There are many tire swing parts and components to consider. We will define and explain each of them in detail below.
What is a tire swing without a tire? There are two main types of tires, rubber and plastic. Rubber tires are actual vehicle tires from a car or truck. They range from about 24 inches in diameter to about 30 inches in diameter. Larger tires are generally not suitable for tire swings due to size. Tires weighting over 35 pounds pose a safety risk to kids should they get hit in the head. If you get a used tire from a car dealer or automotive shop, be sure to check for any nails or screws that may be in the treads and remove them. Also, check the tire for any shards of steel poking out from it being on the vehicle. Do NOT use a tire with the steel belting showing through.
Plastic tires are exactly what the name implies, plastic. They are either rotomolded or blow molded using a molten polymer. They are often available in several colors and sizes and are suitable for backyard or commercial use.
Tire Swing Swivel (B)
A tire swing swivel makes your child's world go round, literally, and is reference by the letter "B" in the above figure. This is one of the most critical parts. It's very important to match the type/size of the tire to the appropriate size swivel. Swivels come in two general categories, residential and commercial grade. Residential swivels usually have a simple pendulum mechanism and a grease fitting for periodic maintenance. A Commercial tire swing swivel is much larger and longer. They have a heavy duty bronze bushing inside to take the beating from a commercial environment. Commercial swivels also feature a critical component, a rubber dust boot. This does two things, it keeps the dirt off of the bushing, and it keeps the grease from falling on the kids heads.
Tire swing chain is usually coated to prevent pinching of little fingers and is reference by "C" in the above diagram. Coated chain is either plastisol or soft grip rubber. Coated chain is dipped in a tank of plastisol material leaving the coating behind, Soft grip chain is made by molding the rubber portion to the chain using an injection process. There are various lengths available and this is one of those components you do not want to skimp on.
Connector Hardware (D)
Connector hardware is another critical part of a tire swing as it connects the chain to the eyebolts. This is referenced by "D" in the diagram. The most common type of hardware is an S-hook. Other hardware consists of a clevis (shackle), or a quick link. Quick links and S-hooks are available with either a zinc, galvanized, or stainless steel finish on them. Shackles, or clevises are generally meant for commercial playgrounds and feature a tamper-proof head to resist vandalism. They are also more heavy duty than the other connector hardware.
Eyebolts are only part of rubber tire swings. They consist of a sand cast eye bolt with a threaded, machined portion on the end. These are reference by the letter "E" above. The end of the eyebolt has a very large galvanized washer and a nylon lock nut. You insert the threaded portion into the tire, then place the washer and nut on the end and tighten. There are usually three per tire.