Silver Eagle Manufacturing Equips Bendix Air Disc Brakes and Valves on Specialized Wheeled Equipment
ELYRIA, Ohio – April 15, 2019 – “We do a lot of fun and interesting things,” said President and Chairman Gary Gaussoin, describing Portland, Oregon-based Silver Eagle Manufacturing Company. He listed a few: trailers specifically for launching drones; pedal-powered and electric delivery tricycles for last-mile logistics; and command center trailers.
“One of our newest converter dollies is a telescoping T-dolly that automatically closes the gap between two trailers at highway speed,” he continued. “We have unique designs, and we pride ourselves on quick turnaround and creative ideas.”
A trucking industry supplier of specialized wheeled equipment for more than 80 years, Silver Eagle partners with Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems to provide both air disc brakes and control valves on its diverse product offerings. Bendix, the North American leader in the development and manufacture of active safety, air management, and braking system technologies for commercial vehicles, has produced nearly 3 million air disc brakes since introducing the Bendix® ADB22X™ air disc brake to North America’s commercial vehicle industry in 2005.
Innovation and Specialization
Gaussoin’s father, C. Julius “Judy” Gaussoin, founded Silver Eagle Company as a trucking company in 1933. When he saw a particular need for his fleet, Judy developed and manufactured a full front trailer suspension.
“Through his own innovations, we started making things for our fleet, like the Silver Eagle Fifth Wheel, and then other companies wanted them, so we started manufacturing in 1936,” recalled Gary Gaussoin, who joined the family business as a draftsman in 1970. “It became its own company, Silver Eagle Manufacturing, in 1969. Now we employ about 125 people; we do our own on-site engineering; and we bend and weld metal, assemble, and paint primarily our own designs.”
Those designs serve a wide range of purposes across North America and beyond, as Silver Eagle’s two primary customer areas are over-the-highway transportation and military applications. Flatbed trailer bodies, composite chemical tankers, and trailers for the Humvee are also in the Silver Eagle catalog. In addition, the company rebuilds yard trucks and Cycle Logistics solutions.
Meeting niche needs and building relationships through customer feedback and communication have long been at the heart of Silver Eagle’s mission. “My dad used to say that the man who uses the tool knows best how the handle should be bent,” Gaussoin said. “And we’ve maintained that philosophy of always listening to the users of our vehicles. We try to be the supplier that we’d want someone to be for us.”
Quality and Performance
Silver Eagle offers the Bendix ADB22X™-LT air disc brake factory-installed. Introduced in 2016 and created specifically for trailers, the ADB22X-LT is based on the same proven, successful platform as the ADB22X™ tractor brake.
“We offer the ADB22X-LT as an option on any dolly,” Gaussoin explained. “It’s used most frequently by UPS on their converter dollies for small package and freight trailers. Because a dolly serves as a steering axle for the rear trailer, we were concerned about preventing brake steer, which can be a risk with unbalanced brakes on a dolly.”
Air disc brakes also enhance safety by providing shorter stopping distances compared with drum brakes, virtually eliminating brake fade, and providing greater reliability with more consistent stops. Other air disc brake advantages include quicker pad replacement and longer pad life, leading to greater uptime and lower maintenance costs.
“They’re easy to set up on our lines, so our people like them, and the customers are very pleased with the performance,” Gaussoin said.
Additionally, Bendix® valves have a long history in Silver Eagle dollies and trucks, and the new automatically telescoping T-dolly features premium Bendix valves in its controls.
“When Bendix sees a dedicated team like the people at Silver Eagle at work on a challenge or driving to find best ways to exceed a customer’s high expectations, we see ourselves as well,” said Lance Hansen, Bendix North America regional vice president – fleet/trailer sales & service engineering. “Their insistence on excellence, their ability to address complex problems, and their deep commitment to fully understanding what their end-users want and need are all qualities that make us proud to support their business and partner with them to help develop safer vehicles.”
Bendix aims to help fleets and drivers lower total cost of vehicle ownership and strengthen return on investment in equipment and technology. Through its ever-growing portfolio of technologies and unparalleled post-sales support, Bendix delivers on areas critical to fleets’ success, including safety, vehicle performance, and efficiency.