All-new 2019 Ram 1500 Lone Star
Ram is continuing the rollout of introductions for its redesigned 2019 lineup of 1500 pickups with the unveiling of its latest Lone Star model.
Like the rest of the 2019 lineup, the 1500 Lone Star has gotten an exterior redesign from previous model years. However, this truck, which is only sold in Texas, stands out from the rest of the 2019 1500 models with slightly different designs for the headlamps and grille, not to mention the “Lone Star” badges that adorn the tailgate and interior. (You can see the difference in the look in our initial coverage of the 2019 1500 unveilings.)
The truck, which is Ram’s best-selling model in Texas, also boasts the following standard features:
- Bright front and rear bumpers
- Chrome door handle centers
- Bright grille surround with billet inserts
- 18-inch aluminum wheels
- Fog lamps
- 60/40 split rear bench seat
- Leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls
Upon its release in the first quarter of this year, the Lone Star will initially be offered with a 5.7-liter HEMI V8. Ram will also offer a more fuel-efficient HEMI equipped with its eTorque mild hybrid system. A 3.6L V6 Pentastar with eTorque will be available on the truck later in the year.
The 2019 Lone Star will be available with a choice of 4×2 and 4×4 powertrains, Crew and Quad Cab configurations and 5-ft., 7-in. (Crew only) and 6 ft.-4 in. bed lengths.
Monochromatic Sport and Black packages are offered on the Lone Star along with four interior trim levels and a choice of six-passenger bench front or optional five-passenger bucket seats.
Available option packages include the Bed Utility Group, 4×4 Off-road Group, Protection Group, Trailer Tow Mirrors and Brake Group, Max Towing Package and the Premium Lighting Group. The truck can also be equipped with Active Level Air Suspension, electric-locking rear axle, Blind-spot Monitoring and 20-inch aluminum wheels.
Source:: Equipment world
The Association of Equipment Management Professionals announced on Thursday the finalists in its Technician of the Year contest. They include:
James Blake, Kiewit Infrastructure, New York City
A third-generation equipment technician, Blake served as a first responder at the World Trade Center after 9/11. He started as an apprentice in 1996 and draws on his wealth of experience daily. His supervisor says, “James can diagnose and repair everything from trucks and dozers, to excavators, cranes, and tug boats.” Blake also helped develop the “CSI” or Craft Safety Involvement Group at Kiewit. The CSI team consists of multiple trades and meets weekly to identify safety issues, giving workers someone other than their supervisor as a point of contact.
Troy Fryer, Civil Constructors, Freeport, Illinois
Fryer is known as a fabrication wizard and frequently builds parts to keep his crew safe and out of harm’s way. Recent innovations include: a guard for a Ditch Witch Earthsaw, a conveyor belt guard on a Blaw Knox road widener, a “blue bar” mounting system for asphalt paver electronic skis – and a hydraulically actuated push beam for a road widener. Fryer’s supervisor likens him to McGyver, saying, “Fryer demonstrates the ability to keep equipment running on the job at all times, regardless of whether or not the right parts are on hand, or available.”
Bobby Jones, Sherwood Construction, Pryor, Oklahoma
Known as the ultimate trainer, Jones leads by example, and naturally passes on his wealth of knowledge to his trainees. Former trainees have Jones on speed dial and often call him for advice. He is also a great company ambassador and frequently looks for ways to introduce others to the industry. Jones is a top notch professional and wrote the book on work ethics. Jones’s supervisor says he, “eats, sleeps, walks, talks, and lives construction equipment…and even if he has to stand on his head in mud to do it, Bobby gets it done.”
Staff Sgt. Jeff Louis, Eglin Air Force Base, Florida
As a material control representative, Louis made a name for himself as a trouble shooting and design hot shot. He streamlined and improved the vehicle maintenance residue program at Eglin by creating a residue data base, regularly diagnoses software application issues, analyzes information systems, and installs hardware to maintain electrical systems. His supervisor says, “His expertise has been vital in identifying the causes of past safety mishaps in our shops and finding solutions to train and prevent their occurrences.” Louis is currently enrolled in a Ph.D. program at California Southern University and volunteers with Operation Homefront Hero, assisting with the needs of deployed member’s families.
