Stubble damage to tires has always been present but was not a big problem until the advent of GMO enhanced corn, soybean and cotton varieties.
GMO enhancements have led to greatly improved yields due to disease and insect resistance; but while GMO enhanced crops have delivered better yields, they can also inflict considerable damage to your tires.
Types of Stubble Damage
There are two types. The first is air chamber penetration. These penetrations can take you out of service very quickly. Your tire may be unrepairable if the penetrations are too high in number. Penetrations usually need immediate repair.
The second type (as seen in left photo) is compound removal from the tread face and sidewalls of your tires. Compound removal leaves your tires very ugly for quite some time before failure becomes eminent. This is usually a slow process and occurs over an extended period of time. The stubble chips away small pieces of rubber due to multiple stubble impacts to your tires. It’s like having a million starving chickens pecking your tires to death! This becomes a serious problem when cords become exposed. Exposed cords will cause your tires to fail. Predicting the time to failure is quite difficult but it will happen at the most inconvenient time!
Tires Are Evolving With the Plants
Tiremakers such as CEAT have been putting tremendous R&D resources behind developing Ag tires that resist stubble damage.
There have been many architectural adjustments to the tread and sidewall designs to reduce or avoid “catch points” where the stubble can get hung up and chew a hole in your tires.
CEAT has fine-tuned the use of natural and synthetic rubber, elastomers, coupling agents and other ingredients to create compound blends that are more puncture resistant. Interestingly, the composition of the sidewall rubber and tread rubber are different; both are blended to maximize flexibility and durability.
There is no such thing as stubble “PROOF” tires or tracks in today’s Ag market. But it is prudent to spend a little extra to purchase Ag radials designed to fight stubble; because as every farmer knows, down time is a killer!
Please click on the banner below to learn more about how CEAT tires fight stubble damage, or feel free to ask me a question in the comments section below.