More from: bungee straps

The Secret to Preventing Tarp Billowing

After spending 20 to 30 minutes tarping a load, nothing aggravates a flatbed trucker more than looking out the mirror 25 miles down the road and seeing one or more of those tarps billowing in the wind. Billowing tarps reduce fuel efficiency and risk both straps and cargo. Truckers hate billowing tarps.

The question many new truck drivers struggle with is how to prevent billowing. After all, moving down the highway at 65 mph creates a lot of air movement around a flatbed load. Any natural wind added to the equation just makes things worse.

So, what is the solution? The secret to preventing tarp billowing is in how tarps are applied at various points of a load.

In the below post, we will explain how to secure tarps that will not billow as you drive down the road. You can use ratchet straps, bungee straps, bungee rope, or even nylon rope as you see fit. A combination of bungee straps and ratchet straps is the best way to go for efficiency and speed.

Tight at the Front

Physics and common sense dictate that air flows across a load from front to back. Therefore, common sense also dictates that tarps should be getting the most attention at the front of the load. Veteran truckers who tarp well, will tell you that the front of the load is key.

The most important thing for preventing billowing is to make sure the tarp at the front is as flat and tight as possible. If you do not give air a clear path under the front of the tarp, you will reduce the likelihood of billowing across its entire surface. So think tight and flat.

One suggestion from veteran truckers is to start by securing the front corners of the tarp with bungee straps. Pull the tarp tight and secure the rear with bungee straps as well. Then go back to the front of the load and apply one ratchet strap across the top of the tarp as far forward as possible. You can then use bungee straps or bungee rope to go around the front edge of the tarp, hooking to a strap on either side, to keep the vertical surface of the tarp lying flat.

Work Your Way Back

Once the front of the tarp is flat and secure, work your way back. Use additional bungee straps at key points to secure the tarp to either your trailer or the load itself. Another ratchet strap across the middle of the tarp will keep that section flat. Finally, wrap the entire perimeter of the load using bungee rope from corner to corner. This keeps the edges of the tarp secure against the load.

The advantage of using bungee rope here is that you can apply fairly large sections of rope without creating a safety hazard or risking damage to the load.

One veteran trucker we know offers another tip that makes sense. He says that it helps to take a few extra minutes to make sure tarps are applied evenly. An uneven tarp is harder to keep flat and tight because you are working with different amounts of material at various points across the load. An even tarp gives you the same amount of material at the critical points, making it possible to apply even tension with each bungee or ratchet strap you use.

Remember, the secret to preventing tarp billowing is to concentrate on the front of the load in order to ensure the tarp is flat and tight. If you can conquer the front of the load, the rest should be fairly easy.


Top 5 Bungee Strap Hacks for Truckers

You just ordered two packs of bungee straps from Mytee Products. You will eventually go through all of them, but you suddenly realize that having 100 straps on board your truck is a bit of overkill. No worries. Bungee straps are not just for tying down tarps. As a flatbed trucker, you can do a lot of amazing things with those little black wonders.

Below are some of the more creative bungee strap hacks we have come across online. If you have additional hacks not listed here, we would love to hear your ideas. The incredibly versatile bungee strap is to the flatbed trucker what duct tape is to the DIY homeowner. There seems to be no end to how bungees can be used.

1. Hang Your Tarps

Neatly folding your tarps and storing them in the toolbox is the normal thing to do. But you might find yourself dropping one load only to drive just across town to pick up the next one. A quick and dirty way to save time is to fold your tarps into rolls and hang them from the headache rack with half a dozen bungee straps. It is fast, easy, and you are not risking any damage to the tarps.

2. Hang a Quick Clothesline

You may spend your life on the road, but you still need to do your laundry. Save a little money at the laundromat by not using the dryer. Instead, stretch some bungee straps across the inside of your sleeper cab and then hang your laundry. Let it dry as you drive. You can take everything down when you stop for the night.

3. Replace a Broken Curtain Rod

Your sleeper cab hopefully affords you a measure of privacy with the strategic use of curtains. Those curtains are hung on either plastic rods or cords. If one of them breaks, a couple bungee straps works as a good substitute until you can purchase a proper replacement. And if your sleeper cab does not come equipped with curtains, you can make your own with an old blanket or set of bedsheets and a few bungee straps.

