FAIRFAX, Minn. – Shomotion LLC of Denver specializes in the transportation, repositioning, customization and lease of equipment and drivers to assist in the execution of mobile marketing campaigns and other promotional events. When Shomotion founder Mike Scherkenbach needed a custom-made hydraulic door for a mobile container unit – in eight days – he called Schweiss Doors.
Shomotion promotional events have run the gamut, from providing stadium event services for top musicians like Paul McCartney, Kenny Chesney and AC/DC to the promotional arms of NASCAR, Tylenol, Home Depot, Burger King, Chevrolet, ESPN/Discover Card Gameday and the U.S. Army. Shomotion is responsible for keeping the show moving anywhere within the continental U.S., Mexico and Canada.
Scherkenbach contacted Schweiss Doors for a custom-made rush job, ordering a 38-foot by 7-foot, 11-inch hydraulic door for a mobile container unit Shomotion was custom building for an overseas aircraft operation. Research led Shomotion to Schweiss Doors.
“When we got the call, we gave them top priority and went right to work on it,” says Mike Schweiss, president at Schweiss Doors. “We like challenges and always strive to give the best service. Our reputation over the years speaks for itself.”
Jason Rush, Shomotion’s Director of Intermodal Logistics, says Schweiss Doors came through as scheduled. Shomotion had a truck at the Schweiss factory eight days after the order was placed.
This custom container was to transport a 12-foot-wide airplane fuselage on a multi-city roadshow to familiarize airline executives with Mitsubishi’s newest regional jet. Due to the standard 102-inch width restrictions of traditional trailers and containers, Shomotion commissioned the construction of a 144-inch-wide by 40-foot-long display container with hydraulic actuated doors to showcase the product. Mitsubishi was adamant the side view be unobstructed, offering a clear view of the entire fuselage, which is more than 36 feet long.
Mitsubishi airline executives traveled from Japan to Shomotion’s headquarters to discuss the unique project. Shomotion and its partner companies and vendors came up with an extraordinary design to showcase a mock aircraft fuselage that would be securely housed inside a mobile container. Shomotion had eight weeks from design to completion to construct a road-ready container. Six weeks was devoted to fabricating a container featuring a hydraulic door that would open wide on one side, allowing for viewing and loading of the fuselage.
Mitsubishi was excited about showing off this new fuselage. It would be the prototype introduction for the world’s next great passenger jet – the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ). MRJ is a twin-engine regional jet aircraft seating 70-90 passengers. The container with the mockup of the fuselage was driven on a 10-week tour to airshows and to show important regional jet clients in the rebuilt jet market throughout North America with a stop in Canada.
“The mockup had never been transported in a container and put on the road all assembled,” says Rush. “We custom-built a 12-foot-wide by 40-foot container with a side-mounted hydraulic door on it. From the back of the trailer, there is a platform set up where you could walk into a receiving area and then inside the fuselage’s first class and coach seating, complete with overhead bins and some kitchen and serving areas as well.”
In addition to building the large hydraulic door, Schweiss Doors also supplied components for the second smaller entry door. Rush says the crew that fabricated the container was able to install the door with easy-to-understand directions from Schweiss.
“It was meant to be a tradeshow display piece, not necessarily a transport, so we had to design a system to securely fasten and tie the fuselage to the container using special strapping and blocks to minimize any shock to it,” Rush says. “The rear receiving area and the fuselage itself were air-conditioned.
“The hydraulic door worked flawlessly. It was perfect for loading the fuselage and exactly what the customer required. It is really a high-quality door. There were a few challenges; we had to make sure we had enough clearance when the door opened and closed to clear the fuselage and that the support pieces were sufficient. The hydraulic pump was mounted on the floor inside the front of the container. The client was really happy with it.”
Scherkenbach says. “Schweiss exceeded Shomotion’s expectations with an expertly crafted door, accompanied by a sophisticated hydraulic power pack and pump. From Dallas to Montreal, the Schweiss product operated flawlessly. Schweiss Doors will certainly be Shomotion’s first choice for custom doors moving forward.”
Schweiss Doors is the premier manufacturer of hydraulic and bifold liftstrap doors. Doors are custom made to any size for any type of new or existing building for architects and builders determined to do amazing things with their buildings, including the doors. Schweiss also offers a cable to liftstrap conversion package. For more information, visitwww.bifold.com.