Understanding OTR Terminology

Off-the-road (OTR) tires are tough, but for those who don’t know a lot about OTR tires, understanding the terminology used to describe them is just as tough.

Understanding OTR TerminologyWhile there are many different types of OTR tires, and a wide variety of tread patterns depending on the exact application the tires will be used for, there is some basic OTR tire terminology that helps describe the basic makeup of OTR tires.

Typically earthmoving and other OTR tires are composite products that are manufactured from steel, rubber compounds, and other synthetic or textile reinforcements. The terminology below refers to a tubeless, radial ply tire with a steel carcass.

Basic Terminology for OTR Tires

Imagine a tubeless tire cut away into sections. On the outside is the tread, and on the inside, the chafer. In between there are a number of layers each of which has its own function.

  • Tread is the outside layer of OTR tires that primarily provides traction, but also protects the carcass of the tire below. This is the part of the tire that comes into direct contact with the road or gravel surface OTR vehicles or equipment travel on. Additonally:
    • Tread groove is the space between rows of tread.
    • Tread depth is the measurement from the surface of the tread to the bottom of tread grooves.
    • Tread design refers to the pattern formed by the tread grooves and other tread elements.
    • Tread pattern is the term used to describe the overall structure of the tire tread.
    • Tread lugs and tread voids form part of the tread pattern. The lugs come into contact with the road or other terrain, while the voids are the spaces between the lugs.
  • Carcass is another word for the tire casing and refers to the main body of OTR tires that consists of body plies and wire beads. It doesn’t include the tread of the tire or its sidewall.
  • Belt package is comprised of a number of low-angle, steel cord layers that provide the tire with strength. This layer also stabilizes OTR tires and prevents any form of penetration into the carcass of the tire.
  • Radial ply is that part of the tire that transmits load, steering and braking forces between the road and the wheel. It also withstands burst loads of OTR tires when they are subjected to operating pressure. The ply may comprise one or two layers that are impact and heat resistant.
    • Ply rating or load range are the terms used to describe the carrying capacity of tires in relation to the vehicle.
  • Inner liner is a compounded rubber layer specifically found in tubeless tires. It prevents loss of air from the tire and in this way maintains air pressure in the tire.
  • Sidewall is found at the sides of OTR tires. This layer covers everything but the tread and belt package, protecting the ply and helping to withstand weathering and flexing.
    • Sidewall strength refers to the resistance of OTR tires to tears and punctures in the sides of the tires. Tires with greater sidewall strength will be more resistant to flex, even when the tire has been aired down to a relatively low pressure.
  • Bead bundle refers to a steel rim of sorts that sits outside the sidewall, and seats the tire. It also seals the tire on the rim and effectively maintains its position.
  • Apex is found over the bead bundle in the form of rubber filler in the bead and lower part of the sidewall. Its function is to provide progressive transition from the bead bundle zone – which is stiff – to the flexible rubber tire wall.
  • Chafer takes the form of a hard rubber layer that is able to resist erosion of the bead area by the rim flange.

If you would like to know more about OTR tires, or want to purchase the right type for your vehicles and OTR equipment, contact OTR Tires Worldwide.

Tough OTR Tires for Mining and Construction Work

OTR tires for mining and construction work have to be tough because of the environment in which they are used. And even though they are designed specifically for function, and highly engineered, they need ongoing care and attention to ensure they last and continue to perform at peak.

It’s important to realize that not all OTR are the same. Even OTR tires made for mining trucks and other all-terrain environments are not all the same. Rather, there are OTR tire that are intended OTR Tires Miningfor mine service, for cranes and haulage, for graders and scrapers, and others that are made specifically for front loaders or dump trucks. Tough OTR tires can also be custom-designed for specific site conditions.

What construction work and mining tires generally do have in common is tread patterns that result in really good traction; cut-resistant sidewalls; and ultimately, designs that ensure construction and mining tires will have a reliable long life – provided of course they are properly maintained.

Xtreme OTR Tire Company, Ltd manufactures Coach Master LOAD OTR tires for use in tough construction and mining conditions. Some of the information that follows is generic, some is based on this brand.

Tread Patterns for OTR Tires

Different types of OTR tires have completely different tread patterns because they have been designed specifically for different equipment and operations, including loaders and graders, high speed cranes, and mining trucks. You won’t be able to tell just by looking at the tread whether it is suitable or not; but a knowledgeable dealer will be able to advise.

Tires with different treads are manufactured in different sizes.