4. Secure Things in the Cab

What kinds of things do you carry in your sleeper cab? We have known truckers to bring along things like microwave ovens, crock pots, and trash cans. You can secure any and all of those extra items with bungee straps. And before you say it’s not necessary, just remember that you never know when a sudden stop or start will knock something off a shelf. Even simple road vibration can cause something like a hotplate or coffeemaker to travel across a shelf and fall off.

5. Secure Toolbox Doors

Toolbox doors are going to remain tightly closed when they are brand-new. But time wears on toolboxes just as it does the rest of your rig. Once those toolbox doors start to loosen, just a single bungee strap across the top will keep them place even at highway speeds. You will not have to worry about the door suddenly flying open as you’re cruising down the interstate at 65 mph.

Every flatbed truck driver knows bungee straps are great tools for securing tarps. But the versatility of the trusted bungee strap goes well beyond that individual use. Bungee straps are perfect for a lengthy list of needs inside and outside the truck.

Mytee Products carries a full selection of bungee straps with crimped hooks. We also carry bungee rope cord, replacement S hooks, and rubber rope hooks. We offer great prices on each of our products – especially when you buy in bulk.


10 Things (Other Than Tools) to Keep in Your Toolbox

Aluminum toolboxes are part and parcel to working in the trucking industry. They are especially important to flatbed truckers who are ultimately responsible for maintaining their trailers and protecting cargo. That’s why you see flatbed truckers having multiple toolboxes mounted on their tractors, headache racks, and even their trailers.

So what do they keep in those toolboxes? If you’re a veteran truck drive, you already know the contents of those boxes. However, If you are new to the industry, it may take you a while to assemble everything you want to have with you on board. In this post, we’ve put together a list of things to help get you started. Each of these items might miss your checklist until you actually need them.

1. Spare Headlamps

It is illegal for you to run your truck in the dark without both headlamps functioning properly. Driving down the road as a ‘one-eyed bandit’ is a good way to get yourself pulled over and subjected to a roadside inspection. You can minimize such risks by carrying one or two spare headlamps at all times. It only takes a few minutes to change one.

2. Assorted Bulbs

Along with your headlamps, you should have an adequate selection of miscellaneous bulbs on hand. That way you always have a replacement when any of your lights go out. Have whatever sizes you need to accommodate taillights, running lights, trailer lights, etc.

3. Spare Parts

Owner-operators tend to carry a larger selection spare parts to keep themselves rolling. Examples include a spare alternator, pulleys and belts, air boots, filters, and the like. Any parts that tend to have a need for frequent replacement and can be handled on the road would be candidates for your toolbox.

4. Extra Fluids

It goes without saying that the trucker should have extra fluids in his or her toolboxes. This includes motor oil, coolant, and hydraulic fluid.

5. Fuses and Circuit Breakers

Your truck’s electrical system is not going to function properly if there’s a failure in one of the fuses or circuit breakers. Not only should you carry an ample supply in your toolbox but you should learn how to quickly identify which fuses and circuit breakers match the various electrical systems on your rig. The faster you can change them, the faster you can get back on the road.

6. Flares or Emergency Flasher

Breaking down on the side of the road at night can be a dangerous situation. To increase your safety, carry flares or an electric flasher or to save up on space a flare and flashlight combo in your toolbox.

7. An Assortment of Fasteners

You know that old coffee can full of nuts and bolts your grandfather used to keep on his tool bench? You should keep a similar can in your toolbox. An assortment of fasteners – including zip ties – will prove to be a lifesaver many times over the course of your career.

8. Extra Bungee Cords

Every flatbed trucker uses bungee cords to tie down tarps. Most of the time, those cords are kept in a single location so they can be found easily. Keep a spare pack of 50 in the bottom of your toolbox to guarantee you will never run out. There’s nothing worse than falling a couple of bungee cords short of a load.

9. Heavy-Duty Flashlight

A flexible, plastic flashlight is good for most emergencies. Still, keep a heavy-duty flashlight in your toolbox just in case your cheap plastic model fails.

10. Tire Thumper

Last but not least is the trusty tire thumper. The tire thumper represents a quick and easy way to check tire inflation on the go.


EPDM Rubber Bungee Straps

Those black, rubber bungee straps truckers use to secure tarps are so easy to find that they are often taken for granted. However, did you know that the modern bungee strap is a relatively new invention? It hasn’t been around that long when you consider that a French scientist invented the first artificial rubber polymer in the 1870s. What he learned about synthetic rubber more than 130 years ago paved the way for creating the flexible, durable, and easy-to-use bungee straps that are common find in the modern marketplace.

