Retreader switches to composite staples, reducing potential tire failures

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Black’s Tire Carolina retread plant in the USA has switched to using the Black Magic staple in its warehouse. Metal staples were causing the business several issues. The main problem was that the metal staples were puncturing the tire envelopes, costing the company a lot, as each envelope can be worth over US$110. The second problem was the time and labor required to remove the metal staples from the tire after the curing process, as well as the time and labor to clean up and remove the metal staples from the floor and work area at the end of each day.

The Black Magic staple manufactured by Utility Composites has eliminated these issues for Black’s Tire. According to Ashley Parnell, plant manager, they currently spend around 15-30 seconds per tire removing the metal staples after the curing cycle. This is crucial as metal staples left in the splice can puncture the tire envelope causing irreparable damage, ultimately leading to premature tire failures.

“The Black Magic composite staple melts into the tire tread during the cure cycle, eliminating the step of removing the staples, resulting in a more professional and finished product,” explained Parnell.

At the end of the working day, the floor around the finishing stations is littered with metal staple fragments, resulting in a cluttered and unsafe work area. If a tire envelope falls to the floor, it will most likely be damaged by the sharp metal staple fragments. Employees have to sweep up and discard all these metal staple fragments at the end of the day. Eliminating this daily clean-up activity not only saves the company in labor costs, it also makes for a cleaner and safer work area throughout the day.

Furthermore, metal staples are sometimes unnoticed and left in the tires. As the tire is in use, the crown of the metal staple wears down on the pavement. The remaining staple legs can work their way deeper into the tire, through the belt – again causing a premature failure.

The initial plan was to continue using the metal staples on the heavy tread tires; however they decided against, as William Blake, warehouse manager, explained: “During the process of working with the Black Magic staples, we found that the polymer staples do just as good, or a better job than the metal staples on any tread that we recap.”

The plant has been able to remove 100% of the metal staples from the retread process and enjoy the benefits of the Black Magic product on all tires that they retread. Black’s Tire has completely moved away from metal staples and is using Black Magic staples exclusively. The company is benefitting from lower labor costs in its processes, as well as lower envelope replacement costs. In addition, it can process more tires daily – all while providing a higher quality tire to its customers.

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Rachel's career in journalism began around five years ago when she started working for UKi Media & Events, having recently graduated from Coventry University where she studied the subject. Her favourite aspect of the job is interviewing industry experts, including researchers, scientists, engineers and technicians, and learning more about the ground-breaking technologies and innovations that are shaping the future of the automotive and tire industries.

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