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ICUEE Rings a Familiar Tone with New Utilities-Focused Products

Trailer/Body Builders,  Nov 1, 2001  

Contractors, utility, and municipal officials turned out in volume for the International Construction and Utility Equipment Exposition (ICUEE) in Louisville, Kentucky, September 25 through 27, 2001. The event attracted more than 15,000 attendees from around the world. The show included more than 1.5 million square feet of exhibit space and focused on demonstrations of construction equipment, truck mounted aerial devices, and utility service bodies.

The 108-year-old Equipment Manufacturers Institute (EMI) sponsors ICUEE. EMI provides trade association services to companies that manufacture and market agricultural, construction, forestry, materials handling, and utility equipment.

Paula Miller, EMI coordinator for the ICUEE Show, said stock market fluctuations and rumors of a recession did not have a significant negative effect on plans to purchase equipment according to her interviews with equipment users.

"Many of the attendees said they were interested in purchasing new equipment simply to keep up with the existing backlog of work that they have to perform."

Asked if his company was feeling the results of an economic slowdown, Todd Dario of Energy Erectors of Leesburg, Florida said, "Not at this point. We have more work booked ahead than ever before. In the last year, we have purchased 30 pieces of equipment or so, including boom trucks, rough terrain forklifts, air compressors, a vibratory ride-on roller, and scissors lifts. This year at ICUEE we'll probably be looking at some man-lifts and maybe another pressure digger."

With participation from the United States and 53 other nations, ICUEE can also serve as a barometer of economic vitality on the international level. Two developments were reflected in attendance and purchasing activity at the show - deregulation of the telephone industry in Canada and revived economic activity in Southeast Asia.

Canadians are a good example of the international buyer that attended ICUEE. "The high levels of ICUEE participation we see from Canadian contractors and utilities might be attributable in part to the vitality caused by removal of governmental domination of the market," EMI President Emmett Barker said. "At our 1999 event, we had more than 400 attendees from Canada, and we feel that just has to contribute to export sales of our equipment manufacturers."

As deregulation of the telecommunications industry continues in Canada, contractors will be looking at impressive backlogs and, potentially, new equipment. Ontario contractor A Van Egmond Construction LTD is one example.

"We're heavily into directional drilling," said Rob Bouwers of A Van Egmond. The firm has three locations - Smithville, Orangeville, and Rexdale, Ontario. "We're basically placing poly pipes in the city of Toronto for fiber loops. And then we have to place the manholes and the pipes from manhole to manhole."

"We're not seeing a slowdown," said Ken Dodds, Maintenance Manager for Canadian telecommunications giant Telus Communications Inc. "Our industry has recently gone through deregulation. It was previously government-owned, but now it's all private."

The number of Asians at ICUEE may be a strong indicator of economic health in that region. Southeast Asia suffered a fiscal crisis, leading to devaluation of the Thai baht, the Malaysian ringgit, the Philippine peso, and the Indonesian rupiah.

However, Miller said there was a strong showing of Asian buyers at this year's ICUEE. She cites a strong demand for infrastructure telecommunications improvements and aerial and service-body equipment.

"We are in the business of exporting telecommunications equipment," Gene Kim, president of the Cypress, California firm Baikal USA said. "At the 1999 show, we were looking at new items with a client from Korea. They supply equipment to the Korea Telecom. The economy will impact our market this year, especially when dealing with Asian Countries. The exchange rate is way up. In 1999, the exchange rate with Korean won was at 1,100 to one. Now it is 1,360 to one."

New Bodies

ICUEE offered a number of new product innovations for the end user and the distributor. Many of the crane manufacturers used ICUEE as the introductory show for their redesigned and new products.

"ICUEE gives us a chance to reach the end-user in a quality fashion," said Jeran Pollock, sales engineer for Elliott Machine Works, Galion, Ohio. Elliott showcased several new products including a lube service truck at ICUEE. "We can answer questions about a new design that we are manufacturing, or customers can do their own comparisons by simply walking down the aisle. We think we make a great product, so we welcome that type of comparison."

IMT also displayed the newest lubrication truck design, the PM Series, SiteStar. The body has been designed to meet the specific needs of heavy equipment dealers servicing contractor fleets. The lubrication system is outfitted with polyethylene product tanks, pneumatic pumping systems, and heavy-duty hose reels. Storage shelves and interior lights will further assist on-site technicians.

Time Condor Corporation, Waco TX, introduced newer, ergonomically designed controls for the Condor truck mounted articulated/telescopic aerial work platforms. The platforms, which range from a working height of 90- to 210-feet, are designed for maximum height and horizontal reach applications. Joe Hestilow, truck mount service technician, says the platform control panel is easy to read and to operate.

Terex Cranes, Watertown SD, introduced several new lifting products at ICUEE, including the Commander 6000 crane series, the TL-50P crane, and the updated Hi-Ranger 5TC crane series. The Commander 6000 series features dual lift cylinders, box fabricated booms, and continuous unrestricted planetary gear rotation. The TL-50P reaches more than 50 feet with a 600- pound platform capacity in all positions. The Hi-Ranger 5TC is equipped with a platform leveling system, "True-Comp" compensating boom design, and continuous unrestricted worm gear rotation. Terex also demonstrated the new radio activation device for the operation of the crane's hydraulics and rotational controls.

Stellar Industries, Garner IA, showed the 60 Series RR articulating crane specifically designed for railroad applications. The crane has a reach of more than 26 feet under full hydraulic control. The crane is rated at 60,000 foot/pounds.

Ferrari Cranes of Italy introduced its model 715 and 708 articulating cranes with speedier, tighter control, and more handling power. The cranes offer rotational mobility with vibration canceling properties. The cranes were highlighted during Ferrari's sponsored 'Italian Festival' Celebration.

