US Cargo Control Customer Review and Photos

Thanks to our loyal US Cargo Control customer Marc for these great photos of his hotshot, or hot shot, rig and positive customer testimonial.

Here is what Marc had to say:

“The aluminum platform weighs 1000 lbs. the tarpped load weighs 16k lbs. Oh yeah that’s a USCC tarp too. My platform customers loved my equipment today. I now have repeat business from them. They now want me to haul for them on the regular. This is what it’s all about. The professional look is one of my things that I bring to the table. You guys are directly the cause of my success in this tough industry. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again US Cargo Control customer for life. You guys make products that are easy to stand next to and say ‘Yes I can get the job done.'”

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Customer Photo: Sunny Hot Shot Securement

A special shout-out to loyal US Cargo Control customer, Marc.  This is a great shot of his hot shot rig in action with US Cargo Control securement. Marc tells us he is double booked out of Miami and Fort Lauderdale (We’re a little jealous!). He’s hauling a 2,000 lbs. crankshaft and 10,000 lbs. flat roller — both headed to Texas. Marc trusts US Cargo Control to keep his heavy loads secure. Thanks for the photo, Marc! Keep them coming.

 

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US Cargo Control Straps Trusted to Secure Professional Race Car

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Michele Abbate behind the wheel of her 2013 Scion FR-S race car.

US Cargo Control straps can be used to tie down some pretty precious cargo, but for professional race car driver Michele Abbate they are used to secure her most prized possession – her car.

Racing has been a big part of Abbate’s life since she was a child. The Las Vegas native says she’s been following racing since she was just a kid. Her older brother started racing when he was 10-years-old, and the family always traveled with him and cheered him on. It wasn’t until she turned 16-years-old that Abbate put herself in the driver’s seat and her own racing career took off.

“I was always intrigued by anything with a motor, because it was always in my life – my love was truly for wheel to wheel racing, because it was always where my passion led to,” Abbate said.

Abbate got her start racing autocross with her every day car – the same car she used to get to work and the grocery store was racing in local and regional autocross events. Her racing operation has since expanded to include a 2013 Scion FR-S race car and licenses with both the National Auto Sports Association and Sports Car Club of America.

It hasn’t been an easy journey. Abbate has overcome some serious roadblocks along the way.

Last year, she lost her title sponsor three days before her first race. That disappointing news forced her to become her own team owner, start a massive fundraising campaign and build her own race car. She and her crew-chief constructed the car and now run all the maintenance and repairs themselves.

“We are a two man team on a tight budget, but we are out there finishing in front of a lot of the big boys,” Abbate said. “He and I put in the blood, sweat, tears and finances to keep the team running.”

So when we say the race car is valuable – we mean it.

US Cargo Control 2'' ratchet straps used to secure the back of the race car to the transport trailer.
US Cargo Control 2” ratchet straps used to secure the back of the race car to the trailer.

Abbate trusts US Cargo Control to keep her car safe and secure as she travels all over the country for about ten races each year. Right now, she’s using 2’’ olive green ratchet straps with double J hooks to secure the back of her car to the trailer. She selected the color to coordinate with her car.

For the front, she uses US Cargo Control’s superior, heavy- duty BlackLine ratchet straps. She says they are the only straps she’s encountered that don’t snag, shear or rip while tied-down to the front of her car.

US Cargo Control heavy-duty, BlackLine straps trusted secure the front of the car.
US Cargo Control heavy-duty, BlackLine straps trusted secure the front of the race car.

“We have been using our BlackLines for over six months and they still look brand new,” Abbate said. “There’s nothing better than knowing you have the right tools for the job and we are thankful to have US Cargo’s products with us.”

Racing is a stressful gig and it isn’t just on the track.

Abbate says financing is her biggest struggle. Last year, she launched a crowdsourcing campaign, raising more than $13,000 to fund her 2015 racing season.

“At races we strive to have the best equipment, set up, and attitude; and off the track we work equally as hard to promote, expand, and advertise for all of our partners that make this possible,” Abbate said.

US Cargo Control is proud to provide products that give Abbate and her team peace of mind as she strives for greatness. To learn more about Abbate and her racing operation visit her website.

Michele Abbate with her self built FR-S Photo Credit: Richard Pochop
Michele Abbate with her self built FR-S. Photo Credit: Richard Pochop

 

Taking a Shot at Hot Shot Trucking

It’s a niche part of the trucking industry that’s starting to boom: hotshot trucking.

Hotshot trucking, or hot shot trucking, is a pretty simple concept. A heavy-duty pickup pulls a flatbed instead of using a traditional semi-trailer truck.

