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Ice traction; snow tires vs. chains

Discussion in 'Wheels / Suspension / Tires / Brakes' started by K2e2vin, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. K2e2vin

    K2e2vin Senior Member

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    I currently have Altimax Arctic tires on my Subaru, but they are not studded. On ice, would it be best to just leave them as-is or would tire chains help out.

    For those wondering, I bought the tires used(though they look pretty new, bought it from a couple that moved down from VT or somewhere around there), and here we do not get much snow but if we do, we usually get ice too(or just straight up ice). I got them mainly for traveling in the mountains(which is >3hrs away on "normal" dry roads to reach; I'd imagine that would be havoc on studded tires).
  2. E_SolSi

    E_SolSi Member of the 20 nut club Moderator

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    if you are really dealing with ice then you are going to want chains... snow tires are meant for exactly what their name implies... snow... for ice you will need something that can chew into the ice in order to get traction
  3. Briansol

    Briansol Admins Admin

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    studded snow tires are banned in a lot of states now. it's antiquated technology, really. chain up for icey stuff.
    reg snows will suffice for anything else
  4. K2e2vin

    K2e2vin Senior Member

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    Thanks guys. Though, too late, started sleeting already. lol!

    Are there any preferred brands of chains?
  5. TurboMirage

    TurboMirage Finally boostin'

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  6. K2e2vin

    K2e2vin Senior Member

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    good one! lol. I'm talking about a simple chain design vs one like Thule's.
  7. newb

    newb phresh

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    I love cables. My dad was a long haul truck driver for like 20 some years, so he taught me to unravel and untangle, then throw his chains at an early age lol. I always used chains on my own stuff too. Then I picked up some generic cables for the old ladies car just to try em out. Theyre a lot less hassle. Pretty much just pull em outa the bag and throw em over the tire. Been using the same cheap set for 3 years and gettin ready to use em for a 4th.
  8. Celerity

    Celerity Well-Known Member

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    I'm gonna bring this thread back.

    I've been searching for a snow vehicle for this winter, but with the "Buy a house for cash" project currently underway, I seriously have been eating ramen and drinking water for like 8 months now.

    I got a set of snows for the BMW (Blizzaks) and have NOTHING for the Mustang (Baloney skins).

    the Mustang only goes around town, never above 45 mph, and never for more than a 10 minute ride to the grocery store about once a week. So I'm not worried about it.

    the BMW must drive 130 miles each way for work, on the highway.

    Both cars are one-legged, and the worst part of my rides is my own driveway (It's shared, narrow, and right on a main road where the plow just buries it in). Last year my wife and I just stayed home in the snow (We would get a week's supplies and just hang out on the homefront for a few days. I only go to my office in CT when I want to)

    so this year I'm thinking of passing up the $1000-$2000 trucks I've been finding and going after a set of chains for each car.

    the BMW must have chains that are quickly deployable. I drive it, so complex isn't a problem.

    My wife has to have a set that's easy to deploy, not necessarily quick. Neither have to be particularly high speed (I'm aware that the top speed of a chained car is about 25 mph).

    So I could go to CT for a few days and leave my wife with a fully chained Mustang that could get her all the way to the grocery store and whatnot, but my chains have to transition from "Out of the driveway" to "Ready for a 130 mile trip on the highway" in a moment. Again, I only need my chains for 30 feet of steep driveway. Then I'm good to go.


    I see that Michelin offers a rope solution for a ton of money, and Thule offers this ... I dunno, Contraption for a ton of money and there are new developments in cable setups too. Anyone got any advice ?
  9. Briansol

    Briansol Admins Admin

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    Honestly, traction isn't really an issue with the bmw. it's TCS is really good. throw 100 lbs in the trunk and you'll be fine with snows.
    its really the depth and low clearace that make it useless.
  10. Celerity

    Celerity Well-Known Member

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    A few weeks ago, after a brief rain, I got stuck in my driveway because I was parked with one wheel on the grass. I had to rock it out.

    I'm worried.
  11. Celerity

    Celerity Well-Known Member

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    You had LSD no ?
  12. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member

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    <p>This is the first time I'm actually looking forward to snow for the first time now that I have my S4. The traction it has is ridiculous.</p>
  13. K2e2vin

    K2e2vin Senior Member

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    Same here. A couple of friends are going up to the Snowshoe, WV in late December and the caravan currently consists of a Legacy GT, S4, Fusion AWD, and possibly a late-model WRX and Toyota Tundra(not sure of the years). None of our cars have seen "real" snow(non-plowed roads). Besides the truck and my LGT, I believe the other cars will be wearing regular all-seasons.

    The Michelin and Thule systems look very nice but yeah, that's a lot of money. A DIY alternative is to buy cheap-ass tires and run bolts through them like some of the ice racers, etc. but I'm not sure how that will fare in regular snow. Then, there's always Craigslist.
  14. Briansol

    Briansol Admins Admin

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    mine did but i never used the m3 in the winter.


    bill's 328is didn't, and he was fine too

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