmission (AMT) as standard on all Volvo-powered trucks built for the North American market. Sales of the Volvo I-Shift reached record levels in 2012, with nearly one of every two Volvo trucks built in North America featuring the I-Shift. Market share of the I-Shift has steadily grown since 2007, when Volvo brought an integrated AMT to the North American market, the company said. In 2012, nearly 60% of Volvopowered vehicles built also featured an I-Shift. Volvo added it was the first to offer multiple premium packages with the IShift, and the first to introduce innovative technologies like load and grade sensors, skip shifting and Eco-Roll.

Mack Twin Y, mRide suspensions debut at MATS Mack Trucks unveiled two new suspensions offered with proprietary Mack axles for superior fuel efficiency, performance, ride and handling. The Mack Twin Y Air Suspension and Mack mRide spring suspension were showcased in the Mack booth at MATS. According to the truck maker, the Twin Y is the trucking industry’s first suspension to utilize an innovative Y-shaped high-strength steel design. Delivering unmatched comfort, handling and fuel efficiency for highway customers desiring a smoother, more stable ride, the Twin Y is up to 403 lbs. lighter than other air suspensions, offering customers a significantly lighter weight option. 45


Powertrains Eaton, Cummins announce powertrain package for heavy-duty truck market Diversified industrial manufacturer Eaton and Cummins Inc. unveiled a new powertrain package for the North American heavy-duty truck market, which the companies said is expected to deliver 3% to 6% fuel economy improvements, lower preventative maintenance costs, and offer total lifecycle cost improvements. The new product integrates an Eaton Fuller Advantage Series automated transmission with new Cummins ISX15 SmartTorque2 ratings. The product will be available in the fall of 2013 for linehaul, regional haul and less-than-truckload applications. Executives from both companies said this product announcement is the result of a long-standing collaboration between Eaton and Cummins. The powertrain package promises to deliver a more fuel-efficient, reliable and robust powertrain package. The Eaton Fuller Advantage Series automated transmission will be offered as a small ratio step Over-Drive model with new Cummins ISX15 SmartTorque2 ratings’ the ISX15 415 ST2 with torque of 1,450/1,650 ft.-lbs., and the ISX15 450 ST2 with torque of 1,550 ft.-lbs./1,750 ft.-lbs.

Allison Transmission bolsters fuel economy with TC10 and unveils fully automated hybrid Test fleet users achieved an average 5% fuel economy improvement with the Allison TC10 tractor transmission over their current manual and automated manual transmissions, according to the company. TC10 t The TC10 is specifically designed for both city and highway tractor duty cycles and provides a blended architecture with full power shifts, a torque converter and a twin countershaft gear box. It is fully automatic and offers smooth, seamless shifting through 10 gear ranges. This optimizes acceleration and fuel economy, making this transmission ideal for distribution applications where a tractor-trailer splits its work cycle between city and highway conditions, the maker added.

Allison also unveiled its H 3000 hybrid-propulsion system for commercial vehicles, which the comhybrid-propulsion pany said is targeted for medium- and heavy-duty trucks in distribution, refuse, utility and shuttle applications. The fully automatic parallel hybrid-propulsion system is based on the Allison 3000 Series transmission, which is matched with hybrid system components, including a motor-generator, power electronics and lithium-ion cell battery packs. Scalable to each application, the modular lithium-ion battery packs enable an optimal amount of energy capacity to be tailored to a specific vehicle or duty cycle, allowing for greater flexibility and performance, the company said.

ZF offers TraXon, a modular transmission system ZF introduced its new automatic transmission system for heavy trucks at MATS. According to the company, with a completely new basic transmission and a modular concept, TraXon meets the demand of the commercial vehicle market for a versatile solution for a broad range of applications. The innovative transmission combines several contradictions at the same time: it offers more torque without compromising the power-to-weight ratio; it has a higher gear spread while the noise quality was improved; and, depending on the application, it can not only be driven by a dry clutch, but also by a hybrid module, dual-clutch module or a torque converter clutch. Furthermore, it can be combined with an engine-dependent PTO. For the new transmission, ZF said it developed the PreVision GPS shifting strategy, which works in an anticipatory and especially fuel-saving way thanks to a GPS connection and an interface to navigation data. 46 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

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Trailers & trailer components Aerodynamic products pay for themselves

