It has been a while in the making but Perry Cude of Leachville has a patent on a weight free tire balancing system.
It could not be repatented and also he said tire companies making airplane tires were not interested.
Then he turned his attention to balancing land tires.
"There are 300 million tires a year produced in the United States," Cude said.
He calls his idea very simple but it will work. Tire companies will be able to balance tires without using the lead weights. Cude explained by using a simple tool, a little rubber can be removed making a perfect balance.
"Balanced tires have a longer life and allow for better gas mileage," he said. "By not using wheel weights, it will take care of the unsightly spots on the wheels. There was a lawsuit in California to stop the use of lead wheel weights. It claimed a half million pounds of wheel weights are dropped on the highway every year. Lead wheel weights were outlawed in California in 2009. I think other states will appeal to the EPA to outlaw them in other areas, also."
Cude's patent will solve the problem because it does away with the wheel weights, he said.
He has been working on this for 10 years. He retired in 1997. He worked for many years for Sears and as a Snap-On tool dealer.
He has done the balancing in his own shop and has proven it will work.
"I have been there, done it and I know it will work," Cude said.
Cude is the son of Loudeen Cude Nolin of Leachville and the late Johnny Cude. His dad was a garage owner in the Leachville area.
"I was raised in my dad's garage," Cude said. "The day I was born my dad put a used transmission in a car," Cude said. "His payment was a shotgun. I still have the gun today. My dad made the first combine in the area. He came up with the mule pulled combine to thrash beans. It worked and he made a lot of money in the area with his combine. A couple of years later a commercial combine was out."
Cude said he has learned a lot about getting a patent. He submitted it the first time four years ago and it was turned down.
"It had too much stuff in it and it had to be reworked and resubmitted," he said. "That doubled the price, also."
He will be in contact with tire companies again now that he has the patent. It is Patent #7,648,606 2B.
"I have talked to a couple of people in the tire manufacturing business who have been very interested in the idea," he said. "Any alterations done to the tire will not be noticeable to anyone looking at the tire. As I told the people I have talked to, it is a simple idea. Simple ideas come from simple people like me."
Cude said he has asked a lot of people if they would give $10 more for a tire that would not have to be balanced.
"All of them said they would," he said. "The average cost of balancing a tire today is $7 with lead wheel weights."
"It has been fun and I have had some disappointments along the way," he said. "I have gained some experience and I have a master's degree in my head on the do's and don'ts of getting a patent."
Cude encourages young people to go forward with their ideas.
"I have learned a lot from listening to and watching people through the years," he said.
He is working on a new patent that will allow farmers to service their tire needs in their own shop.
"It is another simple idea but it will work and will be so beneficial to our area farmers," he said. "That is the next story."