In recent years, Russian companies are increasingly using forklift trucks in production. These compact and nimble machines are indispensable helpers in warehouses and factories, while their reliability and performance largely determine the right choice of tires.
If you “put on” the loader in the wrong tires, then it can suddenly fail in the middle of the working day, which is especially critical if the company has only one or two such machines at its disposal. What are forklift tires choose to minimize the risk of production downtime?
Types of tires
If you go to the company’s website Tractor tire, then you can find out that in total there are three main types of tires for forklift trucks: pneumatic, solid and bandage. Each of them has its own characteristics and is suitable for certain operating conditions.
Pneumatic tires are considered the most affordable and in their design completely repeat the classic car tires. They can be both chamber and tubeless, and their resource is approximately 1,000 – 2,000 working hours, but for this they should be operated in rooms with clean floors, where the risk of puncturing the tire is minimal.
The main disadvantage of pneumatic tires is the loss of their working properties when punctured, and if the latter is not noticed in time, then when transporting bulky cargo, the forklift may even tip over due to a loss of pressure in one of the wheels.
Solid tires (also known as superelastic) have at least a three-layer construction, where the outer layer is the tread, the intermediate layer is used for shock absorption and heat dissipation, and the inner layer with steel cord is used to secure the tire to the rim.
These tires are best suited for use in industrial areas with a lot of debris (such as metal shavings) on the floor. They confidently resist punctures, are not afraid of aggressive environments (acids or alkalis) and do not make much noise during operation. Solid tires are the most durable, and their main disadvantage is their high price.
The bandage splints are designed for use in aggressive environments. They have a thin cushioning layer with a tread that attaches to a steel band that secures the tire directly to the rim. This type of rubber is well suited for work on scrap metal, but it is considered morally and physically obsolete.
Such tires are not cheap, but their advantage is the ability to use on the same wheels, together with pneumatic ones. In other words, the loader available to the company can be made more versatile by changing tires depending on operating conditions.
Radial and bias tires
Also tires are divided into two broad categories: radial and diagonal. Again, they differ from each other in design, with the most preferred for forklift trucks are bias tires, in which the layers of the cord intersect, due to which a higher structural strength is achieved.
Such tires are much cheaper than radial ones and are better suited for use on roads with poor quality surfaces. In addition, they are less afraid of cuts and bumps.
As for radial tires, their main advantage is a larger contact patch, which means they are able to provide better grip on the road surface, which can be relevant, for example, when operating the machine on soft soil. Plus, such tires overheat less during operation, which means they can be recommended for work in regions with hot climates.
In addition to the type of tires themselves, you should also pay attention to their tread, that is, the outer layer that is in contact with the road surface. Thus, a relief without a groove in the center is able to provide high wear resistance, and a pattern with transverse grooves contributes to better grip. There is also a compromise solution with a block pattern.
Using snow chains
The peculiarities of the Russian climate also affect the operation of forklift trucks. For example, it is often necessary to “put on” snow chains on the wheels of cars, designed to minimize the risk of skidding and slipping. Plus, this solution allows you to increase the cross-country ability of loaders in swampy or snowy areas.
At the same time, do not forget that sliding chains can only be used as needed, after which they should be dismantled. If this is not done and the operation of the loader continues on hard ground or asphalt, then the process of work will be accompanied by strong vibration and noise, and the tires will become unusable as soon as possible.