Gold Metal Recyclers is one of the largest metal recycling companies in the United States. The Dallas processing yard encompasses about 15 hectares (38 acres) and ships approximately 200 to 300 trailers of scrap metal and concrete a week. Forklifts are primarily used to transport the scrap from trucks to bailers or other types of processing machinery.
Working seven days a week with two shifts a day, Gold Metal runs each of its forklifts approximately 3,000 hours a year on average. Forklifts move large pieces of scrap metal and concrete, often in heat over 38 degree Celsius (100 degree Fahrenheit) in a rough and dusty application with large potholes and rebar sticking out of the ground like landmines. Given the dust and debris in the air, along with heavy use and high hours, the customer’s number one challenge is downtime, often due to maintenance repairs. With competitor forklifts, Gold Metal had to replace four transmissions in the last nine months for about $3,300 each; four steer axles in the last 12 months, for about $2,700 each; and brakes every 15 to 16 months, for about $700 each.