Timber specialist John McDermott has replaced its sole truck with a new Volvo FMX 8×4
Tridem supplied by the team at Volvo Truck and Bus Wales and West. The new arrival
replaces a 10-year old Volvo FM 6×4 which had been purchased second-hand, and becomes
the first brand new commercial vehicle ever operated by the Fordingbridge-based firm.
Truck Sales Executive Andy Button worked closely with Volvo Field Sales Engineer Brian Anderson
to propose the perfect specification vehicle to accommodate a front-mounted crane and long bed for
transporting timber. They recommended a 4,900mm wheelbase FMX with a 10-tonne front axle and
Tridem bogie rear suspension, with a lifting and hydraulically steered tag axle, for ultimate
manoeuvrability and an unprecedentedly small turning circle.
ommenting on its arrival, John McDermott, a joint partner in the firm with his son-in-law, Martin
Kerswell, says: “We’re absolutely delighted with the new truck; the manoeuvrability is incredible. At
one site we visit regularly it used to take four shunts to get into position, whereas we drove straight
in with the FMX!
“The new vehicle’s got a lot more technology on-board than we’ve ever had before, but the dealer
sent their driver trainer out with us for the day and we were quickly up to speed. They showed us
how to use the air-suspension to best effect, optimising rear axle pressure to generate maximum
traction. We expect this will make a big difference in some of the locations we load in.”
Perfect for timber haulage, the FMX will work predominantly across the South of England,
transporting fresh timber to firewood suppliers, fencing manufacturers and sawmills. Operating five
to six days per week, it will cover between 60,000 to 70,000 km per annum.
McDermott adds: “We’ve run a Volvo for the last 14 years and despite always buying second-hand,
we’ve enjoyed great reliability. When we took the decision to buy new, we had full confidence we
were getting the best truck for the job.”
Power is provided by a Volvo D13K six-cylinder diesel engine, which is capable of producing up to
420 hp between 1,400 and 1,800 rev/min, and up to 2,100 Nm of torque between 860 rev/min and
1,400 rev/min, for great pulling power over a wide operating range. This is paired with Volvo’s proven
12-speed I-Shift automated gearbox, making driving easier, safer and more comfortable.
The FMX is expected to remain in service with John McDermott for the next 10 years and is mounted
with a Jonsered 1088S timber handling crane supplied by JD Engineering. The truck’s bespoke
bodywork was assembled jointly by the customer in conjunction with Hampshire Plant & Commercial,
which also built the sub-frame for the crane and bolsters.