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Prime Mover Magazine


Getting down with Uptime

Getting down with Uptime

The task for finding allusive uptime is always a challenge for fleets in the road transport aftermarket. Through its national network Dana Australia is providing a solution with its new range of driveshafts.

Commercial vehicle specialist, Dana Australia, launches this month a new line of inter-axles and main driveshafts for PACCAR Genuine Parts.

The new products, manufactured at its Keysborough plant in Victoria, will cater to all applications while helping increase crucial uptime sought by fleets in the ultra competitive aftermarket.

Customised in direct collaboration with the original equipment manufacturer (OEM), the shorter inter-axles, which are housed between the front axle and tandem rear axle, have been specified for 1710 and 1810 inter-axle product range.

The main driveshafts will cater to 1710, 1810, SPL170 and 250 models. Warren Farrugia, Dana Australia Business Development Aftermarket says by providing national and local fleets with a variety of inter-axles and main driveshafts, the company will be able to deliver uptime solutions for fleets across the country.

“Being an OE for many truck brands the consistent feedback that we’ve had from fleets is they want a more reliable aftermarket product that eliminates downtime and increases more uptime,” he says.

As the local arm of a global manufacturing specialist, Dana Australia can draw upon its OE suppliers and engineering to bring in additional products to support fleets and the different types of profiles they have across truck brands from Europe and the United States.

“Through our national network we can support the national and local fleets,” he says.

“We’re tapping into a whole variety of different inter-axle and main driveshafts for different types of brands and these new products will also help us to accommodate further truck brands in the market.”

PACCAR Parts will be selling the driveshaft product range, as a service replacement driveshaft, under their own brand name PACCAR Genuine Parts through their own dealership network according to Warren.

He says in order to support all of its fleets throughout Australia, Dana will rely on its partnership with national drivetrain distributor Driveline Services whose reach across all states and territories should further reduce the downtime for OEMs awaiting the new parts offered by Dana.

“Driveline is fully trained on our product process, procedures and quality standards. They use all of our OE genuine parts to manufacture their different types of inter-axles and driveshafts which then allows us to have a quicker turnaround time frame to support this new product range.”

Having a global reach, according to Warren, allows Dana to tap into other brands that it is not currently manufacturing for.

“It gives the fleets the same quality component that they would purchase from an OE truck brand new in the aftermarket space,” he says.

“There’s that reliability, quality, performance and also the fact the driveshafts are locally made in Australia – supporting Australian manufacturing and securing jobs. Sometimes it can be riskier to go with some of the local driveshaft manufacturers as fleets don’t know what the quality of driveline components are being assembled.”

Dana Australia also has new technology at its disposal.

This includes a $1.5 million investment in manufacturing machinery to build driveshafts.

Quality systems and gates are inbuilt into the technology before any of the products are released into market Warren explains.

Driveshafts are tested for balance to determine where the weights should be positioned. A machine evaluates parallel straightness before each driveshaft is rechecked and certified.

“It’s understanding all the different types of loads and torques and the other restraints contained within the driveline running from the transmission to tandem and tri-axles,” Warren says. “We have a good understanding of that being in Australia since the 1970s. It’s one of the assets we have as a company.”

Fleets have communicated to Dana they require readymade access to inter-axles and driveshafts when the parts are due for replacement explains Warren.

“They can’t afford to wait a week for turnaround. They have need for a rapid time frame where they can remove the driveshafts and replace them and put the trucks back into service.”

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