Rock Products

APR 2019

Rock Products is the aggregates industry's leading source for market analysis and technology solutions, delivering critical content focusing on aggregates-processing equipment; operational efficiencies; management best practices; comprehensive market

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32 • ROCK products • April 2019 radial has a stiffer sidewall than a tra- ditional steel-carcass radial, which provides some benefits, particularly on large loaders. Less sidewall flexibility means less wind-up when digging into a pile, potentially improving breakout force. It also provides additional stability for the machine. With less rocking and sway- ing, a large loader may experience less material spillage, particularly on high- lift models with large-capacity buckets that put a great deal of stress on the tires when fully loaded and extended. The downside to a nylon, multi-bead construction is that it's a heavier tire – and although it provides some additional penetration resistance in the sidewall area, it also comes with a lower TKPH rating. However, some manufacturers are currently working to design and test nylon radials in a single-bead construction, which will improve TKPH ratings. Radial Or Bias: Is The Latest Always The Greatest? The short answer is no. Over the last several decades, tires have seen a predominant shift to radial due to the increase in size, power, weight and speed of equipment. While radial technology outperforms bias in many instances (justifying the increased cost), bias tires, when used in the proper application, can provide sig- nificant cost savings and performance benefits over radial – proving the latest isn't always the greatest. On the spectrum of sidewall stiffness, bias is the stiffest of any tire construc- tion, which can further enhance the stability and breakout force benefits. Bias tires are also generally easier to repair than radials and, because of the sheer amount of layers, offer the most penetration resistance in the sidewall. For a loader working in a small foot- printed area with limited tramming, bias may be the best option for achiev- ing a low cost per hour and excellent performance. Alternative Sizes: Larger Rims, Lower Aspect Ratios In addition to innovating treads, compounds and constructions, some manufacturers are even exploring entirely different sizing combinations between tire and rim. For instance, Low Sidewall Technology (LSW) is a concept inspired by the automotive market. This technology's larger rim diameter and shorter sidewall allows for less sidewall flex, which eases stability concerns and improves breakout force. LSW has already proven successful in the high-horsepower agricultural Deeper L-5 treads and a bias design may prove beneficial over a radial on loaders that don't require a great deal of tramming. market. Since 2011, the concept has also seen success in the mining indus- try with the 58/80R63 on a Cat 994K. LSW is currently being tested in smaller construction equipment applications. Don't Forget The Wheel With so many choices in the selection of tire technologies, it's easy to forget about a critical component of the assembly – the wheel. One of the latest advancements in wheels is quick-change technology, also known as Accelerated Change Technology (ACT) or Quick- Change Rims (QCR). These quick-change technologies allow the inner tire of a rigid haul truck to be removed without having to remove the outer wheel. Typically, these systems consist of a two-piece lock ring that can release the tire assembly from the wheel while the outer wheel stays mounted to the truck, thereby eliminating the need to torque and re-torque. On a complete tire change-out or whole- truck rotation, using a quick-change technology can reduce associated down- time by up to 50 percent. While the cost of these types of wheels is more than standard wheels, the return on invest- ment in the form of uptime can pay for itself in a relatively short period of time, dependent on production and mainte- nance schedules. Tracking Effectiveness With an end goal of reducing the cost per hour of a fleet's tires, there are many considerations to be made. Strik- ing the perfect balance between tread style, tread compound, tire size and wheel type requires looking at both site conditions and intended use of each individual machine. Consult with a tire expert to ensure you're getting the most out of the technology you invest in. As global OTR product manager at Titan International, Johni Francis oversees the research and development, design, and introduction of the company's off-the- road tires for construction and mining. He has spent a great deal of his career consulting with job sites throughout the world in the development of tire manage- ment and tire procurement. OTR Tires

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