The best innovation on the wheel since pneumatic tires - the Tweel

Sprite

permanent case of the Moooondays
Apr 27, 2005
3,834
2
0
Jersey
#1
This thing kicks ass. I saw it in action on 2 different TV shows in recent months. It was on my mind tonight after having a sidewall blowout on a rear tire of my SUV only to find out my spare has a severe leak. If I had tweels on my truck, it wouldn't be parked at a Sunoco 15 mins away right now. I like the tweel.




"The Tweel (a portmanteau of tire and wheel) is an experimental tire design being developed at Michelin. The tire uses no air and therefore cannot burst or become flat. Instead, flexible polyurethane spokes are used to support an outer rim. Handling gains have been cited as a reason to adopt this type of motor vehicle tire. If problems with the prototypes (such as excess vibration and noise at higher speed) are resolved, the first applications for the tire may be in the military where a flat-proof tire would be advantageous to maneuvering vehicles in difficult or dangerous areas.

Currently, the Tweel is being used for low-speed, low-weight applications, such as wheelchairs, motorbikes and construction equipment (for example, a skid loader). Tests on production cars have shown it is within 5% of a conventional tire and wheel's rolling resistance. If Michelin's prototypes go as planned, models for cars may appear around 2016.

The Tweel has been presented in a variety of applications. Eventually it may be able to outperform conventional tires since it can be designed to have high lateral strength (for better handling) without a loss in comfort."
 

Haeder

South Dakota
Mar 30, 2005
5,775
3,947
608
#3
Has to be worthless when packed with snow and ice.
 

d0uche_n0zzle

**Negative_Creep**
Sep 15, 2004
46,650
6,848
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F.U.B.A.R
#6
Pretty sure those are just demo tires without the sidewalls to show how they work. The final product will look just like regular tires.
 

abudabit

New Wackbag
Oct 10, 2004
14,802
0
0
#7
When they produce them they probably will have a side wall, I think these promotional ones just have the open sides to show off the technology.
 

BullsLawDan

She A Great Big Fat Person?
Feb 9, 2006
3,823
2
0
NY
#9
Pretty sure those are just demo tires without the sidewalls to show how they work. The final product will look just like regular tires.
So the actual tires will have sidewalls...

Which every knitter in the ghetto will promptly cut off, exposing the tire like in the picture. Them some phat rims fo' yo' whip yo!
 

ShooterMcGavin

Go back to your shanties.
May 25, 2005
18,028
1,380
578
#11
This is probably a stupid question, but...

How does it handle the weight of the car and still be flexible enough to conquer steps and such?

I don't know physics...
 
Jun 2, 2005
15,516
4
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Dallas
#12
The weight of the car is figured in to the tension of the springs.

So, for example, if the car weighs 3,000 lbs, the wheels would be engineered to withstand 3500ish lbs before flexing.

These numbers were obviously completely made up, and the real engineering would figure in things like down-force and errant bumps and obstacles like rail-road tracks, but that's the simple answer.
 

BullsLawDan

She A Great Big Fat Person?
Feb 9, 2006
3,823
2
0
NY
#13
This is probably a stupid question, but...

How does it handle the weight of the car and still be flexible enough to conquer steps and such?

I don't know physics...
The same way the pressurized air in your tires does currently. All that really needs to be figured out to make something like this is how to have those little poly flex pieces push against the outside of the tire with the equivalent force to 30psi of air in a regular tire.
 
Nov 29, 2006
3,452
374
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FL
#14
Michelin's promo video:


[YT]pcdmH_hVWBY[/YT]
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
41,284
8,967
768
#16
eh ill try any thing once,