This month’s creation is one of many new trucks we have ordered and built for a local family-owned company in Kansas City that has multiple businesses that include sand, gravel, excavation, demolition, and recycling. For those of you that have come to pick up a truck or just stopped by the dealership to visit, I am sure you have seen several trucks, owned by Kaw Valley, pass by. Kaw Valley has businesses on both sides of our dealership, so during the day it is not uncommon to see a head-turning red Kaw Valley dump truck, end dump, low boy, or even a lube oil truck, drive by every few minutes.
Initially incorporated by founder Ben Kates in May of 1984 as Kaw Valley Sand and Gravel, they added wrecking and demolition to their list of services offered in 1986. In 1990 Joey Kates became the VP of Kaw Valley Demolition and Excavating. The Great Flood of 1993 shut down all operations at Kaw Valley. Despite widespread devastation in the area along the Mississippi and Missouri rivers, major efforts went into a quick recovery, and Kaw Valley resumed operations just two weeks later. In 2016, Kaw Valley founder Ben Kates retired, Joey Kates became CEO, and Tim Kates became President, ushering in the second generation.
With about 100 employees, Kaw Valley has multiple divisions. One of the bigger and more fascinating ones to me is the sand operation. The sand that is in our area is very special, and it has many uses you might not expect in our daily lives. I find it really crazy how important sand actually is. I read that after air and water, sand is our most used natural resource – we use it even more than oil. Sand is used to make cement, toothpaste, insulation, glass, computer chips, cosmetics, paper, paint, plastics, and more!
When it came time for Kaw Valley to update their really cool older 379 heavy haul truck, they wanted a truck to not only get the job done, but also to set them apart from the rest. I was excited to order them the new heavy hauler pictured here, especially when they opted to do a few extras. While we were ordering the new truck, we also contacted my good friend and previous customer Shane Gigstad and ordered them the matching Load King trailer pictured here, too. The trailer, which was ordered in the matching red color, has an assortment of axle options to haul all their machinery.
When the truck showed up, Tyler and the crew in service were responsible for getting this one dialed in. They installed full function straight stacks, a painted Tommy drop visor, painted cab lights, breather lights, cab skirts, painted fender lips, painted breathers, painted fuel tanks and boxes, a painted flush deck plate, bicycle fenders with vinyl center stripes, low boy ramps, and a Brunners headache rack. When we finished the build, they had one of their employees Chuck Stites send up a drone for some cool aerial shots while I took my ground-level pictures.
I wanted to give a big thank you to Kaw Valley not only for letting us order and build them this cool low boy truck, but for their continued business – whether it be parts, service, sales, or even body shop work, at times. Over the years, I have had the pleasure of selling a lot of trucks to nice people from all over the country, but I rarely get to see the trucks after they leave. I am always super excited to go outside, because there’s a really good chance I will get to see one of the Kaw Valley trucks go by.
All the Kaw Valley local day cabs have long hoods, big Cummins power, 18-speed manual transmissions, and Platinum interiors loaded with all the goodies. These trucks are sweet rides, but I am especially excited to see this big heavy hauler stroll by, with a large piece of equipment on the trailer, turning heads all the way!