Robert May, Skanska USA Civil, Riverside, California
Early in his career, May was a journeyman mechanic, working nights on various highway and earthmoving projects and developing exceptional problem solving and critical thinking skills. He often takes the initiative to master new technical skills and learn new regulations, even if it means taking classes on weekends and nights. May will scour the internet, review OEM standards, and take service manuals home at night, all to find a fix for the next day. A safety superstar, May has no lost time or recordable incidents after 19 year with Skanska. Commenting on his professional growth, May’s supervisor says, “For the past 12 years May has been a foreman, taking complete ownership of the projects and personnel under his care. His reputation for reliable execution and thorough follow-through grows with the years.”
Paul Tombrello, Sanitation District of Los Angeles County, Whittier, California
As a proven leader with LACSD, Tombrello mentors other technicians and maintenance staff, and is highly regarded as a role model, especially for younger field technicians. Tombrello has mastered the lost art of fixing parts, not just changing them out, and his fabrication and repair skills are highly regarded. Always looking for the best and most efficient way to maintain machines, Tombrello was instrumental in the development and implementation of a new set of service and inspection forms. His supervisor writes, “He has a strong drive to do whatever it takes to get the job done and get the machine back into service. His thinking outside of the box is second to none.”
Bronson Sheperd, Beaver Excavating, Waverly, Ohio
Knowns as a tech savvy employee, Sheperd uses all avenues to make repairs, recommendations and aid the dealer in repairs, saving Beaver Excavating time and money. Following up on a customer request, Sheperd engineered a solution for removing tires from rigid frame haul trucks. He also proposed a custom made jack stand with a brace to raise the rear axle off the ground. This kept the jack stand from rolling or tipping, and kept everyone out of harm’s way. In addition to having great technical skills, Sheperd an effective communicator, a leader and a mentor to others with a strong work ethic. His employer writes, “His personality is such that it draws others to him and they feel comfortable confiding in him with any issues that arise.” Outside of work, Bronson takes time to volunteer at his local church to help those in need. He also builds a float each year for the local parade to haul the wee ones around from the local dance troupe.”
Joe Tyre, North Carolina DOT, Hertford, North Carolina
After 23 years with NCDOT, Tyre is well known for his ingenuity for finding, fixing, and making parts. Joe’s supervisor says, “Inevitably, Tyre will make a tool or find a way to repair a piece of equipment with only the items on his truck after a two-and-a-half-hour ferry ride to a remote location. Tyre works tirelessly and without complaint even when natural disasters such as storm clean-up, snow, ice, and hurricanes call for long hours. Joe’s employer also cites his ability to help train and develop the next generation of technicians, his strength in mentoring, and a belief that “growing others is a privilege, not a chore.
The winner of the AEMP Technician of the Year will be announced at the association’s annual meeting, March 21-22, in Orlando Florida For more information on the finalists and the Technician of the Year contest, click here.
Source:: Equipment world
An aerial view of the 2017 Orlando auction.
Ritchie Bros. is preparing for the start of its big Orlando auction Monday and the heavy equipment auctioneer says this will be the largest version of the annual auction yet.
Company spokesman Ian Malinski says more than 12,800 trucks and pieces of equipment will be available at the auction and sold with no minimum bids or reserve prices.
Because of all the added equipment and strong early demand from equipment sellers, Ritchie expanded the Orlando auction from five to six days. “Adding the sixth auction day really optimizes the event so that we can grow to include more consignors and ensure that we aren’t selling too late into the evening,” says Ritchie Bros. President for U.S. sales Jeff Jeter.
According to Ritchie Bros., “bids can be made at the Orlando auction in person, online in real time at rbauction.com or via the mobile app, and by proxy. Detailed equipment information is available at rbauction.com/Orlando2018—items being sold off-site also have inspection reports and are backed by IronClad Assurance.”