Great Dane unveils its first mobile app Great Dane’s Innovation Experience at MATS featured a display with an Apple iPad and a Samsung Galaxy Tab Android tablet, enabling visitors to get hands-on practice of how the company’s new mobile app can be used. The app is available to download for free from the Apple App Store and the Android Market. Among other features, the initial version of the app enables users to easily locate and access their nearest Great Dane branch, dealer or authorized parts and service facility, with location-specific phone numbers, hours of operation and GPS-enabled mapping. The functionalities of Great Dane’s mobile app also include the ability to access to the company’s AdvantEdge national fleet services network, which includes Emergency Road Service (ERS) in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

FlowBelow’s Tractor AeroKit offers the first solution for addressing the dragintensive area around the wheels of the tractor tandem, the maker said. According to FlowBelow, parked trailers significantly delay any return on investment for their aerodynamic products. Because tractors typically log more miles than trailers, the Tractor AeroKit achieves best-in-class ROI.

Trail King introduces Continuous Belt ag trailer Trail King showed its new Continuous Belt Super Hi-Lite Rolled Side Ag Trailer (ASHR-C) at MATS. The company said the trailer revolutionizes how the agriculture industry hauls feed, seed, fertilizer and other ag-related products. The ASHR-C features a smooth, continuous 48-in. two-ply SBR rubber belt driven by a dual reduction planetary gearbox with heavy-duty roller chain and steel Z-bar support to deliver fast, horizontal discharge of the load and exceptional hopper clean-out in one revolution or less, the maker said. The continuous belt design reduces the risk of cross-contamination between loads in two ways: there are no voids created by overlapping belt sections where product can be trapped; and the belt’s “banner” edge, or flange, along both outside edges fits snugly against the belt flange to help prevent product leakage or buildup. A spring-loaded belt scraper on the underside of the back end of the belt scrapes the belt clean, reducing carry back of product under the trailer. Also available as an option is a second spring-loaded scraper, located under the front of the trailer, that is designed to clean the belt and prevent carry back of environmental debris into the hopper. The floor is controlled by an on/off valve, so the tailgate 48 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

and other trailer components are less likely to be damaged by the operator inadvertently engaging the floor and moving the load before the tailgate is open, the maker said. The trailer also features Z-bar cross members and a heavy-duty roller chain design, reducing friction and putting less demand on other components for less maintenance. It is available in a variety of models, ranging in capacities from 55 to 105 cubic yards and overall lengths of 43 to 53 ft.

VorBlade Wing System is SmartWay-verified

The VorBlade Wing is EPA SmartWay-verified for over 5% fuel savings, according to Avantechs, which added that no trailer skirts or any other supplemental aerodynamic devices are needed for CARB compliance. The system with cross wind mitigator subsystem features: improved fuel consumption by over 7.5%, no maintenance or driver interactions required, is light weight (under 50 lbs.), is less than 2 in. in height, and effectively fights cross winds. This system is one of the lowest cost EPA SmartWay-verified solutions and works on 28- and 40-ft. trailers. It also can provide improved safety with a 50% increase in aerodynamic stability, Avantechs added.

Optronics introduces new LED clearance/ marker lamps Optronics International, a manufacturer and supplier of heavy-duty LED vehicle lighting, displayed its new Uni-Lite LED clearance/marker lamps at MATS. The small, threequarter-inch lamps employ Optronics’ new GloLight optics, making them appear deceptively bright for their size. Vanguard trailers are the first of their kind to be fully outfitted with the small clearance/marker and 4-in. round stop/tail/turn lamps employing Optronics’ GloLight optical diffusion technology. GloLight lamps are visually distinctive from other LED lamps because their lenses disperse light waves in a unique way that gives them a smooth, brightly glowing appearance, according to the company. The new Uni-Lite clearance/marker lamps come in red and amber. The red Uni-Lite lamps are designed with dual-function capabilities for applications such as high-mount stop and turn. The lamps are available in P2- and PC-rated versions, enabling them to meet the photometric requirements for a full range of applications.

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MGM offers e•Stroke brake monitoring for air disc brakes

Brake Technology WABCO showcases air disc brakes & ECAS WABCO Holdings Inc., a global technology and tierone supplier to the commercial vehicle industry, announced at MATS that series production trucks from Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) are now on the road and fitted with WABCO’s breakthrough Maxxus heavy-duty single-piston air disc brake technology. As previously announced, WABCO entered into a long-term supply agreement with DTNA in June 2012. As a result, Maxxus brakes have been fitted to DTNA’s range of vehicles since February 2013. Maxxus is currently available on Freightliner Cascadia, Coronado, Columbia, Business Class M2 and SD models, as well as West-

ern Star 4700, 4800 and 4900 platforms.WABCO’s Maxxus is more than 40 lbs. lighter than a comparable air disc brake when fitted to a 6x4 truck, thus boosting fuel efficiency and enabling increased transport payload, the maker said. In addition, the company showed its electronically controlled air suspension (ECAS) technology and hydraulic anti-lock braking system (ABS) with integrated ESCsmart electronic stability control (ESC). The maker said its ECAS is an enabler technology that supports fleets to transition from 6x4 to 6x2 configurations by significantly improving the traction performance of 6x2 trucks on low friction surfaces and by reducing tire wear through its “intelligent load transfer” functionality.

