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Thread: Winter Tires?

  1. #1
    BikeForums Founder Joe Gardner's Avatar
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    whats the best way to make winter tires, should i use screws in my older tires, or does sombody make a ice / winter tire?

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    A friend of mine had purchased studed tires for winter use however I do not know where he got them from. If you wish, I'll drop him a line in order to find out where he purchased them. I don' know how well they would work as my main concern is not myself but some of the 'drivers' that are surrounding me on these icy/snow covered roads....

    sergio

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    Nokia is making some really good winter tires with spikes. Some are pretty cheap and some are really expensive. They greatly better your grip on ice and really hard packed snow.

  4. #4
    Siegfried
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    I'm looking for 16" spiked tires; I know this sounds crazy, but I need to make my tires as lightweight as possible, because the place where I'm going is really high and every extra pound counts double there.
    Thanks for any information you might have.
    Siegfried.

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    aka Sir MaddyX MadCat's Avatar
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    I got my winter studded tire at Mountain Equipment Co-op http://www.mec.ca . It's a Nokian. It only cost me 35$ Canadian or so. I only bought the one for the front because the rear doesn't need it as badly. I'm told that the tires people make themselves with wood screws or rivets wear down quickly.

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    Slow Moving Vehicle Jean Beetham Smith's Avatar
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    Why not put studded tire on rear?

    Since the rear wheet is the "power" wheel, I would think that would be the wheel that would need the studded tire the most, just like we always used to put chains on the rear wheels of our tractors. Speaking of chains, does anyone have a source?

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    Senior Member mike's Avatar
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    You can put studs on rear tires plus...

    Jean, you can put studs on your rear tire and you should.

    If you have to chose only one tire, then put the studed tire on the front. This is because you need the steering from the front the most to control and avoid sliding.

    However, without studs on the rear, the tail can tend to slide out from under you. A rear slide is easier to recover or crash from than the dreaded front slide. Rear slides hurt less than front slides too.

    Anyway, if anybody wants to experiment with studded tires before sinking big bucks into the real thing, you can make your own. See http://www.icebike.com for instructions.
    Mike

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    Chains?

    Where can I get some tire chains? I am planning on terrorizing a NorCal ski resort, anyone know of on that allows bikes? Thanks

    John

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    You might want to check out the Icebike site before running out to buy chains...
    <http://www.enteract.com/~icebike/Equipment/tirechains.htm>

    Especially the part where they talk about what happens when a front tire chain comes off unexpectedly. (Ooops...)

    My favorite winter tire is the Avocet Cross. No studs or knobbies, just a goofy inverted zig-zag tread that's always worked well for me in the snow (ice is a different story--you're better off with studs there). I run the 26 x 1.9 at about 20 psi. Great for commuting in the summer too. I'm on my third pair.

    Just my .02

    -M

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    I live in Alaska and I and for the most part everyone that I know use Nokia tires. The 296 tire is what I recommend. They are expensive but worth the money. This is my 3rd season on them and they look like new. If you only buy one tire make it the front. The only drawback is the weight on the tires but what can you expect with 295 studs in each tire.

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    I don't recommend making your own studded tires but rather purchase a set of Nokia 296 tires. They will last for many seasons and are wounderful on the ice. Believe me I live in Alaska and commute every day. If you would still like to make your own I do have plans and would gladly e-mail them to you.

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    IMHO - before investing in studded tires, give the 20 psi thing a try. Last year I went all winter (in mid michigan) with a pair of no name mountain bike tires at 20 psi (or less) - I didn't have any problems. But, I do skip glare ice days, not so much cause I'll go down, but more so, the run away cars.

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    Junior Member seer's Avatar
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    I made my own with the woodscrews once.
    They wore out way too fast, just turned out to be a waste of time. I'm sure there's better hardware out there to use for this though, I think i'll look into it more this year. Need some better ideas for preventing flats.
    Last edited by seer; 12-20-01 at 08:05 PM.

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    Slow Moving Vehicle Jean Beetham Smith's Avatar
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    Nokia Mount & Ground 144's get my vote for a great winter commuting tire. They are 26 x 1.9 and run at 30-45 psi. They are narrow enough to not be murder to ride on the clear stretchs of highway but have enough studds to keep you moving straight in 2 inches of slush & ice. They are loud, but not as loud as my home-made ones were. They aren't cheap, but they are worth it if you commute here in the lower 48.

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    Sumanitu taka owaci LittleBigMan's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Jean Beetham Smith
    ...but have enough studds to keep you moving straight in 2 inches of slush & ice.
    Jean (tongue planted in cheek), what is "slush" and "ice?" (Is that like "snow?")
    No worries

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    Member capkos's Avatar
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    Siegfried... Tires with 16" spikes will be quite heavy, and though they may be good on ice, they'll play havoc on blacktop.
    Drink shellac. It'll kill you, but MAN, WHAT A FINISH!!

