The effect of different design variables used in the construction of tire belts on the interply shear phenomenon was studied using a simple, belted cylinder structure. Only balanced belt constructions were considered. The finite element method was used in the analysis of the belted structure. Predicted results were verified by performing experiments with selected combinations of the design parameters studied. Predicted and experimental results indicate the presence of interply shear strains in the cross-sectional plane of the belts; however, due to difficulties involved in measuring these strains experimentally, they have not been treated in this study. Results for shear strains in the circumferential planes only have been presented. Results for the interply shear strains at the belt edge indicate that the belt cord angle has a very strong influence on the interply shear phenomenon. It was shown that the shape of the curve depicting the relationship between cord angle and interply shear strains is influenced by other design variables of the belt as well as properties of adjacent plies, such as the bladder used to simulate a radial tire carcass ply. Interply shear strains decrease with increasing thickness between the plies and modulus of the interply rubber. In the case of a stiffer rubber, the reduction in shear strain is entirely due to a reduction in the relative motion between the belts. However, in the case of an increased interply thickness, which is accompanied by an increase in relative motion between the belts, the reduction in shear is the result of the relative motion being distributed over a larger thickness. Increasing the belt cord modulus results in an increase in interply shear strains for relatively low values of the modulus. However, beyond a certain value, approximately the modulus of fiberglass cords, increasing the cord modulus does not significantly affect interply shear strains. The shear strain-belt width relationship is strongly influenced by the cord angle used in the belts. Depending on the value of the latter, the shear strain can be a decreasing function of belt width or remain relatively constant as belt width is varied. The degree of localization of the interply shear phenomenon at the belt edge was also studied. All of the variables considered in this study, with the exception of the cord modulus, seem to affect the distribution of the shear strain along the width of the belt to varying extents. The belt width seems to have a strong influence, with wider belts resulting in significant shear strains confined to the vicinity of the belt edge.