Customer: Pedders Suspension & Brakes
Pedders is one of Australia’s leading suspension brands, with a history dating back to 1950. They design and manufacture a range of brake and suspension products, selling them through a network of more than 120 dealers nation-wide. They also have a growing network of international distributors, exporting to Europe, the USA, Africa, Asia and the Middle East.
With Pedders’ large customer base and considerable experience in vehicle suspension, they had repeatedly seen problems caused by unsafe loading of vehicles, including overloading and poor weight distribution.
They came up with the idea of a system that could show the weight being applied to each end of a vehicle, allowing the driver to achieve optimal load balancing. Having secured a government grant to develop the idea, Pedders management approached the REDARC Group to design and manufacture the product.
Hummingbird Electronics is known for technologies applied to sensing and monitoring vehicle activity. In this case, Pedders needed a system that could be retrofitted to existing vehicles, as well as being installed along with Pedders’ suspension upgrade products.
The engineering team devised an electronic scale to measure the weight being supported by each axle. A dash-mounted display would give a readout from the scales and inform the driver in the case of excess weight or unsafe load distribution. Hummingbird designed and manufactured the system for Pedders. Testing and validation for the EU and US markets was carried out in the REDARC Group testing facilities.
Features and customisation
The resulting product is Pedders LoadRyder Onboard Scales.
Combined with brackets to suit a wide range of popular vehicles, the compact and robust scales can be fitted to each end of the vehicle. The scales are connected to a dash-mounted display unit that gives a real-time indication of the proportion of total load carried by the front and rear axles.
When pre-set total weight limits are exceeded, or unsafe load distribution is detected, the display unit generates audible and visible alerts. The system also logs data, allowing fleet managers to monitor workplace loading practices and detect unsafe loading in their vehicles.
The LoadRyder system is suitable for individual users and has particular value to industry, with the potential for thousands of units to be deployed in the mining sector alone.
Pedders LoadRyder Onboard Scales are scheduled for release in 2021 and have already attracted attention in the industry.
Before it was even available for sale, the new product won its first award. At the Caravan Industry Association of Australia National Conference in May 2021, Pedders were presented with the Gerry Ryan OAM award for innovation.
This is the second year in a row that a product designed, developed and manufactured in Adelaide by the REDARC Group product has achieved this award. In 2020 it was won by REDARC’s RedVision Total Vehicle Management System.
From the client
Pedders LoadRyder Onboard Scales came about after we saw an opportunity to provide education and improved safety and compliance for our clients who operate light commercial vehicles.
Electronic devices are completely new ground for Pedders, so we approached REDARC Group as we consider them industry leaders with the required technical capability to develop our concept into a product.
The COVID-19 pandemic put significant obstacles in our path, especially when it came to User Acceptance Testing. In spite of the various restrictions in place we were able to get early sample devices installed in customer vehicles, which yielded some important feedback, not only on the LoadRyder units, but also on the delivery of user instructions.
We were delighted to win the Caravan Industry Association of Australia award before the product was even launched. Load and weight are important issues, so it’s great to see them recognised in this way.
We see two main markets for Pedders LoadRyder Onboard Scales. For organisations running large fleets of light commercial vehicles, such as the mining sector, it’s a purchase that ticks boxes in terms of safety and compliance, while tradies and smaller businesses will see benefits from reduced stress on drivetrain components, brakes and tyres, along with the safety and legal compliance outcomes.
We have high hopes for this product. Our customers are crying out for it because it fills such an important market need.
David Montgomery, Pedders Senior Manager – Product & Brand Integration
Hummingbird develop market leading Australian made products with a comprehensive portfolio including audio-visual alarms and alert systems, monitoring and detection systems, inclinometers and tilt switches, GPS trip meters, speedometers, and trailer odometers, as well as digital signboards.
Key customers continue to bring great ideas to Hummingbird’s team of Electronics Engineers who provide a full-service capability to conceptualise and design advanced electronic products, ultimately delivering new and exciting technologies to the mining, civil construction, industrial, and fleet management industries.
Find out more
To find out more about Pedders visit https://www.pedders.com.au/
To find out how Hummingbird can bring your solutions to life contact HMBE head office.