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  1. #1
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    Make or buy Winter ice tires

    I was wondering if any on on here has used the ones you buy and how well the work, i live in MN and we get allot of snow and ice i plan on riding my single speed MTB most of the time this winter and was wondering if i should just make my own winter tires i found some directions around the web and it seems like it would have more traction with the ones you build.
    Shut up and pedal!!

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    Senior Member tjspiel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farnsworth View Post
    I was wondering if any on on here has used the ones you buy and how well the work, i live in MN and we get allot of snow and ice i plan on riding my single speed MTB most of the time this winter and was wondering if i should just make my own winter tires i found some directions around the web and it seems like it would have more traction with the ones you build.
    I live in Minneapolis and bought studded tires from Nashbar for my MTB. They work well on ice, although I ride cautiously on it.

    Where the tires don't work so well is on a couple of inches of snow and salt with a little water thrown in for good measure. This is the crud that cars push to the side of road after a fresh snow I get a lot of fishtailing. The tires float on top.
    If you're not riding with a psychedelic gecko on your shirt, you ARE having a substandard experience.

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    Senior Member tjspiel's Avatar
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    Just another note. I'm sure it all depends on the materials used and how it's done, but my impression is that home made studded tires don't last too long.

    I've had mine for 3 years now and they're still going strong.
    If you're not riding with a psychedelic gecko on your shirt, you ARE having a substandard experience.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Farnsworth View Post
    I was wondering if any on on here has used the ones you buy and how well the work, i live in MN and we get allot of snow and ice i plan on riding my single speed MTB most of the time this winter and was wondering if i should just make my own winter tires i found some directions around the web and it seems like it would have more traction with the ones you build.
    If you are going to be riding for any significant amount of time on clear road surfaces you should buy some. If, however, you are going to be riding on hardpacked snow all the time you can make some that would work fine.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by tjspiel View Post
    Just another note. I'm sure it all depends on the materials used and how it's done, but my impression is that home made studded tires don't last too long.

    I've had mine for 3 years now and they're still going strong.
    hey what kind of tires do you have.
    Shut up and pedal!!

  6. #6
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    Search this forum for studded tires.

  7. #7
    In the wind mercator's Avatar
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    I ran a homemade set last year and they worked fine. I used sheet metal screws and they do wear out. I ride about 100 miles a week and the back tire needed a new set of studs by mid-February. The front tire looks like it is still sharp, although I have a spare for the front that I swap out when the roads are clear so it got less use than the rear.

    Takes about half an hour to replace them. I figure $5 worth of screws should last me 10 years.

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    Senior Member rankin116's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mercator View Post
    I ran a homemade set last year and they worked fine. I used sheet metal screws and they do wear out. I ride about 100 miles a week and the back tire needed a new set of studs by mid-February. The front tire looks like it is still sharp, although I have a spare for the front that I swap out when the roads are clear so it got less use than the rear.

    Takes about half an hour to replace them. I figure $5 worth of screws should last me 10 years.
    What kind of tire do you have them on? Do you notice the tire tearing at all where the screws were put in? This sounds like something would fail easily unless done perfectly.

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    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Nokian are the best studded tires made. If you plan on riding for several winters don't cheap out, just get the Nokians.

  10. #10
    Senior Member rankin116's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    Nokian are the best studded tires made. If you plan on riding for several winters don't cheap out, just get the Nokians.
    Will they last that long? My only experience with studded tires are car tires, and I know that once you put them on, the studs become rounded, does that happen with bike tires as well?

  11. #11
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rankin116 View Post
    Will they last that long? My only experience with studded tires are car tires, and I know that once you put them on, the studs become rounded, does that happen with bike tires as well?
    This winter will be my third on Nokians with little wear showing. Cheaper brands on the other hand are usually only good for one season.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    Nokian are the best studded tires made. If you plan on riding for several winters don't cheap out, just get the Nokians.
    I have a set of Nokians that I've run for the past 3-years. They are still going strong, and I'm planning on using them for the next several winters. However, you could probably make a set if you are so inclined. I haven't bothered as the Nokians have been wonderful.

