I’m not a big fan of those “How It’s Made” programs on cable TV. I suppose there are worse (many of which involve the Kardashians), but I never really wondered how a 10mm socket was made. I’m more concerned about where I lost the one I just used…
However, I’ll make an exception for this overview of the Shinko Motorcycle Tire Factory, where YouTube gives us a relaxing tour of the motorcycle rubber production process, starting with the raw material and ending with a tour around the parking on freshly mounted sneakers.
No doubt the Peanut Gallery will now comment on “China-made Stinkos” or something similar. The reality is that Shinko was founded in Japan and these motorcycle tires are actually made in South Korea; while the brand had some teething troubles in its early years of production, you don’t hear the same horror stories these days. Yes, Shinkos are built at a cost, but the company is not based on hacked ideas. Shinko purchased Yokohama’s older designs and production machinery and began manufacturing motorcycle tires in the late 1990s. The official Shinko website says the company now manufactures more than 200,000 motorcycle tires per month, including rubber for dual sports, sportbikes, cruisers, dirt bikes and scooters. You never hear about hot new technologies from the company, but its tires are still affordable and they get the job done. Personally, I have traveled many kilometers on Shinko 244 and 705.
And, thanks to this video (thanks Revzilla/Andy Greaser, for bringing it to our attention!), you now know where these tires come from.