When Coors Brewers decided to approach Linde to provide it with 158 new Linde standard 393 fork lift trucks on full maintenance contract hire, it was to B&B Attachments that Linde turned for the supply and servicing of attachments. Now B&B Attachments supply and maintain 49 Kaup keg clamps and 29 Kaup double pallet handlers at Coors main brewery in Burton on Trent, the largest brewery in the UK, as well as the company’s other sites at Tadcaster in Yorkshire and Alton in Hampshire.
The servicing of the Kaup attachments is managed by B&B Attachments on behalf of Linde from its sites in Berkshire and Northumberland. B&B offer Coors Brewers and Linde service support to ensure maximum availability of the attachment and truck combination at all times. B&B has been the UK distributor for Kaup products in the UK since 1980 and is Britain’s largest independent supplier of truck attachments and masts.
Europe’s foremost producer of forklift attachments, Kaup was chosen by Linde and Coors Brewers for their robust profile and excellent driver visibility. The new Kaup clamps enable Coors drivers to line up the central tines into the middle of the load. The sighting slot has been expanded and the structure of the unit designed to maximise visibility. Other design features include the tine position so that they are slightly raised above floor level. This has reduced tine wear and provided a major saving in replacement costs.
“Three years prior to our signing the contract with Linde we spent £40,000 on damage to clamps and attachments”, said Rob Evans, Principal Engineering Manager at Coors Brewers. “Now, due to the new Linde trucks and Kaup attachments as well as driver training and the response time from B&B such costs have dropped 75%”.
B&B Attachments’ close ties with Linde indicates a change of direction for the fork lift truck industry which until now has looked on attachments as secondary to the maintenance of trucks and masts. However, in the case of Coors Brewery, Linde was looking for a partner that had the necessary infrastructure to maintain the attachments to the same high standard as the trucks to ensure maximum uptime on both trucks and attachments and ensure they work in synergy.
As a general rule, Coors use diesel trucks outdoors and electrics inside. Burton on Trent has 99 trucks on the Linde contract books. Sixty-two forklifts have been fitted with a mixture of keg clamps and double pallet handlers. Some smaller trucks are used in beer destruction where Rotating Fork Attachments are used to tip spent cans into balers.
“By subcontracting the services to B&B, Linde has encapsulated all service and parts within a fixed cost”, says Mike Barton, Managing Director of B&B Attachments. “This has ensured that Linde can maximise uptime on all their attachments at the three Coors brewery sites”.
B&B Attachments is supplying Linde with a dedicated local service engineer, and guaranteed response times within 24-hours. In addition the company is also providing an extensive hire fleet for additional backup and to meet peak demand, a site-based parts holding facility as well as standby equipment on site.
B&B Attachments, now in its 25th year, is the UK’s leading independent supplier of forklift truck attachments and masts. From its sites in Hungerford, West Berkshire and Cramlington, Northumberland the company services a client base that includes OEMs, forklift truck dealerships and end users.