Commuting - Ice Biker/Nokian Question
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I have two different Nokian studded tires. I have an EXTREME 296 and a FREDDIE'S REVENZ 336 (http://www.nokiantyres.com/bike/winter/index.html_ . The Freddie’s is much more aggressive and heavy, but the Extreme is no light weight either.
My question is: which one to mount where? Last year I had the Freddie’s on the rear and was running a ‘MOUNT & GROUND W160’ on the front. That arrangement gave me enough traction to climb Mount Everest (if I had the power), but lacked control. That is why I opted for the Extreme this winter. I have two wheel sets and only use the Nokians when the weather calls for it. Most of the time it isn’t snow, it is ice, several inches thick on the bike path.
I know I could (and probably will) experiment, but I just wondered where you experienced ice bikers might come down on the subject.
Put the Freddie’s on the front for control or the rear for traction?
If you were running only one studded tyre, I think the generally accepted idea would be to put it on the front. Following the same logic I would probably try Freddie on the front to get maximum control and see if the Extreme provides sufficient traction on the rear. As you said, you should probably try both arrangements to see which suites you best.
09-27-04, 12:55 PM
I run the extreme 296's all winter front and back--so I don't have much advice on which wheel to run, but I did note on looking at the Nokian site that the Freddy is a pretty hefty tire weight wise. I ran some Innova studded tires for a while and they were in the weight rage of the Freddy and boy did the 296's feel different when I started with those--I switched midseason so one day it was Innovas and the next the 296's. I have felt very secure with the extreme 296s--I ride on a lot of ice and their grip is exceptional. Given the weight difference I think you would be happier with 2 296's than using the Freddy, but studded tires are expensive so you probably don't want a garage full of them!
I run M&G 160s on front and rear, my first winter commuting with them, I think I made the right choice. I do a combination of trails to road so the 160s are somewhat in between in Nokian's line of studded tires. I find I get good traction in most conditions except for real loose powder. The harder the pack, the better of course for the studs to dig into.
My first question is how much Ice are you riding on during your commute ? Those are heavy , expensive tires and very in-effcient on the road . Now if your Commute is mostly off road ( which would be awesome ) stay with the 296's
I ride 14 miles each way, about 10 on bike path. Once the bike path freezes over it stays that way for weeks. It takes 3-4 contiguous days of above freezing temps with sunlight (sunlight is a rare thing in southern Ohio in winter) to melt it.
The M&G 160s worked well on thinner ice say 1/8th inch, but the path gets to be several inches thick in places. What I (and another winter commuter) noticed with them is this: Since there are no studs in the center, while you are going straight and not leaning to one side or the other the tire begins to slip. But as you get off center while slipping, the studs on the side do their job and grab. I will say this is the superior tire for mornings with a heavy frost or a light freezing rain/mist.
Thanks for the input !
This section of the path rarely is without ice once it freezes, but sure is pretty!
09-29-04, 10:13 AM
[QUOTE=OhiOH]The M&G 160s worked well on thinner ice say 1/8th inch, but the path gets to be several inches thick in places. What I (and another winter commuter) noticed with them is this: Since there are no studs in the center, while you are going straight and not leaning to one side or the other the tire begins to slip. But as you get off center while slipping, the studs on the side do their job and grab. I will say this is the superior tire for mornings with a heavy frost or a light freezing rain/mist.
Did you try bleeding a few psi out of the 160s to get the studs onto the ground when going straight? I'm interested in that cos it'll be my first winter with 160s this year. Thanks.
Did you try bleeding a few psi out of the 160s to get the studs onto the ground when going straight? I'm interested in that cos it'll be my first winter with 160s this year. Thanks.[/QUOTE]
Reducing the air pressure helped. Don’t get me wrong, the M&G is a nice tire. I used it on the front all winter and was pleased with it while on the road or on the path with a fresh/smooth ice layer.
If you are in a climate (or road conditions) where it snows or ices and goes away in a few days, I think the M&Gs would be fine. I found them quite acceptable in freezing rain, heavy frost, snow and great in flat hard pack.
The bike path is a unique situation. It is never treated or plowed. When we get snow all the traffic packs it down and it freezes solid at night, then during the day it turns to slush, then kids with 4 wheelers and motorcycles drive (illegally) on it and leave deep tire marks/grooves and then it freezes solid again at night with the tire marks still there (sorry about the run-on sentence). I’m riding early in the morning and after dark when it is frozen solid. When my front wheel gets in one of those tire grooves I’m dead meat if I can’t get traction for control on my front wheel to get out.
Gotcha!!! 336 on the front 296 on the back!
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