The Week's Features
Construction starts on ceremonial casket
Bobcat, rear axles get stuck in soft North Carolina mud
Vinyl film transforms unit into a unique piece of branding
New line highlights innovative work boot styles
Lake Co., Ill. commissioners inviting all companies to apply
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American Towman Magazine Presents the Week in TowingFebruary 22 - February 28, 2017

Fighting Back with The Dragonator

0 da319By George Nitti

At the Wisconsin Tow Show on Father's Day weekend, Prairie Land Towing's 2008 Kenworth T800/Century 1075 caught the eye with its bold multicolored dragon enveloping the truck from front to back and top to bottom.

Although it was purchased in 2008 from Zips of New Hampton, Iowa, its graphics were recently redone just in time for the show.

Todd Menzel, who owns the company with his brother Tim and mother, Jeanne, said, "Over the last few years we have been wrapping our trucks differently. We have our own graphics company, Menzel Signs and Graphics, so we do everything in-house."

The colorful dragon on a rotator, aptly called the "Dragonator," is a departure from the company's graphics of the past when the image of a bulldog pervaded their trucks. The change is part of the company's ongoing strategy to promote its growth. Since taking over the company from their father, who started it in 1984 and passed away in 1993, the family has grown the business from two trucks to more than 100, opening up six locations, with its primary headquarters in Sun Prairie, Wis.

"I've been in a growth pattern my whole life," said Menzel, "by procuring government and city contracts and adding good employees, some of whom have been with us since the beginning. You can't build the business by yourself. People build the business by driving it in the right direction.

"You also have to be willing to change," he said. "We have iPads on all of our equipment, have been paperless since 2011, and have become more efficient and quicker."

When asked if the dragon served as a symbol, Menzel responded, "It doesn't necessarily tie-in; but you want to fight back when the industry beats you down. It's a tough business. It's one of the hardest industries to survive because it's very demanding. So maybe the dragon is a metaphor that we will fight back when cornered. Good towing companies will fight back. In the words of Doc (D.J.) Harrington: 'Tough times never last. Tough people do.' "

Regardless of the dragon's larger meanings, one thing remains firmly rooted. It's a memorial, on all of their trucks, that states: "In Loving Memory of Dad."

No doubt Dad was looking down proudly during the Father's Day weekend show.

Brag @ TIW!
Should your truck be featured here? Send a few pics and your contact information to the editor at bdooley@towman.com. You might even be selected to go in print, too, in American Towman magazine!
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Vibrant Colors over Texas

0 8e63aBy George L. Nitti

To ensure that its 2015 Peterbilt T800/Century 5130 stood out, Texas towing company Eagle Towing and Recovery, turned to vinyl film to transform their heavy-duty tow truck into a unique piece of branding.

"For years, Eagle Towing in Georgetown, Texas, was stuck with a bland 2015 Kenworth heavy-duty big-rig tow truck," said Sean O'Brien, of Topic Design branding. "Its owners decided they needed something fresh. They turned to Rodney Blackerby of Diamond Graphix who used Avery Dennison [wrap materials] to make Eagle's prized big rig stand out.

O'Brien said the film clarity of the wrap enhanced optical effects on the unit.

As a result, the new graphics of this unit are eye-catching. Eagle owner Woody Sizemore worked with Blackerby on the mesmerizing design for a couple of months to get it right.

It was Sizemore's desire to blend the unit's original colors of red and green with new vibrant colors that now streak across the unit's sides, giving it a zesty makeover.

The company logo and name pops out over the diamond metallic plate that it sits on while resting atop a large design of the state of Texas.

"We were considering a slogan," Sizemore said, "but I wanted to keep it clean. I think that the truck speaks for itself. I got what I wanted."

Not only did Sizemore get what he wanted, but he gave his son Trey the new unit. He had come on board full-time with the company around the time of the purchase.

"Trey was managing a garage auto body shop and working with us part-time," Sizemore said. "Now he heads our heavy-duty tow trucks. We are a family owned and operated business with several other family members involved in the business."

Trey expressed some of the same sentiment as his father, saying, "I wanted a wrap you could see and I didn't want it to be too busy.

"I believe in branding. All of our trucks eventually are going to match."

Brag @ TIW!
Should your truck be featured here? Send a few pics and your contact information to the editor at bdooley@towman.com. You might even be selected to go in print, too, in American Towman magazine
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