PDA

View Full Version : Studded Tire Recommendations



Ridge Wrecker
December 12th, 2007, 08:45 PM
Anyone have any recommendations on studded tires? Thinking about attempting to get into winter riding this year. I don't want to go crazy expensive because I'm not sure if I'm going to stick with this.

Also, do studded tires really make that big of a difference riding in snow? Or are they really only helpful on ice?

Jisch
December 12th, 2007, 09:06 PM
They only help for ice not on snow. There's some discussion on whether or a wide or narrow tire is better for snow (i.e. float on top or cut through) Personally I like a wide tire, but its really dependent on the snow.

Anyway, I have a set of home made studded tires, they're heavier than the commercial versions. On a really icy day in the woods or on a frozen lake its so much fun, its criminal. Making a set is time consuming, I have made 2 sets, so I've made my mistakes and can help you out if you want to go down that road.

Now is it worth $100 a tire (generally Nokians are considered the best ones out there) for that? I dunno. Those tires will last a long time though, like 5 years or more. I can tell you that if you don't like it, you will have no problem selling them.

John

fisherking
December 12th, 2007, 11:55 PM
I love my Nokian 294's since I got them. They work great on the icy stuff and are agressive enough for the light snow and such too. And like J said, especially early in the season you will be able to sell them if you bag it pretty easily. Ebay has a few sets for about 160 new.

Good luck and have fun!!

Mike

bikerdom
December 13th, 2007, 05:35 AM
Nokian Extreme 294's are great. I've had the 296's for years now and they work great. Important that you seat the studs on a paved surface for a least 10 miles. The Extremes have a very good tread design for non-icy surfaces also. The problem with home made is they loose the studs easier. Nokians don't come cheap but resale is easy because they're the best.

dabedob
December 13th, 2007, 07:20 AM
Anyone have any recommendations on studded tires? Thinking about attempting to get into winter riding this year. I don't want to go crazy expensive because I'm not sure if I'm going to stick with this.

Also, do studded tires really make that big of a difference riding in snow? Or are they really only helpful on ice?


If you visit www.universalcycles.com they have a good variety of studded tires. But I have to agree that the Nokians have the best rating and you get what you pay for.

splat
December 13th, 2007, 08:26 AM
I have a set of nokian 296's They are awesome. before that I got a set of IRC Sno-Mads off of ebay for $60 ( 260 Studs per tire ) they were good , but not as good as the Nokians.

when and if you get a set , go to the nearest skating pond and have fun!! it is a blast!


The problem with home made is they loose the studs easier.

I don't know about that . I have a set of Home made, ( using 110 sheet metal screws per tire ) and I have not lost one, and to lose a stud would mean ripping it through the tire and I really don't see that happening

radair
December 13th, 2007, 08:47 AM
...I have to agree that the Nokians have the best rating and you get what you pay for.
Carbide studs are pretty key. Steel studs will dull out relatively quickly if you ride on any pavement or rock, which seems inevitable.

MTBME
December 13th, 2007, 01:56 PM
Several years ago I bought a couple of studded tires from Bike Nashbar for about 30 to 40 dollars each. I don't remember exactly right now. I have ridden on icy ponds with them and have never gone down. So you can spend more for studded tires but there are some deals out there.

Slider
December 13th, 2007, 02:06 PM
I've never run studded tires, and have ridden through every winter for 18 years. There have been maybe five occasions in that whole time that I missed the studs. By far, most of the time, I have to listen to my ride buds complain that they didn't need the studs and it was a mistake to use them.

They have a big downside - weight, right where you want it least, in the rotating mass. The other downside is in some conditions, where they cut through crust you'd otherwise be happily riding over.

If you buy them, expect to need them less than twice per year, and most likely not even that.

Slider

hogboy
December 13th, 2007, 02:09 PM
I've never run studded tires, and have ridden through every winter for 18 years. There have been maybe five occasions in that whole time that I missed the studs. By far, most of the time, I have to listen to my ride buds complain that they didn't need the studs and it was a mistake to use them.

They have a big downside - weight, right where you want it least, in the rotating mass. The other downside is in some conditions, where they cut through crust you'd otherwise be happily riding over.

