Michelin Trial Proves ‘Food for Thought’ For Frank Wright
A year-long trial with Michelin’s XZM tyres fitted to a single forklift unit has led to animal feed manufacturer Frank Wright Trouw Nutrition International taking the plunge and switching to the Michelin brand across its mixed fleet of 20 diesel and electric powered forklift trucks.
During each day the test unit operated for an average of ten hours on a range of surfaces from asphalt to concrete and grit. The Michelin shod forklift was carefully monitored during the entire period, with monthly tyre inspections to check for wear and damage.
“We were impressed with the XZM tyres early in the trial and saw that they easily out-performed the solid tyres we previously used and gave an impressive
increase in our operating hours,” said Andy Keeling, Frank Wright Trouw Nutrition International’s garage manager. “We also noticed that the forklift was suffering reduced wear and tear, in addition to the tyres offering better payload protection from shock and vibration. The driver gave us positive feedback too, with reports that the switch to radial tyres offered added benefits including better traction, reduced stopping distances and a superior ride.”
The XZM, notes Michelin, is designed to last at least twice as long as solid or crossply tyres, with high levels of traction combined with low rolling resistance. The tyre is intended to offer proven resistance to cuts and damage which combined with the strong wear characteristics associated with all Michelin industrial tyres, means less downtime and excellent cost-per-hour benefits.
“We are constantly looking at new ways of ensuring every part of the fleet is operating as efficiently and effectively as possible – something that is even more important in the current economic climate,” Keeling added. “When compared with the best solid tyre available during the trial, the Michelin performance speaks for itself.”
Michelin promotes the XZM as a tyre suitable for fitment to almost all makes and model of forklift truck, and lists significantly improved driver comfort compared with solid tyres as a key benefit it delivers – fewer shocks and jolts are transmitted to the driver, in turn helping to reduce the chances of fatigue or back pain.
As a result of the new tyre policy, Frank Wright Trouw Nutrition International will order its new forklifts with Michelin tyres specified as original equipment, and the company is carrying out a complete tyre replacement programme over the next 12 –18 months across its existing fleet. Tyre requirements and maintenance is managed by ATS Euromaster, including regular fleet inspections and associated tyre husbandry from the company’s service centre in Ashbourne.