    Ice feels kind of like dirt underneath your tires. The traction on ice is second to none. I run a low tire pressure with slime tubes inside. I've not had a flat (luck?), and the combo of low pressure and studs makes even the most icy/mucky conditions very ridable. I also run a single speed with hydro disc brakes. This makes the bike nearly bullet-proof. It's no fun trying to fix anything on the bike when the conditions are super-cold.

    Good luck!

    ... Brad

  13. #13
    In the wind mercator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rankin116 View Post
    What kind of tire do you have them on? Do you notice the tire tearing at all where the screws were put in? This sounds like something would fail easily unless done perfectly.
    I just used a cheap knobby tire, nothing special. I predrilled holes from the outside so the studs came out where I wanted them. No signs of tearing, I wouldn't say I did a perfect job but they haven't failed yet.

  14. #14
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    I make my own and only stud the outer knobs and leave the centre studless... if I'm riding on pavement then I get a smooth ride and the studs are very effective when I am in snow or have to make turns.

  15. #15
    Senior Member toyota200x's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mercator View Post
    I just used a cheap knobby tire, nothing special. I predrilled holes from the outside so the studs came out where I wanted them. No signs of tearing, I wouldn't say I did a perfect job but they haven't failed yet.

    I just found some old tires with a decent amout of tread and did the sale thing. Make sure you use a liner so the tube doesn't wear on the heads of the screws. I used duct tape but old inner tubes last longer.

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    On snow and ice only: Make them.

    On pavement even some of the time: Buy them.

  17. #17
    Smiling and Waving thebikeguy's Avatar
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    I have never really found the need for studded tires.I play with the air pressure in the front wheel to gain traction in icey conditions.Most mountain bike tires having a pretty aggressive knob on it work fine for me.

  18. #18
    Spazzy Member zippered's Avatar
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    i have yet to try either kind... we, or rather my s/o tried to make some last year, but we forgot to account for the clearance factor on the brake arches... so learn from our mistake if you do try to make your own!

    studded tires might actually be more dangerous for me to use on my regular commute: i live downtown in a big city so the main streets get plowed right away, and there are a lot of streetcar/train tracks, sewer grates and other such slippery metal obstacles.
    "Never do anything that you wouldn't want to have to explain to the paramedics."

    "His first words were 'did you bike today?' I hesitated before admitting that I had, thinking I was going to get a lecture on how bad the roads were and how I shouldn't try to bike home. Instead he said 'man, you're lucky! I've been sitting in traffic for over 1/2 hr, and I've only gone about 2 miles. Some guy on a bike passed me about 20 minutes ago and I'm sure he's home by now'."

  19. #19
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zippered View Post
    i have yet to try either kind... we, or rather my s/o tried to make some last year, but we forgot to account for the clearance factor on the brake arches... so learn from our mistake if you do try to make your own!

    studded tires might actually be more dangerous for me to use on my regular commute: i live downtown in a big city so the main streets get plowed right away, and there are a lot of streetcar/train tracks, sewer grates and other such slippery metal obstacles.
    Conti makes a non-studded winter tire you might want to check out.

    http://www.biketiresdirect.com/produ...il.asp?p=COTCW

  20. #20
    Spazzy Member zippered's Avatar
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    oooh those do look pretty nifty, thanks! even just to have the reflective sidewalls...
    "Never do anything that you wouldn't want to have to explain to the paramedics."

    "His first words were 'did you bike today?' I hesitated before admitting that I had, thinking I was going to get a lecture on how bad the roads were and how I shouldn't try to bike home. Instead he said 'man, you're lucky! I've been sitting in traffic for over 1/2 hr, and I've only gone about 2 miles. Some guy on a bike passed me about 20 minutes ago and I'm sure he's home by now'."

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