Can you imagine a single-vehicle on the road that runs without wheels? Certainly not (unless you conjured up some sci-fi fantasy). But yes, wheels, also called tyres, are the most significant parts of the vehicles, and you don’t realize their importance until you get stranded on the road with no spare wheel.
Tyres are usually made from rubber. However, modern manufacturers make use of the materials like synthetic rubber, natural rubber, fabric, wires and some other chemical substances to make them. Very sturdy and resilient, tyres are an important invention to mankind that made a significant change in transportation.
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Started with bicycles, tyres are used in all kinds of vehicles like buses, trucks, cars, bikes, any heavy equipment and even in aircraft. And there are many interesting facts about tyres which are easy to read, important to remember, and knowledgeable to your brain. Read the following list and get ready to acquire information that you may have never read before!
The first manufactured tyres are white in color
Do you know that the first manufactured tyres are white in color? It is true, and it continued to exist for 25 years. This is because of the result of the by-product produced when rubber is mixed with zinc oxide that is added to provide strength to the tyres. Later, experiments began experimenting with carbon black and its compounds, thus changing the colour to black.
Black-coloured tyres are introduced in the early 20th century
To increase the strength and durability of the tyres, carbon black is mixed in the preparation of the tyres. This resulted in the invention of black tyres and their production began from the early 1900s.
The first whitewall tyre was made in 1914
Whitewall means the tyre containing a white stripe around the outside of the tyre. This color is obtained when the zinc oxide is mixed with carbon black. The tyres having white walls are introduced in 1914.
Run-flat tyres go for at least 100 miles
Run-flat tyres are manufactured to resist the adverse effects caused by the punctured tyres. They reduce the effects of deflation and continue to run for some distance at a certain speed. For instance, if you maintain 50 mph, you can drive up to 100 miles without any trouble. However, you can decrease the speed if you need to travel a longer distance.
Luxury cars producer BMW uses mostly the run-flat tyres while manufacturing their high-end cars.
Used tyres produce a lot of waste
Like all other things, used or discarded tyres produce a lot of waste. To curb this problem, most of the tyres are melted down, mixed with asphalt and used in construction. Also, old tyres are recycled to produce new tyres. Many artists think of creative ways to use tyres innovatively at their homes.
For instance, tyres make an attractive stand-out when decorated in your garden or parks, etc. You can make them as pet beds, planters, swings, playground equipment, etc. For fitness freaks, heavy-duty tyres are one of the best methods to strengthen their muscles and overall body.
A new tyre is being manufactured, called ‘tweel’
There is no limit to innovation and the same is applied to tyres. A company called Michelin is coming up with the ways to produce airless wheel and tyre that come attached. They want to introduce the concept of no-flat tyres and replaceable tread.
Highest tyre manufacturing company is Lego
Do you know that Lego, a toy production company, is the highest tyre manufacturer of tyres? If you are wondering how a toy company can be the highest producer, it’s because they produce 306 million mini tyres each year. It is higher than any other tyre manufacturer in the world.
Modern tyres contain 200 manufacturing materials
As mentioned earlier, modern tyres consist of many materials in addition to rubber such as Kevlar, nylon, steel. These are added to increase the resilience of tyres. Silica and saline are also used in tyre making to provide maximum grip while travelling on roads. This not only improves the performance but also keeps you safe on slippery roads. Also, cobalt, titanium kind of metals are used along with citrus oil and other environment-friendly materials.
The world’s largest tyre is 80-feet tall
The largest tyre was manufactured in the year 1964 and used for the first time in New York’s World Fair. The 80 feet tall and 12-ton weighed tyre was later moved to Allen Park in 1966. So, you can see the largest tyre in the world at Michigan state of the US.
New cars don’t come with a spare tyre
Though not related entirely to tyres, this point is good to remember. Newly manufactured cars don’t come with a spare tyre so as to shed the overall weight of the vehicle. Instead, you will get it separately in a patch kit along with a can of compressed air.
Aren’t these 10 points interesting and fun to know? I bet they are. On the other hand, it’s also important to know some technical aspects that come in handy while you are purchasing new tyres. This also helps you to understand the technical jargon that the seller uses when you want to buy a new tyre.
Important points to remember about tyres
Tyre’s air pressure must not be too low or high
An under-deflated tyre is equally dangerous as that of an over-inflated tyre. In both cases, the vehicle’s weight is not supported well. This can reduce the tyre’s performance and quality and can threaten your safety on the road.
Tyre’s strength is determined by the number of body piles
Body piles are the number of layers present inside the exterior rubber body of the tyre. More the number of body piles, the stronger will be the tyre. For instance, cars have two body piles which give enough resilience. On the contrary, heavy-duty tyres need up to thirty body piles!
Tyre’s contact with the road must be wide and large
You should see that the tyre’s contact with the ground has sufficient grip. Generally called as a contact patch, it gives you the maximum safety while you are on road. This is the reason sports cars and bikes have wide tyres to get the best grip from the ground.
Grooves/sipes on tyres give the best grip on snowy and watery roads
Have you observed the grooves or thorn-like substances that are projected from the tyre? These are known as sipes that help to provide maximum friction. It is particularly helpful when travelling on snowy or slippery roads. If you are a person who travels frequently, then you must consider the tyres that have zigzag patterned sipes.
After reading this article which sheds light on to the various facts about the tyres, you will definitely recall these points whenever you see tyres of different vehicles. Observe how each vehicle has a different type of tyre and think why that specific tyre is chosen for that vehicle. Do some research on your own and who knows, you may find some more interesting things about tyres. Do not (actually never) hesitate to share the points in the comment section below.
I’m Ariana Mortenson, a professional writer and blogger by profession. I write on various niches in a way that it’s understandable and appealing to the people. I always strive to provide users with useful and informative articles in a readable format.