If you buy them, expect to need them less than twice per year, and most likely not even that.

Slider

studded tires do not break through the crust any more than regular tires. if it's gonna break it's gonna break.


the upside of studded tires is seeking out and riding glare ice. nothing better than riding far out on spy pond or concord river or doing laps and having lots of control. or bombing things like the PR and encountering 40 feet if the bridge-too-far glacier. no studs, you are walking that, and having a hard time. studs, ride as though it was summer.

DT
December 13th, 2007, 03:05 PM
studded tires do not break through the crust any more than regular tires. if it's gonna break it's gonna break.


the upside of studded tires is seeking out and riding glare ice. nothing better than riding far out on spy pond or concord river or doing laps and having lots of control. or bombing things like the PR and encountering 40 feet if the bridge-too-far glacier. no studs, you are walking that, and having a hard time. studs, ride as though it was summer.

Sounds like somebody wants to do some snow riding in the PR!

Ridge Wrecker
December 13th, 2007, 09:46 PM
I've heard that the Nokians are the best but also quite pricey. I was mostly thinking of riding some packed down snowmobile trails and not so much soft snow. I'm guessing that I won't encounter a whole lot of ice on that type of terrain but I dunno?

I may be better off getting a fatter set of tires instead.

Thanx for the suggestions.

hogboy
December 14th, 2007, 08:23 AM
nokians are pricey but they will last an extremely long time. no matter what you get, make sure it has carbide studs. any old stud will wear out, but carbide lasts the longest. it will outlive the rubber on the tire. I have ancient nokian 296's and they still work awesome. riding on pavement doesn't seem to affect them at all

splat
December 14th, 2007, 08:37 AM
Also if you lock up your rear brake on the driveway with them and there is no ice , you will leave permanent marks in your driveway.

Superbman
December 14th, 2007, 09:04 AM
I've heard that the Nokians are the best but also quite pricey. I was mostly thinking of riding some packed down snowmobile trails and not so much soft snow. I'm guessing that I won't encounter a whole lot of ice on that type of terrain but I dunno?

I may be better off getting a fatter set of tires instead.

Thanx for the suggestions.

Ridge,

Depends where and when you ride-if you rode the plains earlier this week-studs would not have been optional. But if you ride tonight in the coke plant, deerfield, toby etc you'd want wider non-studded tires run at a very low air pressure (like 20 psi-don't worry-you won't flat-13 inches of snow has a way of taking the sharp edges off a trail).

I'm with splat on this-over the last 5 years of snow riding-there has only been 5-6 days where studs would have been a life-saver. But by and large, wide, soft and floaty was the better call. I did have have a set of schwalbe ice-spikers for a season-but once the snow got deep, or worse, soft and grabby they were a nightmare (and they weighed like 950 grams for a 1.9 inch tire!).

If you do get a set of studs-just be prepared to switch them on and off your wheels as conditions demand (afterall-changing tires isn't all that hard esp if you're running tubes)--that's the solution I always toy with.

The Nokians are superior though I understand Schwalbe now makes a lighter version of the ice spiker with carbide studs. I'm really interested in using the nokian Freddy's Revenge Lite (a 2.3) studded tire-might run the gammut of good tire choice. There is a studded nokian folding bead that weighs under 700 grams as well.

Tough call-but most people in these parts run regular tires and do fine-the extra hip-saving security of studded tires certainly makes some sense too.
Liam

Jisch
December 14th, 2007, 09:47 AM
I agree that there are rare opportunities to use studded tires. That said, when the perfect conditions come around, its amazing. Those conditions are rare - twice a year maybe.

I put the studded tires on my back up bike and I'm ready to go when it comes around. I see the claw marks on the rocks from folks who run them constantly once winter comes, its really the wrong tool for 'normal' conditions.

Don't discount running low pressure - I've been on rides where taking 10 psi out was the difference between sinking and floating.

