If I remove the studs from my Innova 700x35 snow tires for use on trails, what sort of trouble am I asking for?
Today, I went out on a nice 25 mile ride, half of which was on sloppy gravel/dirt roads that I hadn't been on before. My WTB All-Terrainasaurus tires were pretty worthless on this surface. It really reminded me of slushy winter conditions, to be honest. You know when you get the sensation that the back end of the bike is doing it's own thing or you believe you're getting a flat tire. That was my experience for the middle 10 miles of this ride on otherwise beautifully deserted country roads. The final insult was the slow leak I had when I arrived home due to a tiny piece of glass that had worked it's way through the thin tread of the tire. I think that I just have to accept the fact that the WTB's are going to have to go in the trash. They're just too unreliable for riding in inclement weather and riding with unpredictable road conditions.
I started looking at my old snow tires and thought that the tread pattern would be great for the type of riding I did today. I'm sure I would have descended more confidently and put in more effort on the flat sections if I weren't concerned for my safety. I don't anticipate using them as snow/ice tires any more so what would be the harm in removing the rusted studs? Experience has taught me that my Monocog 29er is sufficient for about 98% of the riding I do between November and March (commuting exclusively) so having studded tires just isn't that important for me. Not to mention, two seasons of use has worn the Innova studs down pretty good. Not completely, but close.
With all this in mind, are the small recessed areas in the tire going to attract more debris and perhaps be more prone to flats or is the casing as thick there as it is on the rest of the tire?
Here is a picture of tire (when it was new) in order to show the placement of the studs.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.