HeavyDuty Trucking – Issue

July 2016

Cover Story By Denise Rondini
8 Myths About Heavy-Duty Truck Parts

The trucking industry is rife with misconceptions about parts that make it difficult for fleet managers to be sure they are getting the parts they need.

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Features

The 2016 Trailers Update

By Tom Berg

New features displayed at truck shows and announced separately cut weight, add ruggedness and utility.

Why You Should Consider Advanced Safety Systems Lytx, which specializes in video-based telematics systems, says the vehicle, the driver and the environment all must be taken into account for “significant and enduring safety improvements.”

By Jack Roberts

With all of the advancements in the past 5-10 years, there is a strong case, both financially and in terms of sheer practicality, for fleets to evaluate and spec advanced safety systems on their trucks today.

Driver Retention Begins With Recruiting Photo: Boyd Bros

By David Cullen

You want to develop a satisfied workforce of drivers who view their employer as a committed partner rather than the highest bidder at the moment. It’s not easy. It requires not just the efforts of the recruiting department, but the engagement of top management.

Departments

Trailer Tires: Choosing the Best Strategy for Your Fleet Trailer tires are often abused and neglected, but they still play an important role in getting freight delivered. They are worthy of more than a passing thought. Photo: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Do you need to put new tires on a trailer? As it turns out, a lot of fleets do buy new tires for trailers, and for very good reasons.

Kottke Trucking Analyzes Freight to Improve Revenue per Mile Being able to analyze the profitability of loads, lanes, customers and more has helped Kottke Trucking increase revenue. Photo: Kottke Trucking

By Deborah Lockridge

Kottke Trucking's search for more insight into their operations eventually led them to TCG’s Activity-Based Costing and Profitability Management Tools. The fleet says it’s seen an increase in revenue per mile of 10.5% over the past 18 months by using TCG’s Cost Information System to make better decisions.

Kenworth T680 Shows off Lightweight Specs Kenworth says the tractor weighs about 15,000 pounds with 100 gallons of fuel. Among the lightweight components are the standard aluminum cab and optional Alcoa wheels. Photos: Tom Berg

By Tom Berg

Even with a roomy sleeper, this T680 scales at just 14,200 pounds, making heavy payloads possible.

Test Drives

Test Drive: Western Star’s 6900XD Heavy, Heavy Hauler Western Star’s new 6900XD, hooked to a SmithCo 70-ton side dump trailer. Photos: John G. Smith

By Jim Park

Western Star’s 6900XD pulls 70 metric tons through a dirt road course and comes through with flying colors.

A Different Approach to Fuel Efficiency Coaching Our test truck was a rented 2013 Volvo VNL. Vnomic’s development test truck is in the background. Photo: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Vnomics’ True Fuel is a monitoring device that encourages drivers to do better without getting on their nerves or taking away drivability, while providing back-office data that helps fleets coach and instruct drivers on better driving habits to save fuel.

Editorials

Spot Freight Market Could Be Looking Up The collapse of oil prices and the resulting pullback from hydraulic fracturingoperations had a major effect on the spot market.

By Evan Lockridge

If you’ve given up on the truckload spot freight market or have been using it less because of the past year’s depressed rates, it might be time to give it a second look.

It's Not Really About the Name on the Box Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

Things can get confusing when a truck is down and a part is needed to complete a repair. Which part is right in a given situation can be hard to tell, and often it has nothing to do with whose name is on the box the part comes in..

Commentary: Autonomous by Retrofit Rolf Lockwood

By Rolf Lockwood

A $30,000 self-driving kit available as an aftermarket retrofit for existing trucks... strikes me as something pretty remarkable.

Commentary: Devil's in the Details of California Emissions Dream Deborah Lockridge

By Deborah Lockridge

Yes, it’s a worthy goal to improve the environment and public health by reducing emissions. But you can’t blame trucking for looking at proposals to further cut NOx with a good bit of trepidation.

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The expert, Steve Carlson from Xantrex, will answer your questions

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Transmissions

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