John

John

AA
December 14th, 2007, 09:49 AM
As stated before, studs really shine when it is icy, if you are riding packed snow tire volume not studs are your friend. That being said I like to have studs available. We get lots of changable weather here in New England and many of the places I ride in the winter get ice flows (due to water bubbling out of the ground). Regarding the tire weight issue, personally I dont care about it. Face it we all gain weight in the winter, you have a whole bunch of clothes on making you feel like the Michelin Man and the snow makes the riding slower anyway. Think of it as training.

bikerdom
December 14th, 2007, 10:04 AM
I think it might matter where you live. I live in the Lakes region in NH and I ride slippery icy trails. There's many times where I hit ice under the snow cover that is unseen. I also ride lots of lakes, ponds and rivers where I can. So over the many years I've found it's better to have studs than not...at least where I ride.
Some riders with great skill levels can ride on any type of tire in any condition. Trial and error seems to be the cyclist way. What works for you is always best. But not trying studded tires might be a mistake. You'll know soon enough after a couple winter rides if you need them or not. Have fun.

Jisch
December 14th, 2007, 10:52 AM
I've never run studded tires, and have ridden through every winter for 18 years. There have been maybe five occasions in that whole time that I missed the studs. ...

You had to know this pic was going to show up (Slider is in green - I have to assume this is one of the five times he missed studs):
http://i33.photobucket.com/albums/d91/Jisch/jrpr0003.jpg

Proof to my wimp-ness - I walked this section... And yes, I asked everyone to remain in the position they were in when I came around the corner while I got the camera out.

radair
December 14th, 2007, 12:10 PM
I think it might matter where you live...
I agree. While I have ridden some winters in the past without studded tires (and tried to avoid ice), since going to Nokians we tend to seek it out. Whether riding the lakes or riding ice bulges, studs make things much more interesting and fun.

Slappy
December 14th, 2007, 01:04 PM
Awesome pics! :rad:

Aging Wannabee
December 14th, 2007, 02:00 PM
I have a pair of the cheapies and the only complaint I have is that they are tough to put on & take off. Once they're on, they stay on for the season.

I don't think they are as good as the Nokians, but I wouldn't know for sure. I do know they were a pretty inexpensive way to keep riding all winter.

splat
December 14th, 2007, 02:15 PM
SO much fun to hit up a lake , and the kids absolutely love being dragged behind

http://i20.photobucket.com/albums/b227/jgoeller/vietnam/feb/img_9132.jpg

Chris_T
December 14th, 2007, 02:36 PM
I have a pair of the cheapies and the only complaint I have is that they are tough to put on & take off. Once they're on, they stay on for the season.

I don't think they are as good as the Nokians, but I wouldn't know for sure. I do know they were a pretty inexpensive way to keep riding all winter.

My Nokians were a beyotch and a half to mount on my old Bontrager rims. I drew blood more than once and had to resort to soapy water to get them on last time. I went through the last two winters praying for no flats.

Now, on my new Mavic Crossrides they are MUCH easier to mount and dismount. So it's not just the tires but the rims that might be at fault.

Going to Google reveals that Nokian Extremes can be had for as little as $60 each. Well worth it IMHO - they still look new after 2 winters.

-C

radair
December 14th, 2007, 09:31 PM
SO much fun to hit up a lake , and the kids absolutely love being dragged behind [/IMG]
Aye, I've run into the hazards of pulling sleds a couple times. Very fun though!

splat
December 15th, 2007, 07:48 AM
Aye, I've run into the hazards of pulling sleds a couple times. Very fun though!


Yep. I've done that too!!

dabedob
December 15th, 2007, 09:26 AM
With all the talk about studded vs wide going on there is not any mention of any manufactures for wide tires. Nokian is the name to have for studded, what about wide? Is there a tire that is better than all the rest for riding in the snow that is good and wide?

Jisch
December 15th, 2007, 02:50 PM
I have run 2.3 Tioga DH tires most years at 20 psi. Last year I was on a ride where Slider was staying on top of the crust and I kept crashing through. I dropped 10 psi from my tire and I could ride on top.

Take a look at that Pugsley in the bikes for sale section. I think you start getting to some 'real' tires on that thing.

John

radair
December 16th, 2007, 10:02 AM
You would have to go to somthing like an atv tire to get any type of floatation and even then it would be barely noticable...
This is not my experience at all. A few psi can make a huge difference in soft or marginal conditions. Do a search for some of Mike Curiak's & Pat Irwin's Iditabike stories; those guys constantly adjust tire pressure to suit conditions.