MGM announced e•Stroke Brake Monitoring for air disc brake applications. According to the company, by building on the success of its patented e•Stroke Brake Monitoring system for drum brakes, MGM has now expanded Electronic Brake Monitoring to heavy-duty air disc brake-equipped vehicles. Air Disc brakes are notoriously difficult to visually inspect, the company said. e•Stroke for air disc brakes provides real-time insight into brake function and status, virtually performing a brake inspection with each brake application. e•Stroke provides valuable feedback for maintenance by enhancing safety while potentially reducing downtime and labor diagnostic costs. The system for heavy-duty air disc brakes provides maintenance operations and drivers a reliable and efficient way to be proactive in brake safety, the company added.

Onboard IT VDO RoadLog EOBR protects your CSA scores VDO RoadLog is an all-in-one solution for daily logbook and compliance reporting. Requiring no monthly fee, long-term contract or smartphone, it’s an easy and affordable compliance tool to protect your CSA scores and help you qualify for the most profitable loads, the maker said. It provides automated HOS logs with GPS accuracy and other key compliance data, such as Vehicle Inspection and Repair Maintenance. It also automatically tracks time on the road and warns if a driver is about to exceed allowable limits. It also can track status while off-duty, on-duty, or in sleeper berth. The built-in printer makes for fast roadside inspections. Data also can be provided through USB file transfer. It can be installed in as little as 15 minutes, is FMCSA compliant and is update-ready for future requirements, the company added.

Cobra Electronics offers navigation systems Cobra Electronics said its 8000 and 6000 Pro HD GPS navigation systems provide the features drivers need to stay well-informed on the road. The navigation units are 50 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

ready to use out of the box, with free live and predictive traffic information, truck-optimized route guidance, free lifetime map updates, and lifetime access to Cobra’s AURA database of speed/red light cameras, known speed trap locations, and nearby dangerous intersections. Drivers can now update their units easily and efficiently by downloading the new, free Cobra HomeBase docking software, ensuring their information is always current and accurate, the company said.

Rand McNally introduces IntelliRoute TND 520 GPS device Rand McNally has unveiled the IntelliRoute TND 520 connected GPS device for professional drivers. The TND 520, which includes a new ruggedized case, Lifetime Maps, and a host of new features, will be available for sale starting in May. The new 5-in. device includes Wi-Fi connectivity that enables a number of new real-time data services, most of which will be standard on the device without any subscription fee. Rand McNally also has updated software available on the TND 520 for current owners of the devices.

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TIRES & WHEELS Cooper introduces Roadmaster RM234 regional steer tire

Bridgestone launches new Firestone campaign, tires Bridgestone Americas’ Commercial Solutions division has launched a new advertising campaign to support its Firestone medium truck tire brand: “Those With Drive, Drive a Firestone.” The new campaign coincides with the tire maker’s launch of new Firestone tires the company said feature technological advancements that specifically address the needs of drivers and small fleet owners who seek fuel savings, long wear and casing durability. Those new tires include the Firestone FS591 steer, Firestone FD691 drive and Firestone FT491 all-position radials—all of which have been SmartWay verified and meet CARB requirements for fuel efficiency—and the Firestone FS820, an all-position tire designed for on/offhighway service.

52 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

Cooper showcased its new Roadmaster premium regional all-position commercial tire, the RM234, at MATS. The new RM234 is designed for high scrub situations where durability, tread wear and extended mileage are important, Cooper said, adding the tire offers deep tread grooves and premium tread compound for excellent wear and cut and chip resistance. Cooper offers SmartWay products for all wheel positions, including the Roadmaster RM180 steer tire, RM871 trailer tire and RM851 drive tire. The RM234 will be available to customers beginning in May.

