May 2013
Fast Track News is excited to feature a follow up to an article about Caleb and Andrea Harper we first brought to you back in December, 2012. The Harper's story about a recent purchase of a slightly used Cascadia is helping make their dream of building a fleet of trucks come true. We also introduce you to Robert Uksas, Expediter Services' new Fleet Maintenance Manager. And put on your seatbelt as we tell you about new innovations coming to Sprinter Vans prompted by the Expediting Industry and Expediter Services. Feel free to contact us with ideas for future articles or with feedback. And please sign up to receive Fast Track in your inbox!

8 More Seconds of Riding a Wild Bull!

Caleb & Andrea Harper’s New Cascadia Truck (D8322)
ou may recall in our December issue of Fast Track News, we featured Caleb and Andrea Harper and their story of getting into the Expediting business. Well, we're back with an update on their success and growth as they continue on their journey to build a fleet of Expediting trucks. We caught up with them in Baton Rouge, LA, doing what they do best: Expediting.

So, what's new with You and Andrea these days?
Well, quite a bit actually. Last time we spoke, we had purchased a straight truck through Expediter Equipment Finance in February of 2012, then we purchased another one last November. And in March of this year, we added another straight truck to our fleet, a very slightly used Cascadia with only 1,100 miles on the clock.

What made you go with this truck?
The Cascadia came from Expediter Services' fleet and it was such a good deal, I just don't know how we could have done any better. The price was thousands less than what we could have gotten it for from a dealer.

How has Expediter Services helped you get to where you are today?
It's kind of funny. When I first started dealing with Expediter Services, I was skeptical. You know, when you don't really know someone, you always wonder "what's their angle…what are they looking to get out of this deal"? But since I've done business with them for over a year, they really are a partner. We feel comfortable with them and rely on not only their programs, but their support too. Having Expediter Services in our corner has made a real difference in our ability to operate successfully.

What programs in particular do you like?
Caleb & Andrea Harper
really like their fuel card. Most companies put it off on you to keep up with fuel costs, reimbursements and everything else. Expediter Services takes care of all that for you. To me, that more than makes their Owner Operator program worth it. Their Insurance is good too -- that's why all my trucks are now under the Owner Operator program.

What about the future?
My short term goal is to get a fleet of ten trucks. Then after that the sky is the limit.

Last question. Do you still compare Expediting to "Riding a Wild Bull"?
You bet! Only now, it's like eight more seconds every day of the week!

Thanks, Caleb. Congrats on You & Andrea's continued success. We'll be checking back again soon.
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Meet Robert Uksas, Our New Fleet Maintenance Manager

Robert Uksas, Fleet Maintenance Manager, Expediter Services
e'd like to introduce the newest addition to the Expediter Services team, Robert Uksas, Fleet Maintenance Manager.

A Wisconsin native, Robert began his fleet maintenance career with UPS in 1989 as a mechanic in sunny Florida. Over the years, he worked his way up through various positions including Fleet Supervisor, Fleet Manager & Corporate Director of Maintenance, gaining valuable experience with a variety of companies along the way.

Robert's tasks include negotiating prices for parts and services for the daily repair of Expediter Services' 150-truck fleet, as well as Owner Operators and Fleet Owners under Expediter Services Owner Operator Program.

Although Robert is just getting settled in to his new position, he's already making valuable progress in helping streamline maintenance throughout the company. "Since coming on board with Expediter Services, I've been helping develop the maintenance system that's in place and making it more efficient. This includes helping the company use the system and procedures for the right things. It's all about efficiency." He also is addressing the challenges of a fleet that spans across the country. "The Expediter Services fleet, including the Owner Operators & the trucks owned by Fleet Owners is spread all over the US at any given time. I'm working on negotiating parts & service agreements that can accommodate our trucks anywhere in the US and get them serviced at a more standardized and less expensive rate. It's quite a challenge, but its important because it drives down our cost curve and helps get the trucks serviced more quickly. Negotiating better prices for parts and services is a major goal in our future operations."

If there's one bit of information that Robert can impart to drivers on the road, its this: "It's important for drivers to do regular pre and post trip checks. Its much better and cheaper to address small problems than to wait until they become large and expensive. The temptation for drivers is to continue driving and making money when a small issue arises. But in the long run, they almost always come out ahead by taking the time to get small maintenance problems fixed early on. If they wait, their downtime is usually longer, resulting in a loss of income."

Thanks, Robert, and welcome aboard!
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Sprinter Vans: Idle-Up or Shut Down? The Answer May be Both!

PSM Module, Wiring & Installation
or Expediters, Sprinter Vans are undergoing a change that will help save fuel, prolong engine life, promote safety, and help the environment. How can this be, you might ask? "Easy", says Dennis Graham, Service Technician at Stoops Freightliner. "We install a PSM on each Sprinter Van." Well, it may sound easy, but there's actually some serious engineering involved.

To help understand just what a PSM is, here's the scoop: A PSM is a "Parametric Special Module". In other words, it’s an electronic "module" installed on a vehicle that controls certain functions set to specific "parameters". In the case of Sprinter Vans, the PSM parameters control an Auto-Shutdown feature, as well as an Idle-Up feature. Still confused? Don't worry, we'll explain more later.

Some Background
Expediter Services supports a fleet of Sprinter 2500 vans. Each of these sports a Daimler-Mercedes 3.0 liter V6 diesel engine. In order to prolong engine life during long idle times, the vans need to maintain between 1,200 to 1,500 RPM's at idle. "We pushed this issue because we needed to make sure the vans did not low idle and cause premature wear to the engine," said Jason Williams, President Expediter Services. "We approached Stoops about this requirement which started the ball rolling to find a solution."

The Solution
Once Expediter Services put the word out to Stoops about needing a Sprinter Van solution to prolong engine life, Dennis Graham was able to install the PSM modules and program the units with an Idle Up feature available from Daimler-Mercedes in Germany and worked with them to modify the parameters for the Idle Shutdown system to meet Expediter Services requirements. In Europe, these vans already have installed a Parametric Special Module that controls an auto-shutdown feature. The PSM can be retrofitted to older vans -- this involves installing the actual module and running a switch to the dashboard. On newer vans, the PSM can be ordered already installed, we just have to install the necessary switches and wiring and then program the module to our parameters."
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