HeavyDuty Trucking – Issue

December 2015

Cover Story By Tom Berg
The Class 8 Update: Sales and New Products

After an up and down year of sales and a new one on the horizon, all of the major truck manufacturers are showcasing their visions for the future.

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Features

Reduce Your Maintenance Burden With Air Disc Brakes Air disc brakes require minimal routine maintenance. Most of the moving parts are internal. Brake pads will often last for the first life of a tractor. Photos: Jim Park

By Jim Park

When you look at the reduced and simplified maintenance requirements of air disc brakes, better stopping power becomes the icing on the cake.

Maintaining Air Springs and Shock Absorbers This brand-new air spring won’t need much attention until it’s worked for many miles and its rubber bag ages through contact with the elements. Its operating range is 40 to 100 psi. Photo: ContiTech North America

By Tom Berg

Air suspensions are subject to wear and aging, and must be regularly inspected and repaired or replaced when necessary.

What Can Mobile Apps Do For You? Trucker Path, San Jose, Calif., recently added load matching features to its lineup of mobile apps. The company introduced a trip planning app in 2013. Photo: Trucker Path

By Jim Beach

There are hundreds of applications for commercial truck drivers and fleet managers and more are announced every week - so how do you navigate the blizzard of mobile apps to find the best ones for you?

6 Trends to Track in 2016 From the economy to driver recruitment/retention, there will be several familiar faces in the trends to follow closely in the new year.

By David Cullen

From the economy to driver recruitment and retention, there will be several familiar faces in the trends to follow closely in the new year.

Departments

Special Dumps Haul Bulk and Palletized Cargo Near and Far Photo: East Manufacturing

By Tom Berg

Long-hauling is usually done with vans, reefers and flatbeds. But a little-noticed segment of trucking uses dump trailers that carry a wide variety of commodities.

Alkane Achieves DOT Compliance, Builds New Assembly Facility Photo: Alkane Truck Company

By IMI

Alkane Truck Co. recently achieved compliance certification from the U.S. Department of Transportation for its propane-fueled Class 7 cab-over-engine trucks, which will be assembled at a new plant in South Carolina starting in 2016.

5 Tips to Prevent Wheel Separation Impact wrenches are fine for running wheel nuts up onto the studs, but a torque wrench must be used to set the nuts. Retorquing is highly recommended, but few, apparently, get around to it. Photos: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Research into past incidents shows inadequate maintenance is the root cause of most wheel separation incidents.

Today’s Trailer Landing Gear Rust and corrosion are not just a problem for the exterior, it can also creep into the interior parts, which is why it’s important to ensure that all components are kept greased and free of moisture and corrosive chlorides. Photo: Jost International

By Stephane Babcock

Landing gear can make a driver’s job that much easier at the beginning and end of a haul, depending on how well the components are protected and how well they work together.

Must You Provide Only Positive D&A Tests to Prospective Employers? Negative!

By Betty Weiland

When a motor carrier receives an inquiry into a current or former driver’s drug and alcohol testing history, what specifically is the company required to release?

Test Drives

Test Drive: New MX-11 Engine Performs for Peterbilt Peterbilt service engineer Chadd Christian’s fingers indicate sensors for EGR, turbocharger and humidity. His thumb points to the variable-geometry turbo’s water-cooled electronic controls. The big U-shaped device is the air cleaner box with the intake air filter inside. Photos: Tom Berg

By Tom Berg

Truckers who used to crave a long-nose Pete with a big-bore engine might be surprised by Paccar’s new smaller powerhouse.

Editorials

Commentary: What Economic Indicators Tell Us About Shifting Freight Trends

By Evan Lockridge

Recent reports on freight movements, shipper spending and even the spot market can be downright confusing if you’re trying to figure what’s happening to the nation’s freight market and overall economic health.

Commentary: A New View of Truck Repair Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

While truck dealers and other service providers may not be able to do anything to fix the driver shortage, they can play a big role in helping keep trucks on the road longer, which can reduce the need for additional drivers.

Commentary: Gizmology Games Rolf Lockwood

By Rolf Lockwood

While driver-assisting technology is capable of making us safer, in reality it is rarely frustration free.

Commentary: 10 Things to Take Away From the Year of the Driver Deborah Lockridge

By Deborah Lockridge

With another year behind us, Editor in Chief Deborah Lockridge takes a look back at the year of the driver.

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