UD Proves It Has The Wood On Other Trucks

Monday, 11 October 2010 | Print

A Geelong company specialising in the production of pre-fabricated timber trusses and wall frames has switched almost 50 percent of its truck fleet to UD Trucks on the basis of better purchase price and fuel economy.

Timbertruss, which has been based in Geelong for the past 20 years initially purchased one UD to trial it on its delivery fleet, which is tasked with transporting completed pre-fab trusses and wall frames to building sites all over Geelong and the Melbourne metro area.

According to the company's purchasing manager Travis McDonald the first UD the company acquired in 2008, a PK10, performed so well that as more trucks came up for renewal, the decision was made to purchase additional UDs.

"That first UD shaped up so well in terms of initial purchase price, fuel economy and driver comfort that it was hard to choose another brand for ongoing purchases," Travis McDonald said.

"Following the initial PK10 we purchased another similar truck and then had to replace some of our prime movers, so we had a close look at UD's GW line up.

"They measured up in every area and we have since purchased a GW400 and two GW470s for delivering our heavier frames and trusses on semi trailers."

With five UDs now in the fleet and running successfully, Timbertruss is reaping the benefits of lower running costs and contented drivers.

"The drivers on our fleet love them, they don't have to carry huge weight, but our fleet is kept pretty busy and while we don't do huge kilometres, the drivers have long days at the wheel," Travis said.

"It is important that we give them a good working environment where they can operate at their most efficient.

"Working between Geelong and Melbourne and around the metro area there is a lot of traffic and a lot of stop start driving, so if you can keep the driver's comfortable they will perform better and be more efficient."

Each of the Timbertruss UD's is fitted with its own crane to unload the trusses and wall frames on site.

On the prime movers the crane is mounted on the truck rather than the trailer, reflecting the fact that the bulky loads are not weight critical.

"Our loads are reasonably heavy but nothing that is going to put us over weight, our main challenge is the bulkiness of our loads," Travis said.

The company has around 15 different drivers who regularly pilot the fleet on delivery runs, putting its own pressures on the trucks.

"With a range of different drivers you obviously have different techniques and driving styles, however I have to say that as well as being the driver's first choice, the UDs also stand up to life on the fleet better than our other trucks," Travis added.

"We are definitely pleased with our UDs and will be looking closely at adding more to the fleet as trucks come up for replacement."

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