HeavyDuty Trucking – Issue

April 2014

Cover Story
Finding and Keeping Drivers With The One-Two Punch: Pay & Respect
By Deborah Lockridge & Kate Harlow

Recruiting and retention. It’s akin to bailing water out of a boat that has a hole in it. You really have to plug the hole first, otherwise you’re constantly fighting to stay afloat. In the trucking industry, that hole is driver retention.

Features

A Systems Approach to Start/Charge System Maintenance All that empty space between the winding is unused space. Square-wire windings make total use of the space and produce higher output.

By Jim Park

We have to stop thinking of our start/charge systems as simply a handful of separate components, and start viewing them as a system. From alternators to batteries and starters, cables and regulators, and even add-on components like low-voltage cut-off switches and DC/AV inverters, each can impact the component next to it.

Is Cloud Computing Right For You?

By Jim Beach

Today, fleets have an alternative to on-site rooms full of computer servers – using a hosted environment for your computing needs, known as cloud computing. In the cloud computing environment, the servers are maintained by a third party (or maybe your enterprise software vendor) and fleets access applications and data via a web interface.

Transmission Trends Most automated manual transmissions go into highway tractors, but Eaton offers three vocational versions of the UltraShift Plus for on/off-road trucks such as dumps and mixers.

By Tom Berg

The swing continues toward heavy automated products, but manuals still dominate. Light and medium trucks are almost all ‘shiftless.’

Get Ready to Say Goodbye to Paper Logs

By Oliver Patton

After 28 years of proposals, studies, drafts, revisions, legal battles and technological innovations – not to mention an Act of Congress – federal regulators are close to requiring most interstate commercial drivers to keep track of their work hours with an electronic device.

Departments

Tending Liftgate Batteries

By Tom Berg

Bruce Purkey knows where the electrons go. And, as president of Purkey’s Fleet Electric and his many activities in the Technology & Maintenance Council of the American Trucking Associations, he’s well aware that some of them flow to batteries that support the electric-over-hydraulic systems for liftgates on trucks and trailers. Usually there are two and as many as four Group 31 batteries, like the ones on a truck or tractor.

Making Safety a Priority Verst Group Logistics has a strong commitment to safety and has invested in safety technology for its fleet.

By Kate Harlow

In 2012, Verst Group Logistics had zero Department of Transportation recordable accidents. In 2013, to prove the previous year wasn’t just a fluke, Verst only had one DOT-recordable accident. How did this Kentucky-based logistics provider, with a fleet of 90 power units and 250 trailers, attain such a low number of accidents?

Ounces of Prevention Means Miles of Cure For Your Tires Alignment and balancing can keep your tires and your truck running straight and true.

By Jim Park

Unlike their human counterparts, dead tires do tell tales. And aside from underinflation and road strikes, the tales most commonly told of tires robbing their owners of full value revolve around alignment. Scrubbing and scuffing and driving tires off in different directions, poor alignment kills tires faster than almost any other mechanical malady.

Test Drives

Test Drive: Clarke-APG Dual-Fuel Glider This Columbia sleeper-cab tractor looks new, because most of it is. The powertrain components are remanufactured. Daimler Trucks North America offers glider kits for most Freightliner and some Western Star models. The Wilson hopper-bottom trailer carries crushed lime.

By Tom Berg

From the ground and behind the wheel, you’d think this Freightliner Columbia is brand new. This was obvious on a run out on Interstate 70 in eastern Missouri, pulling a hopper-bottom trailer with a heavy load of granulated lime destined for an animal-food plant in Montgomery City, west of St. Louis. It rode, shifted and ran like new, and was just as comfortable.

Editorials

Commentary: Remanufacturing Redux Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

Remanufacturing has been in the news quite a bit lately. I recently wrote about the need to include remanufactured parts as an integral part of your fleet’s overall parts strategy.

Commentary: Engines to Watch Rolf Lockwood

By Rolf Lockwood, Executive Contributing Editor

Executive Contributing Editor Rolf Lockwood discusses the potential of the interesting opposed-piston/opposed-cylinder engine.

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