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Samuk’s J Series shortlisted for Fork Lift Truck Association, FLTA, Excellence Award

The Fork Lift Truck Association (FLTA) has nominated the Samuk range of J Series 24volt, 3-wheel, rear wheel drive trucks, featuring its innovative progressive drive system, as one of the finalists for its Awards for Excellence 2012.

Samuk’s new J Series electric three-wheel truck provides a unique combination of compactness, intelligence and safety. Offering lifting capacities from 1 to 1.6 tonnes, the new range brings together state-of-the-art electronics, a programmable regenerative braking system, a reliable drive train incorporating top quality AC components and full-flow microfiltered hydraulics.

At the heart of the J Series is the (yet to be released) Curtis intelligent AC drive system featuring simplified circuitry and brushless motors that require less servicing and are recommended for use in wet or explosive conditions. The incorporation of improved components, including finely engineered helical gears, ensures very low noise levels and smooth operation ideal for intermittent and long shift, quiet work cycles. Features include a reversion to a fixed wheel base which maintains stability when tilting forward fast or at height. Safe operation is enhanced by the rear steer wheel drive, controlled by the new Curtis design, which prevents the truck speeding up when pivoting or on full lock – unlike two-motor front wheel drive trucks which increase speed when not wanted with one wheel rotating forward and the other backwards.

Progressive braking is a pre-requisite if a truck driver is to work confidently and safely. The new range’s programmable regenerative electric retarding system almost eliminates the need for a foot brake. The retardation rate can be adjusted to suit the load, the working area and the operator. An additional benefit is that regenerative braking recharges the battery between 5% and 20%. The J Series trucks also feature a toggle-action parking brake that holds firm on inclines of 15% or more.

High-specification AC batteries are fitted – either top quality standard or extra-duty units, depending on the workload. Designed for use in demanding applications from 500 to 2000 hours per year, these batteries help to ensure a quiet and clean working atmosphere for the driver and other personnel. The battery is roller mounted with a (patent applied for) roller trolley for easy alignment requiring only one person for the change. Significantly, unlike noisy single speed DC systems, the AC system is quiet and efficient at all motor speeds.

The new AC Curtis 24volt system is based on a controlled variable-speed motor and pump, with latest tooth design for quiet and smooth flow. This is synchronised with the (patent applied for) finely-machined control valve to promote quiet, squeal-free progressive operation. A full-flow microfilter ensures unparalleled cleanliness to minimise seal and pump wear while keeping the control valve in reliable, trouble-free condition for a longer working life. High quality cylinders and hard-chrome burnished rods also help to reduce seal wear and fluid contamination.

Through-the-mast visibility is excellent, contributing massively to reduced load damage and the risk of accidents. This is in spite of the mast sections and roller diameters being up to 20% stronger than those fitted to many market-leading units. The resultant strength means that the masts resist abuse when handling off-centre loads, rotating clamps and barrels containing surging liquids and granules. The masts also feature a soft-landing system that allows forks to settle gently thereby reducing noise and damage to the forks and loads.

Unobstructed forward vision is also assured by the integral sideshift carriage. Its smooth, variable operating speed is matched to the cleverly-designed and machined structure of high tensile steel bars and a double-ended hydraulic cylinder to provide a maximum view of the load and forks.

The driver zone has been designed to offer exceptional comfort, ergonomics and, above all, health and safety – ideal for part time operators. A strong grab handle and large, low step ensure safe access whilst a clear footwell and well-placed pedals gives plenty of room to help the driver work safely. Also, a dead man’s pedal ensures that feet are always kept safely inside the truck. The simple, concise instrument panel eliminates confusion but gives key warnings to the driver. Hydraulic levers are mounted beside the battery giving excellent control based on the advanced Curtis Gen silent system. All the services from reverse to lift are smooth and responsive to minimise the risk of mishandling and accidents.

"I’m delighted that our new J Series has been nominated as one of the finalists for the FLTA Excellence Awards," says Sir Neville Bowman-Shaw, Chairman of Samuk Lift Trucks, "Innovative design, combined with carefully-sourced components, means that this new range of electric three-wheel trucks offers compactness, strength and intelligence. This ensures ultra smooth performance and unrivalled reliability matched with excellent driver comfort, health and safety."

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