Tyre problems...big and small

Submitted: Thursday, Jun 22, 2006 at 16:34
ThreadID: 35182 Views:2086 Replies:3 FollowUps:0
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I regularly find myself on minesites with work, and for the last 2 years during the mining boom, haul truck tyres have been in short supply. In fact, Caterpillar and others don't currently sell new haul trucks with tyres fitted. The companies must source their own. Naturally tyre maintenance is now a very high priority. Individual operations within large mining houses (eg BHP) are allocated tyres according to which sites look after them best. If they have short tyre life, they are at the bottom of the list.

To encourage staff to look after tyres better, some sites offer tyre bonuses. I know of one operation that has locked haul truck transmissions out of top gear! Only the first 5 gears available! Pretty extraordinary stuff, when there's a race for maximum production!

I also came across a firm of contract fitters, who had a problem with a well known 4x4 tyre (which doesn't have a good reputation in Central Qld, from what people tell me) blowing out, and causing some $30,000 damage to a Patrol ute with tradesman body. The tyre company looked after them very well, and have supplied free tyres far exceeding that value for their fleet to date. It's good to see suppliers look after their customers properly. I'd hope they'd do the same for smaller customers, too.

I was also a bit surprised when the fitter I was with told me that his work Patrol had done 56,000kms and was due for its second replacement suspension. It was looked after pretty well, but the trade body adds a lot of weight, and then the gear, parts and tools that go into the back add a lot more weight. It certainly wasn't abused.

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Reply By: revhead307 - Thursday, Jun 22, 2006 at 16:43

Thursday, Jun 22, 2006 at 16:43
Is interesting stuff Brid,

I'd heard they were digging up burried tyres to see if they were still serviceable and getting expensive 2nd hand tyres from Canada.

You would think that an industry as BIG as mining, would have the resources to get around such a problem. Like build their own tyre manufacturing plant lol.

AnswerID: 179912

Reply By: fisho64 - Thursday, Jun 22, 2006 at 17:27

Thursday, Jun 22, 2006 at 17:27
generally locking out top gear is to prevent speeding when there is only a short or windy haul circuit. Havent heard of it for tyre wear?
AnswerID: 179917

Reply By: Member - andrew B (Kununurra) - Thursday, Jun 22, 2006 at 23:08

Thursday, Jun 22, 2006 at 23:08
The tyre shortage will be around for a while, from the second hand info I have there is only a few moulds in the world for each tyre size in the big gear. They are apparently a huge cost, and no manufacturer is game to get new ones commisioned, or it may be a fair ammount of manufacturing andcommisioning time on a new mould. Either way they have almost doubled their price over the last few years.......possibly owned by oil companies...... I work for Rio, and they allocate their tyres on both an improvement in wear measure, but mainly their profit per tyre ratio.

Rio are also getting a cheap Russian tyre for rear use only to help.

Costs of over $50,000.00 per tyre makes me feel better about the 693 I trashed last week

Cheers Andrew
AnswerID: 179986

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