Sliding Tarp System Installed by LCS' Dealer Allvan Corporation
January 11, 2016
Jim Hockaday aka: Hiphugger
I've been trucking now for 39 years and hooked to a flatbed trailer for at least 30 years. Needless to say, my knees and shoulders are a wreck! Sitting in the saddle for long periods of time, climbing up on loads and jumping down, my body is paying for it now. My dad always told me "I would pay for it when I got older". (What do old people know?) Well now I am!
For the past 10 years I have pulled aluminum extrusions from my home state of VA to CA. These are multi drop loads calling for tarp and un-tarp every stop. Not only is this very time consuming to say the least, but handling those tarps was getting to be too much for a man 61 years old. I also haul LTL freight, mostly machine shop equipment of all kinds. Every load required manual tarping with protective furniture pads to protect both my tarps and damaging the finish on the equipment. I feared falling off loads many times and being seriously injured. That's what we call "Flat-Bedding" and "it aint for lazy people or sissies!" After years of doing what I do and suffering physically, I finally started thinking about a tarping system that would allow me to remain safe and at ground level and cover my loads effortlessly. I guess I should have started thinking earlier in life.
In Nov 2014 the doctors replaced my right shoulder and told me I would be off work for a minimum of 3 months. The first 6 or 8 weeks of my recovery I spent all of my time on the computer researching literally 8 hours a day. I wanted the very best system money could buy, as I am not into replacing equipment regularly. I purchased my truck new in 1987 and I'm proud to say it still pulls my flatbed trailer.
My extensive research uncovered all systems were similar in functionality with major differences in the way the systems track, lock and offer up for pay load clearances.
After careful evaluation of every known system on the market I bought what I believe is the best system offered by any manufacturer. the LOOK engineered sliding system by LCS had the premier track & wheel foundation which really caught my attention. Most other makes & models have 72 - 84 wheels. Some I found had ridiculous grease fittings that were hard to even service while others had three different wheel sizes on the same car plate manufactured from plastics or neoprene.
The LCS system has 28 metal V grooved wheels on a 48ft or 53ft system with sealed bearings which run on a stainless steel V groove insert. LCS backs their wheels with a life time warranty (steel wheel) and free set of replacement bearings when you purchase the system making them maintenance free.
Watching drivers operate their systems in the field and asking the right questions I really liked the one hand operation for easy opening and closing with LCS. The LOOK system it is designed in such away that when you open it from the back the patented Loc'N-Load tensioning mechanism travels with the rear car frame eliminating any rear structure that gets in the way of the loading clearance. Most other systems have a heavy A-frame or tensioning post that you must remove and find a safe place to put it during loading so it doesn't get run over by a lift truck.
Once again there is no comparison to LCS's system.
Another key advantage is the inside width and height of the LOOK system. I run 11R24.5 rubber on my truck and trailer and because of the LCS systems frame design I have an interior load height of 98 3/8" and 103" inside load width. My trailer is still narrower on the outside measurement in comparison to other systems.
The LCS network of installation dealers around the country puts this company on top once again! I went from my Virginia home to Charlotte NC for the installation, which was very convenient while most other manufacturers want you to go directly to their factory. Most all factories are up north while I'm a good southern boy!
My travel route as mentioned is Virginia to California and wouldn't you know it, LCS has a very competent dealer on the east side of Nashville, TN. (ALLVAN) is one of LCS's dealers where after I had my system installed I decided to have elaborate stripping done to match my truck. Greg Asadourian, Plant Mgr of ALLVAN was very helpful in taking care of me and introducing me to Jonathan in their paint shop. The stripping was color matched to my truck perfectly and was sprayed on utilizing permanent vinyl inks. ALLVAN is a top-notch operation and a great dealer representative of LCS with wonderful customer respect.
LCS really has you covered while they continue to expand their dealer install and service networks to better handle the American Trucker.
The Benefits of why you should have a LOOK engineered sliding system:
· No more climbing up on loads and risking a serious career ending fall.
PS: Don't wait too long to decide to take the plunge like I did. Because of the LCS system I'm still able to do what I have love to do, truck for a living.