22 Dec How to Spec the Right Truck Body for Your Chassis
If your business needs to transport large payloads over the road, then you’d benefit from utilizing a commercial truck body on a chassis. However, it’s not a one-size-fits-all process; you must consider many details when determining if a truck body is the right size for your chassis. Here are several crucial points you must remember when matching a truck body to a chassis.
You’ll encounter many abbreviations as you set out matching the truck chassis to your commercial truck body. Here are some of the terms you should keep in mind when shopping for a van body:
- Axle to End of Frame = AF
- Bumper to Axle = BA
- Bumper to Back of Cab = BBC
- Body Length = BL
- Cab to Axle =CA
- Cab to Body = CB
- Cab to End of Frame = CE
- Frame Height = FH
- Load to Axle = LA
- Overall Length = OAL
- Wheelbase = WB
Matching the Truck Chassis With the Cargo Load
The first step you must take when finding the right commercial truck body is knowing the payload the chassis will be used for. Knowing the maximum size of the cargo will let you determine how big your chassis must be to carry it properly. Further, you must also record the weight of the payload; if it’s too heavy, it could cause damage to both the truck body and the chassis itself.
Additionally, knowing the dimensions and mass of the payload isn’t enough to ensure a particular truck body is a good fit. All aspects of the load must be taken into consideration, so no angle is forgotten. For instance, while you may find the right-sized body, will it still be adequate if the payload requires refrigeration? Furthermore, how the product is loaded into the truck body plays a critical role in determining what type of rear doors are used and if additional reinforcement is needed for forklifts or pallet jacks. Always know the requirements of the product, as those details can influence what type of truck body you will need for the job.
Determine How the Truck Will be Used
Before you begin matching the chassis to a commercial truck body, it’s vital to understand how the truck will be used. For instance, the location the truck will be driven in, such as open-road environments or small city streets, can influence the chassis you pick. Additionally, how much load the truck will be carrying at one given time, such as a full or diminishing load, can alter the weight needed. Knowing these details beforehand will help ensure there aren’t any unexpected problems while out on the road and help you determine the ideal chassis and body combination for the work required.
Additional Points to Remember When Selecting a Commercial Truck Body and Chassis
After determining the weight and size of the payload and how you plan to utilize the truck, it’s time to find a suitable truck body. One of the most important factors to take into account is the distribution of weight. While the payload might weigh a particular amount, it may not distribute the force of that weight evenly. As a result, you should pay careful attention to the weight limitations of the chassis when selecting a van body, including:
- Gross axle weight
- Gross vehicle weight
- Tare weight, or the weight of the chassis before installation
- Cab to axle dimension
- The wheelbase
Knowing the center of gravity will be key for ensuring that the payload isn’t straining one particular part of the chassis or truck body too much.
Another factor you should consider is the cost. While it may make sense to buy the largest size available so you won’t have to calculate the correct measurements, larger van bodies can be more expensive. Conversely, if you want to save money by purchasing a small truck body, it may not be able to accommodate the payload you intend to carry. Always consult with a professional to help you determine the right chassis and van body combination for your shipping needs.