The 2018 auction will offer the following equipment:
- 765+ excavators
- 520+ comapctors
- 475+ skid steers
- 380+ loaders
- 300+ dozers
- 165+ articulated dump trucks
- 155 cranes
- 380+ aerial work platforms
- 430+ truck tractors
- 195+ dump trucks
We’ll be heading to Orlando next week to provide coverage of the record-breaking auction. Here’s how the schedule breaks down.
- Day 1: Monday, Feb. 19 – skid steers, forklifts, loader backhoes, boom lifts, scissor lifts
- Day 2: Tuesday, Feb. 20 – agriculture tractors, motor graders, wheel loaders, rock trucks, articulated dump trucks, trenchers, direction drills, pull scrapers, log loaders, feller bunchers, mulchers
- Day 3: Wednesday, Feb. 21 – vibratory rollers, tandem rollers, pneumatic rollers, pulverizers, pipelayers, crawler tractors, crawler loaders, cranes, crushers, screen plants, conveyors, pavers, asphalt distributor trucks, road wideners, barges, railroad equipment
- Day 4: Thursday, Feb. 22 – vacuum trucks, water trucks, fuel & lube trucks, mechanics trucks, rolloff trucks, mixer trucks, concrete pump trucks, dump trucks, hydraulic excavators, mobile excavators, mid-size excavators, small excavators
- Day 5: Friday, Feb. 23 – buses, motor homes, emergency vehicles, boom trucks, cab & chassis, truck tractors, lowboys, beam trailers, hiboys, end dump trailers, pneumatic bulk trailers, asphalt trailers, vacuum trailers, frac tanks, reefer trailers, van trailers, boats, airplanes
- Day 6: Saturday, Feb. 24 – bed trucks, tow trucks, bucket trucks, paint striper trucks, flatbed trucks, van trucks, automobiles, pickup trucks, air compressors, light towers, welders, gensets
Source:: Equipment world
Caterpillar North American dealer total machine retail sales continued their double-digit rise, with January sales rising 23 percent compared to the previous year, mirroring December’s 23 percent year-over-year rise.
Caterpillar January total machine retail sales.
Looking at just the construction portion of these retail sales statistics, North American Cat dealers saw a 22 percent year-over-year rise. The biggest construction equipment gainer continues to be the Asia/Pacific region, which saw increases of 59 percent compared with the same period last year. Latin America, a powerhouse in December with 55 percent year-over-year gains, realized gains of 28 percent in January,
Construction Industries only retail sales in January.
The sales are reported by geographic region for the three-month rolling period ending in January, compared with the same period last year.
Caterpillar says the information presented “based on unaudited reports that are voluntarily provided to Caterpillar by its independent dealers and which are not subject to Caterpillar’s internal controls over financial reporting,” and therefore “may not be accurate and/or complete.”
Cat says the information provides “an approximate indication of the trends, direction and magnitude of retail sales,” although it is separate from the company’s audited financial statements.
Source:: Equipment world
The Texas Department of Transportation picks up debris from roads following Hurricane Harvey. Photo: TxDOT
Texas has snagged $1 billion in federal funding to help the state’s Gulf Coast rebuild after Hurricane Harvey and to reduce damage from future floods and hurricanes. That includes buying out flooded properties and elevating flood-prone structures.
Cities and counties can now apply for the money, which comes from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, according to a news release from Governor Greg Abbott’s office. The money will be administered by the Texas Division of Emergency Management.
Harvey dumped more than 60 inches of rain in parts of southeastern Texas in August, and along with its high winds, damaged thousands of homes. The storm caused $125 billion in damage in the state, the Associated Press reports.
Along with buyouts and elevation, the FEMA money can be used for drainage and reservoir projects to prevent flooding; projects that reduce the severity or frequency of floods; building flood-prevention structures, such as dams, sea walls and levees; and large-scale channeling of waterways.
The state received half of the money February 13, and the rest becomes available on or before August 25, according to Abbott’s office. The projects will be reimbursed at 100 percent by FEMA, rather than the typical 75 percent, according to The AP.
