The A-Z of Flatbed Lumber tarps

Lumber means a raw wood material and tarp means cover. So lumber tarps are covers made of tarpaulin of canvas material to cover such raw wood material. They are also to protect the lumber from heat and rain while carrying the same on the truck. Before we set our eyes on lumber tarps, let’s first get a clear idea of what lumber tarps are. Have you ever heard the word Tarpaulin?  Tarp is the short form of that. Drivers who drive trucks carrying goods over long distances are often worried about keeping the goods covered. When goods are delivered, they are supposed to reach the destination intact. Here rises the need of tarps for covering the merchandise.

What is a tarp and what is a lumber tarp?

A tarp in the simplest language is a cover or a tarpaulin. Flatbed tarps help to cover a bigger size of load. Flatbed tarps are the most popular type of tarps and they come in different types. Lumber tarps are used mostly for flatbed trucks. Lumber tarps are larger in size than steel tarps and have a flap on one side to cover the lumber unit ends together. A typical lumber tarp is of the standard size of 24’ wide and 27’ long.

What are flatbed lumber tarps made up of?

All types of lumber tarps for flatbed trucks are made up of PVC coated polyester. Lumber tarps are available in different types depending on shapes, sizes and weights. The size ranges from four feet to eight feet, the shape varies from two-piece to three-piece and the weight differs from light weight lumber tarps to heavy duty lumber tarps. 6oz nylon fabric is used to manufacture lumber tarps to ensure maximum light weight.

Are tarps stitched and how? Tarps are also welded?

Yes, absolutely. Tarpaulins are stitched by the double lock hem stitch. The thread used is #207 bonded that is very hard to tear off. Some rugged heavy duty tarps are welded and not stitched. The end flap is a must on lumber tarps.

Brass grommets are installed at every 24 inch around the bottom edge of the tarp. Additional two rows of Dee rings are hemmed on each side of the three rows down. Rows are stitched 30 inch and 60 inch up from the bottom edges.

Hybrid tarps are also available

To produce a hybrid tarp, the heavy duty 14oz or 10oz vinyl tarp fabric is combined with light weight 6oz fabrics. This assures durability of the tarpaulin. Custom tarps are also available according to prior orders.

What are the different sub-types of Lumber Tarps?

Light weight lumber tarp: The light weight lumber tarps are made up of 6oz fabric that is nylon. They are lighter than the vinyl tarps and are easily torn by the strong wind, water and dust.

Heavy duty lumber tarp: Heavy duty tarps are manufactured from vinyl fabric.

Heavy duty three piece lumber tarp: This vinyl fabric has two flaps and one overlapping flap, thus making it three pieces.

(24 x 18) heavy duty lumber tarp: This is the standard size of the vinyl fabric tarp and is popularly used in larger flatbed trucks.

Super light lumber tarp: The super light lumber tarpaulin is made up of the lightest 6oz material of nylon fabric. They are manufactured of the same material as the parachutes.

Weight of lumber tarps

Weight of the lumber tarps depend on what material they are made up of, whether they are light weight of 6oz fabric or heavy duty of 14 oz fabric, and with or without flaps. The light weight tarps vary between 65 lbs to 75 lbs. The rugged heavy duty tarps vary in weight between 90 lbs to 215 lbs.

Are tarps waterproof?

Tarps are not absolutely waterproof. No type of tarpaulin is waterproof, so in case of rain, trickles of water seep into the fabric. The light weight 6 oz fabric has an outer coating that can shed off water if it rains, but the fabric needs to be sewn and not welded.

What are Dee-rings or D-rings?

Dee rings are rings through which the ropes are entangled to tie the tarp so that the goods don’t fall off the truck. The rings are stitched in rows so that the ropes can be tied around the tarpaulin. If a customer wants an extra set of Dee rings, it is available any time. All the D rings are triangular and are stitched in a way that the rings are stitched inside the extreme points of tension.

How to take care of tarps and are they repairable?

Taking care of the tarps depends on the quality and texture of the tarp. The 10oz or the 14oz vinyl fabric can be welded and patched with the help of the AA-66 adhesive. But of the 6oz lighter fabric gets torn, it should be carefully stitched by the professional repairer.

Why are lumber tarps used?

The basic reason to use lumber tarps is to protect the underlying wood from sunlight and rain. The tarps are mushroom proof so fungus never grows on their surface.  The tarps are acid resistant so there is no chance to get burnt. The lumber tarpaulin is treated in such a double protection way that ultra violet rays of the scorching sun don’t affect its texture. The D rings have super flexibility and thus do not tear off easily. The material of tarp is poly layered on both sides to attain the thickness. Lighter the tarp, lesser the durability. 6oz fabric gets torn faster than heavy duty vinyl fabric of 14 oz or at least 10oz.

