Mack Trucks, Inc., is an American truck manufacturing company and a former manufacturer of buses and trolley buses. Founded in 1900 as the Mack Brothers Company, it manufactured its first truck in 1907 and adopted its present name in 1922. Mack Trucks is a subsidiary of AB Volvo which purchased Mack along with Renault Trucks in 2000. After being founded in Brooklyn, New York, the company's headquarters were in Allentown, Pennsylvania, from 1905 to 2009 when they moved to Greensboro, North Carolina. The entire line of Mack products is still produced in Lower Macungie, Pennsylvania, with all powertrain produced in the Hagerstown, Maryland plant. They also have additional assembly plants in Pennsylvania, Australia, and Venezuela. There was also (previously) a Mack plant in Hayward, California.
Currently, the company's manufacturing facilities are located at Lehigh Valley Operations (LVO) formally known as the Macungie Assembly Operations Plant in Lower Macungie Township, Pennsylvania. Mack Trucks is one of the top producers in the vocational and on-road vehicle market, class 8 through class 13.
Mack trucks have been sold in 45 countries. Located near its former Allentown corporate headquarters, The Macungie, Pennsylvania, manufacturing plant produces all Mack products including Mack MP-series engines.
According to local historians, Mack transmissions, TC-15 transfer cases, and rear engine power take-offs are designed and manufactured in Hagerstown, Maryland, which was the original factory location.
Parts for Mack's right-hand-drive vehicles are produced in Brisbane, Australia, for worldwide distribution. Assembly for South America is done at Mack de Venezuela C.A., in Caracas, Venezuela. The Venezuela operation is a complete knock down (CKD) facility. Components are shipped from the United States to Caracas for final assembly.
In addition to its Macungie manufacturing facility, Mack also has a remanufacturing center in Middletown, Pennsylvania.
Garbage truck or dustcart refers to a truck specially designed to collect municipal solid waste and haul the collected waste to a solid waste treatment facility such as a landfill. Other common names for this type of truck include trash truck in the United States, and rubbish truck, junk truck, dumpster, bin wagon, dustbin lorry, bin lorry or bin van elsewhere. Technical names include waste collection vehicle and refuse collection vehicle. These trucks are a common sight in most urban areas.
Wagons and other means had been used for centuries to haul away solid waste. Among the first self-propelled garbage trucks were those ordered by Chiswick District Council from the Thornycroft Steam Wagon and Carriage Company in 1897 described as a steam motor tip-car, a new design of body specific for "the collection of dust and house refuse".
The 1920s saw the first open-topped trucks being used, but due to foul odors and waste falling from the back, covered vehicles soon became more common. These covered trucks were first introduced in more densely populated Europe and then in North America, but were soon used worldwide.
The main difficulty was that the waste collectors needed to lift the waste to shoulder height. The first technique developed in the late 20s to solve this problem was to build round compartments with massive corkscrews that would lift the load and bring it away from the rear. A more efficient model was the development of the hopper in 1929. It used a cable system that could pull waste into the truck.
In 1937, George Dempster invented the Dempster-Dumpster system in which wheeled waste containers were mechanically tipped into the truck. His containers were known as Dumpsters, which led to the word dumpster entering the language.
In 1938, the Garwood Load Packer revolutionized the industry when the notion of including a compactor in the truck was implemented. The first primitive compactor could double a truck's capacity. This was made possible by use of a hydraulic press which compacted the contents of the truck periodically.
1955 saw the Dempster Dumpmaster the first front loader introduced, however they didn't become common until the 1970s. The 1970s also saw the introduction of smaller dumpsters, often known as wheelie bins which were also emptied mechanically. Since that time there has been little dramatic change, although there have been various improvements to the compaction mechanisms in order to improve payload. In the mid-1970s Petersen Industries introduced the first grapple truck for municipal waste collection.
In 1969, The city of Scottsdale, Arizona introduced the world's first automated side loader. The new truck could collect 300 gallon containers in 30 second cycles, without the need of the driver exiting the cab.
In 1997, Lee Rathbun introduced the Lightning Rear Steer System. This system includes an elevated, rear-facing cab for both driving the truck and operating the loader. This configuration allows the operator to follow behind haul trucks and load continuously.
Rear loaders have an opening into a trough or hopper at the rear that a waste collector can throw waste bags or empty the contents of bins into. Often in many areas they have a lifting mechanism to automatically empty large carts without the operator having to lift the waste by hand.
Another popular system for the rear loader is a rear load container specially built to fit a groove in the truck. The truck will have a chain or cable system for upending the container. The waste will then slide into the hopper of the truck.
The modern rear loader usually compacts the waste using a hydraulically powered mechanism that employs a moving plate or shovel to scoop the waste out from the loading hopper and compress it against a moving wall. In most compactor designs, the plate has a pointed edge (hence giving it the industry standard name packer blade) which is designed to apply point pressure to the waste to break down bulky items in the hopper before being drawn into the main body of the truck.
Compactor designs, however, have been many and varied, however the two most popular in use today are the "sweep and slide" system (first pioneered on the Leach 2R Packmaster), where the packer blade pivots on a moving carriage which slides back and forth, and the "swing link" system (such as the Dempster Routechief) where the blade literally swings on a "pendulum"-style mechanism. The Heil Colectomatic used a combination of a lifting loading hopper and a pivoting sweeper blade to clear and compact waste in anticipation of the next load.
So-called "continuous" compactors were popular in the 1960s and 1970s. The German Shark design (later Rotopress) used a huge rotating drum, analogous to a cement mixer, in conjunction with a serrated auger to grind down and compact the garbage. SEMAT-Rey of France pioneered the rotating rake system (also used in the British Shelvoke and Drewry Revopak) to both mutilate waste and break down large items. Other systems used a large Archimedes' screw to draw in waste and mutilate it inside the body. A mixture of safety concerns, and higher fuel consumption has seen a decline in the popularity of continuously compacting garbage trucks. The Rotopress design remains popular due to its niche in being able to effectively deal with green waste for composting.
The wall will move towards the front of the vehicle as the pressure forces the hydraulic valves to open, or as the operator moves it with a manual control.
A unique rear-loading system involves a rear loader and a front-loading tractor (usually a Caterpillar front loader with a Tink Claw) for yard waste collection (and in some cities, garbage and recycling). The front loader picks up yard waste set in the street, and then loaded into the back of a rear loader. This system is used in several cities, including San Jose.