A Quick Guide to Retrofitting a Truck Wet Kit
Retrofitting a wet kit to a truck enables hydraulic equipment capabilities like tippers or walking floors. The conversion is relatively easy for a competent mechanic, but only when the kit is correctly specified for the vehicle.
Pre-Assembled vs Custom Wet Kits
Pre-assembled wet kits provide convenient all-in-one hydraulic solutions. Kits contain a high-pressure piston pump, aluminium fluid reservoir, directional control valves, PTO pump interface, cab controls, hoses, fittings, and mounting hardware sized for the target vehicle.
Purpose-built for specific gearbox models on truck ranges like Volvo or MAN, self-contained pre-assembled kits properly integrate to leverage engine torque and transmission specs for smooth hydraulic functionality. Complete electrical and pneumatic interfaces connect controls seamlessly.
Conversely, custom wet kit fabrication allows maximum vehicle flexibility by tailoring components to unconventional chassis parameters or unique equipment needs. This demands thoughtful specification of parts like cylinder bore sizes, pump displacement rates, and valve configurations to create integrated systems. Expect extensive lead times and higher costs associated with custom design engineering and fabrication.
For most applications, reputable pre-assembled wet kits provide an optimal balance of customization, performance, and convenience.
Key Wet Kit Components
Typical wet kits share standard core components:
- Hydraulic Reservoir Tank - This tank is constructed of stamped aluminium or steel and provides fluid storage capacity from 50 to 200 litres. Important wet kit specs include tank dimensions, mounting stud locations, fill/drain bung sizes, breather specifications, and internal baffling details.
- Hydraulic Pump - Creates high-pressure flow up to 5000 PSI through gear, piston, or swash plate designs. Critical specs include maximum pressure rating, flow rate in gallons or litres per minute, temperature tolerance, rotational speed range, and supported hydraulic fluid types. Electrical, PTO, and engine drive options cover most integration needs.
- Directional Control Valves - Manage fluid flow for smooth measured motion control of cylinders and accessories. Relevant attributes include actuation method (electronic, pneumatic, mechanical), number of flow paths, rated flow and pressure capacities, size/style of inlet/outlet ports, and supported mounting configurations.
- Hoses, Fittings, Filters, and Accessories – Route, regulate, and condition oil flow between components. Hose diameters, fitting types, and filter micron ratings must sync across parts.
Carefully sized wet kit parts enable reliable truck tipping, ejection, and versatile equipment manipulation powered by an integrated hydraulic drive system.
Properly Sizing & Selecting Wet Kit Components
Adequately rated pumps, valves, reservoirs, and other wet kit components prevent premature failures yet avoid overspending on oversized parts.
When sizing components, consider typical equipment duty cycles and intensities. For example, pump and hose requirements increase for constantly actuated versus intermittently used wet kit functions.
Match part flow capacities and pressure limits to equipment specifications. A truck tipper needs a different pump, cylinder, and valve lineup than a walking floor or crane application.
Adhering to vehicle electrical voltages, gearbox interfaces, chassis space allowances, and hydraulic oil types ensures broad system compatibility. Improperly matched parts risk poor performance or physical integration problems.