Motoring with Bob Roco Romeo: Getting the most out of your tipper


Tippers are one of the true workhorses of the commercial vehicle industry, carrying heavy loads in conditions that are less than ideal. Every load represents money, making a reliable vehicle critical to the running of a profitable operation.

“While FAW’s range of Tippers are designed especially for the conditions in which they are required to operate, the way vehicles are used and looked after can make a big difference. If you treat your vehicles well, they will reward you with many trouble-free kilometres, a lower cost of ownership and less downtime,” says Yongjun Li, CEO of FAW Trucks South Africa.

The following simple, yet often overlooked advice could go a long way in ensuring that every load is delivered on time.

Avoid overloading

Overloading is one of the quickest ways to shorten the life of your vehicle and is best avoided at all costs. The maximum load weight is carefully calculated, taking into consideration, axles, suspension and Tipper construction and it is best adhered to if you hope to get many reliable kilometres from your truck as well as remain within the law. Overloading will also have a detrimental effect on running costs as it is sure to result in increased fuel consumption and tyre wear. It is very important to ensure that you have the right vehicle for the job. FAWs range of vehicles cater for a wide variety of load carrying ability, so rather than overworking a smaller, less capable vehicle invest in the right vehicle for your application, it will be beneficial in the long run.

Keep it clean

Commercial vehicles in the Tipper configuration often operate in less-than-ideal conditions. Cleaning vehicles on a daily or weekly basis is important to ensuring their longevity. Moving parts like axles, brakes and Tipper struts should be washed clean of dust and mud, if not it could have a serious effect on these sensitive yet vital components. The cabin is the driver’s office and should be kept clean just like a normal office is, all loose items should be removed on a daily basis, touch surfaces wiped down and seats and flooring vacuumed. The accumulation of dirt will accelerate wear and tear and a dirty truck is not conducive to a good corporate image. The interior of FAW vehicles is constructed with hard wearing, premium materials, that ensure a comfortable working environment but which are also easy to keep clean

Use telematics

Telematics is vital to running an efficient operation whether your fleet consists of two or 200 trucks. These advanced systems are able to give fleet managers real time updates on a variety of factors including location and speed. They are a great way to monitor and improve driving behavior and productivity. Telematics is an excellent tool for managing loads as it can assist by preventing overloading, ensuring vehicles are kept in pre-determined zones by means of geo fencing and even prevent the load from being tipped in unauthorized locations. In that way it ensures safety of vehicles, driver and the load.

Stick to the maintenance schedule

For vehicles like Tippers that operate in extreme conditions such as high temperature or dusty environments regular maintenance is key. FAW has carefully calculated the recommended service intervals required to ensure the longevity of your purchase and adhering to these is critical. In addition, vehicles that continuously operate in extremely dusty conditions might require more regular maintenance of items like air filters. Telematics systems are able to help fleet managers stay on top of maintenance and servicing by monitoring hours used and kilometres driven, allowing for the planning of periodic maintenance in a manner that minimises the impact on productivity.

A solution for every need

FAW offers a wide range of vehicles that are sold with Tipper bodies already installed. Each model has been carefully configured taking into consideration the Tipper bin and the weight that it is able to carry, resulting in solutions that are fit for purpose.

FAW offers Tippers ranging from 3 cubes to 18 cubes, all with the appropriate axles and engines to back up this load carrying ability. Thanks to this wide variety of Tippers there is one for every need.

The FAW 8.140D is a three-cube solution that features a six-ton body and payload allowance. It boasts a spacious ergonomically designed cab and Cummins ISF3.8S common rail diesel engine mated to a six-speed ZF manual transmission.

The FAW 15.180FD can carry six cubes as part of its 10-ton body and payload allowance. A spacious, ergonomically designed, semi-sleeper cab ensures excellent driver comfort. Powering this model is a FAW six-cylinder in-line turbocharged and intercooled engine paired to a FAW six-speed fully synchromesh manual transmission.

The J5N 28.290FD has a 10-cube carrying capacity in its 850 high strength steel Tipper bucket, making it ideal for a variety of applications including construction. A fully floating, ergonomically designed cab is equipped with a reinforced bumper. Powering things along is a Weichai WP10 six-cylinder in-line turbocharged and intercooled diesel engine paired with a nine-speed fully synchromesh manual transmission.

The J5N 33.340FD is a robust 15.5-cube hub-reduction Tipper that is ideal for mining applications. It features a Weichai six-cylinder in-line turbocharged and intercooled diesel engine mated to a FAW nine-speed synchromesh manual transmission.

The J5N 35.340FD 18-cube is the largest of the FAW Tipper offerings with its 18-cube Tipper body, constructed from 850 high-strength steel, making it ideal for construction applications. It too is powered by a Weichai WP10 six-cylinder inline turbocharged and intercooled diesel engine paired to a nine-speed fully synchromesh manual transmission.

“Thanks to FAW’s manufacturing facility in Coega, Gqberha, we are in a unique position of being able to offer our customers a turn key Tipper solution that is built in Africa for Africa and is ready to work, with no aftermarket alterations required,” concludes Li.

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