Conti rolls out new hybrid drive tires A new segment in commercial truck operations, combining long haul with regional traffic, is the force behind the launch of Continental Tire the Americas’ latest drive tire, the tire maker said. Advances in Continental engineering have combined to create a tire with exceptional mileage, the company added. The Conti Hybrid HD3 is now Continental’s widest dual drive tire, at 248 mm, with 27/32nds tread depth in a new regenerating pattern that is cut in three dimensions. The combination of these characteristics and a large tread volume allows for long tread life, as well as a larger footprint that provides excellent traction when operated on highways. The traction requirements for regional traffic, which often include changing weather conditions and curved roads, also have been addressed via the Conti Hybrid HD3’s tread geometry to provide grip throughout the life of the product.

Michelin mascot Bibendum and Ted Becker, vice president of marketing for Michelin Americas Truck Tires, show off the new X Line Energy T.

Michelin adds fuelefficient tire and retread Michelin Americas Truck Tires showed its new X Line Energy T, a dual trailer tire for line haul operations, and SmartWay-verified X Line Energy D Pre-Mold retread. The X Line Energy T, available for fleets in May, provides a cool running tread rubber that minimizes internal casing temperatures for low rolling resistance and extended casing life, the tire maker said. Compared to the Michelin XT-1, the X Line Energy T delivers a 10% reduction in rolling resistance, bringing improved fuel efficiency. The tire will be available in four sizes: 11R22.5, 275/80R22.5, 11R24.5 and 275/80R24.5. Michelin said the X Line Energy D PreMold retread delivers exceptional fuel economy with breakthrough levels of tread life and outstanding traction, providing significant value and performance for over-the-road fleets. The retread carries a guarantee of 25% more mileage versus other SmartWayverified drive retreads. The X Line Energy D Pre-Mold retread has 21/32nds of tread depth and is only available for retreading on Michelin casings.

Toyo Tires releases new M144 steer tire Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp. introduced the new Toyo M144 highway-rib steer tire at MATS. According to the company, designed for mid- to long-haul use, the new M144 offers a low cost per mile for both fleets and independent operators. Advanced design technology helps deliver exceptional mileage, while an optimized casing profile provides better retreadability. Truck drivers and fleets benefit by knowing they have a premium tire product while reducing their

overall operating costs, Toyo said. “The addition of the new M144 to our line of premium commercial truck tires helps to further expand buying options for truckers and fleet operators, said Roy Bromfield, chief operating officer. “Toyo Tires is dedicated to the commercial trucking industry with a broad line of specialized commercial tires, including SmartWay verified products, and increased global manufacturing in 2013.”

Fuel-efficient Zenvironment displayed at MATS Yokohama Tire Corp.’s full line of Zenvironment tires were on display at the tire maker’s booth at MATS. The highly fuel-efficient, low rolling resistance Zenvironment lineup includes the 703ZL, 103ZR, 501ZA and 101ZL. Within the casing design, Yokohama uses “finite element analysis,” where engineers divide the tire into several thousand tiny individual sections or elements. Each element is analyzed under simulated operating conditions, which allows Yokohama to accurately predict physical changes the tire will undergo during its lifetime. By being able to predict these changes, the tire maker said it can reduce the strain to the casing from normal stress or applied force. The result is cooler operating temperatures and greater casing life and retreadability, the company said.

Consolidated Metco unveils line of premium bearings

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49053

Consolidated Metco (ConMet) said it has developed its own line of premium bearings. ConMet premium bearings are designed and built for precision, performance and longevity, the company said. Precisely engineered profiles minimize raceway and roller stresses under heavy loads and provide better performance under light loads. The reduction in stresses at the roller ends reduces the sensitivity of the bearing to heavy cornering and misalignment. The highly-controlled honed surface finish is 40% smoother than current industry standards, resulting in improved rolling contact, reduced friction, lower operating temperatures and improved lubrication characteristics, the maker added. When ConMet premium bearings are used in ConMet’s PreSet Plus hub assemblies, the combination is backed by an extended warranty. ConMet premium bearings are available on PreSet Plus steer and drive hub assemblies for Class 8 vehicles. 53


Suspensions & Axles Hendrickson debuts UltiMaax severeduty rubber suspension & ‘shockless’ air suspension

