Using On-Board Mass to Get More Mass On-Board

using on-board mass to get more mass on-board

George Transport is based in Lake Goldsmith in Victoria, halfway between Ballarat and Ararat, in the heart of the large agricultural expanse of the Western half of Victoria and is effectively using on-board mass to get more mass on-board. The operation also runs a smaller number of trucks out of a depot in Toowoomba, in Queensland.

All of the A-doubles work under the PBS scheme. Lachie has on-board mass (OBM) systems fitted on all of the trailers in the fleet. The Airtec units on the trailer suspension, send data from all of the axles, communicating the mass of the load through to the Teletrac Navman system, which George Transport use for all of their tracking and on-board compliance needs, including IAP, plus Sentinel and EasyDocs.

using on-board mass to get more mass on-board

“Without the OBM we would be stuck as a B-double,” says owner, Lachie George. “OBM is another cost that we have had to go to, where we acquire data for the government at a cost to us, but it allows us to carry more weight. If we can carry more weight, it works out better for us. Often we can only do one load a day and over time the extra weight we can carry soon adds up.

“I find that, especially in Queensland, B-doubles don’t work. You have got to be able have an A-double to make it work and get ahead. We had to go to A-doubles and the on-board mass. When you looked at the numbers it was the only way to go, especially when the exporting of grain is as big as it is.

“We first got into OBM in Queensland, and when the quotes were coming in for running to the port, with the tolls and things like that, the OBM and the A-doubles were the only way to go.”

The combination of OBM, IAP and HML means the George Transport fleet can be running at maximum capacity for a large proportion of the time. The interchangeability of the trailers and prime movers into different combinations means they can maximise payload on all of the trucks most of the time.

“Within reason, you’ve still got to be careful of vulnerable structures, so you still have to make sure that you are permitted on a particular route,” says Lachie. “Where we can, we want to run up on our weight all of the time, to make us as efficient as possible.”

using on-board mass to get more mass on-board

Setting up combinations

Lachie uses Graham Lusty Trailers throughout the fleet, pulled by Kenworth trucks. There are four T909s, one T659 and five K200s.

“What I have found over time, because we work with some Stag B-doubles, and when you use the Stag in an AB-triple the shorter K200 comes into its own,” says Lachie. “With the big gap between the two trailers, the only way to make that gap work in an AB-triple, is to go with a cabover. Even on some of the A-double requirements for Victoria, the cabover has been a massive help to us to get over the line.

“The K200s are fit for purpose when we use drop-deck trailers to cart hay and when we are making up the longer combinations. They work against me in Queensland a bit, because you need to get over the line on length on the A-double and it can be tricky sometimes. They want you to get as close to 30m long as possible, so the T9s and T659 work really well up there.

“It makes sure we are interchangeable and we are not forced to park thing up when something breaks down. We can always make something else work. There’s nothing wrong with those K200s, you can always make them work, if you set them up right.”

using on-board mass to get more mass on-board

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