Trailer test: Mega Ejecta

By: Lyndsay Whittle, Photography by: Lyndsay Whittle

Mega Ejecta trailer The blade operates by way of a rack and gear system. Mega Ejecta trailer
Mega Ejecta trailer The rear end of the blade, as viewed from the front of the trailer. Mega Ejecta trailer
Mega Ejecta trailer Dunn says the ERF EC14 and the Mega Ejecta are a perfect match. Mega Ejecta trailer
Mega Ejecta trailer A smiling Colin Dunn at the wheel of his brand-new Mitsubishi Shogun. Mega Ejecta trailer
Mega Ejecta trailer A Rainbow Haulage CH Mack and four-axle trailer leaving the Western Aggregates and Soil yard as the Mega Ejecta arrives. Mega Ejecta trailer
Mega Ejecta trailer Unloading at the Western Aggregates and Soil yard Mega Ejecta trailer
Mega Ejecta trailer Newly cleaned and serviced, the steel-bodied Shogun awaits its next job outside the CRD Automotive workshop. Mega Ejecta trailer
Mega Ejecta trailer Mega Ejecta trailer

Rainbow Haulage Ltd’s unique Mega Ejecta trailer is designed to push its load off rather than using the conventional tipping method. DOW went along to find out more about this cutting-edge piece of equipment.

"I first saw the Mega Ejecta for sale on the internet about three years ago," says Colin Dunn, who is the managing director of a multi-faceted operation incorporating Rainbow Haulage with his long-established mechanical repair workshop, CRD Automotive Ltd.

When the keen-minded entrepreneur first saw the trailer for sale on the internet, he was casually interested, but pressures of work at the time sidetracked his thoughts and he never followed up on the matter. It wasn't until recently that the machine turned up out of the blue in Auckland.

By using a bit of clever detective work, Dunn got in touch with the owner and negotiated a price, and it wasn't long before the trailer's new owner had it into the CRD Automotive workshop for a few modifications.

Dunn says George Zander, inventor and builder of the trailer (which is currently the only one of its type in existence), has been a huge help in carrying out the ongoing modifications.

The advantages

Dunn says the potential he could see in the Mega Ejecta's application was the inherent stability it would have on a worksite with a gradient, whereby a load could be dumped with the trailer sitting on an angle that would put the frighteners on any driver trying to eject a load from an everyday tipulator.

As it turned out, other benefits soon emerged on a job situated under low-lying power lines. This job would have required the load to be dumped away from the tip site and bulldozed a fair distance into position.

Dunn says 'ugly' loads don't bother the Mega Ejecta, in fact the uglier the load, the more it seems to like it. He says that on an excavation in central Auckland last year, the contractor dug up some very large pieces of foundation material, about six metres in length and weighing around five tonnes apiece.

Mega _Ejecta _6

The contractor was prepared to have the blocks of concrete cut up into smaller, more manageable pieces, but Dunn convinced the man the Mega Ejecta could handle them as they were, so they were loaded as whole pieces and taken to a concrete recycling plant.

Having completed a few modifications to the pushing mechanism (Dunn and his team of mechanics found they were able to reduce the operating pressure down from 3000psi to around 1700psi), the next big decision to make was which of the company's tractor units would be used to pull the three-axle trailer. That decision was an easy one, as it was decided that the best truck to put the unit behind was the company's 1997 Cummins-powered ERF EC14.

Put to the test

On the day the DOW team went for a ride-along, the rig was hauling loads out of East Tamaki, up through Whitford Road, which has a particularly tortuous section, providing all the elements of a good test run for any truck, let alone a rig with a total weight of 39 tonnes.

The interesting part of the trip starts with a steep descent into what would easily be a 100-metre gully and an equally-steep rise up the other side for a good couple of kilometres.

With the Rainbow Haulage boss at the wheel, the ERF's braking system and engine retard mechanism show no sign of faltering under the load and the 410-horsepower Cummins makes equally-short work of the climb up out of the gully in the 13-speed Roadranger's fifth gear.

After a trip time of about 30 minutes, we arrive at the tip site and are directed to a point on the outer reaches of the tip where we get to see the Mega Ejecta put into action.

The front couple of metres of the 11.5-metre trailer are taken up with the pushing unit that operates like an on-board bulldozer, sitting on a rack and gear system, which is hydraulically driven via the truck's PTO.

The load is simply squeezed out through the tailgate and the entire process appears effortless, taking approximately 4.5 minutes to eject a 20-cubic-metre load, no matter how ugly it may be.

Mega _Ejecta _5

The CRD Automotive fleet

Dunn and his wife Lexie have operated the CRD Automotive enterprise in Avondale for some eighteen years (son Zane also works in the operation as a mechanic, along with filling in as a driver when required).

The haulage side of the business has been going for a number of years now and has 15 truck-and-trailer units, which isn't bad when you consider the company started out with just one truck, a Volvo F10 tractor unit that was put in front of a two-axle Fitzroy tipulator.

A recently introduced E-Road computer system tracks the movements of each vehicle in the fleet by way of a huge wall-mounted flat screen monitor.

The package, which is easily accessed via iPhone or tablet, also provides vital information, such as upcoming servicing requirements and RUC and COF requirements, along with vital information on fuel usage and registration.

Given the company has the ability to service its fleet at its fully-equipped CRD Automotive workshop, and in the field by Dunn's purpose-built Ford F250 field service unit, to date Rainbow Haulage has been well-served by its fleet of second-hand trucks (some of which have clocked up more than a million kilometres).

However, an ongoing increase in work being gained by the firm led it to decide to purchase the company's first brand new truck — a Mitsubishi 430 Shogun six-wheeler fitted with a steel body.

Dunn opted for the EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) Shogun in preference to the SCR (selective catalytic converter) model, as he wanted to avoid having just the one truck in the fleet having to be supplemented with AdBlue.

There have been significant advantages in owning a new truck and the Shogun will soon be joined in the fleet by yet another new steel-bodied Mitsi six-wheeler.

There is also a CH600 and a CL700 Mack in the mix, both towing four-axle trailers, a 90-tonne-rated 100E Kenworth, along with the featured 60-tonne-rated ERF EC14, to name a few. Older trucks in the fleet, such as a Nissan CW A340 eight-wheeler and a V8-powered eight-wheeler Mitsi transporter are in daily use.

With such a wide variety of trucks to get behind the wheel of, and a business that's growing at lightning speed, it's little wonder Dunn has a huge smile on his face.

Thanks to the helpful team at Western Aggregates and Soil Ltd at Span Farm in West Auckland, DOW was able photograph the Mega Ejecta in action. The company supplies crushed aggregates and soil, Auckland-wide.

Check out a video of the Mega Ejecta trailer in action.

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