Dana unveils Spicer EconoTrek tandem axle Dana Holding Corp. introduced the Spicer EconoTrek tandem axle, a new durable, lightweight 6x2 configuration the company said improves performance, reduces maintenance and increases fuel economy for heavyduty line haul tractors. Debuted at MATS, the EconoTrek tandem axle is a solution for customers who can benefit from the advantages offered by a 6x2, Dana said, adding that it improves fuel economy by up to 3% through decreases in mechanical drivetrain energy loss and reduces weight by up to 400 lbs. when compared with a traditional 40,000-lb. tandem axle arrangement. Available this June, the EconoTrek combines the company’s newly upgraded Spicer S170 and S190 single-reduction single drive axles with the new, lightweight Spicer S20-045B tag axle. The new Spicer S20-045B axle features advanced designs leveraged from Dana’s line of Spicer commercial vehicle drive axles. Made of highstrength, micro-alloy steel with a thin-wall, square-edge formed axle housing box, it weighs 20 to 30 lbs. less than competitive models. The S20-045B axle is shaped like a low-profile drive axle to provide significant strength for the axle’s vertical load-bearing capabilities, reducing tire wear while simplifying suspension and chassis installation at a lower weight. In addition, the company said the Spicer Pro-40 tandem axle is now offered in the 2013 PACCAR data books for commercial vehicles under the Kenworth and Peterbilt nameplates. Available in a wide range of ratios from 3.25 to 3.90, the Spicer Pro-40 axle is ideal for commercial trucks with nine-, 10-, 12- or 13-speed overdrive transmissions; diesel engines rated up to 475 HP and 1,750 ft.-lbs. of torque; and gross combination weight ratings up to 80,000 lbs.

Hendrickson Truck Commercial Vehicle Systems introduced UltiMaax, the next generation in severe-duty rubber suspensions. Designed specifically for severe-duty vocational markets with durability being its cornerstone feature, UltiMaax delivers enhanced stability, handling and ride quality even in the most severeduty environments where vehicles encounter harsh and unexpected ground conditions, according to Hendrickson. The integration of Hendrickson’s proven walking (equalizing) beam technology, with its patented progressive rate spring, provides a balance of loaded stability and unloaded ride quality even in the most rugged environments. Hendrickson said when in the empty or lightly loaded condition, shear springs carry a majority of the vertical load, resulting in a constant low spring rate and excellent ride quality. Due to the advancements of the progressive rate spring, as load increases, the ride and stability characteristics of the suspension change to meet the application’s needs without an abrupt change in spring rate—translating to reduced road shock and vibration.

Save fuel, tires with automated lift axle on SAF-Holland tandem SAF-Holland is now offering AutoPosiLift Axle Lift technology as an option on SAF CBX40 Tandem Axle Slider Suspension systems. This combines the proven CBX PosiLift axle lift feature with a unique electronic control unit (ECU) and air valve system on 54 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

a tandem slider suspension, blending the brain and the brawn to increase fleet efficiency, the maker said. The CBX40 with Auto-PosiLift was initially developed for multi-stop beverage distribution fleets; other varying load fleet operations such as less

than truck load (LTL), and fleets back hauling empty; food service also may reap the benefits of significant fuel savings, reduced tire wear and reduced toll charges. The combination of the CBX PosiLift feature with the ECU and air valve

The UltiMaax’s enhanced walking beam design utilizes a central pivot point to help keep tire contact with the ground and maintain traction in challenging environments, in addition to a flat-bottom design for increased ground clearance. Hendrickson added that the system offers up to 17.5 in. of loaded diagonal articulation and an increase in unloaded articulation courtesy of new high performance beam end and center bushings. Available initially in capacities of 46,000, 52,000 and 60,000 lbs., UltiMaax is approved for vocational and severe-duty applications. In addition, the company said it has taken low maintenance suspension systems to the next level with the launch of its latest innovation, Zero-Maintenance Damping (ZMD) ride technology.

Available on select Vantraax integrated air slider models, ZMD technology provides reduced maintenance by eliminating the shock absorbers. Robust chain down-stops replace the rebound limiter function traditionally performed by the shock absorber. An additional benefit is enhanced ride quality. ZMD air springs integrate the damping function traditionally performed by the shock within the air spring itself by exchanging pressurized air through channels interconnecting the bellows and piston of this patent-pending air spring the company said.

axle slider suspensions system creates a lift axle with automatic operation that complies with D.O.T. regulations. The ECU is pre-programmed by the trailer OEM to sense the load weight and as the trailer load weight diminishes or increases, the system automatically raises or lowers the front axle of the tandem slider

