Wednesday, November 18, 2015

New Lift Truck Models Will Suit US and European Freight and Logistics Supply Chain Customers

Both Sides of the Atlantic to Get the Chance to See Innovations in Handling Equipment
Shipping News Feature
FRANCE – US – WORLDWIDE – This week gives an opportunity for potential supply chain customers to review specialised handling equipment from two leading manufacturers on different sides of the Atlantic. The Solutrans exhibition in Lyon has the latest truck mounted forklifts from Manitou whilst in Chicago, Big Lift LLC, the makers of Big Joe equipment, has announced details of its latest two models, available in January. Both freight and logistics providers and manufacturers will doubtless be interested as both firms’ products are ever popular with regular users.

For many companies Manitou fills an otherwise difficult gap, the introduction in 2014 of the Truck Mounted Mast (TMM) design further extended the range of the French company whose products were already a familiar sight travelling attached to the rear of trucks all over Europe. That ‘ready for action’ convenience fills a gap for many road haulage operators required to not only deliver or collect, but actually unload or load the freight due to the clients lack of suitable handling equipment.

Manitou TMMs are now available in four models, 2 -2.5 tonne in bi or multidirectional format, whilst the established Truck Mounted Telehandlers (TMTs) come in a range of sizes and specifications to suit different handling applications. As with any mast fork truck the TMMs can be fitted with telescopic forks, an extender or both combined whilst the TMTs have telescopic booms which move laterally by 135 mm for greater usage flexibility without adding any attachments. Using this boom, the TMT can unload a platform from a single side without any additional equipment.

The Manitou truck-mounted forklifts distributed in Europe are manufactured at Beaupréau (49) where all-terrain masted trucks for the entire group are also built, with over 200 assembled each year. In order to support the growth in sales of truck-mounted forklifts, Manitou Beaupréau doubled the production line in 2015 at a site opened only 15 years ago. Julien Hiltzer, Product Manager for Manitou truck-mounted forklifts commented:

"Our range is capable of covering the essential requirements of our transport-company customers. The launch of the TMM range last year consolidated our position on a segment where we have been present for many years. The essential advantage of this range is the network. The Manitou network is concentrated and very well-trained in its products. Transport companies know that they have all necessary support, wherever they are at any time. In a sector where dead time is very costly, this is reassuring."

Meanwhile Big Joe has announced the latest in its range of lift trucks with emerging trends in the US in mind. These new models will include a walkie reach truck with power steering called the PDSR, and the next model in its Joey series of vehicles, the J2 low level order picker. Big Lift LLC believes that due to the proliferation of small store formats and the growth of ecommerce, strains to traditional fulfilment operations are occurring that require new innovative products like the J2 Joey and PDSR. Bill Pedriana the Director of Sales for Big Lift LLC observed:

“Whether at a store location, cross-dock, warehouse or in-between; new equipment is needed that is simple, capable and intuitive to operate, which is exactly what we are developing. With the PDSR we are providing exceptional flexibility with one piece of equipment for places like retail stores, and with the J2 we are delivering a low level order picking vehicle perfectly suited to changes we see in fulfilment at the store level and contemporary distribution centres.”

The Big Joe PDSR will have a 3,000lb load capacity with lift heights available up to 157” at launch and will include power steering, sideshift, integral tilt, and proportional controls for lift, lower, extend & retract as standard. The new PDSR is an AC powered vehicle whose driveline delivers both lengthy run times and low cost operation, while its compact chassis allows the unit to perform a wide variety of material handling tasks in small spaces. Optional equipment available at launch will include several straddle and wheel options as well as a choice of three masts, a 104” and 126” two-stage, and a 157” triple.

Also launching in January is the Big Joe J2 Joey low level order picker which will feature a 2,000lb total vehicle capacity and the ability to lift 1,500lbs pallets up to 72”. The J2 Joey will include power steering, an ergonomic mini-mast, and an industrial battery compartment as standard. Options for the vehicle will include a choice of guard rail mounted or front mounted controls pending the needs of an application and an optional overhead guard upon request.

At MODEX 2016 in Atlanta, Big Joe will be showcasing both the J2 and PDSR on the show floor as well as three more products planned for launch later in the year as part of an ongoing product development initiative.