Orders are growing at Don-Bur
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• Growing customer confidence is creating increasing amounts of work at Don-Bur's Longton factory, near Stoke-on-Trent.
This is typified by orders for curtainsided trailers, brewery drays, rigid steel carriers and a cavernous double-deck trailer for a large national food company planning to change its distribution arrangements.
The 13.6m straight frame twindecker with its fixed upper forward deck has 1.83m of headroom between each floor and 116m3 (152yd3) overall volume.
GRP 22mm side panels are secured to the 24mm composite base using new aluminium extrusions and the 7.3m upper floor is a 54mm alu/composite mix.
To avoid possible oil contamination, the elevating floor is electrically powered via reciprocating ball slides on four screw-threaded shafts.
Heavy-duty batteries, charged automatically by a small Ruggerini diesel pack (or the tractor) provide the power and there is a mains stand-by Plated at 28.57 tonnes gross it has tri-SAF axles with AR421-20 low-height air suspension and runs on twin 245/70R 19.5 tyres.
Coupled with the company's new Leyland Daf 75-300 ATi unit, with its 1.08m (42.5in) high kingpin, the trailer runs at 4.88m overall height. The suspension allows up to 175mm of adjustment for deliveries at varying height load docks.
A Ratcliff retractable cantilever lift helps load roll cages which are kept in check with aluminium gates on each deck. In addition to an order for 22 Volvo FL618 steel section carriers with Coverhaul sliding canopies for Swift, Don-Bur is also working on a shared order with Boalloy for 18 Seddon Atkinson 21011 7 6x2 drays for Glasgow drinks company AG Barr.
Like Boalloy's Localiners, DonBur's Slide-a-Side versions provide a 940mm (37in) deck height within a side aperture of 72m x 2.11m (23ft 7in x7ft).
The floor's 31mm slope to the centre drainage channel helps stability of the load while a moving inner wall separates outgoing product from empties.
Rated at 21 tonnes GVW, the drays all have unladen weights of 7,420kg to give AG Barr a healthy payload margin.
Anticipating an upturn in trade, RH Stevens has purchased 20 13.6m Palletmaster curtained semi-trailers along with six new Iveco Ford Turbo Star tractive units. Four of the trailers have TIR tilt sides and full length opening roof as for international work.