Randy Eilerts has been in the hotshot game since October, but he’s been driving semis for years. He operates Tallgrass Trucking LLC out of Algona, Iowa. Randy's Rig

“I have had this idea for several years now and when I was fed up with my day job I just jumped in feet first and did it,” Eilerts explained.

Randy Eilerts runs a hotshot rig out of Algona, Iowa, phtot courtesy Tallgrass Trucking LLC
Randy Eilerts runs a hotshot rig out of Algona, Iowa. Photo: Tallgrass Trucking LLC

Eilerts runs a Dodge 3500 pickup truck that hauls a PJ 30’ low-pro gooseneck trailer with ramps. He and his hotshot rig move a wide range of loads all over the Midwest and as far south as Texas.  His operation carries everything from heavy equipment and machinery to hay, lumber and building materials.

Companies typically hire hotshots if they need speedy deliveries or have smaller loads. The term originated in the oil fields of Texas where pickups would make a quick run for parts preventing the rigs from having to shut down. Now, you see hotshots hauling loads all across the country. More people are taking a shot at the business because it’s cheaper to start-up compared to traditional trucking.

Eilerts says most hotshots cost $50,000-$80,000 to get going. Big ticket items include obvious equipment needs like pickups and trailers. He says most hotshots use a 3500 to 5500 truck and a 40 ft. mini-float trailer.

Cargo control items like chains, binders and ratchet-straps are also necessary to secure the load. Eilerts keeps about ten of each tool on him, along with various sizes of tarp and many, many bungee cords.  He’s purchases many of those items including 2” ratchet straps, strap protectorschains and load binders from US Cargo Control.

Randy Eilerts uses U.S. Cargo Control straps to secure his hot shot load.
Randy Eilerts uses U.S. Cargo Control straps to secure his hotshot load.

Equipment costs are just half the battle. Starting-up also requires tedious paperwork.

“I did a lot of research beforehand so I kind of knew what to do, but there have also been some challenges and surprises along the way,” Eilerts said.

Those challenges include learning and fulfilling state and federal regulations.  An article on Overdrive breaks down some of the requirements which include obtaining a U.S. DOT motor carrier authority, liability insurance, drug and alcohol testing membership, driver qualification filings and required hours of service.

A CDL, or commercial driver’s license, is also necessary for hotshot drivers with a gross combination weight rating of 26,001 lbs. or more.

But for someone like Eilerts hotshot trucking is the way to go. He enjoys being his own boss and doesn’t feel like the typical trucker when he’s navigating from the cab of his pickup truck.

“I enjoy doing it because I like to work alone and I get to travel and see the country,” Eilerts said.

Another picture from Randy

 

 

Customer Photos: BlackLine Winch Straps

marc8 We’re always happy to hear from customers. Thanks to Marc for sending in these great photos of our BlackLine winch straps.

“I found USCC online. Googled best cargo strap and USCC came up. I bought everything that my hot shot rig would need. Everything I bought is extremely high in quality- from the straps and chains to the binders and tarps.marc7

I’ve been moving all types of cargo since 07 and have never seen better quality cargo control products. Since there are so many people getting into hotshot trucking right now there are many questions being asked. A popular question/topic is “What are you guys using to secure your loads?”  This question is asked almost daily. I’m always quick to chime in and rep US CARGO CONTROL. Others agree that you guys are the best. USCC makes my company and I look professional. I have the confidence to pull into any DOT weigh station, inspection area or truckstop and KNOW my load is marc3secure. DOT officers don’t give me a second look after they see that my rig is fitted with high quality securing equipment.

Keep up the good work guys.”

Marc Betancourt
A1 Eagle Ford Transport

 

 

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Chain Slings from US Cargo Control

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David Urlaub, Lifting & Rigging Product Expert

Since we’ve expanded our line of chain lifting slings earlier this year, it’s been great seeing the different types and sizes of chain slings customers are requesting. This one has been one of the biggest we’ve seen lately.

These chains have a capacity of 234,000 lbs. at 60 degrees, which means it would break at about 1,000,000 lbs. It’s being used to lift a large pump that weighs 210,000 lbs.chain sling from US Cargo Control

 

All of our lifting chain slings are manufactured with chain that’s made in the USA and European-made fittings. All also meet or exceed the latest guidelines of the National Association of Chain Manufacturers (NACM), ANSI B30.9 standards, and specifications set by OSHA.

Types of Chain Slings

We offer four sling types: standard, adjustable, endless and basket.

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Standard Triple Leg Chain Sling

Standard chain slings. Manufactured with one, two, three, or four lengths of chain, and fitted with hardware at each end, with a master oblong link at the top.

