CK Power began in 1976, with roots dating back nearly 90 years – always focused on diesel and gas engines, and power generation. Watch how the business utilizes Knapheide truck bodies to increase their success.
For years, metal construction has dominated the truck body industry conversation. Steel and aluminum have proven to be safe choices as fleets look to deliver in the toughest environments. But where does fiberglass-based composite construction rank in this mix? Frankly, pretty high on the list. These modern day wonders often exceed the performance of steel and aluminum truck bodies in head-to-head comparisons. But the myths surrounding these composites persist. Below we address a few of these.
1) Advanced Composites Can’t Handle the Most Demanding Work
Lack of toughness. Often this comes to the minds of fleet managers when considering composites as an option for purchase. However, this thinking has proven to be unfounded. Why? Because advanced fiberglass-based composites have a unique combination of lightweight construction and high-strength performance. In fact, some of the largest service companies in the U.S. opt for advanced composite service and line bodies. So, ultimately, we are talking about some seriously demanding conditions. Additionally, fiberglass composite trucks are compatible with most crane and aerial applications – again another key test in strength and durability. And advanced fiberglass composite material won’t dent, bend, crack or corrode, even in the worst climate conditions. When you add in the fuel savings received as a result of composites’ light weight construction, these advanced bodies should be considered on the modern fleet manager’s short list.
2) They’re Difficult to Repair
Repairing damaged fiberglass composites may seem to be a difficult task. In reality, this is not the case as composites are far easier to repair than steel or aluminum bodies. With some common tools, most damage can be isolated and repaired with a few key steps. Basic tools required include a buffing wheel, an orbital sander, a putty knife, some industrial tape, a straight edge for smoothing, and a utensil for mixing. In general, when compared to a steel or aluminum bodies, the repair effort is significantly more simple. And with composites, the smaller damaged area can be isolated, cutout and repaired…unlike metal bodies where bent steel or aluminum often requires full section repairs. With some basic body shop work your composite body will show no evidence of repair.
3) Composites are Pricey
Another misconception relates to affordability. Sure, composite bodies are more expensive than steel and aluminum on the front-end. And some might assume that because steel and aluminum bodies require a lower initial investment, that they are more cost effective. This simply isn’t true. A few key factors support the opinion that composites are the smarter investment:
- The long life of the composite body (averaging 20+ years), and the ability to transfer composite bodies from one chassis to another.
- Fuel savings from the lightweight design, which can equal up to $1,600 per year for a single truck driven only 25,000 miles.
- Reduced routine maintenance costs because of the reduced stress forced on brakes, shocks, and suspension components.
Marketing Manager at BrandFX Body Company
Los Angeles County, Cities of Long Beach and Seattle electrify fleets to improve MPG and promote sustainability
BOSTON - XL, the leader in connected vehicle electrification solutions for commercial and municipal fleets, is upfitting a combined 38 hybrid and plug-in hybrid electric trucks and vans for the City of Seattle, Los Angeles County and the City of Long Beach to improve fleet efficiency, increase MPG and reduce CO2 emissions. The municipalities expect to see a 25 percent increase in MPG on hybrid electric models and a 50 percent MPG increase in plug-in hybrid electric models compared to their standard gasoline fleet vehicles. The orders represent the first hybrid electric cargo and passenger van purchases for Los Angeles County and the City of Long Beach.
The West Coast of the United States has some of the most stringent emissions regulations and aggressive sustainability targets in the nation, and these three municipalities are among those making a long-term commitment to reducing the environmental impact of their fleet vehicles with XL hybrid (HEV) and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) electrification systems. With XL’s Fleet-Ready™ electrification technology, customers can improve fuel economy and reduce emissions without needing to invest in additional charging or fueling infrastructure, and with no impact on vehicle performance or driver requirements.
For example, California’s goalis to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent to reach 1990 levels by the year 2030, advancing the state’s leadership in alternative fuels and clean energy usage. Additionally, the City of Seattleis working to cut their greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent by the year 2025.
XL hybrid and plug-in hybrid electric technologies both leverage regenerative braking to capture and store energy during the braking process, and provide electric torque for acceleration. The company’s plug-in hybrid system, which leverages a 15 kWh lithium-ion battery pack, can be charged using standard wall outlets, or level 1 and 2 chargers. Following is what the municipalities are saying about their work with XL:
John Seevers, the City of Long Beach’s acquisitions superintendent (8 PHEV Ford F-150’s, 11 HEV Ford cargo vans): “We are always striving to be a leader in leveraging alternative fuel options for all applicable vehicle purchases. XL provides our fleet with cost-effective fleet electrification technology for our fire department, public service, parks department and other applications to help us save fuel and achieve our sustainability goals.”
Mike Quan, C.P.M for the County of Los Angeles Internal Services Department - Fleet Services (6 HEV Ford cargo vans): “The XLH system is helping us to be in line with the California greenhouse gas reduction standards for the vehicles we use in the County. And the XL Link telematics program will allow us to measure and analyze speed, idling, vehicle drive cycle, CO2 emissions reductions and MPG.”