I was in Moab this fall and one of the rides ended on a long sandy stretch. The local guy I was riding with suggested we drop tire pressure to 10 psi or less, almost like riding on flat tires. Instantly the sand went from being unrideable to easily manageable.

C.P.
December 18th, 2007, 08:49 AM
Slicing through deep snow on a bicycle is difficult with the amount of horsepower a human develops, (vs a WRC car) mostly because when turning, the front tire pulls snow up the rim, and it becomes almost impossible to keep forward momentum. I'm with radair on this one, wider is better for deep snow - ride on top, The advent of super wide tired bikes like ones found on the Surly Pugsley (http://www.surlybikes.com/pugsley.html) and other similar set-ups took what works, and applied it to their designs. Now there's the Ktrak (https://www.ktrakcycle.com/index.html), kit, which looks interesting, but jury is still out as to it's ability to work in deep snow...

Nokian and other studded bicycle tires are not purpose made to ride in snow, they are purpose made for riding in icy conditions (snow optional). They are narrow (mostly) by design so that the tire lugs/knobbies with stud's in the contact patch, focus rider weight to dig each & every stud into the ice.
There will always be a point at which the snow conditions will be iffy or just so mixed on any given ride, so it's difficult to say what single set up is the best...like the Old Coot has always said, every biker comes with a hiker...and there's always a point at which the bike get's put away and the skis, snow-shoes etc come out to play...

sportcult
December 19th, 2007, 10:00 AM
Two setups I've recently tried:

Big Gazzi 3.0's - work great in loose snow, float and grip well. About as effective as bedroom slippers on ice, though.
http://www.pullpedalpaddle.com/Images/bikepron/gazzi.jpg


Then I tried some chains that were festering in a dusty forgotten bin at the local shop. They work really well on the crusty slick conditions we have now. Can't make the rear tire lock up if I try! On pure sheet ice, they feel about the same as studs, you can still wipe if you aren't careful. They have awesome climbing and descending traction.
http://www.pullpedalpaddle.com/Images/bikepron/chained.jpg
http://www.pullpedalpaddle.com/Images/bikepron/chains.jpg

Jisch
December 19th, 2007, 10:05 AM
Thats a blast from the past! My brother used to run a set of those tire chains. They were very heavy and a real pain to set up with rim brakes, I also recall some tire wobble due to them being unbalanced if he wasn't careful.

John

sportcult
December 19th, 2007, 10:13 AM
They're lighter than most studded tires, if you use them with an light xc tire. They add about 250g per tire. I thought they were pretty easy to setup...

Obviously they "rumble" a bit on hard ice or pavement, but it actually sort of inspires confidence.

We'll see how they fare on some longer rides and more challenging terrain...

errollthin
December 21st, 2007, 09:10 PM
those look awesome!

Muddawg
December 21st, 2007, 09:51 PM
I WANT. haha =]

C.P.
December 21st, 2007, 10:05 PM
Giddyup! (http://cgi.ebay.com/Mountain-Bike-Tire-Chains-NEW_W0QQitemZ120199319394QQihZ002QQcategoryZ42317Q QssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem)

splat
December 21st, 2007, 11:45 PM
I have 2 sets of those ( one set is broken )

Jisch
December 22nd, 2007, 11:56 AM
Not great. I think someone up above stated it best - studs are great for ice-specific rides. I think if you're on a regular ride, they are just not worth the weight. Its great when the ground is covered in ice or you're out on a frozen lake. If its just a regular ride with a little ice here and there, I'll go for my widest tires. I see a lot of stud scrapes on the rocks and I've been behind folks who slipped on the studs while I had no problem with just rubber.

John

bikerdom
December 22nd, 2007, 02:49 PM
On bare ground/rock/roots the Nokian Extremes aren't that bad. They're better than some non-studded tires I've tried on bare surfaces. I've hit ice without studs and slipped and slipped. I've done less slipping on bare rocks with studded 296 Extremes than non-studded tires on ice. And the likewise for staying upright and on the bike instead of all over the place slipping and falling. I like the safety net of studs. Trial and error will dictate what works for you but give both types for tires a chance and see for yourself.