Single Leg Standard Chain Sling
Double Leg Standard Chain Sling
Triple Leg Standard Chain Sling
Quad Leg Standard Chain Sling

 

 

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Adjustable Double Leg Chain Sling

Adjustable chain slings. Similar to standard chain slings, but each leg is also equipped with a shorter length of chain with a grab hook also attached to the master oblong link. This design allows the operator to shorten the chain leg length as needed.

Single Leg Adjustable Chain Sling
Double Leg Adjustable Chain Sling
Triple Leg Adjustable Chain Sling
Quad Leg Adjustable Chain Sling

 

 

endlessEndless chain slings. As it sounds, an endless sling is an endless loop of chain attached through a master oblong link at the top. An additional variation has two loops of chain attached through the same master oblong. Our endless chain lift slings are available to order via our Custom Chain Sling Order Form or by giving us a call at 800-660-3585.

 

 

basketBasket chain slings. In a similar design as the endless basket sling except it’s just one length of chain making up the body of the sling, with each end of the chain attached to the oblong master link. A double basket configuration has two lengths attached each to its own oblong link, with the oblongs then attached to a master oblong link. Basket chain slings can be ordered via out Custom Chain Sling Order Form or by phone at 800-660-3585.

 

Custom chain lift sling options

In addition to the four different types of sling, other options to customize the lift slings include the size of the chain, the grade of the chain, and the number of legs. Several end fittings are available including sling hooks, grab hooks, foundry hooks, self-locking hooks, and simple oblong links.

You can shop our online selection of chain slings here: Chain Slings & Lifting Chains, or give us a call at 800-660-3585 about any customization options you need. We’ll be happy to help find the exact sling you need.

Are Moving Blankets Machine Washable?

Sarah Watson - USCC PhotoWe’re often asked if our moving blankets can be washed in a washing machine.

Our “Best” category includes three machine-washable moving blankets. Their heavy-weight construction with woven polyester binding on all four sides allows them to be washed and re-used repeatedly. Keep in mind, even though these blankets are classified as washable, we do not recommend drying them.  Hang dry is the route to go if you want to extend the life of the blanket.

Our “Best” Moving Blankets are available in 1-Dozen, 4-Pack, and single quantities, and  include:

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1 Dozen Pack, $154.99

Supreme Moving Blanket

  • Cotton/polyester fabric blend
  • Woven polyester binding
  • Maximum protection
  • Black / white
  • Ultra heavy weight
  • Great for sound proofing or as pet bedding
  • Machine washable/hang to dry

 

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1-Dozen Pack, $149.99

Pro Mover Moving Blanket

  • Microfiber fabric
  • Woven polyester binding
  • Heavy weight provides excellent protection
  • Blue both sides
  • Guaranteed colorfast
  • Softer microfiber fabric is great for pet bedding

 

 

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1-Dozen Pack, $129.99

Performance Moving Blanket

  • Cotton/polyester blend fabric
  • Woven polyester binding
  • Mid-weight
  • Very high quality
  • Black / white
  • Durable for many uses

 

 

While moving blankets in our “Best”category are some of our top sellers, we also offer seven additional types of blankets which are great for moving, as well as a variety of other uses. Check out this article for some great ideas: Moving Blankets- Not Just for Moving Anymore.

Better Moving Blankets
Even though we don’t recommend machine-washing our group of “Better” moving blankets, they can be spot cleaned and are durable enough to be used over and over again.

Good Moving Blankets
Our group of “Good” moving blankets are designed for limited usage, but still provide excellent protection.

Moving Skins
Lightweight skins are comprised only of non-quilted, recycle cotton fabric filler. Because they are thinner, they are also sold in larger pack quantities: 24-Pack and 6-Pack.

What are Ratchet Straps Made Of?

ratchet strap with chain extensionBecause ratchet straps are used for trailers, interior van trailers (logistic straps for L-track or E-track systems), moving trucks, and many other types of vehicles that haul bulky or heavy cargo, all of our  ratchet straps are made of high quality, industrial grade webbing.

Ratchet straps are typically made from a polyester fabric, which is strong, durable, and has very little stretch to keep large loads properly secured. Polyester webbing also resists damaging UV rays and most common chemicals, and because it absorbs very little water, it is resistant to mildew, mold, rotting, and shrinkage.

If you need a ratchet strap with stretch, nylon webbing can be used. Call us about custom ratchet straps, we can create a nylon ratchet strap built to your specifications. You can also purchase nylon webbing  and create your own straps by adding your own tie down hardware.Sewing Strap

All of our ratchet strap listings include break strength information for both the webbing and the ratchet assembly. We also calculate the working load limit (WLL) on our ratchet straps. The WLL is the maximum load which should be applied to the securing devices, even when the straps are in new condition. For additional industry key terms, see the Glossary on our website.

