In the fire and emergency industry, nearly 80 percent of the vehicles manufactured today have roll-up doors for compartment access. In the work truck industry, probably less than one percent of the work trucks manufactured today have roll-up doors for compartment access. This is primarily due to the fact that there are a few myths surrounding roll-up doors. DuraMag, a leading manufacturer of all aluminum truck bodies in North America, wouldn’t be fooled by mere myth, and introduced what is recognized as the finest quality service body on the market: the DuraMag R Series Service Body, featuring Dover Roller Shutters.
DuraMag has a complete line of aluminum bodies, from dry freight van bodies to platform bodies, all manufactured on DuraMag’s more than 128,000 sq ft manufacturing floor. DuraMag is not new to aluminum truck body manufacturing, having introduced platform and landscape bodies in 2009. And, with the introduction of Dover Roller Shutters on its Service Bodies, add “Trendsetter” to DuraMag’s résumé.
Vehicle roll-up doors were first developed and used in Europe to safely access compartments in confined areas. With smaller roads and confined construction areas, there had to be a safer way to get tools and equipment from inside the vehicle. Dover Roller Shutters and Robinson Shutters, established in Europe, introduced roll-up doors to the North American market, mainly to the fire and emergency industry. Dover introduced the roll-up door directly into US market but was later bought by AM Group, which also owns Diamond Roll-Up Door, Inc. and the Dover USA brand name.
JUST A MYTH
MYTH: Roll-up doors take up more compartment space.
FACT: They don’t. Physically compare the two.
MYTH: In the after-market, roll-up doors are more expensive and take more time to fix and replace.
FACT: Roll-up door parts are readily available and can be shipped within a day or two.
MYTH: Roll-up doors are not specified by the customer when ordering new work vehicles.
FACT: This is actually true, but only because they are not yet offered. Offer them and see the response.
MYTH: Roll-up doors are too complicated and hard to implement into the manufacturing process.
FACT: Although implementing roll-up doors in the manufacturing process requires some reengineering, once complete, roll-up doors make the manufacturing process easier. The doors themselves are fairly simple and easy to work on.
Swing doors require some room on all four sides. This sometimes makes it difficult to get equipment over the lower ledge of the compartment. With a DuraMag body’s roll-up doors, compartments can be accessed by standing right next to the vehicle. In most cases, roll-up doors take up the same or less interior compartment space. Roll-up doors may take about six inches of the top compartment, but there is no side or lower room required, and with DuraMag’s shelving options, the roll-up door is the perfect solution to your “Where’s my tool?” problem.
The most significant cost savings roll-up doors provide comes in repair costs. A damaged swing door usually has to be completely replaced. That means the end user has to order from the body manufacturer, and that can take a significant amount of time. Parts for roll-up doors can be shipped next day, or in worst case, two weeks for a complete door. However, most of the time, roll-up doors don’t need to be completely replaced. If the end user has any experience with roll-up doors, he can replace the parts himself. All these provide cost savings, but also shorten the amount of time the truck is out of service, keeping business owners from declining or postponing jobs.
Aside from the benefits of the roll-up doors, a DuraMag body is built with quality in mind. Featuring a strong, lightweight aluminum (approximately 40 percent less weight than steel), you’ll see real fuel savings. DuraMag floors are a heavy, interlocking extrusion, not a sheet, ensuring a more durable product. Ultimately, a DuraMag Service Body is an investment, improving work efficiency and adding value at a trade-in.
Safety is probably the biggest advantage roll-up doors provide to the customer, and DuraMag leads the way in the highest quality, safest design for service bodies. With a DuraMag Service Body, tools don’t have to be carried out and around swinging doors. For tow trucks and vehicles on the highway, personnel do not have to walk around or close a swing door to stay close to the vehicle. When in confined spaces, the user does not have to worry about a door getting clipped off or slamming open or closed by the wind or another vehicle.
Security is also part of safety. Roll-up doors are very secure with most roll-up doors incorporating a two-point keyed locking system at the base of the door. This is in addition to the bar lock which keeps the door in the down position while traveling on the road without engaging the keyed lock system. DuraMag also offers an all-door electronic locking system on its service bodies—providing added security—and is integrated into the vehicle warning and caution systems.
DuraMag realized all the benefits of roll-up doors early on. Tom Sturtevant of DuraMag says the company chose to use Dover Roller Shutters not only because of Dover’s dedication to quality, but also because of its excellent customer service. “With our focus on building the highest quality, safest-to-operate service body in the industry, Dover was an obvious partner.”
A DuraMag Service Body is built to last the lifetime of the truck (or more), and built from heavy aluminum. A DuraMag Service Body is easily installed and designed for pickup deletes as well as cab chassis, allowing a custom fit. DuraMag Service Bodies feature six premium roll-up safety designed doors, an all-aluminum construction, heavy slam latch tailgate, a fully-welded construction, and sand-blasted preparation under a white or black powder coating. DuraMag Service Bodies come with several options to meet the needs of your business, such as a service body rack, CTECH drawers, and light packages. Shelving is standard, with additional shelving as an option.
With DuraMag’s innovative decision to offer roll-up doors on its Service Bodies, the use of roll-up doors on work trucks should see a significant increase in the very near future. Once the end users see the advantages and the manufacturers see the cost savings and simplified design, the work truck industry should see the shift from swing to roll-up doors as the fire and emergency industry did several years ago.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Find out more about DuraMag, visit www.duramagtruckbodies.com. Find out more about the Dover Roller Shutters, visit www.doverrollershutter.com.