LOUISVILLE, Ky.—Bridgestone over-the-road truck tires were ranked No. 1 in casing durability and ease of retreading in the 1999 Radial Truck Tire Retreadability Survey conducted by The Tire Retreading/Repair Journal. Retreaders and fleet operators picked Bridgestone brand truck tires over those of perennial rival, Michelin, for the No. 1 ranking in three of the survey's six tire categories, according to an article in the publication's June issue.
The two tire makers have vied for top honors in the annual International Tire and Rubber Association-sponsored survey for the last several years. Some 20 brands were included on this year's survey questionnaire.
Questionnaires were mailed to 1,422 U.S. and Canadian retreaders of whom 198 returned completed survey responses. Some 79 fleet operators also took part, the ITRA-owned publication said.
Fleet operators, voting separately, gave Bridgestone the nod in terms of casing durability for over-the-road/long-haul tires, but named Michelin tops in casing durability among heavy-duty truck tires used for other than long-haul applications.
Retreaders, however, named Bridgestone medium truck radials No. 1 in ease of retreading and casing durability for over-the-road/long-haul tires but tapped Goodyear for the top spot in the other-tires category. Bridgestone placed second behind Goodyear and Michelin third in the other-tires segment.
As in years past, ITRA Managing Director Marvin Bozarth, who serves as the magazine's editor, cautioned readers that the survey's results aren't based on any scientific test.
``Rather, they are the opinions of truck fleet operators and retread plant managers as to the performance of various brands of tires,'' he said.
Mr. Bozarth also noted that retreaders' opinions are based on their experience with casings that may be from two to five years old. ``...The casings manufactured today could be better or worse than those surveyed,'' he said.