Andrea Pratt, Green Fleet Program Manager of City of Seattle (13 HEV Ford ambulances and cargo vans): “We are constantly looking for ways to reduce fuel and emissions, but most options come with a heavy price tag. XL, however, does not have high incremental costs, and it’s an easy technology to incorporate, so our partnership with the company allows us to stay competitive with our green technology and work towards our sustainability goals.”
“The aggressive goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are driving the priorities for many state fleets and utilities,” said Clay Siegert, co-founder and chief operating officer of XL. “The XL technology is one of the few ways that local city and county fleets can immediately move closer toward these goals in a cost-effective and scalable way, without having to wait for charging or alternative fueling infrastructure to catch up to vehicle demand.”
The XL team will showcase its XLH hybrid-electric Ford F-250 and XLP plug-in hybrid electric Ford F-150 at the Government Fleet Expo in San Diego, California, June 4-7. Attendees can see the new Super Duty hybrid pickup truck in booth 920 and register to drive the plug-in hybrid F-150 during the Ride & Drive on June 4. For more information about XL fleet electrification technology, fleet managers can also contact email@example.com.
XL is the leader in connected fleet electrification solutions for commercial and municipal fleets, relied on by customers such as The Coca-Cola Company, Verizon, Yale University and the City of Boston. XL’s fleet customers can increase fuel economy by up to 25 percent and 50 percent respectively for Class 2 to 6 commercial fleets, as well as decrease operating costs, reduce carbon dioxide emissions and meet sustainability goals with zero impact on fleet operations or service. For more information, visit www.xlfleet.com or on Twitter @XLFleet.
Warren Mason with Harbor Truck Body shows off a custom Workmaster with all types of LED lighting and space galore. This was made custom per the customers request and specifications. See more at http://www.harbortruck.com
Highway Products builds a massive range of military-grade aluminum truck accessories. Our products have been engineered and overbuilt for every job, lifestyle and need. Whether you're a contractor, plumber, highway maintenence crew or just a "truck guy," we've got the ulitmate solution just waiting to be put on your truck. Your lifestyle and job commands respect, and our truck accessories will help you earn it.
Learn more at: https://www.highwayproducts.com/collections/truck-accessories/
Born in Idaho, made in the USA, DECKED innovates products that make working in and around vehicles more efficient, safer and easier. Our manufacturing partners help us produce the highest quality products on the market right from the heartland of America.
We started thinking about DECKED in 2011, and by 2014 we were shipping our first full bed-length drawer storage systems. With a relentless eye on product quality and customer satisfaction, we are driven by the needs of the working man and woman.
See more at https://decked.com/
With best-in-class* payload you’ll be able to work smart with more effective payload. Just one of the many reasons the 2018 Ford F-150 doesn’t just raise the bar. It is the bar.
*Max payload on F-150 XL Regular Cab, 8’ box, 5.0L, 4X2, Heavy Duty Payload Pkg. and 18” Heavy Duty Wheels. Not shown. Class is Full-Size Pickups under 8,500 lbs. GVWR based on Ford segmentation.
Master Mechanic™ Series Crane Bodies come in a variety of sizes and configurations to meet your particular project requirements. Built to withstand your industry's toughest environment, models range from nine feet to 14 feet in body length, 60 inches to 120 inches in cab-to-axle chassis and up to 12,000-pound weight capacity.
These Master Mechanic utility bodies offer infinitely adjustable shelving that gives you control over your storage capabilities and a modular design that reduces long-term operating costs having to repair and replace components. The Master Mechanic Series is engineered with a minimum of two horizontal cross-members for a substructure that rivals the strength and stability of any other body on the market.
Adrian Steel's new Drop-Down Ladder Rack can be operated by technicians 5'4" or taller. These new ladder racks are constructed of durable and corrosion-resistant aluminum and have innovative adjustment knobs that allow users to set up their ladder rack in seconds.
“I spoke to the directorate last week [early October] and they are still confident they can get this final rule out before then,” Graham Brent said in a phone interview in mid October.
“I’ll only say they’ve been pretty confident before and they haven’t managed to meet the deadline,” Brent added.
In fact, the day before the previous deadline of Nov. 10, 2017, OSHA published a notice on the Federal Register that confirmed a long-anticipated extension.
The operator certification requirement was included in an update to OSHA standard for cranes and derricks in construction — called 29 CFR Part 1926 — published in 2010. Most of the provisions went into effect soon after, Brent said.
Some exclusions apply
The proposed rule excludes cranes of 2,000 pounds capacity or less. “This standard applies to power-operated equipment, when used in construction, that can hoist, lower and horizontally move a suspended load,” the proposed regulations say. They specifically include “service/mechanic trucks with a hoisting device” but also exclude a “mechanic’s truck with a hoisting device when used in activities related to equipment maintenance and repair.”
