Our president Clark Smith recognized several years ago that there was a potential for low quality product to work it’s way into the US marketplace on dock boards and dock plates. The “open door” was the material itself, the steel or aluminum used to produce these loading dock products.
Being the good stewards that we are, we recently purchased some offshore aluminum from Chinese supply and used our ANSI testing equipment on it. We ran the same type of test we use on our own product for standards testing. The results were immediate and dramatic.
A Bluff Manufacturing Model A3636 aluminum dock plate rates under the ANSI standard at 3,238 lbs. When loaded to that weight the product is still usable and visually unchanged. The offshore product showed over 1/2″ of deflection at 1,000# and we stopped at 2,500# when the plate would have been pulled from service because of permanent deflection.
Again, you get what you pay for. In some areas cheap products are acceptable but not when your employees and friends well-being is in the balance. You might have to explain to a judge why you saved the forty bucks.