UD Automatics Help Trump The Opposition With Ace Gutters
Monday, 20 July 2009 | Print
One of Australia's largest manufacturers and suppliers of rainwater and plumbing products, Ace Gutters, has become the latest company to purchase automatic transmission equipped UD trucks.
Ace Gutters, based in the southern Sydney suburb of Mortdale, maintains its own fleet of 16 UD delivery trucks and has remained loyal to the UD brand for almost a quarter century, buying only UD throughout that time.
The move to embrace automatic transmissions is a logical one according to Ace Gutters managing director, Don Anderson, who believes the move is already saving money and improving efficiency. The company has so far purchased two new MK6 Automatics and will be purchasing more as older trucks on fleet come up for replacement.
"It is obvious that in city operations the automatics are going to be smoother and have less wear and tear simply because there will is no clutch and gearbox damage," said Don Anderson.
"As well as having less maintenance and repairs the automatics are more economical and make it easier for drivers to be smooth in city traffic," he said.
"The automatic will upshift at the optimal time and won't allow drivers to over rev the engines which wastes fuel and increases maintenance," he added.
Don says the company's UDs have proven themselves as the most reliable and economical truck for Ace Gutters over many years.
"That is an important aspect and the fact that Allison is the best known automatic transmission brand and one we could rely on meant we had no qualms about choosing the MK6 Automatics.
"Our UDs have cost us virtually nothing in repairs over the past 20 or so years and that is vital in terms of keeping costs down and ensuring reliability," says Don.
"Our delivery fleet is very important because it enables us to offer a higher level of service to our customers across a wider area, we do daily deliveries to Canberra, the Central Coast and Newcastle and once a week to Singleton and Port Stephens as well as three times a week to Nowra on the South coast.
"You have to chase work, it won't necessarily always come to you so we have always made a point of delivering to our customers and that has won us loyalty and new customers," says Don.
The vivid orange and white livery of the Ace Gutters UDs stands out on the road and are very much moving billboards for the company as they go about their daily delivery work.
Each of the Ace UDs is equipped with a specially designed and built body featuring racks to hold the rolled gutter product as well as extra lockers below the tray that hold loose plumbing and rainwater items for delivery.
"I designed the bodies myself and until recently we built them in-house, it is only because our tradesmen have become so busy that we have contracted the body construction out to another company in recent times," said Don.
"The design aspect of the trucks is very important to me and we have put a lot of work into configuring the bodies and racks to ensure the guttering is transported without damage," he added.
One clever design aspect is that the kerbside of the truck body is open while the drivers side features a full length vinyl tautliner adorned with the Ace Gutters livery. The lack of signage on the kerbside enables drivers to reverse more easily and to better judge access to tricky sites.
The Ace Gutters UD trucks feature air bag suspension for a smoother ride again to ensure the guttering and other products are delivered without damage.
Ace keep its trucks on fleet for approximately three years before they are sold on to owner drivers who work for the company and who run them for another five to six years.
Ace Gutters was established in 1953 by Don's father and has become a leading manufacturer and supplier of the high quality rainwater products.
The company is headquartered in Sydney has branches in both NSW and Victoria.