Bermuda’s largest wholesale food distributor, Butterfield & Vallis needed a way to meet increasing customer demand while maintaining a high level of customer service. They also wanted to keep their delivery fleet as small as possible.
Their equipment supplier, Nichols Fleet Equipment based in Chattanooga, Tennessee, recommended Demountable Concepts, Inc. of Glassboro, New Jersey and their Demountable (a.k.a. swap-body) System for delivery fleets.
The Demountable Truck Body System
The system is made up of interchangeable cargo-bodies that can stand freely on retractable legs and a lift-unit installed onto the truck’s chassis to enable the truck to quickly and easily “swap” one body for another.
Utilizing demountable bodies reduces the number of trucks necessary to do the same amount of work by increasing each truck’s productivity. One body can be loaded at the facility while a second body is on the truck making deliveries. When the truck returns the empty body is exchanged for the loaded one and the truck is back on the road in minutes. Time that was spent waiting for the truck to be loaded is now used to make additional deliveries.
The system also improves warehouse efficiency because workers can load demountable bodies throughout the day, as opposed to waiting for trucks to return before they can be loaded. Clutter on the loading dock, rush loading, damaged goods, second shifts and overtime paid for loading outside of normal business hours are reduced or eliminated.
Butterfield & Vallis Required a Smaller Version
of the Demountable System for Straight-Trucks
Bermuda’s infrastructure is smaller in scale than what’s found throughout the United States. Demountable Concepts and Nichols needed to develop and manufacture a system that would be effective in narrower, crowded streets and tighter delivery areas. Drivers also had to have the ability to deliver goods at a loading dock or street level and the bodies needed a refrigeration system to keep food fresh under tropical conditions.
The final product is a user-friendly, reliable Hydraulic Demountable System that is built into lower gross vehicle weight (GVW) trucks–a scaled-down version of the Demountable System for straight-trucks. Butterfield & Vallis currently operates a demountable fleet that consists of three trucks, six refrigerated bodies and one flat-bed body. Each truck also has a lift-gate to accommodate ground level deliveries.
Collaboration was Key to the Successful Outcome
of the Butterfield & Vallis Project
“We work hand-in-hand with truck body companies and truck suppliers to implement the Demountable System into fleets of all sizes across a wide array of industries.” says Rustin Cassway, President of Demountable Concepts, Inc. “On this project we worked with Nichols Fleet Equipment, who are Butterfield and Vallis’s equipment supplier, to design, manufacture and install the lift-units into the trucks. We also supplied their truck body builders with the components necessary to make the bodies interchangeable.”
The result: The Demountable System enabled Butterfield & Vallis to manage increasing customer demand while actually decreasing the number of trucks necessary to deliver their goods. Capital freed-up by the system can now be used to improve other aspects of the operation or applied directly to bottom-line profitability.
Demountable Concepts, Inc. is celebrating their 20th Anniversary as North America’s premier manufacturer and supplier of “Swap-Body” Delivery Systems for straight and low GVW trucks and the Warehouse on Wheels Portable Distribution Center. They have a network of installation and service centers throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico and provide the Demountable System for new or existing trucks.