Elliott Equipment Company displayed the newest entries in the Elliott crane lineup, the ECS-50R and ECS-70R. Both aerial devices feature a 900-lb platform capacity, a telescopic rotating jib with 1,000-pound capacity, an approximate crane capacity of 9,000 pounds, and continuous boom rotation. The ECS-50R has a working height of more than 55 feet, compare to the ECS-70R with a working height in excess of 75 feet. Elliott Equipment Company is based in Omaha NB.

This Delta refueling and lubrication body from Elliott Machine Works, Galion OH, is equipped with storage for diesel, oil, hydraulic fluid, coolant, and a grease reservoir. The body, displayed on a Ford F-550 chassis, has a total capacity of 500 gallons, with greater capacities available to fit customer needs. It is equipped with a used-fluids suction and discharge system.

Palfinger, a German lift device manufacturer, introduced the PK-40002 truck-loading crane. The crane emphasizes Palfinger's improved movement geometry, which allows for greater lifting capacity in relationship to the crane's weight. The crane is equipped with the Power Link System that improves the ease of crane maneuverability. Palfinger North America is based in Niagara Falls, Ontario.

Monroe Custom Utility Bodies, Greenfield IN, manufactures both service bodies and an extensive line of service body related accessories. Displayed is the newest product, the T-130 service body. The 130-inch-long body fits chassis with a 10,000-pound or larger GVW. Monroe Custom Utility Bodies has put together a 35-page catalogue, Accessories Just For Service Bodies, to assist distributors in upfitting service bodies with accessories.

Fibre Body, Keller TX, introduced the FB-84-DLP with new cab-high style, Low-Pro Topper, which can be fitted to any of Fibre Body's styles. The topper sits at cab height and provides the secure and dry storage area needed by many customers.

Steelweld Equipment Company, St Clair MO, exhibited the newest design of the S-96-ST body. The 96-inch open cargo area body is designed with transverse compartments. Steelweld bodies are available in either low-profile or full-height configurations.

Leggett & Platt, Atlanta, GA, powers-up the new Masterack ladder rack. The electronically operated system lowers and raises the ladder to a convenient unloading and loading position to assist the field technician.

Omaha Standard, Council Bluffs IA, showed the newest design of the 96-HALF-VT model. The body has been redesigned with a new door seal system that provides a weather resistant and sealed area for storage. The unit is a low-profile model with slide out drawers throughout the unit. The body has a horizontal compartment above the rear wheel and has a vertical compartment at the rear of the body. This body is equipped with an Omaha Standard, Eagle Lift 1,300-pound liftgate.

Lift-All, a division of Hydra-Tech, Fort Wayne IN, introduced the LD series digger-derrick. The LD series offers a patented automatic pole claw device that alleviates manual pinning. The LD series can be mounted per customer specifications, as well as skid-mounted.

Boss Industries exhibited a line of service bodies expressly for distributors. The Boss Service Body is constructed from A-60 galvanized steel. Boss Industries offers the body in sizes to fit all standard industry CAs. All wiring will be integrated into the body for ease of distributor installation. All compartments will utilize full-length piano-styled hinges, with 3-point positive latch stainless steel handles. Boss Industries will manufacture the body at the La Port IN headquarters.

Adrian Steel loads up its new Load Runner Rack designed for today's contemporary pickups. Manufactured with two-inch, high-strength round tubing and square crossbars, the rack has a removable rear cross member that will still allow long items to be carried in the truck bed. Adrian Steel is located in Adrian MI.

PACCAR Winch Division unveiled the new line of self-contained, front-bumper mounted hydraulic winches. The uppermost winch features a new swept-back design to fit modern truck chassis. The hydraulic PD-18 winch, which can handle up to a wrestling 20,000-pound pull, is not designed for simple, light wrangling. PACCAR is located in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.

Louisville's Early History of Body Building and Municipal Leadership

In the midst of the hustle and bustle of the ICUEE show lies a small cemetery plot that most likely went unnoticed by many attendees. Oddly enough, residents of that small cemetery share a great deal in common with today's ICUEE visitors.

The cemetery lies a few hundred yards away from the west wing of the Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center. With planes landing less than a quarter of a mile away from the cemetery and several thousand visitors walking around the ICUEE crane demonstration area, this little remnant of Kentucky history isn't very visible.

It would hardly be noticeable except for a few standing grave markers and a chain link fence that now adorns the property.

This is the final resting place for many members of the Oldham family. They were buried in the family plot that was part of their farm, Fair Hope, from 1817 to 1872.

Samuel Oldham, the patriarch of the family, quickly established himself as a community leader that believed in infrastructure projects as a way of benefiting the city of Louisville. Upon moving to Louisville in 1784 and joining his brother William, Samuel Oldham became a deputy sheriff and a tax collector in Jefferson County. He later became a judge of the county. During his career, he pushed for infrastructure projects that would benefit the citizens of the city and county.

William Oldham Sr was also known as a civic-minded community leader. Upon his death at the Battle of St Clair's Defeat near Ft Recovery, Ohio, the state legislature named Oldham County in his honor.

Although the family history becomes a little murky to decipher, it appears that William Oldham Jr was married to Catherine Oldham. Catherine, upon William's death in 1826, married Henry Churchill, a leading horse enthusiast, who reportedly was involved in the carriage building business.

John and Henry Churchill asked their nephew, 26-year-old Col M Lewis Clark, to set up a racetrack near the Churchill farm. Their motivation was not only jockeyed horseracing, but harness racing, which was held at one of their sister tracks named Greenland.

Col Clark, along with the Churchill and Oldham families, organized the Louisville Jockey Club. The club organization and track soon afterward took the well-known name, Churchill Downs.