Doleco USA introduced a double-decking systems for trailers and containers that can allow fleets to double payload capacity, and which the company said has advantages over existing systems in the market.
During the ATA's Technology & Maintenance Council’s annual meeting in Cleveland, Ohio, Doleco officials announced the new LayerLok XP, AF and SC decking systems. The LayerLok XP and AF are engineered for use in dry van and reefer applications. The LayerLok SC is specifically designed for installation in shipping containers.
With new-trailer orders heavily backlogged, fleets are looking for ways to improve efficiency. Double-decking systems have been around for almost three decades, but Doleco officials contend that popular systems are based on aircraft seating track, which they say was never designed for repetitive sliding or to carry vertical loads.
“The LayerLok XP, AF and SC double-decking systems are each purpose-designed and precision-engineered to meet the harsh demands of the shipping environment,” said Ralph Abato, president and managing director of Doleco USA. “The entry of a new major competitor, like Doleco, into the North America marketplace, will expand customer options and renew competitive vigor within the load securement industry generally, and within the double-decking segment specifically.”
All “captive” LayerLok systems never leave the trailer and can be stowed at ceiling height when not in use. While different in design, each of the three systems has been optimized to minimize material use and weight, while maximizing strength and durability.
The LayerLok XP system is made of proprietary materials that have a higher strength-to-weight ratio than competing products, allowing it to be designed with the thinnest track profiles in the world, according to the company.
The LayerLok XP features a “radically different” machined aluminum track design, with beveled teeth instead of holes or slots, said Doleco officials. The system’s steel head assembly and beam adjustment tool both glide seamlessly within recessed slots on either side of the teeth, virtually eliminating the snag points common to other systems, according to the company.
Optional, cushioned head assemblies enable the system to operate at just 60 decibels.
The LayerLok XP can also be configured with interconnecting horizontal tracks that use turntable intersections, enabling decking beams to seamlessly switch from vertical to horizontal travel. The unique feature allows users to accommodate a wider array of cargo capacity and securement needs, by letting decking beams serve double duty as shoring beams when needed.
The LayerLok AF is designed as an "intelligent alternative" to the most common aircraft-track-based systems and is modeled on a complementary design. Its tracks and decking beams are interchangeable with competing systems. Single-and double-track styles with surface-mount and semi-recessed versions are also available.
“LayerLok AF is designed as a universal solution for trailer OEMs and fleets that are comfortable with the status quo, but less comfortable with the lack of competitive sourcing and pricing for aircraft-track systems,” said Abato.
The LayerLok SC is designed for use in 20- and 40-foot shipping container applications. The steel tracks are engineered to be welded into position within the container body. In addition to optimizing container capacity, the LayerLok SC helps protect cargo and maintain its stability during intermodal transfers.
LayerLok XP, AF and SC were developed by The Netherlands-based LoadLok. LayerLok has been in use throughout Europe for more than 15 years and is already available in 42 countries worldwide. Through an agreement with LoadLok, Doleco is now the exclusive North American distributer and co-manufacturer of the LayerLok XP, AF and SC.
At TMC, Doleco announced it will give a "free" system to any qualifying fleet.
Doleco officials also showed off the DoNova PowerLash Textile Lashing Chain and PowerLift textile Chain Sling. These textile chains, introduced to the U.S. in 2018, consist of high-performance webbing made with Dyneema to create a chain that is as strong as steel and 85% lighter, according to the company.
The DoNova textile chain, which can be used as a traditional lashing or lifting chain, is a multilayered redundant system which is abrasion and cut-resistant. When used as a lashing chain, the DoNova PowerLash is as powerful as a 13mm grade 80 steel chain, with a lashing working load limit of 22,000 pounds.
Because they are so much lighter than traditional chains, they help with fuel savings, and the light weight and flexibility are easier and safer for operators to handle.
Incorporated in 2013, Doleco USA is a cargo securement, optimization and protection supplier in the United States. Doleco is a subsidiary of Dolezych GMBH, a German manufacturer and supplier of lifting equipment, slings, ropes and load-securing technologies, including the DoNova PowerLash Textile Lashing Chain and PowerLift textile Chain Slings.