So the next time you are sending wood or any load by a truck, don’t forget to cover it up with the lumber tarp to make the journey to the destination intact and secure. You have to understand that open load is unsafe and a waterproof canvas cover is ideal for the protection of your expensive goods. So don’t hesitate and buy a tarp, and don’t you forget the D strings for that extra security.


Tarps Specially Designed For Lumber

If you are transporting lumber in your cargo then you must make sure that the covering you use is specifically designed for that. Different cargo needs different types of protections. Thus it makes sense to get a specially designed tarp for your lumber. Lumber needs to be drier than perhaps any other type of cargo, so moisture free tarp is mandatory. Similarly there are so many specific needs that lumber has that other cargo does not need.

Firstly we will try and understand what lumber is? Lumber is raw wood. Fungus attacks the lumber when moisture is present in the environment, the weather is warm or when air is present. So lumber during transportation should be shielded from these hazards. Fungus ruins the lumber and lumber becomes useless. Thus the protection for lumber should shield it against all these problems.

Here we will discuss about a tarp, which is specially designed for lumber:

1.    Moisture Proof- The lumber tarps come in a material that is moisture and water proof. So it not only protects the lumber from water, but also ensures that moisture does not damage it.  Transporting lumber long distances and making sure it reaches the destination completely dry can be a difficult task. So this is one way you can ensure complete dryness without any hassles.

2.    Keeps it cool- The tarp actually keeps the lumber cool and prevents humidity. Very warm climates give rise to humidity. A good tarp can have a cooling effect on the cargo and can prevent humidity. Cool and dry climate works best for lumber.

3.    Air tight- Tarps prevent the air from passing to the lumber. Air carries moisture particles which again give rise to a moist climate. As discussed above moisture is bad for the lumber so an air tight tarp helps.

4.    You can buy parts- One very interesting feature is that you can buy these tarps in parts. So when the truck bed is really long you can utilize more portions, when the bed is short you can use a few portions. This way you can adjust the length of the tarp to suit your needs.

5.    Easily available- These tarps can be found just about anywhere, even online. This makes it very convenient, as even if a tarp is very good and cannot be found easily it is of no use. These however can be bought online and in local markets. Lumber tarps are the most common variety of tarps found.

6.    Covers even a huge pile of cargo- Your lumber stack or pile can be several feet high. These tarps can cover up to eight feet high cargo.  These are very long and broad. It can measure up to 48 feet in length. Even after covering your cargo the sides of the tarp would be hanging down on either sides of the cargo. So this ensures that more part of your cargo will be left exposed. As even if a small portion of your cargo is uncovered it becomes useless. There has to be 100% coverage.

7.    Strong Hems- The hems and edges are made exceptionally strong. As in any cover the most vulnerable parts are the edges. As on tying the cargo to the truck the edges come under a lot of pressure. So the edges have to be really strong or else it would tear.

8.    Can be custom made- Lumber tarps can ideally be found in all sizes. No matter what the size of your vehicle is, you are sure to find a tarp to suit it. But in case you are not happy with the sizes available you can always get one made. Making one to suit your need can be done at no additional cost.

9.    Arctic Protection- These tarps are known to give protection even in the harshest of winters. Even in arctic winter your lumber will be safe. These tarps are made of polyethylene and this material prevents the cold from entering. Also it prevents the heat present inside to escape. This feature makes these tarps excellent for lumber protection.

10.    Also used in flatbed trucks- Flatbed trucks are those which have no side walls and are completely flat, giving it a bed like look. These flatbed trucks are good for carrying very heavy cargo or cargo that is broad and cannot be accommodated within the walls of the truck. Flatbed lumber tarps are used in these trucks. As they helps secure the cargo very firmly and avoid it from spilling or grazing against other things.

11.    Fire safe- These tarps often come in fireproof materials. This is very good as fire can strike anywhere and anytime. One must always be prepared for it. Fire does not catch these tarps as they are fire resistant; also if fire catches the tarp prevents it from spreading all over. So this ensures that your lumber is safe. As lumber is wood and wood is highly combustible. Even if a small portion of the wood catches fire within seconds the whole cargo would be in flames. So it should be protected from fire at all cost.

12.    Protection against acid rains- Sometimes even the rain water is not pure. It comes down as acid rain. Even snow and precipitation contain small traces of acids in them. So protection against the rain is not enough. As acid can eat in to the cargo and damage it. So a lumber tarp with acid protection is necessary.

