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Old 07-21-2006, 08:33 PM   #1
spegull03
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Default the mid summer snow tire thread!

I want to buy some snows for my dracos, and im looking on ebay and found some Nokian HakkapeliittaQ's in 15". I remember reading somewhere that nokian makes some pretty decent snows. anyways, they have a few different sizes available and im not sure the best size for my car.

should i go 195/55/r15? 185/55/r15? wider? narrower? taller? shorter?

what are some of you guys running, and how do you like the tires?


and how would these work for the occasional rallycross :D
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Old 07-21-2006, 09:58 PM   #2
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You get better ice traction with a wider tire because more surface to grip. But then you get better snow traction with a thinner tire that digs through the snow with more weight per area. I'd go with a 195 width...probably a 60 ratio if I could find it. In all the rallies I do, the best guys are running hakka's....I'm planning on getting some myself for this winter.

As for rallycrosses...any snow tire will work a lot better than an all season, but they get torn up pretty quickly. When I ran my motomaster winter trac tires in a rallyX, they sure took a beating. MUCH better grip though. I have gravels now. the inch-thick sidewalls inspire a lot more confidence and make the car handle a lot better. but its cheaper to go the snowtire route to a point....until you're tearing up a new set of snow tires every year. anyways, good luck with it and have fun,

Nate
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Old 07-21-2006, 10:08 PM   #3
spegull03
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unggthat
You get better ice traction with a wider tire because more surface to grip. But then you get better snow traction with a thinner tire that digs through the snow with more weight per area. I'd go with a 195 width...probably a 60 ratio if I could find it. In all the rallies I do, the best guys are running hakka's....I'm planning on getting some myself for this winter.

As for rallycrosses...any snow tire will work a lot better than an all season, but they get torn up pretty quickly. When I ran my motomaster winter trac tires in a rallyX, they sure took a beating. MUCH better grip though. I have gravels now. the inch-thick sidewalls inspire a lot more confidence and make the car handle a lot better. but its cheaper to go the snowtire route to a point....until you're tearing up a new set of snow tires every year. anyways, good luck with it and have fun,

Nate
it looks like there are a few different haaka's. the Q's, 1's, and 2's i think... are they all pretty comparable, just newer or something?
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Old 07-22-2006, 03:12 AM   #4
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RSI, period.
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Old 07-22-2006, 06:14 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spegull03
I want to buy some snows for my dracos, and im looking on ebay and found some Nokian HakkapeliittaQ's in 15". I remember reading somewhere that nokian makes some pretty decent snows. anyways, they have a few different sizes available and im not sure the best size for my car.

should i go 195/55/r15? 185/55/r15? wider? narrower? taller? shorter?

what are some of you guys running, and how do you like the tires?


and how would these work for the occasional rallycross :D
185/65-15 is the way to go.
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Old 07-22-2006, 06:57 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Chigga 744SE
RSI, period.
yea, i have no idea what that is :(
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Old 07-22-2006, 10:06 PM   #7
Chigga 744SE
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http://www.nokianrsi.com/

its probally better than all those $500/pop Micheline/Pirelli ish, I had a set on my 540, I could drive it to ski resort with 1ft of snow, I could go thru my fav on ramps at pretty darn good speed.

for reference, I paid $1200 Cdn for a set of 235/45/17, you should be able to get it cheaper in the states.
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Old 07-24-2006, 08:15 AM   #8
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Buying snow tires is now like buying summer tires. There are lots of niches and lots of choices in the niches. The general groupings I have seen as I have editted the Snow Tire FAQ (http://www.snowtire.info) are
  • Studded - Snow & Ice. Best solution for ice, but can be loud and not allowed in some states.
  • Studless (Friction) - often sold as Ice Tires. These tend to be great on glare ice, but not so great in deep snow.
  • Touring (high speed, unstudded) - Good compromise if you only see occassional snow and little ice
  • Slow crawl (deep/heavy snow) - these are the old style, big luggy treads. Great if you need to grind through deep/heavy snow, but not good on the highway.

For rally cross, you want a dirt or gravel tire, not a snow tire. The snow tire might be better then a summer tire, but a tire designed for dirt or gravel will work the best.

Before you pick a snow tire, you need to look and decide what your values are. When I am running rallies, cost is secondary, performance is primary, and if I can run studs, I will. For my wife's car, I preffer something that is quieter and a better all round tire.

Quote:
Originally Posted by spegull03
it looks like there are a few different haaka's. the Q's, 1's, and 2's i think... are they all pretty comparable, just newer or something?
They are all different. The Hakka-1, 2, 4, (and 5) are all studded snow tires. Their primary source of ice traction comes from studs. The Hakka-1 is about 10 years old. The 2 replaced the 1. (The 1 replaced the 10, the 10 replaced the 9, the 9 replaced the 8..... I've been using Hakkas for a while.) The Hakka 2 and 4 are the quietest snow tires I have ever tested (and I have tested about 16 tires in the last 6 years). The studded Hakka 4 has the best ice traction of any street tire I have driven.

