Northumberland County Council are one of the first councils to invest in an on-truck brake lathe increasing MOT pass rates, saving the council a substantial amount of money every year and saving the environment at the same time. This remarkable on-truck brake lathe was provided by Pro-Cut, based in Toddington Gloucestershire.

Northumberland-County-Council.jpgGritters are stored for 5-7 months between winter seasons with the corrosive characteristics of salt, left from the previous year, eating away at the vehicles exposed areas. In the past the council replaced these parts and ran essential maintenance to ensure the gritters run smoothly and pass MOT tests when they are needed. Brake discs especially suffer from corrosion, rust and warping if left static leading to poor brake performance. These discs are normally replaced at a large cost each to ensure the brake assembly achieves lock-out first time passing MOT tests.

Replacing the brake discs on each gritter will account for a reasonable amount of the budget and takes a technician 2 hours to change one disc. Even then the brakes may not achieve lock-out during the MOT test incurring more time and costs to the council. Brake discs are replaced by trained council technicians often working in unpleasant conditions handling parts of the brake system weighing as much as 30kg.

The on-truck brake lathe provides a perfect solution for all commercial vehicles owned by the council . The adaptor bolts directly onto the hub and the lathe is then connected to the adaptor. The lathe works automatically, freeing the technician to work on the opposite side simultaneously, flattening the discs and ensuring they perform at the same level as new discs. The council saves their budget by not buying new discs. Saving an hour’s labour as the lathe machines the discs in 0.3 hours (20 minutes) instead of the 2 hours taken to change them.

Technicians work in a safer, more pleasant environment and as the old discs are reused, the council contributes to sustainability.   These benefits pale in comparison to the MOT pass rate achieved by skimming discs. This alone will save the council thousands of pounds in time and labour for years to come, combatting the main problem with commercial vehicles. Northumberland County Council use the lathe on all vehicles in the fleet over 3.5 tonnes to achieve MOT pass rates.

Steve Gray, Charge Hand at Northumberland County Council, told us

We use the lathe on every single truck in the fleet. The MOT pass rates are now at 65-70% for brake lockout success and no gritter performs below that, this is 15% more efficient than needed. The machine is definitely worth the money, it minimizes down time for the vehicles and decreases the potential for injury to staff. The calipers are heavy and using the lathe decreases the potential to damage bearings and seals as no disassembly of the hub is required – saving money in every way.”

The On-Truck Brake Lathe supplied by Pro-Cut provides commercial vehicle owners, truck operators and workshops with an ideal opportunity to guarantee lock-out during MOT testing as well as optimise profit opportunities on brake discs and labour. Machined discs provide a true surface for brake pads to meet brake discs ensuring maximum life span.

It is then possible for each set of brake pads to last 80,000 miles. Previously, if new pads had been deployed on old discs, the uneven surface of the discs would have increased wear and reduced pad life.

Pro-Cut International serves all 40 European countries, plus Africa and the Middle East. We are Europe’s leading specialist in offering solutions to vibration issues relating to braking and wheel balancing. With over 2000 lathes in daily use in the UK alone and thousands across Europe and Africa, we are the fastest growing specialist in the area today, Pro-Cut USA the parent company has now sold over 40,000 machines world-wide and are the world leaders in the field.