Productivity, safety and fuel economy could be increased by running trucks together. But is it practical?
ATA's Technology & Maintenance Council just adopted a White Paper: Automated Driving and Platooning Issues and Opportunities discussing where development is and what its prospects are. READ MORE
Posted @ Thursday, October 1, 2015 3:00 PM | »
Another trailer axle would add 11,000 pounds of gross weight, but does it make dollars and sense?
The strongest argument against heavier rigs is the lack of payback due to low revenue from stingy shippers. That's the "market" at work. READ MORE
Posted @ Monday, September 21, 2015 8:00 AM | »
FlowBelow Aero devices control air flow and boost economy by 3%, says Indian River Transport.
Stainless steel tanker trailers look smooth enough to easily slip through the air, but they have characteristics that cause drag. One fleet has turned to an aero system for the tractor tandems to help smooth the air flow over the trailer. READ MORE
Posted @ Wednesday, September 9, 2015 5:00 PM | »
Computational fluid analysis interpreted air flow over the trailer panels’ surfaces, finding some drag produced by rivet heads.
Lord Corp., which makes bonding adhesives, has done research that indicates eliminating rivets from a trailer’s walls might cut aerodynamic drag by about 1%. READ MORE
Posted @ Wednesday, August 26, 2015 3:00 AM | »
You’d think the woman driving the van would’ve seen the rig sitting there with its tail and marker lights on, and its red-and-white reflectors aglow from her van’s headlights.
Senior Editor Tom Berg ponders fatal rear-end crashes -- a type of crash that killed a college buddy many years ago. READ MORE
Posted @ Friday, August 14, 2015 2:00 PM | »
One-third of all food produced goes to waste. If it weren't, it's possible that nobody would go hungry.
“If food waste were a country, it would be the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases behind China and the United States." Tom Berg's Trailer Talk blog looks at a new book on food waste whose authors are with the parent company of Carrier Transicold READ MORE
Posted @ Wednesday, August 5, 2015 9:00 AM | »
How many of these items are usable in your van trailers?
While poring through more than 1,300 pages of proposed regulations, staffers found themselves immersed in details of trailer design, including weight reduction. READ MORE
Posted @ Wednesday, July 22, 2015 3:00 PM | »
These steel boxes are exceptionally strong, fire resistant and weatherproof, and deserve to be repurposed instead of going to scrap.
Containers are made of heavy gauge steel and make excellent structural components. And they’re far cheaper and “greener” than buying traditional materials like lumber for that purpose. READ MORE
Posted @ Friday, July 17, 2015 12:00 AM | »
Armored vehicles can “road march” to battlefields, but suffer high rates of wear and tear when doing so. It’s far better to carry them.
The U.S. Army operates some of the more serious tractor-trailer combinations in the world, as Tom Berg explores in his Trailer Talk blog. The M1000 gooseneck trailer, for instance, weighs 50,000 pounds before it's even loaded. READ MORE
Posted @ Thursday, July 9, 2015 10:00 AM | »
Spread tandems sometimes generate extreme lateral forces, and drop-decks use smaller sizes that are especially vulnerable to damage.
Dropdeck trailers with spread-axle tandems are torture on tires. Tom Berg explores one tire maker's quest to design a product to stand up to the beating in his Trailer Talk blog. READ MORE
Posted @ Thursday, July 2, 2015 1:00 PM | »
Ever get stuck behind a semi you want to pass? You'd appreciate the large-screen TV on its rear doors.
Many traffic accidents in Argentina happen when motorists try to pass slower vehicles on two-lane roads.Here's a fix. READ MORE
Posted @ Monday, June 22, 2015 3:00 PM | »
At 20 feet in diameter and weighing 28,000 pounds, the load was big, heavy and priceless.
