For a casual observer traveling down the highway beside an 18-wheeler, it might seem like all semi trailers are the same. However, the people responsible for hauling, servicing or renting semi trailers know that that’s far from the truth. Not all semi trailers are designed and manufactured the same way. And the same goes for equipment like liftgates and refrigeration units.
There are some manufacturers that stand out above the rest. Those are the ones we work with at Boxwheel, because we only want to provide our customers with equipment that’s sturdy, reliable and easy to use and service. While we can find trailers and other equipment from virtually any provider if our customers need us to, we generally have equipment from these companies readily available:
- Great Dane
- Thermo King
Below is a brief introduction to these companies and the semi trailers they offer.
Wabash Semi Trailers
Wabash National is a leading North American producer of semi trailers and liquid transportation systems. Founded in Lafayette, Indiana, in 1985, the company went public in 1991. Its line of dry vans, reefers, platform trailers and liquid tank trailers are built in facilities around the U.S. and in Mexico, and marketed and sold under a number of brand names. You may see Wabash National, Benson, DuraPlate, Beall, Garsite, Walker Transport and many others on the road.
Great Dane Semi Trailers
What became Great Dane was founded in 1900 in Savannah, Georgia, as the Savannah Blow Pipe Company It fabricated sheet metal systems used to manage wood chips and sawdust in mills and other woodworking facilities. In the early 1930s, the company began manufacturing over-the-road truck trailers. Today, the name Great Dane and the iconic dog profile logo are synonymous with the trucking industry. The company’s trailers, built in nine different manufacturing plants, are durable, state-of-the-art units that can meet the toughest of demands.
Utility Semi Trailers
Utility traces its history back to 1914, when two brothers in the lumber business purchased a recently founded trailer-building business as an alternative to constructing their own trailers. What they wanted was a trailer that could take the abuse of constant use, heavy loads and unforgiving roads. The company’s innovations led to the development of a patented cable-reel trailer, with the U.S. government purchasing 100 of them when WWI broke out. Fast forward over 100 years and Utility is still an innovator and industry leader in dry vans, reefers and flatbeds.
Hyundai Semi Trailers
Headquartered in San Diego, Hyundai Translead calls itself the “leading manufacturer of dry and refrigerated van trailers, flatbeds, chassis and dollies in North America.” Established in 1994 as a division of Hyundai Engineering & Construction Company, which dates back to 1947, the semi trailer manufacturing unit is the first in North America to earn ISO:9001 Certification. So, you can expect quality in a Hyundai trailer and a focus on continual innovation and improvement.
Named for the Wisconsin city in which it resides, Stoughton started as a family-owned business in 1961. Today, the company has nine facilities and more than 1.3 million square feet of manufacturing space across Stoughton, Evansville and Brodhead, Wisconsin, where its manufacturing and component painting quality control processes are a top priority. Stoughton estimates that more than 150,000 of its trailers are on the roads in the U.S. and Canada.
Vanguard Semi Trailers
Vanguard National Trailer Corp. is a newer semi trailer manufacturer. Founded in Monon, Indiana, in 2003, the company touts “superior corrosion protection, high strength and long-life specifications and advanced safety components as standard features on every trailer.” While Vanguard may have started in a small Indiana town, its parent company, CIMC Group, operates more than 100 subsidiaries with more than 45,000 employees worldwide. For people that use Vanguard semi trailers, that’s an indicator that the company has plenty of resources to focus on manufacturing solid, dependable equipment.
Fontaine Semi Trailers
With a legacy that goes back to 1940, Fontaine Commercial Trailer is a Marmon Highway Technologies/Berkshire Hathaway company that manufactures trailers in Jasper, Haleyville and Springville, Alabama. The company claims to be the largest platform trailer manufacturer in the world. People know Fontaine trailers for their high quality and reliable performance and great warranties.
Transcraft, a division of Wabash National, produces flatbed and drop deck trailers at its state-of-the-art facility in Kentucky, and has for more than 50 years. It’s trailers are known for a number of characteristics, including uptime, fuel efficiency, durability and load flexibility. They deliver on that reputation, in part, by designing trailers that don’t have unnecessary weight but that have strength where it’s needed most.
The Optimal Access and Temperature Control Units for the Job
Of course, getting loads into and out of trailers efficiently and keeping temperature-sensitive loads properly chilled are critical capabilities for truckers and the companies that rely on them. The trailers that we lease, rent and sell use the best units for these tasks.
For liftgates, we prefer units from Waltco or Maxon. Both manufacturers offer a wide range of liftgate types capable of handling any loading/unloading operation.
When it comes to keeping loads cool, Thermo King and Carrier units do the job efficiently and reliably. The companies have products to meet any need, even in the heat of summer here in the western/southwestern U.S.
Which Rental Semi Trailer is Right for You?
With so many great manufacturers out there, how do you know which one to choose when you need to rent a semi trailer? For our part at Boxwheel, we don’t have a vested interest in promoting any particular provider. Instead, we talk with you about your needs and then look for the trailer that best meets them. Maybe durability is your top priority, and that helps guide our recommendation. Or, maybe there’s a particular semi trailer feature that’s critical for the type of work you do. If so, that helps us narrow down the list of contenders.
But, any way you look at it, you really can’t go wrong with any of the manufacturers above. While they’re all slightly different, certain characteristics are common to all of them. Quality construction and durability are two of the most important features, and all of these semi trailers, liftgates and refrigeration units have both.
Are there other reputable manufacturers out there? Absolutely, and that’s one of the great things about working with a company like Boxwheel. Our leadership has many decades of experience and a trusted network of connections throughout the industry. If an up-and-coming company starts turning heads with quality, functionality, price or other features of their semi trailers, we’ll hear about it quickly and share what we learn with our clients.
That’s the kind of personal attention we can give you that larger providers can’t. And if a new manufacturer emerges or an existing one ups its game, it’s a level of service that can be your competitive advantage.
Put Our Inventory of Semi Trailers for Rent, Lease or Purchase to Work for You
If you have a need for dry van, liftgate, refrigerated or flatbed semi trailers for rent, lease or sale from our locations in the Denver and Phoenix areas, please contact Boxwheel Trailer Leasing at your convenience. We’re happy to answer your questions about our inventory and our hassle-free, three-step semi trailer rental or leasing process that can get you on the road faster and more efficiently.