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A New-Style, Innovative Trailer Frame Design

High Concrete needed a partner to manufacture a new-style trailer frame design for hauling large concrete double tees for numerous parking structures and building projects. Critical to the function of the trailer frame was the incorporation of a trapeze arm that could pivot and haul the concrete tees at a specified angle which would eliminate the need for a wide load permit.

Because they needed the trailers for a specific project, High Concrete required an aggressive delivery schedule that we had to meet to avoid delays in the project—and GSM Industrial delivered.

The Fabrication Plan for this Trailer Frame Design

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GSM Industrial has proven success on other projects where we’ve employed our original designs to deliver turn-key products under aggressive timelines. So, we understood the client’s needs and the work and time required to do this trailer frame design-and-build job right.

We know that our customers value transparency—and that’s why we only took on half of the 60-trailer-frame order. Never wanting to over-promise and under-deliver, the GSM team had the knowledge and experience necessary to commit to delivering a quantity we felt confident in—which was only 30 frames.

Immediately, we went to work to get this job done.

The Challenges Associated with this Trailer-Frame Project

As with most of our projects, there were challenges to overcome. But no worries—we welcome dirty, dangerous, and difficult jobs.

The GSM Industrial team worked collaboratively with High Concrete to make some practical design changes to the pin placements in the trailer frame. This placement adjustment was critical to the pivot of the trapeze arm in getting just the right angle needed to haul the double tees within the strict wide load tolerance of 102”. To add to the challenges already stacking up, we had to come up with a solution for a quicker-drying option than water-based paint to accommodate the tight shipping schedule.

Quickly pulling the team together to develop a production plan, GSM delivered a sample set of trailer frames to the customer and worked with their engineers to solve issues that arose. Our team revised the drawings to address the problems, and then GSM got to work on manufacturing the remainder of the trailer frames.

The Trailer Frame Design, Fabrication, and Shipping Process

To meet the deadline, saws ran day and night, and we used sub-assemblies to keep the project moving. The build team assembled the trailer frames on fixtures, and welding followed AWS standards for structural steel.

We proposed an enamel, solvent-based paint as an alternative to water-based paint. The enamel paint required only one coat and would take less time to cure. It also provided a better finish on the end product.

Next, we addressed the associated environmental concerns with air pollution control equipment in the shop and a recovery system to collect and dispose of the solvent properly. The switch to enamel paint saved so much time that the 30 trailer frames could be shipped quicker. We could meet the project deadline without sacrificing the quality or the integrity of the frames.

The Results of This Trailer Project Speak for Themselves

GSM Industrial delivered 30 trailer frames weighing about two-and-a-half tons each through collaboration and teamwork. Critical dimensions were held to ensure the frames would operate as expected and eliminate the need for a wide-load permit. By providing an alternate paint solution that was more efficient, with a faster drying time, GSM met the aggressive delivery schedule.

GSM Industrial Welcomes Challenges Like this Trailer Frame Design Project

While the project was not without bumps, open lines of communication, collaboration with High Concrete’s engineering team, solid project management processes, and GSM’s commitment to do whatever it takes to get the job done right all helped to keep this trailer frame design/build project on track.

High Concrete was pleased with the overall quality of work and the value that GSM Industrial brought to this innovative project—in terms of design solutions, manufacturing, and meeting critical deadlines.