Mark Devaney reports on Haulmark Industries, Inc., a leading manufacturer of trailers for the cargo, racing, motorcycle, snowmobile, food-service and landscaping markets.
Founded in 1977, Haulmark Industries, Inc., has grown from a one-building cargo trailer manufacturer into an industry leader with five plants in four states. Along with its corporate headquarters, factory and Special Products Division in Bristol, Ind., Haulmark owns facilities in Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona and Utah. With more than 350,000 square feet of manufacturing space at its disposal, the company can guarantee competitive lead times and a value-packed product.
“Our mission is to provide price-competitive products that are rich in value and quality,” says Matt Arnold, Haulmark’s marketing manager. “We do that by controlling costs and monitoring quality throughout the plant, while providing dealers with programs and packages that enhance their sales.”
Haulmark offers the industry’s largest and most complete line of enclosed trailers. Each Haulmark trailer model boasts countless hours of research, development and computer preparation, all of which have been invested to ensure that the company makes the best trailers on the market today.
Born to Haul
Haulmark’s sister company, Mark Line Industries, was started in 1970 by Mike Arnold, Matt Arnold’s father and then an accountant for Stewart Coach. When an acquaintance told Arnold he needed some office rental trailers to supplement his supply, Arnold rented a building and built office trailers in the evening with a crew after he finished his accounting duties for the day. When the business supported it, Arnold quit his accounting job to build office trailers full time.
“Mike would cost and sell the product from 9 to 5. Then when his crew went home, he and a few foremen built trailers until the late hours of the evening, only to go home and start the cycle again,” says Matt Arnold. “Then in 1977, an office trailer customer asked him to build a few steel cargo trailers and the cycle started again.”
From those seemingly small beginnings has sprung a diversified product range serving numerous industries including cargo, racing, motorcycle, snowmobile, food service and landscaping. According to Matt Arnold, two of Haulmark’s most exciting new products are lift-gate trailers and its high-end motor homes and motor coaches. Both product lines use the company’s composite side wall, which gives them the smoothest side walls in the industry.
“First, the ramp gate takes our name into the most elite company and most prestigious arena for trailers,” says Arnold. “And with our new side wall, it is one of the best out there. This product will also further our reputation on smaller trailers. Second, our line of heavy-duty motor homes built on Freightliner’s FL70 and FL112 chassis are a true diversification of our business, and should help our company grow immensely.”
The Checkered Flag
As a major sponsor of both the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) and the International Hod Rod Association (IHRA), Haulmark knows the importance of building a high-quality, dependable race trailer. The company has built its Race Trailers®, which need to be specially designed to meet the unique requirements of race vehicles, for the past 10 years. Today, Haulmark can build a trailer for any racing vehicle from snowmobiles to midget sprint cars. Haulmark sponsors several series of auto racing, which illustrates its loyalty to its customers. In the past, the company sponsored NASCAR drivers Chad Little and Jeremy Mayfield; Jim Yates, professional stock-car driver in the NHRA; and Gary Scelzi, top fuel driver in the NHRA.
“We also produce a wide variety of cargo units that are used for everything from carrying landscaping equipment to hauling motorcycles and antique vehicles,” says Arnold. “From single-axle Cub models to the heavy-duty 4-ton Grizzly, Haulmark can build you a cargo trailer capable of hauling your heaviest loads.”
Haulmark relies heavily on CAD technologies. “Our CAD department has the know-how and experience to engineer the highest-quality, most durable trailer possible,” says Arnold. “Haulmark’s engineering department uses CAD technology on every trailer. Innovative design technology allows Haulmark to lead the industry in top-quality trailers. As an industry leader, we don’t need to copy other trailers. In fact, it’s the Haulmark trailer that the others copy.”
The company conquers many engineering challenges in creating new models to fulfill customer needs. For example, the Lowhauler had to be built to accommodate up to four Harley-Davidsons and fit into a 7-foot garage. The company’s popular Escape Packages, which haul motorcycles, also have camping facilities including a shower, kitchenette, toilet and bunks. Its newest model — the Ultimate Edge, built with a composite side wall and a lift-gate ramp door — has central air conditioning, a 5-kilowatt diesel generator and air-ride axles, which are built to last for years of hauling.
The company uses welded unibody construction on every trailer it manufactures. Unibody frame technology ensures that Haulmark trailers are constructed extra heavy-duty — which means that its trailers are tougher than any other trailer on the market, according to Arnold. The company also frames every door and window with steel, and builds them into the unibody. Steel-framed windows and doors are more durable than components framed in wood.
“Haulmark has been an industry leader in constructing high-quality, dependable trailers for over 20 years. That’s longer than almost everyone in this business,” says Arnold. “There are reasons why we’ve been on top for so long — customer service, outstanding warranty service and a dependable, heavy-duty product.”