MAKING THE GENERAL PLANT
The design of the new General Plant range of trailers has been a significant challenge for the team of Chief Designer Martin Dickinson and Design Engineer Jiannan Yin.
What were the biggest challenges? The biggest challenge is that it’s a trailer for different uses, both ‘general’ and ‘plant’ hence the name! if you take our Digger Plant trailer for example, as the name suggests, it’s designed with a specific purpose in mind. The General Plant has to be easily adaptable, but highly capable in all scenarios. For example, adding a row of tie down holes in the deck or sides would be great for lashing down plant equipment, but not so good if you’re carrying sand or soil!
What does the design process involve? The process starts with a few hand sketches as initial interpretation of the brief along with suggestions of sizes/capacities and features. From here we quickly move onto the CAD and start fleshing things out. Once we have an idea together we can relatively quickly build some prototypes for testing and evaluating. The design develops quickly from here. Once the basic trailer is realised, work starts on all the configurable options.
What's different between this model and the ones it replaces?
The key differences are that this has been designed with the configurable options in mind from the outset. This gives the dealers and the end user the most versatile product. The previous models were pretty much a fixed specification at time of order, whereas the General Plant can be configured and changed at any time.
What are you most pleased about?
One of the key things about this project is that it’s been designed with the manufacturing process in mind as well as customer benefits, so we’ve re-engineered the pre-assembly stage so that the whole trailer can be welded from the underside, completely eliminating the need to flip the trailer in the manufacturing process. This is key for us as we move towards further automation of the assembly line and all without compromising strength, quality and functionality.
Brian James Trailers Ltd., Sopwith Way, Drayton Fields Ind. Est., Daventry, Northamptonshire NN11 8PB, United Kingdom
Tel: 01327 308833 | Fax: 01327 308822