Raine Parker http://www.arwald.co.za 4m 1,096
The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
The Evolution of Trucks and Trailers
From carrying temperature-sensitive food products across the country to hauling heavy construction equipment, tanker trailers are used for different commercial and domestic needs in the modern world. It would be safe to say that these huge, but extremely useful heavy locomotives have indeed come a long way from the horse-drawn tankers of the 19th century.
Tanker trailers trace their origin to the horse-drawn tankers of the 1880s that were used to transport gasoline from refineries. Towards the early part of the 20th century, Anglo-American, a subsidiary of Standard Oil, laid the foundation for our modern trailers, by developing the first motorized oil tanker truck. It was not long before that these vehicles, in addition to hauling products, started displaying the names of companies of the sides, serving as yet another form of advertising.
Today, there are about 20 different types of trailers, with the most common type being the box or van trailers. Apparently, modern-day trucks can carry 5 times more goods in terms of miles than an average 1950s truck. Even the productivity of the trucks has increased by 35% in the last 15 years. Each make is different and built specifically for the type of product it is meant to transport. For example, the Conestoga trailers are built with a flexible retractable roof and siding and are used to carry large pieces of equipment that can only be lifted by an overhead crane. Other tanker trucks are refrigerated or well insulated to transport liquid food products such as milk, water or juices across long distances.
For some more interesting facts and figures about these amazing vehicles and their evolution through the years, have a look at the below infographic created by Arwald Tanker Trailers, a leading SABS and ARMSCOR approved tanker and trailer manufacturer in South Africa.
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ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT TANK TRAILERS
Approximately 18000 tank trailers run on the roads of UK every year, serving different business and domestic needs. Here we take some time to drive through a few pieces of information on these extremely useful heavy locomotives.
Horse-drawn tankers transport gasoline from refineries
The first motorized oil tanker truck is developed by Anglo-American – a subsidiary of Standard Oil.
Oil tanker trucks resemble billboards, displaying the name of the company whose product they were hauling.
The revolutionary Diamond T’s 1933 models, integrating a cab and tank in a rounded package and a rear-mounted six-cylinder engine, is released.
The stylish 9000 series is introduced by White, comprising of a streamlined tank with a V-12 engine.
The earliest trucks, fitted to carry refined products such as gasoline, kerosene, stove distillate, and fuel oil, had 22 different makes:
1900 – 1995: White, Road Oiler
1901 – 1916: Locomobile, Tarvia (road oiler)
1901 – DATE: Mack, The Texas Company
1903 – N/A: Dart, Hawkeye Oil Company
1905 – DATE: Ford, Standard Oil
1906 – 1967: Reo, Texas, Productos de Petroleo
1907: Pierce-Arrow, The American Oil Co.
1908 – 1933: Rayolight Oil (Standard Oil of Ohio)
1909 – 1935: Pierce Arrow, The American Oil Co.
1910 – 1923: Sullivan, Monroe County Oil Co.
1910 – 1929: Kelly, n/a
1910 – 1927: Wilcox, Oylrite Brands (Independent Oil Co.)
1910 – 1952: Corbitt, Speedway gasoline (Red “C” Oil Mfg. Co.)
1910 – 1959: Federal, White Blaze (Kansas City Fuel Oil Co.)
1911 – 1918: Sauer (Road oiler)
1911 – 1932: Harvey, n/a
1911 – 1939: Indiana, Polarine gasoline and Perfection oil (Standard oil)
1911 – DATE: GMC, The Texas Company
1912 – 1926: Wisconsin, Polarine (Standard Oil Co.)
1912 – 1926: Hewitt-Ludlow, n/a
1913 – N/A: Hendrickson, Pioneer gasoline
1914- 1930: Denby, Jordan Oil Co.
1916 – 1948: Doane, Mohawk gasoline
1957 – 1958: Corbitt, Speedway gasoline (Red “C” Oil Mfg. Co.)
Box/Van trailers: most common type of trailers. Standard lengths vary from 7.50m to 13.60m.
Bus-bodied trailers: hitched to a tractor unit to form a trailer bus, a simple alternative to building a rigid bus.
Car carrier trailers: used for carrying multiple cars, usually new cars from the manufacturer.
Conestoga trailers: have a flexible retractable roof and siding used to carry large pieces of equipment that can only be lifted by an overhead crane.
Curtain-siders: similar to box trailers except the side are movable curtains made of reinforced fabric coated with a waterproof coating.
Drop-desk trailers: have a floor that drops down a level once clear of the tractor unit.
Double deckers: generally a stepped box or curtain siders, with box trailers having either a fixed or movable deck, and curtain sides having either a fixed or hinged second deck.
Dry bulk trailers: resemble big tankers, but are used for cement, sand, barite, flour, and other dry powder materials.
Dump trucks: cargo container in which one end can be raised to allow the cargo to slide out the other.
Flatbeds: consist of just a load floor and removable side rails and a bulkhead in front to protect the tractor in the event of a load shift.
Hopper bottoms: are usually used to haul grain, but can be used to haul other materials.
Live bottom trailers: have a conveyor belt on the bottom of the trailer tub that pushes the load material out of the back of the trailer.
Livestock trailers: usually have two levels (or three for hogs) to maximize capacity.
Lowboy trailers: a type of flatbed in which the load floor is as close to the ground as possible, most commonly used to haul heavy equipment, cranes, bulldozers, etc.
Refrigerator trailers: box trailers with a heating/cooling unit (reefer) attached, used for hauling produce, frozen foods, meat, flowers, etc.
Refrigerator tank trailers: well insulated or refrigerated trailers to haul bulk liquid foods, such as liquid sugar, water, wine, milk, or juices.
Sidelifter semi-trailers: have hydraulic cranes mounted at both ends of the chassis allowing for the loading and unloading of shipping containers.
Tank chassis trailers: used for hauling liquids such as gasoline and alcohol.
A “frac” tank trailers: shaped like a wedge and when unhitched, its bottom side lies flat on the ground. Typically used during hydraulic fracturing at oil wells or for petrochemical industries.
- Vehicle weight (gross): 44 tonnes
- Width: 2.55 m
- Individual truck length: 12 m
- Articulated truck and trailer length: 16.5 m
- Axles: 6 sets
- Length of road trains: 18.75 m
Modern trucks can carry 5 times more goods in terms of tonne miles than a typical 1950s truck.
The average working life of a truck is now 9 years.
In the last 15 years harmful exhaust particulates are down 94% and Nox are down 75%.
A modern truck is 35% more productive than one of 15 years ago.
1 shipment by a fully loaded 44 tonners is equal to 300 car jounreys moving the same goods.
60% of UK road freight is food-related.
ARWALD TANKER TRAILERS