Wheel Testing Capabilities
At our laboratories in Ravenna, Ohio, and Suzhou, China, Smithers wheel testing capabilities include a number of standard and custom test options. Our wheel testing specifications cover a wide variety of industry standard tests including SAE, SFI, ABNT, ASTM and ISO as well as real-world and on-road tests such as torque retention studies. Some evaluation areas include:
- Dynamic radial and cornering fatigue
- Torsional fatigue
- Hydrostatic burst tests
- Impact testing
- Strain gauging/stress analysis
- Rim contour/dimensional checks
- Rim flange strength
- Metallurgical tests
- Coatings analysis
- Forensic investigation
In keeping with recent trends toward larger wheel sizes on SUVs and trucks, Smithers has invested in a new wheel testing machine that can accommodate passenger wheels up to 24 inches in diameter. The new machine has a computer controlling load, speed and deflection, and digital data storage and analysis.
Common Wheel Evaluations
The lab is fully equipped to perform a number of common wheel evaluations, including:
- Fatigue testing: Standard radial and cornering fatigue tests on all size wheels.
- Impact testing: Includes a standard 13-degree side impact test in accordance with SAE J175.
- Hydrostatic burst testing: Using compressed water, the burst pressure of steel and alloy wheels is tested to determine the margin of safety above the rated wheel pressure.
- Strain gauging / stress analysis: Customized strain analysis protocols per your specific requirements.
- Rim contour / dimensional checks: Precise measurements of rim contour dimensions in accordance with Tire and Rim Association standards to confirm the wheel rim geometry will allow the tire to seat properly. Dimensions include rim width, drop center height, bead flange height, slope angle, and heel radius.
- Metallurgical testing: Metallurgical analysis of steel and aluminum wheels and other components.
- Coatings analysis: Evaluation of wheel coatings in accordance with ASTM standards and customized test protocols for coatings on steel wheels and alloy wheels. Standard test protocols include:
- ASTM B117—Salt Spray
- ASTM D3170—Chip Resistance
Thanks to many years of combined experience in wheel manufacturing, testing, and design, the experts at Smithers can deliver reliable, accurate testing and customized solutions for your testing needs and challenges.