SANTA ANA, CA – At the March 1 meeting of the NAFA Pacific Southwest Chapter, fleet managers and other attendees saw presentations about tires and got the chance to tour a tire retreading plant, Tarulli Tire Inc. in Santa Ana, Calif. The Newport Rib Company provided a BBQ lunch.

The first presentation, given by Michelin, discussed tire-pressure monitoring systems and the benefits they provide. The presentation covered the two types of TPMS, direct and indirect. Direct TPMS uses an actual device mounted inside or outside the tire. Indirect TPMS measure air pressure by monitoring individual wheel rotation speeds. The presenter went on to point out that keeping tires inflated can reduce costs for fleets by improving handling (which helps avoid accidents) and improve fuel efficiency.

The second presentation, given by the regional fleet sales manager for Bridgestone and Bandag, covered tire construction and tire sizing nomenclature. For example, a truck tire with a size of 11R22.5 would be 11 inches wide from sidewall to sidewall and have a bead diameter of 22.5 inches. The letter R refers to the fact that the tire is a radial tire. The presentation also covered the differences in tire construction, i.e. tubeless vs. tube-type tires. Tubeless tires feature fewer parts, less weight, and require less labor time to mount, and are safer due to the elimination of flanges and locking rings, according to Bridgestone. Tube-type tires feature numerous components, such as the tube, wheel, side ring, flap, and locking ring, and are the traditional tire construction method.

The group attending also had a chance to tour Tarulli Tire Inc., which was also where the group helo the meetings and lunch. The tour covered the entire retreading process, from processing tires to have the new tread added (after technicians remove the original tread).

Beyond the tires, the NAFA Pacific Southwest Chapter had a Fiat 500 and a Ford Transit Connect Electric on display for attendees to check out.

Written by Greg Basich, photos by Thi Dao