A correctly specified liftgate allows operators to pack and unpack heavy cargo from their fleet trucks in a more efficient manner with a reduced chance of operator exhaustion and risk of injury. However, with a selection of different types and alternatives to select from, this begs the question: what should truck managers take into account when choosing a liftgate suited for a particular task and their budget expenditures? Read on to find out.
Type and size of the truck
Is it a van, straight truck, pickup truck or a trailer? This is ideally the starting point for correct liftgate selection, as the answer starts to sort out the types of gates well suited to the vehicle.
For instance, in the case of a pickup framework fitted with a service body, chances are that there isn't sufficient ground space to mount a fold-away or tuck-away gate, which is typically tucked beneath the truck body. In this case, a conventional liftgate installed to the frame of the truck or a rail gate installed on the sides of the back section of the truck body present a more fitting gate option.
In case you are dealing with a medium-duty straight trailer, you have a selection of gates to select from. You might opt for a foldaway gate as well as a rail gate which slants at different degrees to allow for level packing on uneven surfaces.
For heavy-duty trucks, a slider gate is a more viable option. This type of platform tucks away beneath the truck. Other gate options include rail or cantilever gate.
Aluminium or steel platform
Aluminium gate platforms provide a more weight advantage in comparison to steel gate. Consequently, this impacts positively on fuel economy, payload capacity as well as productivity. With a number of fold-way or tuck-away liftgates, where the operator must physically open and tuck the gate, the lightweight nature of aluminium eases the process.
Furthermore, aluminium liftgates offer anti-rust benefits, particularly suitable for trucks that run in snowy areas where steel is prone to corrosion from salty roads. The main downside to aluminium platforms, however, is that they are quite costly.
For fleet managers who prefer to work with the cheaper steel gates, but are apprehensive about rust resistance, the best option is to consider galvanising the steel gates to secure them from corrosion.
Thorough research and adequate understanding of the fleet trucks with liftgates will guarantee correct gate selection and consequently, profit returns on the initial outlay. Consult resources like Maxilift Australia Pty Ltd for more information and assistance.