Off the road or OTR tires are different from Over the road tires.
That’s an understatement!!
What about off the road (OTR) tires?
What I am “not” going to do here is go off and explain what tires (specifically OTR tires) are. For readers that are in the commercial tire industry already you’re going to be outta here in three seconds. But if you’re a visitor to this page not in the commercial tire industry and you are here for the first time and you want to learn more about off the road tires, there are many excellent resources on the internet for that. For example:
Tire Review http://www.tirereview.com/selecting-the-correct-otr-tire-benefits-everyone/
Goodyear OTR http://www.goodyearotr.com/cfmx/web/otr/info/pdf/otr_MaintenanceManual.pdf
Yokohama Tire http://www.yokohamatire.com/assets/docs/OTR_databook.pdf
Titan Tire http://www.titanstore.com/pdf/OTR_catalog.pdf
Mining Safety http://www.miningsafety.co.za/dynamiccontent/42/Maintenance-Guide-for-Earthmover-Tyres-Factors-affecting-tyre-wear-life
There are probably more links on this list than you could care to look at, but you get the picture. The point I am making is there is a massive amount of information on the internet that talks about and explains OTR Tires in depth. In future articles on this website you will likely see relevant information about new developments with OTR tires, applications for use and special design features.
What I want to explain to you the reader is that when you call me and we are talking about what you need, that you will understand that I know about OTR tires too. When we start to discuss your tire needs know that I am fully aware of bias, radial, semi-pnuematic, solid, and foam filled tires.
Tires and rims
Rims and tires go together. You have to know off road tires to know the right rim or wheel that mounts that tire size. In my 22 plus years in the off the road wheel and tire industry, I have acquired wheels and tires experience and knowledge covering a wide range of off-highway tires used in applications such as:
- Agricultural tires
- ATV, RTV, UTV tires
- Grader tires
- Heavy equipment tires
- Earthmover tires
- Backhoe tires
- Industrial tires
- Lawn, garden, and turf tires
- Loader tires
- Material handling tires
- Military type tires
- Lawn mower tires
- Off-road flotation tires
- Front end loader tires
- Off-the-road earthmoving, construction and mining tires
- Skidsteer tires
- Skid steer solid tires
- Rough terrain telehandler tires
- Manlift and (AWP) Aerial Work Platform tires
- Special tires like non-marking tires
- Telehandler tires
- Truck tires
- Foam filled tires
- Solid rubber tires
- Wheel loader tires
- and more.
I think you get the idea. When you work in the OTR wheels industry as long as I have, you get exposed to a great many types of machines, mounted tires and tire sizes. You can’t help but learn a thing or two about rubber tires in the process.
The range of OTR tire construction types, tread styles, ply and star ratings produced by the world wide tires industry is almost infinite. I am not a tire expert by any means in all these categories. But to be an OTR tire and wheel specialist my range of knowledge has to include more in depth knowledge of these types of products than you might expect.
I need to be clear here and tell you the company I work for is not a commercial tire dealer. The company I work for innovates, designs and manufactures specialized tires for specific uses. Being a commercial off the road tire dealer representing major brands like Bridgestone, Michelin, Goodyear, Yokohoma and others is a special status where those dealers have exclusive access to those brands of tires at wholesale prices but also have marketing area limitations. Those limitations are put in place for marketing and business reasons.
What the company I work for does that makes us special is we can supply for a customer custom wheels and tires. Very few companies have the capabilities and in house talent to design and manufacture both and then supply the tires on wheels delivered.
Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM)
That being stated, if you’re an OEM and are interested in purchasing mounted tire and wheel assemblies I can help you with that. The company I work for does have special programs available that may be of interest to you. Call me at the phone number at the top of the page and we can discuss how those programs work for OEM’s.
Commercial tire dealers
If you are a commercial tire dealer and you want to purchase special branded tires “designed and sold” by the company I work for, myself or one of our customer service staff can help you with that too. I like to steer end users that I know are in a particular sales area to partnering commercial tire dealers that stock our tires for those sales opportunities.
If however your purchase volumes exceed a set much larger annual sales volume you may qualify for another special program we have available as well. We offer a Master Dealer program that offers the best possible pricing on these specialized branded tires. Call me at the phone number at the top of the page and we can go over that program as well.
When a typical customer calls
When a typical customer calls the office looking for an OTR tire the typical conversation sounds like this.
A customer will call up and say “I want a (replace with model or brand of) tire for my (replace with brand of machine). I need it in (replace with tire size) size and (?) ply rating”.
What else I need to know is if you are looking for a replacement tire or are you converting or changing from one tire size or style to another.
In summary, what I need to know to make sure I am the right person to help you and to get you the right tire you need is:
- Machine make?
- Model number if any?
- Tire size or tire sizes?
- Ply rating or star rating?
- Tread style?
If you want to change tires to different size or to a different type of tire, that may mean that you need to change your wheel too. Note: You need to understand the tire size tells me what kind and size of rim or wheel you need.
Engineering and designing OTR tires takes into consideration all these factors:
- The tire use or application.
- Tire size
- Rim size and type the tire is designed to fit.
- Load, speed and pressure required.
- Manufacturing methods
- Type of rubber or blends necessary to make the tire to meet performance and life expectancy demands.
- Big point I am making is that your tire size tells me what kind of wheel you have or need to properly fit, support and mount the tire.
Now there are exceptions to this. Why you say? Because tire engineering like any other kind of engineering creates opportunity for innovation. In recent years, new sizes have been created that carry the same tire outside diameter and tire section width as a conventional sized tire, but they are engineered to fit different rim profiles and OTR wheels. Some of these tire designs are completely proprietary and some are more industry standard designs. The goal of these new designs has been to get added or improved tire or machine performance gains. But designing anything almost always involves some trade offs.
Let me use the example of one of the most popular kinds of off the road equipment, the ultimate in utility vehicles, the skid steer loader.
You can buy a skid steer configured with pnuematic tires. But some customers want flat proof skid steer tires. You can get flat proofing benefits in various ways.
You can for example:
- Purchase foam filled skid steer tires.
- Pneumatic shaped solid rubber tires that are pressed on a OTR wheel.
- Purchase solid industrial tires with molded on rubber tires where the rubber is actually adhered to a steel band and cured.
- Steel wheels with replaceable tread sections designed to be installed in the field when ever one gets destroyed, falls off or wears out.
- Pnuematic tires that have been treated with flat-proofing polyurethane tire liners.
- Pnuematic tires that have been filled with various kinds of puncture sealers.
- Crocodile Airless Tyres fitted to a Caterpillar Skid Steer Loader
The same scenario to be equally applied to machines like telehandlers, large forklifts, material handlers, and wheel loaders of all kinds and various kinds of utility vehicles used in a variety of applications and vertical market segments.
Working in the commercial tire industry you get exposed to an extensive range of machine types, tire sizes, types, designs and possible applications. It can keep your life interesting and it can give you lots of grief when a particular tire is not doing the job in a specific customers application. Sometimes you need to back up and look at all the possible options and solutions that can be applied to solve a particular customers performance issues or problems. Not everyone in the industry knows everything there is to know about all these options. When in doubt, consult with the industry old timers but also consider your tire suppliers. New products are being developed all the time. It is constant and never ending improvement that wins the day.
If you are looking for help with OTR tires and wheels, I am mostly likely the off the road specialist that can help you. If you would like to have a talk about how I might be able to help you, give me a call at the phone number below or at the top of this page.
Take a look around my website as I am always adding new information that may be useful for you.