Forklift Use Affects Tire Development

Executives from Camso, a manufacturer of tires for forklift applications, has distinguished certain trends in the use of forklifts during their participation in ProMat 2017 held in Chicago, Illinois last April. According to the company, these trends are influencing how the company is developing its tires.

A forklift tire.
(Courtesy: Camso)

The company discovered that there are five industry trends in the use of forklifts that are influencing the design of the tire. They include:

1. Energy Efficiency. Executives at Camso see a growing trend toward electrically powered forklifts. They noted that an electric forklift lasts about 8 hours under good conditions before the battery needs to be recharged. This, they say, ensures that a facility’s fleet can run through complete shifts without downtime.
2. Non-Marking tires. Executives of the company notice a trend in keeping warehouse floors as clean as possible. As a result, they say, companies that use forklifts are turning to a non-marking tire. As a result, Camso is offering more non-marking tire solutions.
3. Compact Platforms. The company asserts that the industry is demanding forklifts that balance increased lifting capacity with less bulky machines. They say that OE forklift manufacturers are looking for ways to increase productivity on smaller platforms without increasing tire size. This increases the amount of energy being transferred to the tire that have smaller contact surface and volume. Therefore, it is essential for tire manufacturers feature resistance to the resulting heat build up on the tires.
4. Safety. The current use of forklifts is requiring tire manufacturers to be more concerned with safety of the operation of the forklift tire over time. Two issues that they need to focus on now are vibration and noise generated by the tires. Since forklifts have no suspension, there is little to isolate the operator from tire vibration. So tire manufacturers are improving tread design to minimize the issue.

5. Fleet Management. Executives of Camso have found that users of forklifts are asking for more information about how much more the tires are costing for forklift fleets.

Non-marking forklift tire.
(Courtesy: Camso)

To assist forklift tire users in measuring intensity of use of tires to help users select the proper tires for their application, Camso has unveiled the Usage Intensity Calculator. The tool is supposed to ensure that the right tires are selected without over paying for performance.

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