In the market for a new Western Star dump truck? You can’t just order up a new model of what you already have, because new technologies that make dump trucks more efficient than ever have also changed how you need to spec that new truck.
New government-required components and new performance options affect your Western Star truck’s weight, it’s size and even how the truck is configured on its frame. You’ll need to understand these changes to be sure you’re ordering the best tool for your job-related applications. Read on to learn about the kinds of changes you’ll find, then give us a call and one of our Western Star dump truck experts will walk you through the details.
Thanks to innovative technologies, your Western Star dump truck will still be husky enough to handle any job you can throw at it, but it will do the work more fuel-efficiently and with fewer emissions. It will be quieter, and you may even find it easier to drive.
Vocational trucks have to meet lower EPA-mandated emissions standards, and that includes using diesel exhaust fluid. After-market emissions equipment such as DEF tanks have to share your truck’s frame rails with traditional components, including hydraulics, lift axles, air and fuel tanks, battery boxes, toolboxes and other accessories.
If fuel tanks and battery boxes will be located farther back on the frame, that changes the weight distribution and could extend your dump truck’s wheelbase. It has become more important than ever to make the most efficient use of whatever frame rail space you have available. And that has to be determined early on in your truck’s development, so your upfitter knows what to expect.
Naturally there are trade-offs. For instance, a 26” diameter fuel tank has less ground clearance than a 22” tank. If your DEF tank is mounted behind the cab, then the body has to be mounted farther back. But where you put the DEF tank depends on it’s size, which in turn depends on total fuel capacity. Many industry experts suggest that for dump trucks, it’s best to locate DEF and fuel tanks adjacent to one another.
Exhaust configuration also comes into play. The reality is that the way in which you package your truck’s mid-chassis components is critical to ensure clean, timely body uplift. That’s one more reason to give us a call to help spec your next Western Star dump truck. Here at Tracey Road Equipment, we know dump trucks and we know Western Star, so we can help you choose the most efficient, least expensive configuration based on your working needs.
Sheer size doesn’t necessarily matter any more.
You may be able to spec a smaller size engine – say, a 13-liter instead of a 15-liter – without sacrificing power or performance. That’s because the latest technologies have altered horsepower and torque curves, making them more efficient. You’ll get better fuel economy, and perhaps a lighter weight engine to help offset weight of frame-mounted components.
You may want to think differently about your transmission, too. If you or your drivers are well-skilled, you might prefer an 18-speed manual transmission. If your crew is less-experienced, an automated tranny may be the better choice. Both engine and transmission specs will depend on your typical payload, whether you’re working in mountainous terrain and if you frequently use low creeping gears.
New automated transmissions can lessen your load when it comes to maintenance, too. They can be virtually service-free, and your clutch could last as long as 100,000 miles if you treat it well. Automation means drivers don’t have to determine when to shift, so they can be more alert to other aspects of truck operation, particularly important when your jobsite is busy or working conditions are difficult. An automatic can give you better control on steeper slopes, too.
Ultimately the best truck for your jobs will depend on what those jobs are, where you work and driver capability. Knowing the latest developments in truck and engine design will help you spec smartly when you’re ready for that new Western Star dump truck.