In this episode, Mike Stevens of Snow Plow News talks with Gardi Willis of Kuper North America, the sole North American distributor of Kuper blade products.
Kuper has been in business for almost 60 years, yet made its big splash in North America only six years ago, and big splash it was as Kuper products are now found in 30 states and six Canadian provinces. How can this European company make such a fast inroad into the North American market?
Carbon Steel and Vulcanized Rubber Team Up
Kuper had engineered wear edges that they boast last three times as long as the normal carbide wear edges. That means even the average contractor with a few trucks can save hundreds of dollars a year in maintenance costs by not having to replace their wear edges.
Their primary product is a hybrid of carbide steel and vulcanized rubber. The steel actually free floats in the durable rubber and the combination is designed to allow the plow to cut down to the plowing surface easily while at the same time extend the life of the wear edge. They designed the blade edges to be easy to mount and easy to use.
For Delicate Road Surfaces
They also have a product where the vulcanized rubber is on the outside with ceramic cylinders on the inside. These wear edges are made for areas where there are more obstacles below the surface of the snow or for areas where there are risks of damage to the road.
For instance, embedded, raised road markers get picked up and swept away when a normal hardened steel blade swoops down upon them, yet the vulcanized rubber blade rides over these markers, leaving them intact. The ceramic cylinders make this rubber blade last 8-10 times longer than a more conventional rubber blade.
A Word About Wear Edge Life
Actual wear edge life will vary depending on the plow you use, how the operator uses the plow, the kind of surface the plow is used on, and as Willis points out, the weather conditions (wet is best for long wear edge life).
We will keep our eye on how well Kuper wear edges perform in the field. We definitely know the longer you can keep your wear edge, the less time, hassle, and money you need to keep focused on what you do best, move a lot of snow.
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