These are exciting times for Alloy Tip Ltd and IFM (Industrial & Farm Machinery) Ltd who have come together to bring two new trailer products to the market.
The first is a unique demountable, cross-over trailer which, according to Samir Kumar of Alloy Tip, offers “the best of both worlds when it comes to the commercial and agricultural sectors”. The second is a livestock body which is made completely from aluminium.
Established in 2018, Alloy Tip specialises in manufacturing bespoke commercial vehicle bodies using high tensile-grade aluminium which offers great weight-saving and rust-free lifespan of the product. So when IFM approached the Carlow-based company about manufacturing a livestock carrier body, it provided Samir and his team with a challenge they hadn’t faced before.
“It wasn’t your standard run-of-the-mill job!” Samir smiles.
“At first, we thought it would never happen as there were so many complications. Not only had we to make the bodies demountable, but demountable between an agricultural tri-axle tractor trailer and a commercial four-axle truck. The main issues we initially had to deal with were the ride height between the truck and trailer, the different heights of the truck and trailer tyres (315 compared to 560), the different suspensions (air and springs) and chassis lengths.
“Once the first hurdle was cleared, we faced an even bigger one relating to the automated locking system for securing the body safely to the chassis of the truck and trailer. It took three full attempts to ensure that when the body was swapped from the truck to trailer, it was sitting and fitting correctly every single time.”
He continues: “Our livestock carrier body differs from others in that it is not a standard build. To start with, a traditional Irish livestock carrier is a lot heavier as it is built with steel over aluminium whereas we have eliminated the steel bit completely. This leads to a better payload, rust-free environment for cattle and a better lifespan of the body.
“And because aluminium does not oxides in wet environments or with salt from the road does not need any coatings or paint to protect it, it results in an easier upkeep of the body and low maintenance.”
Samir is confident that there will be a strong demand for the new products when they are launched later this year.
“Time will tell, but I’m happy with what we’ve come up and the quality that’s in the trailers. The demountable trailer was almost a year in the making. The beauty of it is that it can be used in either a commercial or agricultural environment. Joe O’Reilly of IFM has shown huge confidence in us and the products. A lot of time, money and effort has been invested in them.
“We also have plans in the pipeline to develop an inter-changeable grain tipper, but we’ll see how this goes first.”
IFM was founded in Dunleer, Co. Louth in 1968 as a wholesale and retail distributor of hydraulic hose and couplings, adaptors, oils and greases and other ancillary products. Its mission is to provide a high-quality service through the supply of products from global brands such as Gates Hydraulics, Fuchs, Orlen and Rockman Lubricants.
A dynamic company, IFM is constantly seeking better ways of doing business. IFM also operates a retail business selling premium products such as Teng Tools, Snickers Workwear, 247 Lighting and many more hardware accessories.
The collaboration between IFM and Alloy Tip came about through Samir’s father-in-law, Jimmy Kelly, who he worked for before going out on his own. For many years, Jimmy ran a company called Jimmy Kelly Truck & Trailer Bodies Ltd which specialised in manufacturing truck and trailer bodies.
“IFM had dealt with Jimmy in the past and that’s how this project happened,” explains Samir, who moved from his native India to Ireland when he was 21.
“After graduating from WIT with a Mechanical Design Engineering degree in 2009, work opportunities were scarce because of the recession. I worked in a few different jobs in Waterford before moving to Athy where Jimmy gave me the opportunity to work for him. Nearly everything I know about the industry I’ve learned from him. He continues to mentor me and give me great advice. I even ended up marrying his daughter, Lyndsey!”
Alloy Tip has gone from strength to strength over the past three years and now employs six staff at its Bennekerry workshop, which is just off Junction 5 of the M9. Samir would like to see more young people take up a skilled trade such as welding.
“We’re a dying breed which doesn’t bode well for the future of the welding trade. I don’t think it’s right that young people are being encouraged to choose college over a trade. If someone has an interest in welding and is willing to work, we’ll happily take them on and provide them with the training they need to make a career out of it,” he says.
Samir would like to take this opportunity to thank his customers and suppliers for their continued support, and his staff for their hard work, dedication and skill.
Alloy Tip Ltd
Telephone: +353 (0)59 9116933 / +353 (0)86 2588833
Email: [email protected]
First published in Irish Tractor & Agri magazine Vol 9 No 3, May/June 2021