More than 15 million retreads!: And that number will increase in 2006 if these dealers have anything to say about it
In 2005, domestic retreaders produced 15.2 million truck tire retreads. The top 100 retreaders in the United States accounted for 80% of that total. They are optimistic about the future, and are not sitting still.
Not surprisingly, many are listed on our "Top 100 Retreaders in the U.S." When asked about their plans for 2006, heavyweights like Bauer Built Inc., Parkhouse Tire Inc. and McCarthy Tire Service said they wanted to increased production. So did retreaders such as Bain & Holden Tire Co. and Diehl Tire Co. Inc. McGee Tire Stores Inc. quantified its goal: it wants to increase capacity by 10%.
The totals in our list are representative of 2005; for example, Chicago Bandag is listed with seven plants, but closed one since the beginning of the year.
Our list does not take into account niche markets such as passenger, industrial and aircraft tire retreading. Perhaps the largest aircraft tire retreader is Desser Tire & Rubber Co. in Montebello, Calif. The company's sole plant retreads aircraft tires "and a few specialty motorsport tires," says owner Steve Chlavin. "We average about 200 tires per day."
Wide-base tires, sort of a niche within the truck tire retreading segment, are included in the totals. One member of our list, McCoy Truck Tire Service Center Inc. in Modesto, Calif., added a Bandag 8400 Buffer in 2005 that works on wide-base tires as well. "We have maybe three customers that are into wide-base tires," says Retread Manager Joe Krzewinski. "So far, I would say I've done four trailer tires and all the rest drive tires."
Here are some of the plans for many of the large and small retreaders in the U.S. in 2006.
Action Tire Co.: The company is moving into a new 25,000-square-foot facility this month, according to President Rick Stewart. Action Tire retreads 160 truck tires a day; however, the addition of a computerized chamber, builder and NDT II machine will increase plant capacity to 300 tires a day.
B.R. Retreading Inc.: The company is adding a new Giant Marangoni Builder.
Berlin Bandag Inc.: The company renovated its ISO 9000-certified plant in Meriden, Conn., beginning last Thanksgiving. The changes, which included replacing its buffer with a new 8400 model and adding a 7400 Insight shearography machine, were completed in January.
Boulevard Tire: In 2006, the company plans to increase capacity, improve productivity and complete ISO plant certification.
Canton Bandag: President Dave Richards Jr. wants to expand OTR retreading capabilities. His Canton, Ohio-based plant retreads an average of four OTR tires a day.
Central Tire Corp.: President Terry Westhafer wants to continue to expand his plant's Acutread mold cure production.
Chicago Bandag (CBA Tire): The company is breaking ground on a state-of-the-art plant in Melrose Park, Ill., this month.
"We have purchased brand new equipment throughout the company to keep us ahead of our competitors in our markets," says Tony Howell, manufacturing manager. ISO certification for its plants also is a top priority.
Commercial Tire Inc.: The company wants to modernize its four retread plants to increase production capacity.
Craft Tire Inc.: CEO Mark Goodes says his goal is a 20% increase in capacity. To do that, he is adding both equipment and personnel.
Dale's Tire & Retreading Inc.: Owner Dale Rovere wants to increase production at his Rapid City, S.D., plant by 15% in 2006. The retread shop retreads light truck, truck, industrial and OTR tires.
Free Service Tire Co. Inc.: "(The) emphasis in 2005 was on OTR versus medium truck retreading due to market demand," says Chairman, CEO and President Lewis Wexler Sr. "Therefore, a shift resulted in our production. (OTR tire unit production per day was the same - 3.4 - in 2005 as it was in 2004, while medium truck tire production dropped from 79 to 55 per day. However, in terms of total OTR production dollars, increased 2.5 times compared to 2004, "due to retreading larger size OTR tires.")
"We expect in 2006 to continue to increase OTR production as well as increase the medium truck production to meet or exceed the 2004 production units of 79 or more per day."
"Also in 2006, we will continue testing and then introducing the new "Continuum process. (Bandag Inc. launched Continuum in January 2005. The precure OTR tire process features serpentine tread rubber designs for construction, material handling, mining and port industries.)
Glotfelty Enterprises Inc.: Glotfelty retreads 93 truck tires a day at its Oakland, Md., facility. In 2006, the company is building a 12,000-square-foot retread plant, its second.
H&H Industries: The company recently purchased "the largest OTR buffer in the industry," according to President Mike Hickman. A new inflatable builder, capable of retreading 57-inch OTR tires, will be up and running by the end of June.
International Retreading & Tire Co. (IRT): "We feel we will be able to triple our current capacity (of 190 truck tires a day)," says Vice President Alan Kram. IRT recently purchased a 30,000-square-foot plant in Atmore, Ala., -- its second -- and is adding two chambers and a buffing building station.
I.T.R. Inc.: "We are currently adding new equipment in the specialty plant for OTR and larger specialty-type retreading," says President Richard Brahler II. I.T.R., based in Jacksonville, Ill., has two retread plants; it is a sister company of Brahler's Truckers Supply Inc.
Keen Tire Co., dba Diehl Tire Co. Inc.: The Keens - President Mark and Secretary/Treasurer Kathy - want to increase their customer base and production. They retread an average of 23 truck tires a day at their Clinton, Mo., plant.
Main Tire Exchange Inc.: Already a Bandag retreader, Main Tire Exchange is adapting to the Bandag QuikCure method. President Tim Shay says he hopes this will increase his Dansville, N.Y., plant's production capabilities.
McCoy Truck Tire Service Center Inc.: Retread Manager Joe Krzewinski says the company is adding a shearography machine to its Stockton, Calif., plant (he added one to the company's Modesto, Calif., facility the year before).
Moore's Retread/Ark La Tex (Moore's Goodyear): According to President Daniel Hutchison, the company hopes to increase production at its Shreveport, La., plant by 15%, from 200 truck tires a day to 230.
Morton Supplies Inc.: Plans include adding another full shift and expanding capacity to 132 truck tires per day (in 2005, Morton Supplies averaged 108 a day).
OIS Tire Inc.: The addition of personnel and two CIMA molds should increase the company's production capacity. General Manager Dan Evans also says the company is updating its delivery vehicles.
Ranger Tire: CEO John Roefs says he will build another retread plant, his fourth, in New York. The plant will be on-line in early 2007.
Roberts Tire Sales: The company expects to increase capacity by 25% with the help of new chambers and buffers.
Service Tire Truck Centers: CEO and President Ron Bennett says he wants to update his three plants to increase capacity.
Stratham Tire Inc.: The Stratham, N.H.-based company will begin the ISO Certification process for its three plants this year. It also is enhancing its equipment to help it achieve greater production levels.
Sullivan Tire Co. Inc.: Marketing Director Paul Sullivan says the company plans to "increase capacity through acquisition" in 2006.
Sumerel Tire Service Inc.: President Bob Majewski says Sumerel Tire will add more presses and increase capacity this year.
Tucker Tire Service Inc.: "We plan on increasing our retread capacity by adding a 20-tire chamber to our production line," says co-owner Mike Tucker. The company runs one truck tire retread shop in St. Louis, Mo., and retreaded 74 tires a day in 2005.
White's Tire & Rubber Co. Inc.: New Ringtread molds are part of the company's retread plans.
Ziegler Tire & Oil Co.: President Bill Ziegler says the company will add a plant in 2006, giving it two.