It turns out that synthetic rubber was developed largely in response to the needs of the burgeoning auto industry in the early 20th century. Natural rubber was expensive to produce and not very durable for things such as car tires. Making matters worse were the first and second world wars, two eras in which rubber was hard to come by.

bungee-straps

In the years following World War II, discoveries on a variety of synthetic rubber products were made that would have various uses. One of those products was something known as ethylene propylene diene monomer (M-class) (EPDM) rubber, the rubber used to make bungee straps.It is an ideal kind of rubber for a multitude of products, including bungee straps and roofing materials.

Strengths of EPDM Rubber

EPDM rubber is an ideal material for bungee straps because it is resilient to hydraulic fluids, alkalis, and ketones. It is popular with truckers because of its extreme weather resistance. EPDM rubber holds up as well in subfreezing temperatures as it does in extremely warm temperatures and bright sunshine.

Imagine trying to tie down a canvas tarp using ropes during the middle of winter. The average trucker would have to go without gloves in order to get a good, tight knot. Nevertheless, with rubber bungee straps, you just hook the strap and go. It is quick, it is easy, and you can do it while still wearing your gloves.

Challenges of EPDM Rubber

As great as EPDM is for rubber bungee straps, it does have a few albeit minor challenges. Most of them arise due to the fact that EPDM it is a polymer made from petroleum byproducts. This means it is susceptible to damage from certain kinds of solvents and acids, gasoline, oil and kerosene. Truckers have to be very careful about using these substances near bungee straps.

Due to the flexibility of EPDM rubber, they perform best when used with other products to secure cargo in place. That is where webbing straps and chains come into play. Bungee straps are usually suitable for keeping tarps in place during transit.

Mytee carries several different sizes of manufactured EPDM rubber bungee straps with galvanized steel hooks. We also carry solid core rubber rope that truckers can bought in bulk and cut into customized sizes. Rubber rope hooks are available for use with this rope as well.

Thanks to some creative scientists looking for a better alternative to natural rubber, we now have EPDM synthetic rubber and products made from it. 130 years ago, who knew how vital synthetic rubber would be to the trucking industry in the 21st century?


Bungee Straps – Omnipresent and Reliable Tool

Bungee straps are reliable and multipurpose tools. They can be used in household activities to tie luggage on top of the vehicle, can be also used for sports and adventure activities. The most common or popular use of this strap is tie down truck.

Uses of Bungee Strap:

The bungees were originally been used as swimming goggles straps. Nowadays they are been used for myriad of activities. Most of the people must have used these straps at least once in their life as it is a versatile product.

These straps can be used effectively in the house hold activities. They are very effective if used to tie down luggage or other objects on the top of the vehicle when you go on a road trip. The bungee straps will ensure that your stuff if secured and will keep it from falling or moving.

These straps are actively been used in adventure and sports activities because of their elasticity and reliability. People use them to feel the thrill of jumping off the cliffs or high points like bridges.

The truckers have found the use of this strap to tie down heavy duty cargo on flatbed trailers. Once the cargo is loaded on the trailer and covered with tarps these straps are used to tie the load with the trailer. It is essential to tie the load using straps else it can cause serious damage to the truck driver or other drivers on the road apart from damaging goods that are being transported.

Details of the components of the strap:

The strap is made up of three main components the core, the covering and the end fittings. The core of the strap is made from synthetic or natural rubber to give it elasticity.

The covering of the strap is made from different material depending upon the use of the strap. There are materials like nylon and cotton braids used to cover the core of the strap. This kind of straps can be stretched to twice its original length. Then there are straps made entirely with rubber including the covering, such straps can be stretched up to four times its original length.

The end fittings are also very important. They have hooks to allow you to tie the objects swiftly and easily. There are different types of hooks that can be attached to its ends like the S-shaped hooks or the J-shaped hooks. Some manufacturers cover these hooks with rubber to give security to its user. This hooks save you from tackling awkward knots. You also have the option of attaching carabiners to the ends of these straps.

Though these straps are so useful and so common, it is important to make sure that you buy these straps only from the reliable retailers. The best way is to buy these straps from the online site so that you can know what are the options and specifications of these straps. You can also avail some special discounts and offers if you buy these straps from e-commerce sites.