What transpired was a meticulously planned two-day journey involving Belyea Truck Co. and Pacific Crane & Rigging, plus support vehicles, California Highway Patrol motorcycle escorts, and cars bearing press reporters and photographers. READ MORE
Posted @ Wednesday, June 17, 2015 6:00 AM | »
New composite leaf springs should last longer than steel and ride almost as well as air-ride, SAF-Holland says.
Air-ride's more complex and requires more maintenance, so some fleets that watch costs very closely never got on the air-ride band wagon. READ MORE
Posted @ Friday, June 5, 2015 10:40 AM | »
Experts agree that wind drag on trailers is more significant than what the tractor faces.
ATDynamics, now part of Stemco, says 75% of wind drag at highway speeds comes from the trailer. READ MORE
Posted @ Monday, June 1, 2015 5:19 AM | »
Trucks, on the road or on flatcars, are often part of model railroads, as Senior Editor Tom Berg found at the Toy Train Museum.
There was a time when railroads were in the motor transport business, as their parent companies recognized that freight was being grabbed by fast, flexible long-haul trucks and they might as well grab some of the revenue. READ MORE
Posted @ Thursday, May 7, 2015 8:29 AM | »
An arrow-shaped aero device diverts wind away from the tandem, while a covering of the frame rails and crossmembers reduces turbulence there.
Unlike most skirts that are stationary, the stinger moves with the tandem as it’s slid fore and aft, so it smooths air flow no matter where the tandem is set, said the system’s inventor. READ MORE
Posted @ Tuesday, April 28, 2015 11:53 AM | »
Sometimes intermodal shipping works and sometimes it doesn’t.
Senior Editor Tom Berg explores why one intermodal refrigerated operation is expanding, in contrast to another that is suing railroads in blame for its demise, in his Trailer Talk blog. READ MORE
Posted @ Monday, April 20, 2015 12:00 AM | »
Claims made by Cold Train founders in their $41 million suit, announced on Tuesday, illustrate how the railroads, like truckers, can’t handle all the business being thrown at them. READ MORE
Posted @ Tuesday, April 7, 2015 4:46 PM | »
Manac offered a quick look at the three trailer types in its booth at MATS.
Different buyers have different considerations, which is why trailer manufacturers offer the three different types. Manac offered a quick look at the three trailer types in its booth at MATS. READ MORE
Posted @ Tuesday, March 31, 2015 11:09 AM | »
Refiners are buying trucks to fetch more desirable crude oil than what they’re getting through pipelines. READ MORE
Posted @ Tuesday, March 24, 2015 11:48 AM | »
Four people died when their car ran into a semitrailer sitting on a busy highway. How'd it happen?
It could've been driver error, mechanical failure or both, and we won't know for a while. But it sure matters. READ MORE
Posted @ Tuesday, March 17, 2015 12:51 PM | »
Better aero fairings must save at least 9% in fuel to get the new designation
What does the new "Elite" level of fuel-saving devices offered by the EPA SmartWay program mean? Senior Editor Tom Berg explores the topic in his Trailer Talk blog. READ MORE
Posted @ Thursday, March 12, 2015 1:20 PM | »
Elite means a set of equipment will save at least 9% in fuel at highway speeds – nothing to blow off with a shrug.
The Tail resembles the Trailer Tail from ATDynamics, but seems unique in that its panels automatically deploy when the rig reaches about 45 mph, then fold up as it slows down. READ MORE
Posted @ Tuesday, March 3, 2015 8:00 AM | »
A trucker unwittingly takes a minivan for the ride of its life.
A minivan plowed into the rear of a semi on I-75 in northern Michigan, and got dragged along for miles by the rig because its driver was totally unaware that he had something hanging on. READ MORE
Posted @ Thursday, February 19, 2015 5:00 PM | »
Follow the Truck Route or you'll be in trouble.
Sometimes, following the truck route is the only way to stay safe, as Senior Editor Tom Berg finds when he travels through a small town in Ohio. READ MORE
Posted @ Tuesday, February 10, 2015 6:00 PM | »