Your lumber tarp should have all the features that you are looking for. It is wise to jot down the things you need before you venture out to buy a tarp.  As you meet the requirements, start crossing out the points in your slip. In this way you will make sure that you don’t leave out any point. This would be very helpful, as many people come home to find that they have come back with half their requirements. This would mean that you have to go back the next day and exchange the tarp or perhaps buy a new one. So a meticulous noting down of points can be very helpful.


All You Need To Know About Tarps

Tarps are very important to the transportation industry. Tarps however can be used to cover boats, trucks, and other things. They help protect the vehicle from the wind, rain and sun. A tarp also helps secure the cargo that is present in trucks and trailers. The more conventional variety of tarp is made of poly and canvas. However, nowadays several types of tarps are available in the market. One popular type of tarp is the steel tarp. Firstly, these tarps are not made from steel. They are made from materials like mesh, poly, etc. But the name is such because they are used to cover small loads likes steel pipes and steel cables. The other tarps are used to cover wood and other big loads. These tarps are a favourite because it has certain defined features and qualities that the other tarps do not.

Some of the features are listed below:

DurableSteel Tarps are heavy duty tarps and they are also extremely durable.  They are made of mesh, polyethylene and vinyl.
Single Sheet – One of the biggest advantages of using these tarps are that only one single sheet of tarpaulin is needed to cover the cargo. So you do not have to put layers of tarpaulin on the cargo. Just one roll is sufficient to secure the cargo in place perfectly.

Lightweight– Such Tarps are extremely light in weight unlike other tarps. So you no longer have to cart along heavy tarpaulin. So for those who want something very portable this is the right type of tarp.

Air Circulation – Materials used in making these tarps allow the air to pass through. So along with covering your cargo, they keep the cargo fresh. So when you open your cargo after a long distant travel you will have smelly cargo. As when air is trapped in the cargo, it gets stale and gives out an odour.

Firm Fastening– These tarps get fastened better than the lumber tarps.  It can be annoying when vehicle drivers or owners have to tie up their cargo several times to ensure it is fastened. Goods that are not tied up properly are sure to shift around especially during jerks and brakes. With these tarps you do not have to worry about the grip, it provides the best grip available so far.

Exclusively for steel items– These tarps are very good to fasten steel rods, steel pipes, discs, etc. They have the best hold and steel commodities need a firm hold to keep them in place. So this type of tarp is almost necessary when you are transporting steel goods.
Wind Protection- In highways one of the greatest problems is the wind velocity. The winds come with great force and can tear up any tarp especially if the tarp is not tied up well. Thus, this kind of tarp is firmly fastened and prevents the damage caused by strong winds.
Specially designed- These come specially designed for steel cargo. They have D rings which help fasten the tarp to the vehicle. It also has a double drop design, which is nothing but two levels of tie ups available. These levels of tie up are separated from each other by about one and a half feet.

Strong– This tarp has a very strong texture. In fact they are way stronger than any of the other tarps available in the market. They are made of mesh and vinyl materials. These materials provide excellent protection against moisture and heat. So even if there is a heavy downpour your cargo is safe and even if the sun is really sharp your cargo is safe.
Keeps the Cargo in place- Because of it excellent grip the cargo is in place right till the end of your journey. So if you have placed the items in a particular order you are sure to find the items exactly the way you kept it even after a long journey.

Things to keep in mind before buying a steel tarp:

  • Always measure the size of your vehicle– One of the most important thing to do before buying tarps is to measure the size of your vehicle. Do not go by estimate.  If you are investing money in a good tarp it is always wise to get the right fit. Take some time out to measure your vehicle as it would save you a lot of hassles later on. If the size you need is not available always get one custom made to suit your needs and requirements. Even if it costs more a well fitting tarp would save you a lot of money in the future.
  • Good Quality– Irrespective of the material of your tarp, quality is of prime importance.  Do not buy something at a sale or at discounted price merely because it looks attractive and cheap. Do not buy something merely because the salesman talked you in to something. Buy something from a reputed place so that you will not have problems later on.
  • Check the Details– If the tarp cover says it will withstand the cold, check to see till what degree. A good tarp should be able to withstand cold up to -30 degrees. It is no use picking up something that can withstand up to -5 degrees, especially if you live in an area where the winter temperature could dip up to -10. Check to see what the maximum heat it can withstand. Once again it would be useless if the heat limit written on the packet is lower than what heat you usually experience in your climate.
  • Choose a good colour– If you are one of those who live in a dusty environment then choosing a darker colour tarp would be very beneficial. If you are somebody who lives in a spic and span environment, then buying some light interesting colours can be a lot more fun.

