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The History of Tyres

The History of Tyres

Mr. Charles Goodyear is the main man responsible for the invention of vulcanised rubber in 1844. This material was later used to improve tyres. Skip on a few years and another recognisable name John Dunlop invented air filled or pneumatic tyres in 1888, originally for bicycles. It was then in 1895 when Mr. Andre Michelin decided that pneumatic tyres would benefit automobiles, however his attempts were not successful. Then in 1911, Philip Strauss successfully invented the first successful tyre, this was a combination tyre and air filled tube. Mr. Strauss’ company was called the Hardman Tyre & Rubber Company and they marketed these tyres. In the meantime, a man called P.W. Litchfield of the Goodyear Tyre Company put a patent on the first tubeless tyre. This form of tyre was never fully explored until 1954. 1904 saw the dawn of the first mountable rims affording drivers to fix their own flat tyres. Then in 1908 grooved tyres were introduced to the industry by Frank Sieberling, these giving motorists better traction on the road. Carbon was first added to the rubber in tyres by the B.F. Goodrich Company which added longer life to the tyres. The first synthetic rubber tyres were also introduced by the Goodrich company in 1937 using a substance called Chemigum.

Pneumatic Tyre

The Scottish veterinarian John Boyd Dunlop (1840-1921) is officially recognised as the inventor of the first pneumatic or inflatable tyre. It was a patent for a bicycle tyre and was granted in 1888. It was a man named Robert William Thomson (1822-1873) who actually invented the initial vulcanised rubber pneumatic tyre. He patented this in 1845 but was quite expensive so didn’t catch on initially. And this is why the credit went to John Dunlop as his caught on!

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