Nokian Tyres has been perfecting a special tyre for railway use for several years, and now the unique Nokian Ground King Semi-Slick tyre variant solves many problems that were previously typical when using a backhoe loader on railroads.
Introducing the Nokian Ground Kare Semi-Slick Tyre
In 2019, Nokian Tyres released Nokian Ground Kare – an all-round tyre for wheeled excavators and backhoe loaders working on soft surfaces. At the same time, there was a release of a tyre variant that is optimised for very special purpose: working on railroads. Since then, Nokian Tyres has developed the concept even further, resulting in the new Nokian Ground Kare Semi-Slick tyre.”When a backhoe loader is driven on rails, the tyre shoulders that run on metal tend to wear out quickly”, says Kimmo Kekki, Product Manager at Nokian Tyres. “The Nokian Ground Kare Semi-Slick tyre variant is designed with this particular use on mind. We have managed to even out the tyre wear, improving the service life significantly.”
The Nokian Ground Kare Semi-Slick tyre is specially crafted with a slick section covering about third of the tyre tread. The other half shares the same advanced block pattern found in the standard Nokian Ground Kare excavator tyre.
“The patterned part of the tyre still works well on soft soil and road transports”, says Kimmo Kekki. “But the slick part with a thick solid rubber shoulder really takes the grinding of steel under a heavy machine, making sure the tyre won’t wear out prematurely.”
The reports by users prove that the tyre holds up very well. “After nearly 1,300 hours of use, the semi-slick area has still no signs of wear”, says Norwegian Nils Arne Mikkelsen, Construction Manager at Infranord Norge. “The tyres give a very good overall impression.”
For added protection against cuts and cracks, the Nokian Ground Kare tyre family also has a steel belt under the tread. The tyre carcass is developed with good shock-absorbing properties in mind. “In any excavating and loading work, the tyre stability is essential”, Kimmo Kekki points out. “Swinging makes the accurate control of the bucket more difficult and less effective.”
The Nokian Ground Kare Semi-Slick tyre also has one of the highest load-bearing capacities in the market. “The backhoe loaders are getting bigger and heavier”, says Kekki. “Also, many special jobs require heavy work attachments that require stable foundation from tyres.
Even a highly specialised tyre should also be comfortable on the road, and the Nokian Ground Kare Semi-Slick tyre provides just that. “Today, you must keep up with the traffic speed”, Kimmo Kekki reminds. “The Nokian Ground Kare Semi-Slick tyre has bigger tread blocks in the center that allow a fast, steady ride.”
What’s more, the same shock-absorbing structure that makes working more stable also reduces vibrations on road transports.
“Nokian Tyres creates special tyres for special needs”, Kimmo Kekki sums up their design philosophy. “The Nokian Ground Kare Semi-Slick tyre is a good example of our out-of-the-box thinking that results in a new kind of solution to a known problem. The improved stability, load-bearing capacity and service life will make railway work more efficient.”