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Bruce High Performance Transporters (BHP): The Go-to Supplier of Custom Trailers
Bruce High Performance Transporters (BHP) is the go-to supplier of custom trailers for professional racing teams. Bruce Hanusosky and his wife, Judy, founded the company in 1981. BHP quickly gained a reputation in the business for taking transporters to the next level. Instead of bare, standard trailers, Bruce designed a transportation system that offers more comfort and increased functionality. Today his performance trailers are equipped with everything from overhead vehicle storage to conference rooms, custom upholstery, awnings, graphics and more.
BHP contains several divisions, formerly known as the High Tech Companies. Bruce has been working steadily to diversify his business after the economic slump left his sales low. “The racing business went almost flat around 2008,” says Bruce. “Even NASCAR lost half of their funds in cutbacks. Our trailers last for years and years and years, but most of the pro teams replace them every three or four years.”
For a few years, none of the major teams could afford to replace trailers, and Bruce and his team got by almost entirely on maintenance and service. The market is now turning around, and BHP has introduced several new in-house services that make customization more efficient and affordable.
The company produces trailers for a number of applications. While the racing industry remains the staple of Bruce’s business, BHP’s trailers have been used for everything from disaster support to interactive advertising. A popular BHP product has been the display trailer, suited for on-site advertising that brings potential clients into a mobile show room. The trailers can travel to factories, offices and even fairs and expos.
“We did one for Parker Hannifin,” says Bruce. “It was full of large-scale valves. There was a slide-out component and you could walk through and touch the displays and operate the valves. We’re seeing more of that kind of thing coming through.”
BPH has found an increase in federal and municipal clients, calling for everything from mobile medical training centers to search and rescue command centers. “We get some disaster trailer projects through private companies that deal with government agencies,” says Bruce. “There are a few different disaster services we’ve built trailers for, but most of them are for food. We convert a trailer into a huge kitchen that several people can work in at a time.” These trailers go on site to places where people have been displaced by disasters like hurricanes, tornadoes or floods, and they provide hot food for the hungry.
A major motivator for diversifying services has been to expand the company’s ability to perform work in-house. The racing business requires vast customization ranging from size and function to upholstery and vinyl decals. Bruce has expanded his facility’s capacity, adding several shops to take over labor and fabrication that was formerly outsourced. “Our evolution was definitely intentional,” he says. “We worked so hard to build up our motor sports division. We should have thought a lot more about diversifying a long time ago.”
BPH operates out of an 85,000-square foot facility, which is divided into several shops. The most recent addition is a large format vinyl graphics operation. Prior to building his own shop, Bruce was subcontracting dozens of enormous graphics at a time, from large logos to full-trailer wraps. The vinyl graphics were printed out of state, shipped to the BHP shop and then installed. The company has also upgraded its painting facility and, Bruce says, “The changes are impressive.”
The business has also opened shops to build custom interiors from cabinets to couches. “We have an 8,000-square foot interiors shop with the best equipment available,” says Bruce. “We do cabinetry, millwork and furniture and we have highly skilled cabinet makers, finish carpenters and interiors professionals.”
For plush seating and more, the business has a 4,000-square foot upholstery shop equipped with sewing machines and embossing equipment. Skilled upholsterers create custom furniture for racing celebrities like Rusty Wallace, often featuring numbers, colors and logos.
In-house production of more components has streamlined the business “Now we’re hardly outsourcing anything,” says Bruce. “Just hard parts like air compressors and generators or appliances and TVs.”
Aside from those few components, BPH manufactures everything down to the door latches in-house. “It’s more efficient,” explains Bruce. “I can get it when I need it, and I don’t have down time waiting for materials. I can customize every piece, and race teams are very particular about these interiors.” The results have been outstanding and his customers, he says, “are just floored.”
The company is growing as the economy is making a turnaround, and Bruce has been able to provide new designs to his clients on every level of production. His new streamlined trailers have picked up lots of attention with a sleek design, higher efficiency and increased durability. “We put a lot of energy into great design,” says Bruce. “People see these new semi bodies and they see a nice, clean, well-engineered trailer.” No other company puts the time, energy and attention to detail into every trailer compared to the team at Bruce High Performance Transporters, and that’s a fact.