Customer case

Hardox® 450 ensures maximum payload and toughness in Volmex dump truck boxes

November 30, 2020 6 min read

Case details

Country Mexico
Company Volmex
Industry Trailers and body builders
Brand Program Hardox® In My Body

When this dump truck body producer was looking for some next-level improvements, it turned to Hardox® wear plate and Strenx® structural steel, a winning combo that boosted vehicle useful life by 50%.

“Since 2019, nearly 80% of our mining customers who use dump truck boxes request that they be made of Hardox® steel.”

José Luis Macías Alonso, commercial manager of Volmex

Volmex, a Mexican builder of dump truck bodies, semi-trailers and custom equipment, has been in the business 12 years and supplies equipment mainly to the demanding metals and mining industry. Ten years ago, when the equipment was made of ASTM-A36 commercial steel, the plate thickness was 3/8" and the equipment had a volume capacity of 14 m3 (494 cu ft.) and weighed 3.4 tonnes. 

But since 2015, Volmex has been intensifying its production using Hardox® 450. When the company made the switch to 1/4" Hardox® 450, they could produce a body weighing 2.6 tonnes, giving customers about 800 kg (1,764 lbs.) of additional payload. And they were able to increase the useful life of their vehicles by 50 percent. 

Always seeking next-level improvements, in October 2020 they piloted the launch of an innovative dump truck box by upgrading to Hardox® 500 Tuf, the new generation of super-tough Hardox® plate for demanding operations requiring improved resistance to impact and wear. José Luis Macías Alonso, commercial manager at Volmex, is thrilled with the move.

“We are very excited and want the market to know about Hardox® 500 Tuf material,” Macías says. “We continue to make dump trucks with Hardox® 450, and expect to make them from SSAB’s new material going forward,” he says.
Hardox® 500 Tuf offers high resistance, exceptional hardness and guaranteed toughness in a single wear resistant plate. Upgrading to this material brings outstanding wear resistance, increases payload and extends the useful life of customers’ equipment.

Rocks being loaded into a strong and tough dump truck on a mining site.
Customers appreciate the extra-tough Hardox® 500 Tuf dump bodies in challenging mining operations.

Why 80% of customers demand Hardox® wear plate

Macías says that customers began to order equipment made in Hardox® 450 back in 2012. In 2015, the company qualified to become a member of the Hardox® In My Body program. They hear from customers that equipment bearing the Hardox® In My Body decal get higher payload, greater resistance to severe loads and longer service life.

“We specialized heavily in design, material specifications and special configurations for the manufacture of dump truck boxes and were able to develop a product that met the requirements of much of the mining industry in Mexico, Central America and Colombia,” he days. “Since 2019, nearly 80 percent of our mining customers who use dump boxes have requested that they be made of Hardox® material.”

According to Macías, the Hardox® In My Body sign represents first-class equipment that delivers unmatched wear resistance and impact toughness.

Dump truck boxes that stay strong and last long

Besides the weight savings from thinner steel gauges and the steel’s high yield strength, dump truck boxes in Hardox® 450 can withstand greater impacts than boxes made of convention steels. “Not only does its thickness help make it lighter, it can also withstand harsher operations. And the potential for cracking or deformation is greatly reduced,” Macías says.

Two years ago, Volmex combined some components of the truck body that were previously made in commercial steel. “The box frame – the floor, door, sides and top – is made in 100% Hardox® 450 and the structural elements, such as the edges and some bracing, are currently made in Strenx® high-strength structural steel, so they have very similar yield strengths,” he explains. “This has proven to be a very good competitive advantage, because now in the Mexican market many dump truck box manufacturers using Hardox® 450 continue to mix and use commercial steels, such as ASTM-A36, in some body components.”

Volmex customers not only notice a substantial improvement in the useful life of the dump boxes. “They also tell us that they have slashed equipment downtime compared with models made from commercial steels caused by constant cracks and deformations. They can now achieve a noticeable increase in operational efficiency with the new products.”

Performance is also a concern of the manufacturer. Since dump truck boxes made of commercial steels were produced in a thicker plate, they needed more filler material for welding. But with Hardox® 450, Macías says his team gained internal efficiencies and a cleaner design. “This means 11% time savings in production and the product has a European look - it’s quite aesthetically appealing, something customers really appreciate,” he says.

A shiny white dump truck body with the Hardox® In My Body decal on it.
Volmex can use a thinner gauge of steel plate compared with conventional steels and still extend the body’s service life.
A strong yet lightweight dump truck box with the Hardox® In My Body decal being tipped.
Volmex intends to produce half of its dump box units using Hardox® 500 Tuf steel.

Future with more Hardox® 500 Tuf steel

Hardox® 500 Tuf has proven its worth in dump boxes, buckets, liners, containers and all types of wear parts for companies in Italy, Arabia, the United States and Argentina.

Volmex intends to continue investing in the manufacture of equipment using high-strength steels. “Between 2019 and the first half of 2020, our company produced 100 dump box units in Hardox® 450 steel,” Macías says. “Our projection for the future is to produce half of all our dump box units with Hardox® 500 Tuf steel.”

Level up with Hardox® In My Body

Confirmation of a good choice

The Hardox® In My Body sign on your equipment is a confirmation of quality, performance and reliability.

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Hardox® 500 Tuf for wear resistance and toughness

The new generation of wear plate for tipper trailers, mining and agriculture dump bodies, buckets, containers and other equipment exposed to heavy wear.

Hardox® WearCalc 

WearCalc makes tough decisions about choosing the right wear plate easy.

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