The shipping company Spedition Kübler, from Michelfeld in Germany’s Schwäbisch Hall region, is now known for more than just their spectacular transport of planes and ships. Increasingly difficult conditions for road transport have led to a rise in railway use for the transport of heavy goods in recent years. Load capacities of up to 348 tons can be transported with special freight cars. Additionally, the trimodal port terminal in Mannheim has a 500-ton overhead crane available, providing the perfect link to use the synergies of ship and rail transport. Kübler has achieved what the government and their Rail Master Plan have not been able to achieve in this form: Customers rely increasingly on rail transport and send unusual shipments on a regular basis with Kübler’s special train via the Heavy Rail Centre Mannheim in the ARA port.
Kübler Heavy Rail: New construction of heavy transport vehicle
With the construction of a new 24-axle heavy transport vehicle by Kübler Heavy Rail four years ago, The Kübler Group also demonstrated their competence in the area of vehicle construction.
The demand for heavy large transformers continues to grow, which is why Germany’s largest transmission system operator commissioned Kübler Heavy Rail for the construction of a 32-axle heavy transport vehicle for the expansion of their own fleet. Commissioning is scheduled for mid-2020 and sets a new milestone for Kübler.
Spedition Kübler: The operating area is rapidly expanding
Higher load capacities, more modern technology, and more rail capacity on the German market: Kübler and the Austrian company ITB (International Low-Loader Rail Transport, a division of the Felbermayr Group), agreed on the proportionate acquisition by Kübler of a 32-axle ITB heavy transport vehicle, previously stationed in Linz, Austria. The 500-ton vehicle is based at Kübler’s Mannheim location and is now available for customer use.
Heinz Rößler, owner of Kübler, and Thomas Grabuschnigg, division manager of Felbermayr-ITB are satisfied with this joint venture: “Felbermayr-ITB and Kübler are well established with their customers, who appreciate their efficiency and the good and flexible service”.
They continued by saying: “The joint use of equipment enables us to meet our customers’ requirements even faster with greater adherence to schedule”.
Thorge Clever, responsible for intermodal heavy transport and rail transport at Kübler, adds: “Up to now, there was only one vehicle in Germany with a maximum load capacity of 454 tons, and it had to be booked well in advance. Now things have changed: In addition to the proportionate acquisition of a 32-axle vehicle, we now have two identical vehicles from ITB at our disposal. If appointments overlap, a replacement vehicle can be scheduled at short notice, for which the existing feasibility studies and timetables are still valid.”
Clever is pleased about the new possibilities: “Our vehicle is over 60 tons lighter than its 50-year-old counterpart. Thanks to lower wheelset loads, we can now travel routes with lower route classifications. Additionally, the new vehicle can carry wider loads due to its maximum lateral side shift ability.”
Clever continued: “And, all functions can be used while driving. The stop previously required during transports is no longer necessary. The new vehicle uses computer-controlled technology to move while the vehicle is in motion. This allows us to get past obstacles faster and reach the next point of evasion. We therefore assume there will be shorter overall transit times.”
Rößler concludes with an optimistic outlook: “We look to the future with great confidence and are happy that we can now offer our customers complete solutions in the 500-ton class. Together with the road transport technology, handling facilities, our own shipping lines, and our in-house installation department, we can now offer complete logistics from a single source in the Power + Grid sector.”
Grabuschnigg added: “Both companies offer road, water, and rail transport in their region with their own equipment, and operate their own heavy goods terminals. We are confident that our customers will benefit from this cooperation. Europe-wide services that are reliable and flexible can now be arranged with just one contact person.”