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SAF-Holland launches lightest weight sliding air suspension, fifthwheel safety enhancement

Dec. 7, 2016
DURING a recent press conference in St Louis, Missouri, SAF-Holland launched a new lightweight sliding tandem-axle air suspension, as well as a safety enhancement that will help drivers consistently ensure proper coupling of a fifthwheel.

During a recent press conference in St Louis, Missouri, SAF-Holland launched a new lightweight sliding tandem-axle air suspension, as well as a safety enhancement that will help drivers consistently ensure proper coupling of a fifthwheel.

SAF Holland’s new CBX40 AeroBeam is now the lightest weight air suspension in the industry, providing the optimal balance of strength and weight for ultimate performance in on highway applications, according to Roger Jansen, product manager of trailer axles and suspensions at SAF Holland.

“The CBX40 AeroBeam is evolutionary for weight reduction,” he said. “We are excited to offer the AeroBeam, the next generation of lightweight air suspension systems as part of our promise to contribute to our customers’ success, providing solutions that maximize fleet efficiency and safety.”

Designed for greater efficiency in reefer and van fleets, the SAF CBX40 AeroBeam Slider Suspension has a base weight of 1,267 pounds. It is 85 pounds lighter overall than the previous generation CBX40 and 27 pounds lighter than the nearest competitive slider suspension. Per Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Phase 2 legislation, the 85-lb savings will reduce the GHG gas emission by 1,250 pounds over 10 years, according to Jansen.

Setting a new standard in the air ride van slider market, the CBX40 AeroBeam is stronger, with an 80 ksi steel sub-frame with four full-height cross members. Sixteen strategically placed reinforcements improve resistance to damage caused by curb strikes, slider repositioning, and drag turns. The slider sub-frame is backed by an industry-leading seven-year warranty.

Its 5.75-inch diameter friction-welded axles are 12% thicker than competitive axles, minimizing axle deflection to improve inside tire tread wear. Heat-treated cast alloy suspension beams achieve an optimum strength-to-weight ratio. The suspension and axle beam assembly is covered by a 10- year warranty.

Relocated shock absorbers provide more room on the sub-frame to install air tanks, brake valves, tire inflation systems, and ABS modules. Combined with the streamlined AeroBeam design, the new CBX40 AeroBeam facilitates under chassis airflow.

Like all SAF suspension systems, the CBX40 AeroBeam is coated with BLACK ARMOUR, which provides hot dip galvanized level protection without the added weight or cost of HDG. Eco-friendly BLACK ARMOUR chemically bonds with metal to form a protective layer that is impervious to water and stands up against the harsh anti-icing agents used on roadways.

The patented SwingAlign system makes maintaining axle adjustment quick and easy. Industry standard service components including air springs, shocks, HCVs, and actuators reduce maintenance costs and downtime.

With a long list of options available, CBX40 AeroBeam is customizable to suit any on-highway application. Options include manual or air assisted slide pin release, dock walk solution, autosensing lift axles, P89 Series air disc brakes or drum brakes, parallel or taper spindles, and conventional or extended warranty wheel end packages.

Safer coupling

SAF Holland also introduced the ELI-te Fifth Wheel Coupling Assistant, which is available as an integrated option on Holland FW35 series fifthwheels.

With over a decade of SAF-HOLLAND experience in trailer-sensing electronic technology, the ELI-te system uses state-of-the-art components to ensure robust performance in an economical product, according to Bryan Redeker, SAF-Holland product manager for fifthwheels. A long-life, application-specific electronic control module is mounted directly to the fifthwheel top plate, and features electrical output capability to support connection with remote indicators.

Dropped trailers are an expensive and preventable situation. Fifthwheel performance alone cannot assure successful trailer coupling since driver habits are crucial to the effectiveness of the coupling procedure. The Holland ELI-te system supports safety needs by enhancing driver awareness during the trailer coupling procedure. Drivers working with the ELI-te receive simple, immediate, and actionable feedback after each coupling.

When a trailer kingpin is properly coupled to an ELI-te equipped fifth wheel, four high-intensity white LED lights mounted within the fifth wheel automatically illuminate the lock jaws. This assists drivers with the visual safety inspection process by directing their attention to the critical connection between the lock jaws and kingpin.

If a coupling problem is detected, daytime-visible red LED lights will begin flashing from both sides of the fifth wheel to alert drivers that the vehicle is not ready for motion. By reinforcing standard inspection procedures, ELI-te encourages drivers to consistently and independently recognize and resolve serious hazards and be truly confident in their ability to move cargo safely.

“The lights make it easy for drivers to positively confirm that they have coupled correctly, and warn them if they have not. It’s a new generation of safety,” Redeker said. “It’s an engineered, all-in-one system that will be spec’d by on-highway fleets that are looking to empower drivers to accomplish correct coupling consistently.”

Industry-proven sensors and shatter-proof lamp modules are combined with the system’s sealed, one-piece electrical harness, which is one-connector assembly that requires only a low-current connection to the vehicle electrical power. For converter dolly applications, the electrical connection is designed to be compatible with ABS status signals. The complete system provides enhanced operation safety and efficiency for the fleet, and allows for efficient installation at the OEM or aftermarket retrofit.   ♦

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