What are these tiny bits of rubber sticking out of tires?Simon Hunt:

They have no purpose.

The tire is made in a big solid mold—those tiny bits of “flash” are the rubber that solidified in holes used to vent the mold, or pump the rubber into the mold.

When the tire is pulled out of the mold, the solidified rubber in the holes pulls out with it (thus clearing the holes for the next tire).

They are actually interestingly called “nubbins” and there are clever ways to eliminate them—which is why you don’t see them so often on expensive tires from manufacturers with more advanced equipment.

This post originally appeared on Quora. Click here to view.