Trailer Magazine

Brimming with innovation

  • From the November 2018 issue.
Brimming with innovation

Trailer manufacturer, Brimarco, is putting its expertise to the test building nine drop-deck semi-trailers for plant hire specialist, Sherrin Rentals. Each trailer is fitted with Wabco OptiLink, supplied by Air Brake Corporation, which electronically monitors a range of parameters including tyre pressures and axle loads.

Founded in 2006, Sherrin Rentals is a Brisbane-based company that has expanded to include branches in every state, as well as the Northern Territory, of Australia. There are 120 people on the payroll.

The company specialises in dry-hire of earthmoving and construction equipment on a short- or long-term basis. It has its own prime movers and trailers to shift the gear around.

Due to the wide variation in size and weight of the machinery it rents, the company previously used quad-axle trailers that, while eminently suitable for heavy haulage, were distinctly overkill for the majority of tasks they performed.

“We wanted to improve efficiencies in our operation so we started searching for a trailer builder that could provide heavy-duty trailers capable of carrying our biggest machinery, but that were more cost effective for the remainder of our smaller equipment transportation,” says Grant Sherrin, General Manager of Sherrin Rentals. “After looking around for a while we approached Brimarco and they were able to build the trailers exactly how we wanted them.”

A key feature Sherrin wanted was for the trailers to have on-board telematics so the drivers could monitor tyre pressures and axle weights via their smart phones, and also to enable remote monitoring by management.

For this, Brimarco contacted Air Brake Corporation’s Product Manager, Darren Woolley, who suggested the Wabco OptiLink as the ideal choice for Sherrin’s application. Air Brake Corporation is the premier distributor of the full range of Wabco products in Australia and the sole supplier for TSE spring brakes, Pacific valves and Alkon fittings and carry the largest range of ADR approved brake kits.    

“Air Brake Corporation has always been innovative and offered us new solutions for our trailers and customers,” says Matt Kirwan-Hamilton, Managing Director of Brimarco. “The OptiLink system coupled with OptiTire is a prime example of their customer focused approach. They regularly visit our site and when required are prepared to get their hands dirty to help set up new systems.
“The OptiLink system provides all the information the driver and equipment owner need, all at the push of a button on their smart phone.”

Founded in 1976, Brimarco operates from a large, modern and well-equipped manufacturing facility at Ballarat in regional Victoria. This facility has the capacity to accommodate large vehicles and multiple projects and is conveniently accessible to the main Melbourne-to-Perth road network.
After speaking with Grant Sherrin, it was clear he couldn’t be happier with the end result of the builds so far.

“We’ve taken delivery of three trailers so far and all three have exceeded our expectations,” he says. “The quality of the build is particularly impressive and the drivers have really taken to them. They are giving us really positive feedback on how they work and carry the loads.”
Part of Sherrin’s criteria was to have a single spec across all of its branches Australia-wide and Brimarco was able to accommodate.

“We looked at the national guidelines and those of each state and worked closely with Brimarco to ensure the trailers would be suitable across the board,” Grant adds.

As alluded to earlier, the primary goal is to reduce running costs while maintaining optimum operational efficiencies and for Grant Sherrin, the OptiLink and OptiTire are helping to do this.
“With the tyre monitoring we’re aiming to achieve optimum wear from each tyre,” he says. “Every time the driver picks up and drops off a load he checks the axle weights and tyre pressures and if there’s an issue it is addressed immediately.” 

As for the Sherrin heavy-duty widener trailer specs, they are 2.5m wide, widening to 3.5m, with top and bottom deck lengths of 4.0 and 9.7m respectively and overall length of 14m. There is a set of ramps between the bottom and top decks.

Full length main frame rails are up to 595mm deep and have heavy-duty 8mm webs. Cross members are 125mm tapered flange beams and the main deck is 5.0mm Bisalloy steel for ultimate wear resistance.

Full-length upper and lower flanges (16 and 20mm respectively) are made from 350 grade steel, while coaming rails are 200mm wide with side bar chain-down points.

Ramps are extra-wide heavy-duty box section construction with 5.0mm Bisalloy surfaces. Each ramp has a 10-tonne point-load rating. Hydraulic cylinders are 76mm (3.0inch) diameter with power up and down enabled by a 12-volt heavy-duty power pack with its own battery charged from the prime mover via a 175A Anderson plug.

Landing legs are heavy-duty two-speed with flat feet and the axles and suspension are Fuwa K-Hitch airbag with raise and lower valve. Brakes are EBS (electronic braking system) mastered drums, and wheels are 19.5 inch 8-stud steel items.

According to Grant Sherrin, the new trailers have generated a lot of interest within the company, with the various branches keen to receive the new units and put them to work.

Fast Fact
Utilising Wabco OptiLink on new Brimarco trailers, Sherrin Rentals is driving down operating costs.

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