This is how garbage trucks are actually made

Find out how garbage trucks are born at a factory.
Christopher McFadden

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No matter how much recycling you do, there is always a certain amount of stuff you have to just throw away. While most of us never really give a second thought to what happens to our garbage once we put it on the street, this stuff has to be picked up and taken away by someone and something. 

That's where garbage trucks are an essential piece of kit for many municipalities around the world. Let's watch some being made.  

garbage truck complete
Source: Interesting Engineering

Step 1: Prepare the truck base

The first step, once a suitable truck base has been selected and sourced, is to begin to prepare the chassis for the garbage truck's main rear dumpster. Mounting bars and other parts are welded to the main chassis, as well as, the main hydraulic lifting arm. 

making a garbage truck base
Source: Interesting Engineering

Angle grinders are used to clean up any welds. Other parts are also added like access ladders, etc, that will be used by the garbage truck operatives once the garbage truck is put into service. 

Step 2: Make the main garbage dumpster

With that body ready, sheets of metal are then used and prepared to make the main dumpster for the garbage truck. Tubular steel bars are also cut down to size for incorporation into the dumpster as needed.

This is done using special cutting machines that can cut through steel with ease. 

garbage truck steel bars
Source: Interesting Engineering

Industrial-sized lathes are also employed to cut and shape metal rods. To ensure consistency, the lathes are computer-controlled to make sure that the parts turned are the same every time. 

For other parts of the garbage truck, a special computer-controlled plasma torch is used to cut out shapes from large sheets of steel. This is completely automated, by a human worker is often present to ensure the process is running as it should. 

garbage truck welding
Source: Interesting Engineering

Prepared pieces of sheet steel are transferred to another machine for bending and shaping if needed. This is done via a large pressing machine using skilled human workers. 

The parts are given a quick visual check to ensure they meet the very exacting standards of the manufacturer before moving on to the next step. 

garbage truck press
Source: Interesting Engineering

Step 3: More welding

With the parts ready, the next step is to begin to weld the parts together to make the dumpster. This is done by hand using specialist industrial-scale welding equipment. 

garbage truck dumpster frame
Source: Interesting Engineering

The frame for the dumpster is eventually formed and is checked to ensure it passes muster. With the frame ready, more metal sheeting is then welded into place to form the main body of the dumpster for the truck. 

As before, this is done by skilled welders. 

The parts for the garbage truck's tailgate are also assembled and welded together as needed. At all times, welds are cleaned up using a variety of tools including an angle grinder. 

garbage truck tailgate
Source: Interesting Engineering

Step 4: Putting it all together

With all the main parts of the garbage truck assembled, the next step is to begin to put all the parts together. For the tailgate, this requires the addition of hydraulic arms to enable the tailgate to compress any garbage in the dumpster when loaded. 

garbage truck tailgate in place
Source: Interesting Engineering

With the assembly of parts like the tailgate complete, the next step is to paint the dumpster. This is usually done using a series of spray guns, but can also include touching up using paintbrushes, where needed. 

As the metal parts will be put through a lot of wear and tear, they need to be very robust and waterproof, where possible. Once the paintwork is complete, the tailgate can then be attached to the main dumpster of the garbage truck, as needed. 

Both the dumpster and tailgate are then lifted and mounted onto the main truck bases for the garbage truck. Further welding is carried out where needed, and hydraulic systems are connected up to the main truck system ready for use. 

With that complete, the dumpster and tailgate are quality checked and tested to ensure they operate as intended. Adjustments and modifications are then made as needed. 

With that done, the final coat of paint, branding, and other decals are then added to the garbage truck to meet the factory's clients' specific requirements. 

With that done, the garbage trucks are then ready to roll out!

If you enjoyed watching this industrial process, you might be interested in watching another? How about, for example, watching how double glazing units are made? 

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