Tires are designed with a very precise flex point. Manufacturers specifically choose this location so that the thickness of the rubber and the cables can flex with the least possible heat and/or cuts. Why changing this design? Unfortunately, this is what most retreaders of earthmover tires (OTR) do.
When we think of retreading, we think about tread replacement and, if required, tire repair, while keeping the features designed and imagined by the original manufacturer of the tire. However, it is easier said than done! Most retreaders of earthmover tires (OTR) are buffing the tire’s shoulders to remove the spaces left by the original tread design. You can see an example of a buffed OTR tire before moulding in the picture above. This practice changes the flex point to bring it closer to the tread where the tire has not been designed to flex. As a result, the risk of cuts appearing on the sidewalls is much higher. You can see an example on the right picture. To prevent this, some retreaders use a softer rubber compound, but in doing so, they lose abrasion resistance and the tire life is affected.
For us, it is simple, we buff the tire while respecting its original shape. To do this, we make sure to have the same difference in diameter between the center of tires and shoulders as major brand tires. As for the shoulders, this means more work than our competitors because the spaces must be filled, but in the end, our tread sits tightly on the original shoulders of the tire!
Daniel Marleau – CEO LanOTR