High-tech products for high yield

Feb. 19, 2010

Ag tire applications are evolving, and ag tire manufacturers are offering new products to match the needs of  farmers. According to Michael Burroughes, director of marketing, agricultural tires for Michelin North America Inc., farms are “getting larger and larger, increasing pressure on farmers to choose farming measures and tools that are efficient.”

Thus, today’s farmers are “embracing new technologies that offer them the competitive advantages they need to be successful,” says Burroughes.

The following tires offer maximum traction in the field, high load carrying capacity and other high-yield features. (More ag tires will be featured in the April issue of CTD.)

Balkrishna Industries Ltd. (BKT-Tyres) has introduced several new ag tires, including the AgriMax, which “will fit standard combine (wheels),” says BKT Sales Director Bill Haney.

Available in size 900/60R32, it has a maximum load carrying capacity of 18,200 pounds at 46 psi when driven at 25 mph. “Combines usually run at lower speeds.”

Also new from BKT is a radial metric flotation tire in size 710/40R22.5, “used in truck conversions for ag purposes,” says Haney. In addition, BKT has introduced the FS216 Skidder Tire (pictured above left), which is primarily used in forestry applications.

Trelleborg Wheel Systems has introduced its premium bias R-1 product line, the TM90. The size range includes: 16.9-30 - 6 ply, 18.4-30 - 8 ply, 16.9-34 - 8 ply, 18.4-34 - 8 ply, 16.9-38 - 8 ply, 18.4-38 - 8 ply, 20.8-38 - 8 ply, 12.4-24 - 6 ply, 12.4-28 - 6 ply, 13.6-28 - 6 ply and 14.9-28 - 6 ply.

The TM90’s tread bar angle provides maximum traction, the company says. It is constructed with nylon cord for long service life and has an R-1 tread depth for optimum field service.


Bridgestone Americas Agricultural Group has introduced a new line of Firestone ag tires featuring Advanced Deflection Design (AD2) technology, which allows greater sidewall flexibility. Compared with standard Firestone radials, tires with AD2 technology can carry heavier loads at the same pressure, or the same load at lower pressures, the company notes.

That’s important for farmers as they continue to operate larger, higher horsepower equipment, says Tom Rodgers, director of marketing. “Tractors continue to increase in size and power. These large, higher-horsepower machines require more ballast to put that increased power to the ground. Tire performance needs to grow with the equipment.”

Because of their unique construction, tires with AD2 technology can carry a load up to 20% greater than standard radials of the same size. “That means the operator can carry heavier loads or add ballast to a tractor without having to raise air pressure in the tires,” Rodgers says. “Alternatively, they can carry the same weight at lower inflation pressures to reduce soil compaction.”

Tires with the AD2 technology have a footprint that also is larger than that of a same-size standard radial. The larger footprint improves traction to help reduce both field time and fuel consumption, while also reducing soil compaction.

The tires will come in five sizes, two for front-axle applications and three drive tires.

Titan International Inc. is offering its Goodyear UltraSprayer tires. They have tread bars engineered to carry heavy sprayer loads and can handle speeds up to 30 mph. Increases in lug bracing and lug surface area offer durability. The UltraSprayer is available in widths from 12.6 to 15.2 inches.

The Titan Ultimate skid steer tire is engineered to provide extra long life with up to twice the tread depth of conventional skid steer tires. It is available in widths from 10 to 16.5 inches.

The Goodyear Optitrac radial has a self-cleaning tread promoted by a 45 degree tread lug angle. A deep lug offers long tread wear and the forced bead area helps the tractor withstand the forces of higher-torque applications and allows increased loading. It is designed for applications in heavy, wet soil conditions. The size range is 200/70R16 through  900/75R32 (DT800, DT806, DT812, DT818, DT824 and DTT830 R-1W).

There have been a number of additions to TBC Corp.’s Harvest King farm tire program. These include the Harvest King L/L all-purpose tractor tire, which is a bias rear farm tire available in 19 sizes from 24 to 38 inches.

The company also has the Harvest King R-Gator II, a new tube-type R-1 irrigation tire available in three sizes from 24- to 38-inch rim diameters.

Also available is the Harvest King R-Gator +TL, a tubeless R-1 irrigation tire; the Harvest King Deluxe four-rib front tractor tire, available in 15- and 16-inch rim diameters; the Harvest King Front Tractor II three-rib front tractor tire, available in four tube-type sizes from 12 to 19 inches; and the Harvest King Farm Wagon II implement I-I tire,  available in 10 tube-type and six tubeless sizes from 14- to 16-inch rim diameters. The company also has introduced the Harvest King High Speed Implement II, which is Department of Transportation-approved for intermittent highway speeds.

The company’s new Power King LDR+ skid steer tire is now available in sizes 10-16.5 and 12-16.5. And the recently introduced Power King Guard HD+ premium skid steer tire is available in seven sizes, from 15- to 19.5-inch rim diameters.     ■

About the Author

Bob Ulrich

Bob Ulrich was named Modern Tire Dealer editor in August 2000 and retired in January 2020. He joined the magazine in 1985 as assistant editor, and had been responsible for gathering statistical information for MTD's "Facts Issue" since 1993. He won numerous awards for editorial and feature writing, including five gold medals from the International Automotive Media Association. Bob earned a B.A. in English literature from Ohio Northern University and has a law degree from the University of Akron.