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Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

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Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby dave esmond » Mon Nov 23, 2009 9:57 am

Title pretty much says it all.

While I hear this winter is supposed to be a "mild" one we still live in Wisconsin. I'm sure there'll be ice eventually.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby Scotty » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:14 am

Wisconsin outlawed studs in tires about thirty years ago.

About the best you can do these days are winter tires. They are not cheap and you don't run them on the car all year, so you have the hassle of taking them on and off.

tirerack.com is a good resource for these.

I use them and they work much better than all season tires.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby Galoot » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:18 am

Scotty, I take it you didn't notice that this is the "bike issues" forum?

Dave, I've used Nokian Hakkepelita studded tires on my winter road bike for a few years now. Being a cheap-ass sort of galoot, I managed to buy a slightly used pair at a local bike shop.

I only put one on the front tire, and that works GREAT. I've commuted the 8 miles to East High in weather as cold as -10F, and I've never fallen down once in 3 years of winter commuting. The Nokians use carbide studs, which last many many times longer than the steel studs, making the Nokians worth the extra $$$.

They also don't slow you down much, as opposed to studded mtn bike tires. I tried those once, and it was painfully slow.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby dave esmond » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:26 am

Thanks Galoot.

Who sells used tires? Budget? There's not much of anything I don't like buying used as I'm kinda cheap too.

I wouldn't mind finding some good used summer tires that would normally be out of my price range either.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby Scotty » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:32 am

Sorry about that, a little early.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby rabble » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:34 am

Galoot wrote:I only put one on the front tire, and that works GREAT. I've commuted the 8 miles to East High in weather as cold as -10F, and I've never fallen down once in 3 years of winter commuting.

Wow. It never occurred to me that studding only one tire would be enough. And the front one is so much easier to switch. :-)

What have you got for tread on the back?
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby dave esmond » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:35 am

Scotty wrote:Sorry about that, a little early.


It's all good.

I've used tirerack for car tires in the past and had a very good experience.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby robbie webber » Mon Nov 23, 2009 1:24 pm

The reason for only putting a studded tire on the front is that the front tire slipping is what will get you in trouble. If the back slips, you just put your foot down. If the front slips, you fall on your ass, hard. (That's for the people reading that aren't already experienced commuters/mt bikers.) I've never switched out the back tire.

I did find that the studded tires slowed me down, but I'm not much of a speed demon anyway. Some people get a second front wheel, so they can leave a regular tire on one and put the studded tire on the other. If we have a long stretch with no snow, you can ride without the studs without needing to change the tire again.

Changing a tire is generally not a big deal, but those Nokians are stiff as hell, and getting the damned thing on the rim wasn't easy. Not something I'd want to do more than necessary, so once the studded tires go on, they stay on until spring, hence the extra wheel.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby TAsunder » Mon Nov 23, 2009 1:27 pm

Are there any ordinances restricting where you can ride a bike with studded tires? I assume not but wanted to ask before I start seriously considering it. Now that I have a light with enough candle power to light up all of Asia I figure I should think about biking in the winter more so that I can really enjoy the thing.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby robbie webber » Mon Nov 23, 2009 1:36 pm

TAsunder wrote:Are there any ordinances restricting where you can ride a bike with studded tires?


Not to my knowledge. The damage from a bike tire - even one with studs - just isn't enough for cities or the DNR to worry about. They probably would chew up the wooden bridges on trails, but since the snowmobiles with studded treads are doing such a good job, I can't imagine the bikes are a concern.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby HOMOsapien » Mon Nov 23, 2009 1:54 pm

If you simply need a get-around-town set of winter tires, go with Nokian's "Mount & Ground 160" or "Hakkapelitta W240." I ride a set of Hakkapelittas.

http://www.suomityres.fi/w160.html

http://www.suomityres.fi/w240.html

If you want better cornering capabilities on snow and ice, a set of tires will need a tread pattern that locates (some) studs closer to the tire's side walls. Nokian makes a tire called the "Extreme 294" that exibits this design. There is a trade off; these tires weigh a lot.

http://www.suomityres.fi/ext294.html
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby HOMOsapien » Mon Nov 23, 2009 1:54 pm

...
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby HOMOsapien » Mon Nov 23, 2009 2:04 pm

I agree with the cost saving measure of only riding a studded tire in front. For most people this will do. But, you will sacrifice quick stopping capabilities with this configuration. Try breaking on ice without studs on the rear tire. Black ice is real.

If you have to keep your costs down but really, really, want better performance... Find a pair of lightweight used tires and install your own studs, IE sharp screws.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby dave esmond » Mon Nov 23, 2009 2:34 pm

Thanks everyone.

I'd probably go with studs on front and back as I can see some real benefit to having the drive wheel not spinning on ice too.

Since I need 700c tires it looks like there's not quite as many options, but there's still plenty.

TAsunder wrote:Now that I have a light with enough candle power to light up all of Asia...


*Thread drift*

I just picked up a Planet Bike 2W Blaze. Damn is that thing bright. Pretty amazing what 2 AA batteries can power these days.

Again thanks everyone.
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Re: Studded Tires...anyone with experience?

Postby HOMOsapien » Mon Nov 23, 2009 5:31 pm

Will you be riding a bike that is exclusively for winter conditions, or, will you be installing the tires on your do-everything-bike? If you are using a do-everything-bike, reconfigurations might cost you if we do have a mild winter.

The reason I ask is because, Robbie is correct. Friction will increase depending on how many studs are in contact with the pavement. More knobs and studs = more friction; less knobs and studs = less friction. On ice, you want more friction. On pavement, you want less friction. City riders face both. If you are accustomed to riding on, lets say 28c – 35c slicks on dry pavement, you would immediately notice the increase in friction posed by the 40c studded Hakkapelittas (a 700c option).

Don't forget; if you choose more studs, and more friction, this will effect peddling force, IE you will have to gear lower in order to keep your cadence up. I point this out because, if you're riding a single speed, this matters.
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