Abbott said additional FEMA money could be available for requests made by cities and counties. The state will also benefit from $89 billion in funding recently approved by Congress for disaster relief and $5 billion in federal money for community block grants, he said.
“Texas has maintained from the beginning that we would rebuild in ways that reduce the risk of future damage to property and lives, and that’s exactly what these funds are for,” Abbott said. “While this announcement is another important step toward recovery, we still have more work ahead of us, and I want to reassure every Texan impacted by Harvey that we will not let up until your homes and communities are restored.”
Source:: Equipment world
Photo courtesy of NYSDOT.
The $58 million reconstruction project on the three bridges at the Long Island Expressway/Grand Central Parkway Interchange and improvement work at the Long Island Expressway (LIE) between the Grand Central Parkway and College Point Boulevard is expected to be completed in the spring of 2018, nine months ahead of schedule, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced this week, according to QNS.
The project included the replacement of deck and steel structures and widening of the bridges to provide space for shoulders.
Lighting and cable upgrades were installed on the LIE mainline and service roads, and drainage structures were installed to allow stormwater to run off. Pavement restoration, roadway resurfacing and new markings will wrap up the project.
“These vital improvements will help ease congestion at this busy interchange for motorists, while offering those traveling to LaGuardia Airport and JFK a smoother commute,” Cuomo said, according to the news agency. “By modernizing and strengthening Queens’ transportation infrastructure, we help to meet the demands of the 21st-century traveler while spurring economic growth for the entire Empire State.”
“Our roads need an urgent injection of investment to ensure they do not continue to deteriorate,” New York State Senator Jose Peralta said, according to the news agency. “We need to accelerate and make the modernization of our infrastructure a priority. The reconstruction of these three bridges at the Long Island Expressway/Grand Central Parkway interchange is a good step toward the goal of modernizing our roads to improve safety. I applaud Governor Cuomo for this and other projects put in place to improve our network of roads.”
“Strong and resilient transportation infrastructure is critical to spurring local economies, connecting travelers to their destinations and helping move New York forward,” New York State Assemblywoman Nily Rozic said, according to QNS.
Source:: Equipment world
This week, the NAPA Care auction has raised $54,645 between its silent auction and cash donations at the annual meeting of the National Asphalt Pavement Association in San Diego, California.
That brings the total money available to endow the fund to about $590,000, says T. Carter Ross, vice president of communications for NAPA.
The NAPA Care Emergency Benevolent Fund was established by the asphalt pavement industry to support the family of a NAPA member employee who is killed in an accident while working in the line of duty.
The fund has helped 27 families since 2012, Ross says. The members’ generosity helps to provide a caring hand in the midst of a tragedy and sends the message that the industry cares.
The fund is administered by the National Asphalt Pavement Association Research and Education Foundation (NAPAREF), a 501(c)(3) organization, and was initiated by the Associate Member Council.
A family may be eligible to receive an immediate, tax-free cash benefit from the NAPA Care Fund. Click here to view eligibility criteria.
The NAPA Care Fund relies on donations from NAPA member companies and individuals to ensure that the foundation can continue to provide emergency financial support to its workers.
Source:: Equipment world
Caterpillar’s tax woes continue to compound with news today that federal tax penalties the heavy equipment manufacturer is facing have more than doubled.
According to the company’s annual 10-K report filed Thursday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Cat now faces $2.3 billion worth of back taxes and penalties as the result of Internal Revenue Service audits of its 2007-2012 tax returns, including a loss carryback to 2005.
In the report, the company says that it is “vigorously contesting” the penalties. However, based on the company’s statement that it has not changed the way it files taxes in the “years after 2012,” Cat might be in for more penalties before the federal government’s investigation into Cat’s tax strategy is all said and done.
“We believe that the relevant transactions complied with applicable tax laws and did not violate judicial doctrines. We have filed U.S. income tax returns on this same basis for years after 2012,” the report reads. “Based on the information currently available, we do not anticipate a significant increase or decrease to our unrecognized tax benefits for this matter within the next 12 months. We currently believe the ultimate disposition of this matter will not have a material adverse effect on our consolidated financial position, liquidity or results of operations.”
