Recognizing that even a small amount of excess weight can make a big difference when it comes to truck efficiency, Fontaine Fifth Wheel is replacing two of its adjustable plate mount fifth wheel brackets with a single lightweight model.
“We are always looking for opportunities to save weight in our fifth wheel components,” says Aaron Puckett, Fontaine Fifth Wheel director of national fleet sales. “The new PML bracket offers all the features of the PMA and APB brackets, but with a new reinforced cast steel design that cuts weight. Drivers will not notice any difference in capability, but at the end of the month, fuel usage will be measurably lower.”
The new PML Adjustable Plate Mount is an average of 10 lbs. lighter than Fontaine’s PMA and APB models, but it delivers the same load capacity, the company says.
The PML Adjustable Plate Mount is composed of fixed brackets that sit on a steel plate base. Each side of the base has six mounting holes, Fontaine says. The multiple mounting holes allow the fifth wheel assembly to be moved forward or backward in 2-in. increments to help balance any load. Since there is no sliding mechanism, the fifth wheel assembly is lighter, and there are less moving parts to maintain, the company says.
To further minimize maintenance needs, the PML mount’s brackets also feature greaseless liners. The liners ensure there is no metal-on-metal contact between the top plate and the bracket, which reduces wear and extends the life of the fifth wheel assembly, the company says. Dual durometer bushings aid in shock absorption to provide a smooth ride.
The PML mount is compatible with Fontaine’s No-Slack II 6000, 7000 and 7000CC top plates for standard- to moderate-duty on-highway use. When paired with a 6000 top plate, the PML assembly has a 50,000 lb. vertical load capacity. A PML assembly equipped with a 7000 or 7000CC top plate can handle a vertical load of up to 55,000 lbs., Fontaine says.
“Switching to an advanced lightweight fifth wheel mount is an easy way to cut weight from a chassis,” says Puckett. “The PML mount offers flexibility and ease-of-use in a lightweight package. It also consolidates two previous options into one product, so our line of fifth wheel mounts is simpler to understand.”