When I’m on my way, I’m always on the lookout for heavy machinery scenery. Like this Volvo at work, owned by Klever Boor- en Perstechniek. The company -an experienced specialist in horizontal drilling- is hired to work on an underground power line between a floating solar project and the nearby electrical substation.
The 2012 Volvo FH Globetrotter, with a tridem-axle configuration, is registered as a straight truck with a detachable body. This means that the big tank is mounted on its own frame and can be put on and off the Volvo with the truck’s hydraulic hooklift hoist. Such chassis are highly versatile, as a wide variety of bodies can be used. Flatbeds, open top or fully enclosed containers, concrete mixer units, tool carriers, you name it.
The truck’s legal maximum GVM is 35,500 kg (78,264 lbs). The second and third axle are the dual wheeled drive axles, whereas the front axle and the liftable and steering tag axle have super single tires.
The tank/pump-combination was connected to an enclosed container, as seen on the right. Since I’m not a horizontal drilling specialist, I can’t tell whether the Volvo was loading or unloading. But it certainly was speaking to me. Through its dual smoke stacks, actually.
Klever is a loyal Volvo customer. This 2019 FH duo, also equipped with a hooklift system, is rated at a GVM of 43 metric tons each (photo courtesy of Cojan van Toor).
The Volvo Trucks Corporation, the world’s second largest manufacturer of heavy trucks and tractors -after colossus Daimler- has recently refreshed and updated their mid-size and full-size models, inside and outside. From left to right: the FM, FH, FH16 and FMX.
The interior of the latest FH16 top model, as in 16 liter engine displacement.
Since I mentioned solar project and electrical substation, I must refer to the fact that the Swedes also offer the lighter FL and FE models (pictured the latter) as electric vehicles, up to 27 metric tons GVM. No concepts, but available at the local Volvo Store right now.
Related articles, a wide variety of straight trucks with four axles:
2017 Volvo FH 8×4 Wide Spread – The Burly Asphalt Viking
2018 Scania S 520 – Tri-Axle Griffin
2019 Ginaf X6 4243 S – Desperado, The Blazing Asphalt Hauler
2003 DAF CF 85.380 8×4 Truck – The Demolition Men Have Arrived
2018 Renault K 460 8×4 With An RSP Suction Excavator – Radio Controlled Mega Toy
2017 DAF CF 460 FAX – All Beefed Up
I’m in love with the idea of electric propulsion for short-hop trucks like that recycling truck. Yesterday I watched, fascinated, as a UPS delivery truck driver started and shut off his truck at four houses in a row. I really want to be the guy who sells replacement starter motors to UPS.
Recently I read something published earlier this year about Mack field testing 100% electric garbage trucks in New York City beginning this summer or fall. I do not know if it happened, but it appeared to be a go.
Another manufacturer or two (Freightliner being one?) is supposed to begin building electric trucks of some configuration early next year. That was from the same article, so who knows how the pandemic has changed those plans.
I saw a press release stating the NYC Dept. of Sanitation got their first Mack electric this very day.
Dear Johannes, thank you very much for this information. I periodically go online looking at European trucks which I find fascinating. Your essay adds to my interest – to the old truck salesperson. I have not sold trucks for years but I always look. Tom
Glad you like the articles Tom, keep on trucking!
As a mechanical engineer, I am always fascinated with the very different approach (or style even) taken to engineering in western Europe. The trucks you show us are current examples, but if you look at eg bicycles and cameras (think Campagnolo and Rollei) it goes back a century or more.
Also as an engineer I’d love to see or read more about the floating solar installation.
Craig, below an impression of the floating solar project. Over 67,000 panels, good for 27 megawatt.
Quite distracted by “floating solar” and the hooklift system being used even for a tanker.
Learnt two new things today, thankyou sir.
A non-car question: the lead pic shows a truck with “HOLLAND” on the windshield. Would this mean something different (culturally) than “NEDERLAND”? Is it like England vs. Great Britian?
Holland is very frequently and commonly used as a synonym for Nederland. The latter is the only correct name for the country, that’s why I always use the Netherlands here.
Zuid (South) and Noord (North) Holland are two provinces in the Netherlands. Highly crowded and utterly urbanized, way too much for my taste.
“Globetrotter” is the single best name for a long-haul truck, someone at Volvo scored their big annual bonus when they came up with that a few decades ago. I love the look of all of the big and tall Euro COEs, thanks for another very interesting one.
That’s an amazing amount of versatility right there with being able to swap out the rear portion. I don’t know (but doubt) that we have anything similar available here but it seems to make so much sense, especially down the road when the truck eventually gets resold.
Here’s a video, featuring the article’s Volvo. With another tanker body, towing a full trailer. The big container on the trailer got there with the help of the truck’s hooklift hoist.
There is some use of the hook lift system here in the states. Primary users in the midwest is dumpsters. We had a couple of them in our fleet, tunnel washer, flatbed, tanker, junk box. Mercedes has the Uni-Mog. Don’t know if they still build it or not. We had a mid-80’s version. Versatile vehicle, lots of attachments available. The main problem was planning how to use it. Also ours had a top speed of 45mph so it was not practical for a large geographical area. It was our original tunnel washer and we had to haul it between our two districts that had tunnels to maintain.
There are also systems with a tipping frame, working with cables or chains. This one can deliver a filled up silo and put it on its feet.
Hook lifts aren’t unheard of in the US. We’ve got a few at work and they’ve been in service ten years or so.
Like anything else they have some good points but also one or two weak points. Their usefulness all comes down to the application.
Hooklift/chain/cable systems are widely used here in construction, demolition and waste disposal/-recycling. Deliver an empty, open top container at the site and collect the loaded one, just one example.
Of course, such systems increase the truck’s curb weight, given the extra technology aboard. But who cares if the GVM is 35.5 or even 43 metric tons anyway, for a straight chassis with four axles? Relatively, they don’t eat into the payload capacity much.
Nice trucks to drive, we have a couple of Globetrotters FH 16s in our fleet sand as the roving driver I wind up driving everything including those two, one is a 600hp the other 700hp both are Euro 5 with ishift transmissions vedry quiet and comfortable to drive its just a shame about the electronics being so temperamental, and the engine brake is a joke