BMF is the highly successful forest trailer brand of Estonian company OÜ Lisako, which annually produces approximately 1 000 trailers with cranes for forestry use. What is unique about these BMF trailers is that the supporting legs form part of the trailer, making it stronger and safer. The company aims to increase the share of larger and more high-end trailers every year. And so far, they are well on their way to doing just that – with some help from Black Bruin.
BMF offers a wide range of forest trailers and cranes, and the Black Bruin motors are used mainly for their high-end trailers. About one third of the Black Bruin motors BMF uses are B240, and the rest are B250 motors. So far approximately 5% of all BMF trailers have a Black Bruin motor as a power source. The main customers are, as BMF calls them, typical “hobby farmers”, who work in their fields in the summer, own some forest, and use the same tractor in both field and forest. Their business is seasonal and they favour the smaller trailers.
The Black Bruin motors are already familiar among BMF customers and there is a genuine need for the solution, but not all average customers want to pay the price. “It is more for the professional users, with bigger forests and volumes, who work in the forest every day, all year round. The bigger trailers have recently been gaining popularity and selling better,” Commercial Director Margus Kerm explains the situation.
Basically, there are two types of BMF customers wanting the Black Bruin solutions. Firstly, those who need hydraulic motors in very slippery conditions – muddy and wet terrain. “In our region, where it’s pretty wet and muddy in the forest, they need the axle drive,” Commercial Director Margus Kerm confirms. “For example, in the Baltics and Poland.”
In regions with high hills, it is even more important to have the best possible traction and trailers with hydraulic motors to help them climb up the hills. The main market for BMF trailers is in Central Europe, in Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria, Slovenia, all those areas in which the forests tend to be in mountainous areas.
The alternative to having a hydraulic wheel drive system with a Black Bruin motor is the so-called Robson roll drive system, which is quite simple and potentially has a lower price tag. Experience shows, however, that especially in difficult conditions and definitely in the long run, the Black Bruin solution is much better. It helps the farmer and logger so efficiently in muddy conditions, which makes the slightly higher price well worth it. Margus makes it very clear:
For our customers, the hydraulic wheel drive is something they really want if they can only afford it. It helps them in muddy and hilly terrain.Commercial Director Margus Kerm
BMF offers Black Bruin’s control system as an option for their trailers. It is a major benefit. Many trailer manufacturers have their own solutions to control hydraulic wheel drives, as even BMF did earlier, but they have switched to using the Black Bruin CTR system as BMF believes that their customers gain so much more from using it. “The Black Bruin solution has many features which our system did not have – safety systems, power adjustments, speed range controls, hill descent control (HDC) function, etc. Black Bruin knows every detail of their hydraulic motors and that is why they offer the best CTR solution on the market,” Margus Kerm is enthusiastic. “We also get comprehensive product support from Black Bruin, which is great for us. It is a really good partnership.”
The Hill Descent Control function of the CTR system is a brand-new feature for BMF. The company did some field tests near their factory in August and these were very successful. The first BMF customer to go for CTR with HDC function took delivery of the trailer at the beginning of this year and is happy with the solution.
One reason for choosing the Black Bruin control system was that Black Bruin offers the highest level of product support. The motors are quite expensive, so everything should work perfectly all possible issues must be addressed properly. There are seldom complaints regarding the Black Bruin products, but they have always been solved – and pretty fast, too. Margus explains: “It is a quite sophisticated system, so there are always questions – not necessarily real problems with the machine as such.”
Despite the pandemic, BMF has done good business and Margus Kerm attributes this to having good products that are value for money. He says that the company has grown every year. “2020 was an exception, but the business stayed on the same level as previous year, which is a good result in the circumstances. And now we are determined to get back on our growth path.”
BMF (OÜ Lisako) has wide product range that covers the needs of very different clients. With a choice among different trailers and cranes, every client can compile a personal set, that matches their preferences.
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