Sizes of OTR Tires

The size of OTR tires used for mining and construction work will also depend on the vehicle and its function. So, for instance a 12.00R24 might be suitable for some forklift trucks, as well as loaders and dozers operating in quarries and mines where the environment is really rocky. The number – in this case 12 – refers to the aspect ratio of the tire, which relates to the height of the sidewall. The R that follows shows that the tire has radial construction, and the number 24 is the diameter of the rim in inches.

Some size 17.5R25 are also intended for use on loaders and dozers operating in a rocky environment. These generally have a nice thick tread and cut-resistant sidewalls. Some 18.00R25 and 18.00R33 OTR tires have the same features as these, while others of the same size have a tread that is designed specifically for mining operations and road conditions that are particularly rough.

There are larger 20.5R25 OTR, 23.5R25, 26.5R25, 27.00R49 and 29.5R25 tires that have cut-resistant sidewalls too, and a thick tread for loaders and dozers operating in quarries and mines. Even bigger 21.00R33, 21.00R35, 24.00R35, 26.5R25 and 29.5R25 tires have an axle drive tread that has been designed for rough road conditions, including mining.

For equipment and vehicles that need really big tires, both the Coach Master LOAD OTR 30.00 R51 (CM06) and 33.00R51 (CM06) are perfect. These were developed for axle drive and the tread is ideal for mining and any other road conditions that are rough. They have a really good grip and like other CM tires designed for this purpose, are resistant to punctures.

Remember that not all OTR tires have cut-resistant sidewalls, so it’s important to check this feature.

If you are in the market for OTR tires that are suitable for mining vehicles, front loaders and other mining and construction equipment, contact the Xtreme OTR Tire Company, Ltd today for more information and advice. We will also supply a competitive quotation for a container load of top quality OTR tires.

Mining Tires and Tires for Front Loaders Take a Beating

Rugged work conditions demand rugged equipment that can stand up to the harsh environment workers are faced with. Earth-moving jobs top the list, particularly those that involve lugging rocks and working quarries in construction or mining.

Of course mining and construction companies will choose the earthmoving equipment they need to do the jobs at hand, particularly when it comes to front loaders. But when these begin to age and the tires need changing, that’s when problems often happen.

First of all it’s essential to use the right tires for front-end loaders, graders and other earthmoving equipment. Then it’s vital to maintain the tires to keep them going for as long as possible.

The Concept of OTR Tires

Targeted at the construction and mining industries, and used for the equipment used by these industries (including front loaders), OTR tires are tough, and designed to take a regular beating.

Technically you could describe both industrial and agricultural tires as OTR – because both are off the road tires. But the tire industry is a lot more specific. For instance, even though heavy tires manufactured for trucks are also tough, they are not categorized as OTR tires, even though some are designed specifically for use off-road.OTR Tires

First off, more than half of OTR tires are radial, and not bias. Also they come in different sizes.

  • Small OTR tires range from 10.00R20 to 17.5R25 sizes and do sometimes include 15-inch tires, depending on the manufacturer.
  • Medium OTR tires range from 20.5R25 to 23.5R25 in size and include 18.00R25.
  • Large OTR tires start at 24.00R35 and generally increase to 26.5R25, but include both 29.5R25 and 29.5R29.
  • Giant OTR tires are 24.00R49 and include the 63-inch sizes.

Demand for very big (specifically large and giant) OTR tires has dropped substantially in recent years, primarily because of a slowdown in mining operations worldwide. The construction industry has also slowed down a bit, but is expected to recover quite quickly. Ultimately, reports indicate that the demand for all OTR tires (including industrial and agricultural tires) is set to grow at around 4.4 percent all the way to 2020.

One very important growth factor relates to the aggregate mining sector, which of course relates directly to the construction industry. This involves the use of front loaders in quarries, where they are used to mine sand and stone that is used primarily for concrete work in industry.

Importance of Maintaining Tough OTR Tires

As tough as they are, if the OTR tires used for front loaders and mining tires aren’t properly maintained then they’re not going to perform the way they should.

A good first step is to initiate an on-site maintenance program that will regularly assess mining tires and those used for front loaders. Basically what this does is to introduce a procedure that will make sure tire pressure is maintained, and tire damage and wear is assessed at regular intervals.

When you replace OTR tires it is also very important to make sure that they have been properly manufactured for use to the highest specifications. For instance, front loaders really do need tires that are manufactured for use doing heavy-duty construction tasks. Ultimately those manufactured for general industrial or agriculture use aren’t going to cut it.

Also be sure to buy OTR tires that have liability insurance and some sort of warranty.

For helpful advice and friendly service call the Xtreme OTR Tire Company. Specialist suppliers for OTR tires intended for mining trucks, cranes, graders and front-end loaders, we will do all we can to help simply your choice, and ensure you get what you need to do the job.