SAF-Holland CBX69 Tridem slider available SAF-Holland announced the availability of SAF CBX69 Tridem Slider Suspension systems, which the company said set a new standard for lightweight tridem suspension slider axle systems. The CBX69 delivers the features and benefits of the proven and popular CBX40 in a tripleaxle configuration. The lightweight CBX air suspension design and proven slider box technology bring superior durability with best-inclass weight savings, the maker said, adding the slider box design provides an outstanding strength-to-weight ratio for increased cargo. The system features the SAF X-Series 5.75-in. diameter axle with a lightweight, yet robust 11mm wall axle that allows for higher duty cycle applications. Spec’ing the system with optional SAF Integral Disc brake technology shortens stopping distances for enhanced safety. Tridems also provide the versatility to move freight across international, provincial and state borders while maintaining compliance with bridge/weight regulations and Canadian SPIF “infrastructure-friendly” regulations. The system is standard with Black Armour metal treatment for the ultimate in corrosion protection. Black Armour is eco-friendly and when compared to galvanization, is less expensive and lighter weight, SAFHolland said. SAF CBX69 Tridem Slider Suspensions are now available throughout the N.A. marketplace from most trailer OEMs.

suspension without driver interaction, SAF-Holland said. For example, as when a portion of the load has been delivered, the total capacity of a closed tandem axle suspension may no longer be required to carry the remaining load. This lower load capacity can sometimes amount to nearly 80% of a vehicle’s operation during the day. Operating with the tandem suspension in the single axle configuration (front axle raised) greatly increases fuel efficiency, vehicle tire life, suspension component life and brake/wheel-end service intervals, the maker said. SAF CBX40 Tandem Axle Slider Suspensions with Auto-PosiLift technology are now available throughout North America from most Trailer OEMs, the company added. 55

Truck Products Donaldson debuts newest line of replacement filters Donaldson Co. has introduced the newest line of replacement filters for both on- and off-road vehicle applications—with coverage for Racor fuel systems, Cummins engines and more—in an affordable, convenient package. According to Donaldson, the new Twist&Drain Fuel Kits contain all the components needed for a complete change-out, including: water separating fuel filter with Twist&Drain valve; water collection bowl for easy visual inspection; and alternative Twist&Drain valve with water-in-fuel (WIF) sensor or threaded port to meet water-in-fuel sensing requirements. The Twist&Drain valve, a key feature on Donaldson replacement filters, turns the complicated task of removing water into an easy process, the maker said. It has been designed with user-friendly features: a wider, easy-turn “thumb and forefinger” profile; self-venting, allowing for easy water flow; and a single threaded port in the bottom of the filter housing for fast and easy water draining—without the awkwardness of multiple sensor and drain ports. Donaldson Co. Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49150

Webasto introduces digital bunk thermostat

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49056

Webasto Thermo & Comfort North America said the SmarTemp digital bunk thermostat, designed to work exclusively with the Air Top 2000 ST bunk heater, is now available with the Webasto SmarTemp Control all-in-one temperature management system. The thermostat allows drivers to simply dial-in the temperature they desire on the SmarTemp Control’s backlit LCD screen. Menu preferences on the system allow a user to

56 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

select heat or ventilation mode, one of three languages, Fahrenheit or Celsius temperature scales, continuous or timed run times, low voltage disconnect thresholds, password protection and preventive maintenance reminders, the company added. Webasto Thermo & Comfort North America Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49151



Utility Trailer introduces new side skirt design

Hadley introduces SmartValve Electronic Height Control System

Utility Trailer Manufacturing Co. has introduced Utility Side Skirt 120A-4, which the company said is its new advanced aerodynamic side skirt design. According to the trailer maker, the USS-120A-4 is U.S. EPA SmartWay verified to achieve greater than 5% fuel savings and can be used in combination with low rolling resistance tires on Utility trailers to achieve California Air Resources Board (CARB) compliance for California operations. The USS-120A-4’s galvanized high tensile steel bracing system allows the side skirt to flex both inward and outward, and can be bent back to the original shape if damaged. The side skirt also is manufactured with a UV protected bi-directional fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP) construction. To further reduce impact damage, the forward edge of the skirt is securely bolted with a “spring” attachment at the support leg assembly. Utility said it is offering an industry-leading 5-year warranty on the USS120A-4, which is now available as a factory or dealer installation option for new Utility trailers. Retrofitting for existing trailers is available through Utility’s Aftermarket Department.