    Phil

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    Additional sources of information and Nokian tires:
    www.allweathersports.com
    www.peterwhitecycles.com
    Recently I saw a reference to Nokians having been on sale at Peter White. Sorry I missed that, but the regular prices look very good.
    More advice I've seen but have yet to experience: use wide rims (Mavic T519/F519, Sun Rhyno or Rhyno Lite, etc) and low pressures, both help to make a bigger footprint.
    If you plan to commute in traffice on snow and ice, consider insurance: disability income, long term care and/or life. The car/bus/truck behind you may not have studded tires, may not even have much tread; may not have a driver who knows how to drive in winter weather, etc.
    Finally, note that even a tire with 296 studs may have four or fewer in contact with the ground at any moment, and if you hit the brakes on black ice on pavement, the wheel may lock with NO studs in contact!
    So maybe budget for a few key pieces of downhill body armor and a motorcycle helmet, too! I think I'll take the bus.

  18. #18
    Chicago Cyclist ViciousCycle's Avatar
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    If you're concerned about traction on icy/snowy/slushy roads, get a bike that's too small for you.

    I own a used Shogun mountain bike that is too short for me, even when the seat post is at its maximum safe height. If I start to fall one way or the other, it's easy to step my foot onto the pavement to balance myself. And if I'm going through a intersection with deep slush criss-crossing car tire tracks, I can put both feet on the ground and coax my bike along without having to dismount my bike.

    This bike is difficult to use when the pavement is dry. Pedalling fast on a short bike is hard on one's legs. But on snow, ice, and slush, one isn't going to be going that fast anyway.

    In winter condition, what seems to be the wrong bike may actually be the perfect bike.
    The Easter Island people were clever, but their civilization collapsed after they chopped down the last tree on their island. You can't be 'resourceful' if you've used up all of your resources.

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    I live in Missoula and have found lots of good stuff on www.icebike.com.

    Good Luck!

    Gavin


    I ride, I fall down, I get up.
    Meanwhile I keep dancing.

  20. #20
    Career Cyclist threadend's Avatar
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    Previous winters I've ridden WTB Velociraptors, great tires at 40 - 45 PSI for snow, I still run them on my MTB winter and summer.

    This year I switched the commuter bike to Nokian Hakepelita W106 26 x 1.75/1.9 studded tires at 60 - 65 PSI on the front and rear. These tires have an awesome tread for snow and 106 tungsten studs each plus they're skinny enough to cut through deep (6 inches more or less) snow. You should see what the studs do to dry cement or pavement, it's impressive!

    My biggest fear is I'm getting overconfident because of the performance of these tires in snow and on ice and I am going to get served my just deserts. I commute and am out there nearly everyday, I'm not ever going back to unstudded in the winter.
    2003 Iceman Challenge - 2:34:55 - 897 / 2,000*
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    I would suggest making your own....get a tire with some knobs and drill screws through the knobs. And for the tire liner use duct tape. Dont but manufactured tires because their too expensive. I just got in from rippin up the snow and my home made tires work great!

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    OK - I did respond earlier that I did OK with low pressure mountain bike tires, well this year I wanted to keep riding my fixed gear road bike, so I invested in the Nokian tires (Through MEC.CA as mentioned before). They are GREAT on snow and Ice. I had very few slips and I ride pretty hard. I put them on front and back. Through a winter of riding with them there seems to be very little wear - the studs are made of some tough stuff. The added benifit is the rolling resistance gives you some awsome winter training.

  23. #23
    Senior Member MeHT's Avatar
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    Here in Ottawa the Rideau canal is used as a skating rink in winter(the world's largest, afaik). Now I have this crazy idea: why not bike there? Will Nokia 106 be enough for bare ice?
    Prepare for the worst - that way any surprise will be a pleasant one.

  24. #24
    Se˝or Member Tom_The_Bikeman's Avatar
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    Joe,

    I've had a really good ride using the Nokian tires. (see http://www.nokiantyres.fi/bike/winter/index.html)

    Let me know if you'd like more info!

    ride carelessly,
    tt
    Last edited by Tom_The_Bikeman; 09-30-02 at 02:50 AM.

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    Senior Member tchazzard's Avatar
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    Hi; I played around on frozen lakes last year with Nokian Mount and Ground 160's. I was able to ride in figure 8's without a problem. So biking on a frozen canal should work great. Also, I like these tires as the studs do not come into contact with the road when riding straight, so less rolling resistence than other studded tires.

    Enjoy!

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