All you need to know about tarps is summarized and given above. Also what you should keep in mind before choosing tarps is also explained. This is merely a guide to help you with your confusions about choosing the right tarp.


Thinking of buying a truck tie-down? Consider these tips…..

Tie-downs are very important when it comes to securing the cargo in your truck. Neglecting their importance only leads to disasters and legal problems! With the rise in number of truck accidents, the demand for truck tie-downs has started going up. So, if you are about to purchase a tie-down, here’s what you need to look at.

Check out the working load limit

Truck tie-down components such as ratchets, straps, ropes and buckles have a specific weighing capacity. For instance, a ratchet tie down might be rated to handle 16,200 lbs but never judge a tie-down based on its capacity rating. Instead consider the working load limit which in this case would be 5400 lbs (1/3 of the capacity rating). While tying your cargo using a ratchet tie-down, the weight should not exceed 5400 lbs unless you want to use another tie-down.

Easy & quick installation

Buy tie-downs that take less than a minute to install. Drilling is no longer necessary as most of the tie-downs, now, can be quickly installed in the stake pocket of your truck. For instance, ratchets and cam buckles allow one to tighten straps without tying knots. If you are frequently involved in unloading the cargo without any help, go for cam buckles. You can use these with one hand!

Buy highly durable tie-downs

Never compromise on the quality of truck tie-downs even if it means shelling out extra bucks. Remember, the life of your fellow drivers is more important than money. Go for tie-downs that resist elements and offer unmatched protection. Stainless steel tie-downs are a great choice for the ultimate protection of your cargo as these are suited for all kinds of weather conditions.

Understand your needs to buy the right tie-down

Besides considering above points, it’s equally important to pay attention to what exactly you require from a truck tie-down. Figure out your needs properly. For example, if you are carrying heavy objects, go for ratchets. These are considered to be excellent for moving recreational vehicles, lumber and similar other objects. Go for cam buckles if you are dealing with lawn movers, furniture and grills.

Know the features

Before making the final call, thoroughly check the features of tie-downs. For instance, self-locking straps are meant for automatic security. Tie downs featuring rings help you connect hooks for easy loading and unloading cargo. On the other hand, there are tie-downs with rings which need to be pushed down to protect straps and ropes.
Tie-downs are immensely crucial if you want to carry the cargo from one destination to another in a secure manner without causing damage to life & property. Buy one today to avoid getting into legal troubles!


Tips to make your hay last longer

Hay is an indispensable item for farmers and livestock owners. For most of them, their livelihood depends on it. And, therefore, the importance of making & storing hay cannot be undermined. Not taking proper care in storing hay is the perfect recipe for disaster. Weather conditions, animals and vermin can easily ruin your hay, if not stored in the right manner. Discussed below are some tips to keep the quality of your hay intact.

Cutting

The time and manner in which the hay is cut determines its quality. Make sure to cut the hay early in the day to accelerate the drying process. Cutting your hay crop in a wider window helps in drying the moisture quickly.

Baling

Timing is crucial when it comes to bundling hay because a minor mistake can take a toll on its nutritional value. Make sure to retain a 15% moisture level while baling hay. Below this, the results can be disastrous. Alternatively, if you are baling new hay, the moisture should not go above 18% in large bales and 20% in small bales. When you bundle hay into small square bales, don’t forget to add preservatives if the moisture content rises above the stipulated level.

Storage

Storing indoors – Before bringing the bales inside the barn or storage area, make sure to clean it completely. Use wooden pallets to avoid hay touching the floor. Also, triple-check if there are any potential sources of water leaks inside the storage area. Always keep a check on rodents and snakes to avoid contamination. Use steel wool to secure entrances. To maximize airflow, keep some gaps when you stack bales. You also need to regularly check the heat levels in bales by using a metal rod. Keep an eye on broken bales to avoid air exposure. Lastly, keeping your barn free of gasoline, aerosol cans and kerosene is equally important.

Storing outdoors – Unprotected hay kept outdoors quickly loses its nutritional value including protein and vitamin A. Therefore, it makes sense to invest in Hay Tarps to keep the nutritional value of your hay intact. Stack the bales on pallets in a pyramid format to avoid water accumulation. Using tarps is beneficial because these are UV resistant and also protect your hay from rain, snow and vermin. Even if you are using tarps, keep checking them regularly. Never stack round bales in a row where the twine sides touch. In case you want to do that, have a gap of at least 2 feet between them.

Investing time and money in storing hay is crucial in order to keep your livestock healthy and earning an appropriate ROI. So, follow these tips carefully and derive maximum value out of your farming business.