Anything a customer needs

‘Anything a customer needs’ is the catchcry at Shakanda Engineering. Designing and fitting out trucks and work vehicles is an exacting and technically involved process. ‘Process’ is a big part of every Shakanda custom build.

Victorian-based truck-body builder, Shakanda, specialises in custom designing and building just about anything for any truck or working vehicle, but its Chipper Tippers are a much sought-after item, and the company can offer anything a customer needs.

The company claims it produces ‘…the finest quality Chipper Tipper bodies for all parts of the country’, featuring a three-year structural warranty, a fully sandblasted, 2-pack, zinc-primed and 2-pack topcoated finish, and a stack of optional extras.

Another Shakanda catchcry is, “Our Chipper Tippers are made to last!”

The precision and procedure used in planning a Shakanda job is a reflection of the care and attention to detail which goes into the build itself. Image: Shakanda

A careful process

The Australian Arbor Age covered the hardware and build side of the Shakanda Chipper Tipper in the February/March issue, but the more we looked at it, the more we wondered at what must be involved in ensuring a true custom build meets the customer’s expectation.

Shakanda’s Body Building Manager and Head of Engineering, Tim Knight, talked us through it.

“A customer will come to us and say which make or model of truck they have, and what features they’d like the final build to have,” Tim explained. “Once we have that clear we will complete a 2D (two-dimensional) layout drawing.

“It’s a preliminary drawing, which has weight calculations and estimations, and it gives the customer the chance to look at the actual truck and what they’re having fitted to it. The drawing tells them what their payload is going to be and gives an estimation of front-axle and rear-axle weights on the fully loaded vehicle. This ensures they get the capacity they need without exceeding any regulatory limits.

“This is accompanied by a quote based off the 2D drawing, and usually has a list of other optional items that could be added to their build.” “That’s the first stage.”

A two-dimensional layout drawing shows the customer an estimation of what their payload’s going to be, and their front-axle and rear-axle weights on a fully loaded vehicle. Image: Shakanda

Getting serious

Once the customer has had time to check through the drawing and ensure everything is as they imagined and requested, and the quote is accepted, the next step is for Shakanda to schedule the build into its system, then engineering starts modelling up the specs using Solidworks. This is when the 3D (threedimensional) Model is created. From the 3D model all the work instructions and drawings for the build are done so the vehicle body can be manufactured.

Tim continued…

“The 3D modelling is based off the 2D initial drawing, and it’s for fabrication, but we also get the customer involved at this stage.

“Even though they’ve signed off on their two-dimensional drawing, it’s always better to have a look at a threedimensional model. It’s more intuitive for a customer if they can visualise the whole vehicle and its features in 3D. The customer can see and look over their vehicle. If the customer can’t meet in person, we can do this over Teams, Zoom, Google Meet or something like that, and wherever they are – on their phone, tablet, in their office, wherever – they can see the model.

“We share the model live. We go over all aspects of the build and show them everything. At this stage the customer might decide to make changes or may be happy with our design and we will move to the next stage.”

A three-dimensional drawing lets the customer see what they’re getting before the build begins. Image: Shakanda

Full custom

The precision and procedure used in planning a Shakanda job is a reflection of the care and attention to detail which goes into the build itself. Ensuring the customer’s vision is being made reality is at the heart of custom work, and ensuring the safety and durability of the work itself is at the heart of Shakanda’s philosophy.

As Tim pointed out, “You could pick any make and model you could possibly want. We can custom design a chipper bin, or pretty much anything a customer needs, and make sure it has the maximum payload possible without exceeding the truck’s GVM or axle capacities. We give as many estimations and as much information as we can to the customer so they can make informed decisions.”

See the full range of Shakanda’s engineering services at

Image: Shakanda


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