11 December 2019


Robinson Contract Services of Driffield, East Yorkshire has just put into service two new Volvo FH bulk tippers, each fitted with HARSH’s top spec tipping gear, the L120 underfloor. Originally designed for use with trailers tipping 30 tonne loads, the L120 delivers a stability performance level even higher than the long established HARSH K110, itself a tipping gear that outperforms any conventional front end type. Is the L120 therefore considerably over-specced and hence somewhat wasted on eight wheeler work? Robinson’s Transport Director Craig Stainforth doesn’t think so.

“For us, safety and performance are paramount” he says. “As a rule, we’re always interested in something that gives us a bit extra, a little bit more than what the base job actually requires. With high sided bulk bodies, vehicle stability and tipping safety are key issues, especially as our vehicles often operate out in the open on windy, exposed landscapes. As a result, we just buy the most stable tipping gear we can. 

Additionally, there are other long term dividends further down the line by having top end equipment – these may be in areas such as attracting and keeping our drivers, benefits in fuel economy, improving residual values or boosting our company image. Over the years we’ve tried many vehicle variations in our truck fleet, but each and every tipper still has, and will continue to have, a HARSH L120 underfloor. They really are that good.”

The chief design feature of the L120 is an ultra-rigid stability frame fitted outside of the dual tipping cylinders that keeps the body in the closest possible alignment to the truck chassis. There are other benefits of HARSH underfloors too; with the body lowered and the tipping gear folded away between the chassis rails, the L120 is immune from incidental damage such as materials dropped from shovels when loading.  Front bulkheads of bodies can also be brought much closer to the rear of the cab, thereby not only maximising potential bodylengths but also optimising axle load distribution and aerodynamics to improve fuel economy.

For bulk tipper work, Robinson’s new FHs set the highest possible standard.

“If the truck has a tall body, there’s no real reason not to have a taller cab” adds Craig Stainforth. “The driver obviously benefits, and thanks to the much neater cab / body interface we expect the fuel economy to be that bit better too.  Having a proper sleeper cab also adds to the truck’s operating versatility. There’s next to no weight penalty either, because the cab is really just a bigger box of fresh air. That said, we’ve fitted each of the FHs with alloy wheels to bring the total unladen weight down to below 13 tonnes. 

These really are our best tippers ever and we’re absolutely delighted with the end result.”