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Paul’ Picks from TMC
From the spring meeting of the Technology & Maintenance Council, Senior Technical Editor Paul Abelson highlights some products he found magworthy.

By Paul Abelson, senior technical editor

A second life

For owners of platform and drop deck trailers or container chassis, Fontaine Trailer Co. has opened a new business unit, Fontaine Renew. The company refurbishes existing trailers to like-new condition at a fraction of the cost of a new one. When scheduled in advance, a single-trailer owner-operator can drop off his or her trailer at vacation time and have it ready in like-new condition when it’s time to go back to work. Savings are 33 to 50 percent of the cost of a new trailer, and federal excise tax is not applicable.

The refurbishing takes place in an 11-station, 152-step in-line process. Trailers are stripped to bare metal, primed and powder coated. Lighting, air, electrical and braking systems can be replaced or upgraded, and the latest wheel-ends can be added. Floors can be replaced or upgraded to aluminum.

Visit for more information.

Keeping tabs on Kendall oil

I have long been an advocate of regular oil analysis as a diagnostic and, when plotted over time, a predictive tool for engine maintenance. That’s why I was happy to see ConocoPhillips,, offer free oil analysis with every oil change through their Kendall brand. See your dealer or the Kendall website for terms and conditions.

Of course, free oil analysis would not be enough for me to switch from a premium brand if I had to give up performance. But their Super DXA premium synthetic blend, the one offering the analysis, claims to have outperformed three leading oils. It contains a titanium-compound protection additive that, according to the refiner’s claims, chemically binds to metal engine parts to reduce wear and protect from corrosion. The oil meets API service requirements for CJ-4, CI-4 Plus and CI-4 oils and specific engine makers’ requirements.

Tucked away

EZ Claw,, makers of an under-trailer hose management and protection system, introduced EZ Claw Truck to protect coiled electrical cord and gladhand hoses. It keeps them raised above the tractor deck. The retracting cable support holds the cord and hoses while allowing sufficient slack during turns of more than 45 degrees.

Tight and dry

Phillips Industries,, a trailer nose box manufacturer, has introduced the Sta-Dry Weather-Tite seven-way male connector plugs. The sealed socket stops moisture and magnesium chloride as well as other snow-fighting chemicals from entering, which can cause arcing and trailer fires.

Also shown at TMC was the Sta-Dry Tracker, a seven-way connector system that swivels to follow the movement of a trailer through 40 degrees of swing to either side. If a tractor drives off, the connection will disconnect with only 40 pounds of pull. For air lines that may get brittle and crack when flexed in extremely cold weather, Phillips introduced a Tracker for gladhands with the same range of motion as the electrical assembly.