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Why Microbeads?

The theory of balancing tires by installing moveable balancing material inside the tire was first established back in the fifties.  Early versions included using liquids, metal shot and even golf balls.  Balancing truck tires however did not really start to catch on until the eighties, when roads and rigs had improved to such a degree that balancing truck tires to maximize tread life was beginning to make good economic sense.

The introduction of tire balancing compounds in the late eighties overcame the economic disadvantage of fixed weight balancing for truck tires, which requires that the tires should be rebalanced at regular intervals of about 30,000 miles,

M. & R. Tire Products Inc. patented the use of microbeads in a tire balancing compound in 1992.  Until that time, the most successful dry balancing product was a finely-ground granulated material that was installed in the tire.  However, we felt that microbeads could improve on the use of a granulated material as a balancing material in two areas –flowability and durabilityFlowability, because we felt that the better the material moved in response to the forces of imbalance generated inside the tire, the quicker it would neutralize the imbalance and give a smooth ride.  (To understand more about the importance of free flowability of a balancing material, just watch our video – How Magnum Plus Works).

Magnum Plus Micro Bead photo for technical bulleting on how to  install Magnum Plus Tire Balancing Compound

And durability, because we wanted the balancing material to retain its physical shape and size throughout its working life, since any change of its physical properties could affect the consistency of the balance.

With these criteria in mind, we developed our original Magnum tire balancing compound, using microbeads that were round, smooth and durable, plus some additional materials.  The roundness and smoothness of the microbeads resulted in the shortest response time to the forces created by the heavy spot in the tire, and the durability of the microbeads ensured that the balancing compound would remain effective throughout its life. (This has meant that all Magnum balancing compounds can be re-used in a retread tire at no additional cost).

Testing by an independent laboratory also confirmed that Magnum microbeads flowed over twice as fast as granulated materials, using the ASTM D 1895-90 standard for measuring the flowability of a material, thereby demonstrating the superior flowability of our microbeads over other balancing materials.


Granulated Balancing Material photo for technical bulleting on how to  install Magnum Plus Tire Balancing Compound

Finally, we added additional components to eliminate any electrostatic cling between the microbeads and the inner liner of the tire, since anything that slowed down the free movement of the balancing material inside the tire would detract from its ability to neutralize quickly the forces created by the imbalance.  In other words, if the microbeads were sticking to the inside of the tire rather than free-rolling, then greater force would be required to move them to a new position for neutralizing the imbalance. (This can be seen clearly in our video.)

Other balancing beads photo for technical bulleting on how to  install Magnum Plus Tire Balancing Compound

The introduction of tire pressure monitoring systems created an additional problem, in that any powdery material used in a balancing compound would run the risk of blocking the TPMS sensor holes. 

To avoid this, in 2006 we introduced our latest tire balancing compound, Magnum Plus, which is fully compatible with tire pressure monitoring systems.  Magnum Plus uses much larger microbeads than before, and all powdery materials have been eliminated.  The microbeads we have developed for Magnum Plus are nearly twice as large as before, are 98% round and are carefully calibrated for consistent size.  They are also coated to avoid static cling and moisture, which would inhibit their free movement within the tire. 

Magnum Plus extra-large superior microbeads also have two other advantages.  Firstly, their durability (as measured by a standard Newton compression resistance test)  is almost twice that of microbeads that are half their size,  Secondly, the larger microbeads create even less rolling resistance within the tire over smaller microbeads, since their surface contact with the inner liner is less than that of smaller beads. Also, they resist humidity even better than smaller beads.

So with Magnum Plus tire balancing compound, you really do get the best of all worlds.  You get the superior flowability and durability of ultra-smooth microbeads over granulated balancing materials, plus increased flowability and durability over products using smaller microbeads, as well as compatibility with tire pressure monitoring systems.  

Plus the extra savings from re-using Magnum Plus in retread tires!


Balancing Mudder Tires


Hard To Balance Mudder Tires

Magnum Plus tire balancing compound can be used to successfully balance many hard-to-balance tires, such as heavy-lug off-road mudder tires.

In most cases, using the amount of Magnum Plus recommended on our Application Chart will give you a satisfactory balance.  

However, with larger mudder tires, the amount of imbalance can vary tremendously between tires, which makes it difficult to predict the correct amount of Magnum Plus to use. 

In these cases, a useful method is to determine the amount of static imbalance in the tire and rim assembly, and then to install approximately the same amount of Magnum Plus. If the static imbalance falls between two packet sizes, then choose the smaller quantity. 

If you do not have an electronic tire balancer, you can use a simple bubble balancer. Just place the tire assembly on the balancer, then position some packets of Magnum around the side of the tire, until the bubble is centred - then go with that amount of Magnum Plus balancing compound.

Final note – the multiple moving parts in a 4x4 or front-wheel drive vehicle can sometimes create external lateral forces that may interfere with the correct tracking of the microbeads, causing tire vibrations at higher speeds.  If this occurs, the answer is to carry out a static balance on the tires, without removing  the Magnum Plus.  Just spin up the tires a couple of times to ensure a consistent reading for static balance, and then position the static weight where indicated on the inside of the rim.  This has the effect of neutralizing any external lateral forces, allowing the microbeads to do their job of balancing the tire.


Balancing Low Profile Tires

Low profile specialty tires and custom rims for light trucks and SUVs represent a growing market, but also pose some special problems for tire balancing. In particular, ultra low-profile light truck tires are hard to balance, since most custom rims will not accommodate fixed weights at the rim, but require that the weight be installed somewhere in the centre of the rim itself.

If the heavy spot on the tire lies roughly in the centre of the tread, then you will likely get a satisfactory balance.  However, if the heavy spot lies over towards the shoulder area, then a good balance may be difficult to achieve. 

In many cases, Magnum Plus balancing compound may be able to help you out.  Firstly, if the tire is 60 series or higher, then Magnum Plus on its own should provide a satisfactory balance – just follow the regular instructions for installing Magnum Plus.. 

However, for light truck tires of 55 series profile or less, Magnum Plus alone may not give you a satisfactory balance, for the same reason as described above – namely, that since Magnum Plus tracks roughly around the centre of the tread, then it may have difficulty in correcting for a heavy spot located in the shoulder area of a low-profile tire. 

In these cases, we recommend a combination balance. That is, you combine Magnum Plus with a static electronic balance. 

Truck tire photo for installing Magnum Plus Tire Balancing Compound

Just open the appropriate Magnum Plus INSERT™ packet along its seam, and place it into the tire during installation.  Then carry out a static balance of the wheel assembly. 

In most cases, the Magnum Plus microbeads will disperse quickly enough around the interior of the tire so that the reading for the static balance will not be affected.  However, to make sure that the reading is correct, you should take two or more readings for the static balance, to ensure that these are consistent.  Then fix the static balance weight in the appropriate location.

If however the static balance readings are not consistent, then Magnum Plus would have to be installed after carrying out the static balance.

Magnum Plus is compatible with tire pressure monitoring systems

Magnum Plus is not recommended for balancing high performance tires.

Quick Fact Sheet

Magnum Plus Tire Balancing Compound:

  • Lasts for the lifetime of the tire
  • Is easy to install
  • Constantly adapts to wear and tear
  • Doesn't need to be rebalanced
  • Is TPMS compatible
  • Can be re-used in trailer tires