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Chassis King produces periodic articles relating to the shipping, trucking, and intermodal transportation industries. Have an article idea? Email us at

Is Wider Better ??

Posted 8 years ago

From a chassis / trailer point of view, maybe, maybe not.  One thing is for sure though, the interest in Wide Base radials (AKA Super Single or Wide Single) over duals keeps increasing.  In case you don't know, this is the case where a single tire replaces a dual assembly in a container chassis, or a trailer.   

With the latest generation of Super Singles, the needs of the vast majority of the US loads on the road today can be met without the drawbacks of the old 1980s' design.   Two major design improvements are smaller size and higher capacities (up to 22,000 lbs). The diameter is the same as that of low profile, 22.5 inch radials (ie. 295/70R22.5). While this similarity can result in no clearance problems when fitting them onto an existing chassis / trailer, the conversion is not so simple.  A different type of axle and components may be needed for the conversion.  

Weight Reduction:
125 lbs when replacing a set of 2 Conventional tires / Steel Wheels
60 lbs when replacing a set of 2 Conventional tires / Aluminum Wheels

Fuel Savings:
Since you have half as many tires (sidewalls flexing), you should see a 2-5% increase in fuel economy depending on the adoption at both the tractor and trailer wheel position. Sidewall flex is directly proportional to rolling resistance.

Blown Tire:
When a Super Single tire blows, you will now it according to truck drivers. The only place you can go is the side of the road because there's no other tire next to it to help you limp to a truck stop or a tire facility. Furthermore, when a blow out does occur, the cost to replace one wide base tire versus one half of a dual set up is increased.  Not to mention that the closest dealer or truck stop aren't going to be as well-stocked with wide singles a with conventional tires. 

Spread Axle Applicability:
Fleets have found that excess tire wear due to "scrub" from turning does not make wide base tires acceptable on spread axle chassis / trailers from a cost standpoint.

Higher Initial Investment:
Super singles is considered an upgrade by chassis / trailer manufacturers.  Hence, the chassis cost will go up considerably.

Needless to say, the call is yours !!

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Another Kind of Stop at Rest Stops

Posted 11 years ago

Truck drivers may soon become involved in a new initiative to stop one kind of trafficking - prostitution.  Between 2004 and 2009, the FBI set up a series of countrywide stings at truck stops where they found an alarming number of pimps deploying their young prostitutes, MyNews 3 reports.  It is a $32 billion industry and a trend that Truckers Against Trafficking hopes to combat.

The program educates truck drivers on how to identify a prostitute and encourages them to contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline when they do identify one. Several states like Nevada support the program.  An estimated 400 children are trafficked each night in Nevada and Assembly man John Hambrick hopes that the new campaign will help stop this crime. 

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New Tank Vehicle Definition May Affect IBC Drivers

Posted 11 years ago

Drivers who transport Intermediate Bulk Container (or IBC's) in van trailers or on flatbeds should pay better attention to the FMCSA's definition of a tank vehicle that went into effect in July 2011.  Failure to comply may lead to citation during road inspections.

The FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) states: Tank vehicle means any commercial motor vehicle that is designed to transport any liquid or gaseous material within a tank or tanks having an individual rated capacity of more than 119 gallons and an aggregate rated capacity of 1,000 gallons or more that is either permanently or temporarily attached to the vehicle or the chassis.  A commercial vehicle transporting an empty storage container tank, not designed for transportation, with a rated capacity of 1,000 gallons or more that is temporarily attached to a flatbed trailer is not considered a tank vehicle.  

IBCs are totes or tanks used to store and transport fluids and other bulk materials. They are composed of: the IBC Plastic Container, the Metal Cage, and the Container's Pallet. The most common are 275 and 330 Gallon tanks. According to the FMCSA, IBCs with aggregated capacities of 1,000 lbs or greater and are temporarily attached to a vehicle, meet the definition of a tank vehicle and the driver would be required to have the tank endorsement with his/her the CDL.

States have until July 2014 to adopt the new definition   
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