Guide to Truck Bodies
When you buy a new truck body, you’re making a big investment where it matters most: your ability to get the job done. That’s why you want to make sure you’re investing in the right type of truck body. Doing so will make your job easier, save you time, and create better overall value for your customers.
Whether you’re buying a preowned truck body from the classifieds section – or a custom brand new one – it’s important to make certain it’s engineered to achieve your professional goals. Here’s a brief review of the most popular truck bodies in the Midwest, along with some of their advantages and disadvantages. See which one is designed for your mission!
The traditional square truck body features double-wall steel construction. Alongside its horizontal or vertical side braces, its doubled walls give the square body outstanding strength. When cargo or equipment dents the square body’s interior wall, the damage won’t be visible from the exterior. The square body’s straight, flat bed and walls are more compatible with backhoes and sideloaders, and they accommodate wider implements as well.
Its double-wall construction and additional braces mean the square body contains more steel – and steel, as you already know, is heavy. That’s why you will wind up buying more fuel when you choose a square body. The square body’s larger number of angles and seams put it at greater risk of corrosion. Although the square body’s corners do tend to retain material, that is a small price to pay for the bed which holds the greatest amount of volume in the least possible space.
True to its name, the elliptical body possesses concave walls and a cornerless one-piece floor. These keep the payload in a more centered position, even if the contents are irregularly sized. The payoff is an impact-absorbing, self-cleaning truck bed that dumps materials faster and more evenly.
Because it is made of high-strength steel – and because it is surprisingly flexible – the elliptical body does not require additional supports. Without crossmembers, the elliptical body boasts a higher cargo capacity relative to its overall dimensions. If you know the current price of diesel, then you already understand the key advantage of an elliptical body’s lighter weight. But because the elliptical body’s design literally cuts corners, it hasn’t got as much capacity as an analogously sized square body.
Flatbed trucks are ideal for transporting heavy loads that walls couldn’t contain. Logs, steelwork, concrete sewer pipes, construction equipment, vehicles, and anything else weather can’t damage all make ideal cargo for a flatbed. And thanks to its lack of walls and railings, a flatbed is also easier to unload.
Step deck flatbed trailers are designed to promote greater safety and convenience. A step deck’s horizontal surface has two separate tiers: a higher platform at the front, and a lower one at the back. In addition to facilitating loading and unloading, a step deck allows the driver to transport larger objects without exceeding height limits.
Naturally, a flatbed is limited to hauling large, solid objects – the reason why you will never see one transporting aggregate. That said, a flatbed truck’s main drawback is the higher level of care its driver must exercise. Without steel walls to contain them, a flatbed’s contents must be properly strapped down or otherwise restrained. Lost cargo is never a good thing, but it is nothing compared to the death or serious injury that can result from negligible flatbed operation.
The contractor body makes no secret of which kind of professional it’s meant for. Its low, hinged tailgate and drop-sides are capable of containing a small payload of aggregate (including road salt), but they are mainly utilized by pros who require fast access to their tools and equipment. Landscapers are especially fond of the contractor body, which makes it easy to transport a garage’s worth of mowers, weed whackers, and even Bobcats. Better yet, incorporating a crane into a contractor body is easy.
A contractor body can include any number of lockable tool boxes. They’re invaluable to electricians and plumbers who have to bring along a lot of small yet valuable equipment, but they do illustrate the contractor body’s primary shortcoming. It makes valuable tools and equipment more accessible to everybody – not just you. If you frequently work in high-crime areas, a truck body that secures all of its contents in a large, locked enclosure may spare you the hassle of filing an insurance claim.
In addition to truck equipment and accessories, Renegade Truck Equipment offers custom manufactured truck bodies for operators and other professionals throughout Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota and South Dakota. If you would like more help understanding which truck body is best suited to your line of work, then we welcome you to contact us today!