The new Hadley SmartValve Electronic Height Control System combines a valve manifold, external sensor and electronics into one compact unit that fits in the same envelope as a mechanical height control valve. Installed on a drive axle suspension, the company says SmartValve can save time and effort, and help reduce driver injuries by eliminating the need to crank the landing gear as often or as far, and by eliminating trips out of the cab for adjustment. Testing by Hadley at the Bosch Automotive Proving Grounds validated the time saved by SmartValve compared to mechanical height control valves in high-frequency drop-and-hook situations, according to the company. Hadley said it also tested SmartValve using SAE J1321 Type II Fuel Economy procedures, resulting in a 7% improvement on a specific tractor mode. The company says this means that SmartValve provides OEMs with a tool to design more aerodynamic tractors, which can automatically lower vehicle ride heights at highway speeds. The SmartValve Electronic Height Control System is available as a retrofit kit for specific applications, with additional coverage planned for the next few months. It will be available later this year for OEM installation.

Utility Trailers Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49152

Hadley Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49153

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49057 57

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Coxreels introduces HP 1125 series Coxreels, manufacturer of industrial-grade hose, cord and cable reels, said it is expanding capabilities of its existing hand crank and motorized 1125 Series reels to offer an upgraded swivel for high pressure applications. Coxreels said its new high pressure HP1125 models complement its highly popular 1125 Series. With a proven operating pressure up to 5,000 PSI, the external fluid path is configured with an electroless nickel plated steel 90-degree full-flow NPT swivel inlet and chemical resistant AFLAS seals to handle the most demanding tasks in any high spraying circumstance, the company said. The HP1225 models have all the standard features and benefits of their sister series, including a sturdy one-piece, all-welded “A” frame base for maximum stability, low profile outlet riser, and open drum slot design to provide a non-crimping, flat smooth hose wrap. This high pressure option is available for ½- and ¾-in. models. Coxreels said the expansion of its high pressure options is just another example of how the company designs the tools to help industry professionals get the job done. Coxreels

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49153

IPA announces Mobile Tire Pressure Equalizer According to Innovative Products of America Inc. (IPA), its Mobile Tire Pressure Equalizer (#9060) is a new, fast and efficient method to accurately read and inflate tire pressure on multiple tires at the same time. The maker launched the Equalizer to help fleets ensure they are realizing the greatest fuel economy and tire life possible to help reduce costs. The company said it allows fleets to ensure optimal fuel economy and tire life, and is designed to quickly inflate or deflate up to five tires at a time. It is equipped with two integrated high-capacity air regulators and two accurate, highresolution, glycerin-filled pressure gauges for consistent and precise tire pressure readings. The system is mounted on a welded steel cart with pneumatic tires and features wheel-specific, color-coded hoses with corresponding panel indicators and convenient hose hangers. Simple to hook up, easy to use and with accurate and repeatable results, the Mobile Tire Pressure Equalizer is a professional solution for tire service providers, IPA said. Innovative Products of America Inc. Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49154

Mitchell 1 introduces labor estimating solution Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49058

TruckLabor, a labor time estimating solution for medium- and heavy-duty trucks, has been introduced by Mitchell 1. The cloud-based system automatically provides the most current labor time data. Intuitive navigation in the program, according to the company, guides users through steps to quickly generate an estimate, including identifying a vehicle by year/make/model, choosing labor operations and adding parts. Features of TruckLabor include: • Standard Repair Times for consistent and accurate estimates • Coverage of all makes and models of Class 4-8 trucks • Estimator tool that allows customization of labor rates for different customer types or service operations • Automated labor data updates • Saved estimates automatically organized in one location Mitchell 1 Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49155

58 April 2013 | Fleet Equipment

Shop Equipment

Snap-on offers advanced digital borescope Snap-on said its new advanced digital borescope (BK6500) provides an enhanced viewing area and records in greater detail. With a touch screen interface, standard dual-view imager and a larger LCD screen, problems can be diagnosed quicker and easier, the maker added. The Advanced Digital Borescope features:

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49157

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49059

• A 4.3-in. (109 mm) diagonal LCD screen for enhanced viewing that has a 40% larger viewing area than the previous model • Ability to confirm mechanical problems before disassembly • Dual-imager lenses: straight ahead and 90 degree angle, providing unmatched image quality at 90 degrees and eliminating the FOD hazard of a detachable mirror • Imager length: 36 in. (914 mm) • Touchscreen interface for easy feature selection • Store the digital video image to internal memory or to a microSD card • Rechargeable lithium battery • USB port to transfer data • Two-year warranty via Snap-on repair centers In addition, the Snap-on Advanced Digital Borescope has many applications, including: • Inside cylinder to inspect: valve stem, valve seat, valve face, piston top and cylinder wall • Inside a manual transmission and axle housing •Under the dash to read radio codes • Inside door panels • Behind the engine block • Inside a radiator to check for corrosion • Brake pad wear (while mounted to the caliper) Snap-on Tools

sound into the natural sound emitted by the leak itself, the maker said. A 5LED signal-intensity indicator and audible alarm easily pinpoint the exact problem source. According to the company, it is so sensitive that it can detect leaks from orifices as small as 0.004 in. (0.1 mm) at 5.0 PSI (34 kPa), from a distance of 12 in. (30 cm). An Internal Noise Control feature buffers ambient noise, making it ideal for use in even extremely noisy environments. Tracerline Marksman II