The WLL is computed by determining 1/3 of the break strength of the weakest component (either the webbing or the hardware) being used. For example, a ratchet strap that has a web break strength of 12,000 lbs. and an assembly break strength of 10,000 lbs. will have a WLL of 3,333 lbs., which is 1/3 of 10,000 lbs.

Our DOT approved ratchet straps are tagged with WLL information and also meet many industry guidelines, including:

  • Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA)
  • Department of Transportation (DOT)
  • Web Sling & Tie Down Association (WSTDA)
  • North American Cargo Securement

If you have a question about our products, shipping, prices, or custom orders, give us a call at 866-444-9990. We’re happy to help you with all of your cargo securing needs.

Customer Review: BlackLine Winch Straps

100_3699This guest post is courtesy of US Cargo Control customer Randy Fischer.

A strap is a strap is a strap, right?  That’s what I used to think.  They’re all basically the same 4″ of poly-something-or-other webbing, with a hook or chain on one end.  Usually colored yellow, for some strange reason.  I always figured it just meant they were all manufactured in the same place and all the different cargo control companies just branded them with their own names and marketed them to truckers, each claiming that theirs was somehow superior to the others.

How can one be any better than another?  They all have the same exact 5,400 lb.Working Load Limit stamped right there on the tag, right?  So I, like most truckers, just bought my straps from whichever place I could find that had the best price.

That’s how I first became aware of US Cargo Control.  They seemed to have better pricing than the “other 100_3702guys.”  I ordered about a dozen straps from them.  I was not disappointed.  They’ve served me well over the years, but alas, they do not last forever.  Invariably, a tiny little tear on the edge of the strap will begin to form.  It doesn’t take long from there.  Once a rip gets started, it will spread rapidly straight across the webbing.  I had a few straps doing this recently and knew it was time to replace them.

Lisa from US Cargo Control asked me if I’d be interested in trying out their new BlackLine series of straps.  Sure…..Why not?  I still didn’t realize how they were any different, other than being a different color.

I was wrong!  These straps are waaaaay stronger!  I’m not exactly sure if it’s the material itself that is so much stronger, or the fact that it has a tighter weave along the edges, some combination of the two, or if they are weaved by little magic elves in the middle of the night while nobody’s around.  I don’t care, all I know is they’re strong.  The specs on the label prove it.  A 24,000 lb. breaking strength?  Incredible!  A 6,670 lb Working Load Limit?  Unheard of!!

100_3698 Sure, they cost a few bucks more than their regular straps, but still cheaper than most of the “other guy’s” plain old yellow straps.  I can’t help but believe they’ll last much, much longer.  It’s not going to be easy for a rip to get started on these puppies.

So, I’m happy to admit that I was wrong.  Not all straps are created equal.  From now on, only BlackLine straps will be appearing on my trailer (after I finish wearing out the rest of my yellow ones).  If you’re a flat-bedder, show the rest of the drivers you mean business, show them you’re a professional, show them you’re a “black belt”!!

-Randy Fischer  (aka:  “Riding Shotgun with Randy” on Facebook)

 

 

What are E-Track Shoring Beams?

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92″ Adjustable Aluminum Shoring Beam – Extends to 103″

E-track shoring beams  can serve a dual purpose. Not only can they secure cargo safely inside a trailer, they can also be used to provide additional storage space.

E-track shoring beams attach to e-track rails that are installed inside your truck or trailer. Also called load bars, cargo bars, or load locks, the adjustable beams snap into the e-track rails and prevent loads from shifting during transport. E-track shoring practice3beams are perfect for securing large, bulky cargo that may damage other items or your vehicle itself if the load shifts in transport.

Shoring beams are also sometimes called decking beams because of their ability to create more usable space inside your vehicle. Just add two or more beams at the same interval on the E-track and secure a piece of plywood on top of the beams to create a surface area. Our load bar shoring beams are available in both steel and aluminum to suit a variety of applications.

You can also create a storage rack with two beams without using plywood, check out how US Cargo Control customer Wade did so in IMAG0334his trailer: Customer Photos: Adjustable Shoring Beams.

Like any tool, cargo bars should be stored properly when not in use. Failure to do so can result in serious injury because the beams can become dangerous projectiles in the event of a sudden stop or an accident. A great option: Yellow Rack™ shoring beam holder.

To shop all of our  E-track rails, straps, and accessories, click over to: E Track Straps & Tie Downs. Don’t see a strap or hook you need? Give us a call at 866-444-9990 and we’ll do our best to track it down for you.

Need help in deciding whether to install vertical or horizontal E-track? Check out this video for a quick overview of the difference of the two.