Companies unite to ‘revolutionize’ wheel changing

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Updated Apr 21, 2010

Four manufacturers have joined forces to create “Wheel Torque Solutions,” a new wheel changing process the companies say will “revolutionize” how this work is done. The companies – Alcoa Wheels, B&D Cold Heading, Chicago Pneumatic and ITW CIP – say the “innovative, highly researched and developed wheel installation process” will reduce wheel-off incidents significantly.

“ ‘Wheel Torque Solutions’ identifies and addresses all points of failure in the traditional wheel installation process,” says David Walters, manager-warranty & field service for Alcoa Wheel & Transportation Products and a Silver Spark Plug member of TMC. “A clearly defined procedure combined with the careful selection of tools and components significantly reduce the potential for human error that can result in costly and dangerous wheel-off incidents. This group of companies, through the research and development conducted with a large environmental services fleet in North America, have accomplished what others in the industry said couldn’t be done.”

“Wheel Torque Solutions” was designed to bring together the optimum nut, bolt, wheels, tools and processes for increasing torque retention. The components and wheel installation processes were researched and developed with a large environmental services fleet in North America. The research, the companies say, proved that increasing torque retention not only improves safety, but also provides maintenance cost savings over the life of a wheel. The process relies on the product attributes of the companies involved, combined with detailed wheel end maintenance and fastening processes.

“The key to strengthening the clamp force is maximizing the preload and grip length without comprising the structural integrity of the components,” says Ross Hill, business development manager at ITW CIP and chairman of the ISO Wheel Committee. “Wheel Torque Solutions” accomplishes this through the use of industry-leading components that have been tested to achieve maximum clamp force at torques greater than 600 ft-lbs, Hill says.