Rapid Response: 800-930-7204 ext. 49156

Ultrasonic diagnostic tool ‘hears’ problems Tracerline Products has introduced the Tracerline Marksman II, which the company said is an ultrasonic diagnostic tool, a highly accurate instrument that converts and amplifies inaudible ultrasonic sound into audible “natural” sound. Now service technicians can easily hear sounds that represent significant problems such as air brake leaks, compressed air leaks, vacuum leaks, tire leaks and more, before they lead to major breakdowns. It uses a two-tiered approach to ensure accurate diagnosis. The ultrasonic receiver converts inaudible sound into audible sound using heterodyne circuitry. Then, its unique Sound Signature Technology fine tunes the audible 59


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Double Coin Tires/CMA LLC 63

Coming in

May • Equipment Technology Lighting & electrical systems

PostScript Navistar’s new president & CEO gives industry update

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(330) 670-1234 Ext. 215 About Advertising Opportunities! FLEET EQUIPMENT (ISSN 0747-2544) (April 2013, Volume 39, Number 4): Published monthly by Babcox Media, 3550 Embassy Parkway, Akron, OH 44333 U.S.A. Phone (330) 6701234, FAX (330) 670-0874. Periodical postage paid at Akron, OH 44333 and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Fleet Equipment, 3550 Embassy Pkwy, Akron, OH 44333. A limited number of complimentary subscriptions are available to individuals who meet the qualification requirements. Call (330) 670-1234, ext. 288, to speak to a subscription services representative or FAX us at (330) 670-5335. Paid Subscriptions are available for non-qualified subscribers at the following rates: U.S.: $69 for one year. Canada: $89 for one year. Canadian rates include GST. Ohio residents add current county sales tax. Other foreign rates/via airmail: $129 for one year. Payable in advance in U.S. funds. Mail payment to Fleet Equipment, P.O. Box 75692, Cleveland, OH 44101-4755. VISA, MasterCard or American Express accepted. Founded in 1974. © 2013 by Babcox Media, “Fleet Equipment” is a trademark of Babcox Media Inc., registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark office. All rights reserved. Publisher reserves the right to reject any subscription that does not conform to his standards or buying power coverage. Advertising which is below standard is refused. Opinions in signed articles and advertisements are not necessarily those of this magazine or its publisher. Diligent effort is made to ensure the integrity of every statement. Unsolicited manuscripts must be accompanied by return postage.

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Troy Clarke, president and CEO of Navistar Inc.

Troy Clarke, who assumed the position of president and CEO of Navistar Inc. on April 1, addressed industry-leading suppliers at the Mid-America Trucking Show on March 22 during the Heavy Duty Manufacturers Association (HDMA) breakfast. According to Clarke, our industry continues to face major changes, especially issues related to fuel efficiency, driver shortages, regulations and economics. With the price of diesel fuel, advancements in engine technology will never be good enough to offset the cost, but the entire industry is working on solutions. Clarke noted that 20% of the fuel efficiency is met with engines, but additional technologies like vehicle aerodynamics, lighter-weight components and lower rolling resistance tires will be needed—changes that all will increase the price of vehicles, but according to Clarke, “Costs can’t go up forever.” While diesel costs remain high, the lower price of natural gas and its availability will continue to be appealing in North America, and its use will likely drive down diesel prices, he added. As for driver shortages, Clarke contends that with a “dwindling pool of drivers, 25,000 fewer today than before CSA 2010 regulations, the industry will need to address issues like driver quality of life on the road.” When it comes to truck purchasing and the economics of the trucking business, Clarke suggested that we may have entered the “new normal,” pointing out that fleets are competing these days with more affordable intermodal options and ships that are arriving at more ports closer to their destinations. One of the changes resulting from this is a 50% drop in Class 6-7 truck buys. Those smaller loads are now being carried by either by Class 4-5 trucks delivering locally or consolidated loads on baby 8s. “With all these changes,” said Clarke, “I remain optimistic about the future—every delivery needs trucks.” /

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