The Week's Features
Tow Expo Dallas' winning trucks are highlighted
Towman Scott Shover is being called "a guardian angel"
Redi-Letters' lighted signs easily mount on wreckers
Suspending auto repos of clients impacted by Hurricane Harvey
Or, do government controls actually work?
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American Towman Magazine Presents the Week in TowingSeptember 20 - September 26, 2017

Wrecker with Western Aura

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By George L. Nitti

If you look at some tow trucks long enough, you may make all kinds of associations. A&D Towing's 50-ton wrecker reminds me of a stagecoach pulled by a powerful team of horses.

A&D, located in Jersey City and Little Ferry, N.J., has been around since the early '70s, when owner Don Francis started working with his father and then later added his first tow truck sometime around '79 or '80.

"I sold my '76 Cadillac Coupe Deville for $2,800," Francis said, "and bought a tow truck with the money. My father was in the gas station business and I started towing with him, doing motor clubs."

Perhaps it's the classic Peterbilt design that gives this truck, a 2010 Peterbilt with a Vulcan V-100 50-ton integrated, its Western aura.

"Its three-stage boom is not typical," said Francis' son Ryan. "I use it to do recovery work in a tight spot. It's a great truck if you need extra reach."

The graphic design on this unit, like the others in their fleet, stands out for its excellence and uniformity.

"This truck was custom painted and lettered by Carcraft Truck Works in Staten Island," said Ryan.

Several areas of this unit are noteworthy, such as how well the graphic work is integrated, creating interesting contrast from colors to lettering.

The primary colors of the truck itself, red, yellow and robin blue, all hand-painted and then clear-coated. On top of those primary colors sit the large superb logo, consisting of modern lettering and a much different color schematic: a gradation of browns, chrome and blues. They integrate and blend well with the primary colors of the truck.

"Our logo A&D is meant to look like chrome. It was an old-school way of painting chrome," said Ryan.

Of primary consideration for the company is that their simple and clear lettering can be seen while they are driving 65 mph on the road.

"Our big thing," said Ryan, "is that less is more. We don't want anything on the truck that will detract from that objective."

On the boom are the words: "We Tow the Line."

"That was an expression my father used back in the day," said Ryan.

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Going 'Big' in Texas

0 003e2George L. Nitti

In Texas, everyone knows that size counts. Everything's "bigger in Texas," and that includes the size of the graphics one might find on a tow truck.

Drawing on this quintessential Texas idiom is Speedway Towing in Whitney, with its oversized logo on their 1998 Kenworth T300 chassis with a 20-ton Century 4024 body.

For a tow truck, going "big" ensures that it's spotted from afar. In large orange/neon reflective lettering, the name Speedway can't be mistaken or missed as it pops out due to its sheer size.

"We wrapped it real big as I was going for that Texas 'theme,' " said Speedway owner Jerry Moore. "The wrap was done by 517 Designs, one of our local businesses which I like to support. I wanted to make sure that our name stood out."

Under the Speedway lettering, the word "Towing" stands out composed of a diamond-plated gray-themed design with a shadow of reflective neon, giving it pop and contrast.

The racing stripes next to the Texas-sized lettering correspond with the company name. Adding more flavor, the unit's predominantly red, white and blue colors stand out; as does the state flag, where its lone white star shines through as a background to the lettering.

"When we go up to Dallas and Fort Worth," Moore said, "people take pictures of it all of the time. Also, at Lake Whitney, the getaway capital of Texas where we are three miles away, it draws attention. In the summer there is quite of bit of tourism and weekenders that keep us busy."

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