The $2.3 billion sum represents a $1.3 billion increase over an initial penalty levied by the IRS in 2015 after an audit of 2007-2009 returns. That same year, the company appeared before a Senate subcommittee to defend a tax strategy that allegedly allowed the company to avoid an estimated $2.4 billion in taxes since 1999. The company was initially found innocent of any wrongdoing and instead only received a scolding from the Senate subcommittee. However, the company’s legal woes were far from over.
The government’s frustration with the company’s tax dealings boiled over into a full-blown investigation following accusations from whistleblower Daniel Schlicksup, a once highly-trusted member of Cat’s corporate accounting team. Schlicksup filed a wrongful termination lawsuit in 2009 alleging that he had been warning Cat executives of the illegality of the company’s tax scheme since 2007.
Schlicksup alleged the company used what he referred to as a “Swiss structure” and a “Bermuda structure” to avoid paying taxes by moving select profits to offshore shell companies located in Switzerland and Bermuda. Much of the investigation—and these increased tax penalties—centers around Caterpillar SARL (CSARL), a Switerland-based parts subsidiary. Cat has allegedly attributed 85 percent of its parts sales to CSARL even though the vast majority of those sales happen in the U.S. where they would be taxed at a higher rate.
On March 2, 2017, three of the company’s Illinois-based facilities were raided by federal agencies. Law enforcement officials seized documents and electronics records related to the U.S. government’s ongoing investigation of the company’s tax strategy. Less than a week later, Cat CEO Jim Umpleby said the company was “surprised” by the raid, saying that the raid was unexpected due to how closely the company had been working with federal officials throughout the investigation.
Source:: Equipment world
Manitou’s MRT 3050
Manitou is bringing three new telehandlers to the North American market.
The MRT 2470, MRT 3050 and MRT 1840 range from capacities of 8,800 to 15,400 pounds, with lift heights of 58 to 97 feet.
Manitou calls the additions to the MRT Series “three-in-one machines,” serving as telehandler, winch and platform. They feature all-terrain capability, 360-degree cab and boom rotation, frame leveling, fully enclosed cabs, remote control, four-wheel drive and four-wheel steering. The telehandlers also come equipped with the new E-RECO system, which automatically adapts the load chart to the attachment, the company says.
Manitou’s MRT 1840
The MRT 1840 Easy is the smallest of the new telehandlers. It runs on a 74-horsepower Tier 4 Perkins turbo diesel engine. It can lift up to 8,800 pounds and reach a maximum height of 58 feet 9 inches.
Next comes the MRT 3050 Privilege Plus. The rotating telehandler boasts the longest stabilizers on the market, extending 20 feet 6 inches, Manitou says. The stabilizers have pin-mounted strain gauges that determine ground contact and position sensors to adapt the load chart. It has a maximum load capacity of 11,000 pounds, lift height of 97 feet 9 inches and forward reach of 84 feet 8 inches. It runs on a 176-horsepower Mercedes turbo diesel engine.
The largest of the telehandlers, the MRT 2470 Privilege Plus, has the highest weight capacity on the market at 15,400 pounds, the company says. It has a maximum lift height of 81 feet 4 inches and forward reach of 63 feet 3 inches. Manitou says it designed the telehandler with a compact frame to navigate tight areas. It is powered by the same 176-horsepower Mercedes engine as the MRT 3050.
Manitou MRT 2470
Source:: Equipment world
Just getting to an oil filter in the first place can be an ordeal. Then trying to twist it loose at an odd angle and inside some cramped engine underbelly can frustrate even the most patient mechanic.
Lumax swivel handle oil filter wrenches are designed for ergonomic comfort with cushion grip handles and a slim design to help you turn them in tight spaces. The yoke and link assembly grips filters firmly but prevents you from crushing the filter too.
Sizes are available to fit filters from 2-1/2 inches to 5-3/4 inches (63 mm to 146 mm).
Source:: Equipment world