Since service trucks are used primarily for repairing and maintaining equipment, the certification requirement usually doesn’t apply. However, Brent outlined a scenario where a service truck operator goes to a jobsite expecting to work on an engine and someone else on the site notices the crane and asks the operator to lift some pipe.
“Of course the guy is going to do that,” Brent said. “And that’s construction. So as an employer you want to be completely covered 100 percent of the time. And the way to do that is to have them certified.”
Another grey area is that service truck cranes are also used to hoist propane tanks. The wrinkle is that when a crane merely swaps an empty tank with a full one, that’s considered maintenance. But when a crane installs a propane tank for the first time, that’s regarded as construction.
Propane group seeks exemption
The National Propane Gas Association has called for OSHA to exempt truck-mounted crane delivering propane tanks from the regulations and asked for it to delay the Nov. 10, 2018 deadline. “This certification will cost the industry an estimated $151 million every five years,” said a posting on the association website.
The association even threatened to press the case to President Trump. “With the compliance deadline coming up in November, let’s tell The White House how much this rule impacts our industry so they will intervene with OSHA on our industry’s behalf.”
The NCCCO, in a July 5, 2018 letter to Loren Sweatt, the deputy assistant secretary of labor at OSHA, said it would “reluctantly support” another six month extension to the rule-making process. “We said, frankly, no because it’s taken us so long to get here that we think six months is probably not going to make a whole of difference,” Brent said.
He added that the delay “absolutely has maintained the risk because certification is a risk mitigator.” What’s driving the call for certification is the marketplace, he said, noting that 16 states already have their own crane operator certification requirements and that many job postings for crane operators require certifications.
“So if you’re a crane operator it’s in your own interest frankly to get certified,” Brent said.
The new rule will cover states and territories lacking crane certification requirements and create a “federal floor” that state regulations must meet at a minimum.
1,000 service truck certifications
About five years ago, the service truck industry formed a committee of manufacturers, dealers, users, trainers and others to work with the NCCCO to develop a certification for service truck crane operators. In its first year, the service truck program only certified about 75 operators. But the program has picked up steam and at last count had certified about 1,000 service truck operators, Brent said.
(Another certification body, Crane Institute Certification, has also launched a certification program for service truck crane operators.)
Since the last deadline extension on the regulations, OSHA has proposed removing a provision that required different levels of certification based on lifting capacity, although testing agencies can still do so. That’s a move the NCCCO supports.
OSHA also considered but declined to include an exemption for operators of cranes in the 5,000 to 35,000 pound capacity range. The NCCCO supports that move as well.
“What they said was the same risks are present regardless of the capacity,” Brent said, although he was at a loss to explain why that proposal didn’t also cover cranes from 2,000 to 5,000 pounds capacity.
One area where the NCCCO disagrees with OSHA is a proposal that trainers not be required to be certified operators.
In its response, the NCCCO said that “while certification may not be an appropriate ‘sole’ crit
erion or a sufficient indication of competence as a trainer, it should be regarded as an appropriately necessary condition of establishing such competence and ensuring a ‘baseline’ of knowledge and skills.”
Numbers hard to estimate
Brent said the NCCCO has currently certified about 100,000 crane operators, which he “conservatively” estimated is 80 percent of all the certified operators. But how many others are still to be certified, “frankly, nobody knows,” he said.
“We won’t really know before the whole thing shakes out,” he added. “It’s obviously more than 100,000. Is it 200,000? Probably not actually. We’ve been doing this for 23 years and we’ve been talking about it now as a federal rule for at least 15. We’ve had deadlines come and go but these deadlines have had the effect of focusing people’s attention and getting trained and certified. So we’ve had spurts along the way. I’ve got to think, though, we’re it’s only half way there.”
The rules themselves might even lead to companies having fewer crane operators because firms might decide to reduce the cost of certification and only assign specific people to operate the cranes and assign others who formerly did some crane operating to other duties. Indeed, he cited the example of an unnamed petrochemical company that he recalled doing just that.
“That’s why it’s completely impossible to estimate because as soon as you can get an accurate number right this minute, they will change or probably reduce as a result of the mandatory requirement coming in,” Brent said.
— Keith Norbury
National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA)
Source: Service Truck Magazine
November 19, 2018
When making purchasing decisions, we’re seeing that commercial van customers are considering TCO over the lifetime of their vehicle. They are prioritizing ease of up-fit and customization options, proven powertrain options, and strong dealer networks. One of the most frustrating up-fit items with commercial
vans is the air compressor.
Until recently, fleets were limited to two options:
- An electric drive air compressor that takes up too much valuable cargo space, is underpowered, and plainly just not suited for commercial work.
- A gas drive reciprocating air compressor which takes up even more space, is heavy and is known to cause heat damage in the interior of vans. Further, these types of compressors cause safety issues due to exhaust fumes not being properly ventilated, and gas tanks being filled inside the cargo area.
Learn more at: https://www.vmacair.com/blog/choosing-air-compressor-commercial-van/