The weight distribution of cargo has a definite bearing on the handling characteristics of the vehicle, as well as the life of the tires, frame, springs, axles and bearings.
Even though the total load may not be over the total carrying capacity of the vehicles, poor distribution of weight could be overloading an axle or set of tires. Undue stress could be placed on the frame resulting in permanent damage and steering misalignment.
Distribution of weight will depend on the nature of the load. The loading of one piece of cargo which comprises the full load will present different problems from a load made up of a number of pieces of cargo.
Approximate distribution of total weight - vehicle plus payload
Trailers are designed for uniform load distribution, as shown previously. The fundamental difference between loading trailers and trucks is: in the case of trucks, the average design provides for about 90% of the payload on the rear tires and 10% on the front tires. In the case of a trailer, the payload should be distributed equally between the rear tires and the fifth-wheel which transfers its load to the tractor unit.
The load should be centred to give the proper wheel load distribution. The average single unit truck has a central weight distribution point midway between the rear of the cab and the tailgate. The average semi trailer type truck has a central weight distribution point at approximately the middle of the trailer.Previous page Next page