Hercules opens custom mix unit
FINDLAY, Ohio-Hercules Tire & Rubber Co. has opened a subsidiary to expand its work with custom mixed rubber compounds.
Hercules Rubber Co. began operating July 9 under the leadership of Paul D. Rinauro, vice president and general manager.
Hercules has custom mixed rubber compounds for 20 years but the business took on new importance after it sold its retreading assets to Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. in June. That deal freed capacity earlier devoted to tread rubber production, which had accounted for as much as half of Hercules' mixing capacity.
Pep Boys earnings rise in 2nd quarter
PHILADELPHIA-Steps taken last year to reduce costs and enhance profits appear to have paid off as Pep Boys-Manny, Moe & Jack's earnings nearly tripled in the second quarter, despite a 9.6-percent decline in sales.
The Philadelphia-based automotive aftermarket chain said improved merchandise and service center margins as well as lower operating expenses more than offset the sales downturn.
For the quarter ended Aug. 4, Pep Boys posted net earnings of $12.5 million, including a $234,000 gain on the early retirement of debt, compared with profits of $4.38 million in the second quarter last year, when it saw a $967,000 gain on the early debt retirement.
Second-quarter sales of $572.9 million reflected the closing of 38 stores and other steps the firm took last October as part of a ``Profit Enhancement Plan.'' This compares with sales of $633.9 million in the year-ago quarter.
For the first half, Pep Boys' earnings were $21.6 million vs. $10.8 million last year as sales dropped 10 percent to $1.12 billion from $1.25 billion last year.
Alcoa continues wheel recall
CLEVELAND-Alcoa Wheel Products said dealers and vehicle owners can still replace recalled Alcoa aftermarket light truck wheels with new products in the same LTS style.
Last October, Alcoa issued a voluntary recall notice on 16 x7J, LTS-style, 8 on 6.5-inch bolt pattern wheels (part No. 167011). Dealers can find the part number in the wheel roll stamp, positioned on the outside or brake side (not the tire side) of the rim near the hand hole, in line with and opposite the valve location.
The recalled wheels are used primarily on three-quarter- and one-ton pick-up trucks. The company said the wheels potentially can develop more cracks from hand hole to hand hole which could cause the wheel to separate from the vehicle.
Before working on the wheel or vehicle, dealers must call the Alcoa Wheel Service Center at (888) 279-3055 for instructions and an authorization number. Authorized payment, the company said, includes reasonable costs of demounting, tire balancing, replacement wheels and remounting of the assembly.
Web site focuses on farm, ranch tires
GREENVILLE, S.C.-Michelin North America Inc. has developed a Web site to provide information to farmers and ranchers about its BFGoodrich-brand farm and ranch tires.
The Web site, www.BFGoodrich-Ag.com, describes the BFGoodrich line of farm and ranch tires, including available sizes, a dealer locator and technical data on tires, construction and loads.
Truck firm selects tire inflation system
TROY, Mich.-Refrigerated trailer manufacturer Great Dane Trailers has selected ArvinMeritor Inc.'s Meritor Tire Inflation System by P.S.I. as standard equipment on its Classic Refrigerated Van Lines.
The system requires no driver intervention, Meritor said, and is designed to constantly monitor tire pressure and automatically retain predetermined tire inflation settings.