How Tires are Made
There are many different parts that go into the making of a Goodyear tire and they all play an important role in making sure your vehicle performs at its best and keeps you safe.
The Parts of a Tire
The beads are made from high-strength steel coated in rubber, and create an airtight seal between your tire and the rim of the wheel.
Steel belts are placed around the tire to reinforce strength and provide rigidity. These are made of woven sheets of steel wires that are coated in rubber. Sometimes Kevlar cord is also added for extra strength, puncture resistance, and durability.
The plies are the layers of fabric that make up your tire’s skeleton, and are typically made of fibre cord that are woven together and coated with rubber. These allow your tire to be flexible. A layer called the carcass ply is placed directly above the inner liner of the tire and is what gives your tire strength.
This is the area of extra-thick rubber that runs from the bead to the tread and gives your tire its lateral stability. It’s also where you’ll find all the manufacturer information about your tire.
Sipe and Groove
The tread blocks are separated by the deep grooves that allow your tire to disperse water, snow and mud. Sipes are the smaller grooves or cuts made in the tread blocks themselves that give extra grip, which is especially important in a tire made for snow and ice.
Your tire has a small bevelled edge where the tread meets the sidewall. Its design and construction plays an important role in how your tire helps you take corners.
This is the area of your tire where the rubber meets the road. The tread provides both cushioning and grip, and its design and compound determine many of your tire’s most important performance features.
The Process of Making a Tire
Up to 30 ingredients are used in your tire’s rubber blend. The ingredient proportions will depend on what the performance goals of the tire will be. It’s composed of several types of rubber, fillers and other ingredients, mixed in giant blenders known as Banbury mixers. These create a black gummy compound that’ll be sent on for milling.
Once the rubber is cooled, it’s sent to a special mill where the rubber is cut into strips that will form the basic structure of your tire. At the milling stage, other elements of the tire are prepared, some of which are then coated in another type of rubber.
The tire itself is constructed, from the inside out. The textile elements, steel belts, beads, ply, tread, and other components are placed in a tire-building machine that ensures every part is in its precise location. This results in what looks like a relatively finished product, known as a green tire.
The green tire is then vulcanised with hot moulds in a curing press, compressing all of the parts of the tire together and giving the tire its final shape, including its tread pattern and manufacturer’s sidewall markings.