The Hakka WR, NRW are "all-year" snow tires. They provide very good snow performance, but can stand up to year round usage. BTW, in Germany, these three were marketted as Autobahn snow tires.

The Q, and RSI are non-studded, friction tires. They get their ice grip primarily from the rubber (tread compound) itself.


Havng said all that, I really encourage you to take a look at the reviews found on the Snow Tire FAQ and to read the Snow Tire FAQ Forum (http://www.snowtire.info/forum). In the forum you will find input from other drivers and the latest results from The Real World Snow Tire Tests. This past year we tested the Nokian RSI, Nokian 4, Vredestein SnowTrac 2, and the Green Diamond Icelanders.

BTW, Check out this http://www.hakkapeliitta5.com/.

- John
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Old 07-24-2006, 08:16 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastmoving?
185/65-15 is the way to go.
Yes. Although I have been finding 195/60R15 is more available these days and not too much of a tradeoff.
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Old 07-24-2006, 09:14 AM   #10
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For the low budget options, Tire Rack sold Winterfire, and now Winterforce (Firestone with no name on them). They absolutely suck in the dry, have awful sidewalls, etc. BUT are very good in the snow and decent on ice. Also pretty good in the driving rain. About $50 ea.

Best compromise (in my opinion) for dry performance/cost/snow traction is the Dunlop SP Winter Sport M3. About $100 ea.
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:35 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikep
Best compromise (in my opinion) for dry performance/cost/snow traction is the Dunlop SP Winter Sport M3. About $100 ea.
I'm driving to SE on an older pair of M2's. They drove well and handled nice for snow tires. Had plenty of tread, so obviously snow traction was fine.

Gislaved Nordfrost II were my first pair of snow tires. Absolutely amazing in snow up to about 5-6" with an open diff and the front end floating. Never got stuck, never got close to getting stuck. But they've got really soft sidewalls and square corners so I didn't use them on the front. I ran the pressure a little high to compensate for the squirm, and wore out the middle of the tread faster than the edges. Still got at least 4 seasons from them (~dec-mar), plus a summer on the back of my daily driver.
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Old 07-24-2006, 07:42 PM   #12
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I had a set of Gislaved Nordfrost II and thought they were pretty good.

I hear the Nordfrost III's are quite different and not liked by most.
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:21 PM   #13
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I have Blizzak WS-50s and they are awesome. Very agressive tread.
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Old 07-25-2006, 06:55 PM   #14
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Default snow tires

How about clarifying what you are looking for in a snow tire? Do you want awesome snow and ice performance but don't mind giving up dry performance for that? Do you want very good dry performance but still want the advantage of a real snow tire? You can have your cake and ice cream when you buy what you are looking for in snow tires.

For myself I wanted very good dry performance with the advantage of being a real snow tire. So I've bought Michelin Pilot Alpin 205/60-15H snow tires. They are great tires in the dry but when the snow comes you are ready. They aren't quite as good as the Bridgestone Blizzaks I've used in the snow but the Bridgestones don't drive quite as well in the dry. Since most of my winter driving is on asphalt not snow I like the Michelins better.

I've used Pirelli Wintersport 210, Bridgestone Blizzaks, and the Michelin Pilot Alpin. The Blizzaks were the best snow tires but the worst dry tire. The Michelin and the Pirelli were great in the dry but still very good in the snow. I like the Michelin and the Pirelli better in the rain.

Having H rated sport snow tires has been an excellent safety upgrade for driving in the winter over using all season tires like most folks here use.
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Old 07-25-2006, 08:16 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlot
How about clarifying what you are looking for in a snow tire? Do you want awesome snow and ice performance but don't mind giving up dry performance for that? Do you want very good dry performance but still want the advantage of a real snow tire? You can have your cake and ice cream when you buy what you are looking for in snow tires.

For myself I wanted very good dry performance with the advantage of being a real snow tire. So I've bought Michelin Pilot Alpin 205/60-15H snow tires. They are great tires in the dry but when the snow comes you are ready. They aren't quite as good as the Bridgestone Blizzaks I've used in the snow but the Bridgestones don't drive quite as well in the dry. Since most of my winter driving is on asphalt not snow I like the Michelins better.

I've used Pirelli Wintersport 210, Bridgestone Blizzaks, and the Michelin Pilot Alpin. The Blizzaks were the best snow tires but the worst dry tire. The Michelin and the Pirelli were great in the dry but still very good in the snow. I like the Michelin and the Pirelli better in the rain.

Having H rated sport snow tires has been an excellent safety upgrade for driving in the winter over using all season tires like most folks here use.
I have a mustang for dry performance, so i dont really need a good dry tire for the volvo. I would like to take the volvo to Tahoe and the mountains around chico in the winter, so i was thinking of a dedicated snow tire. I also dont want to be switching from studded tires to non studded tires, or run studded tires all winter. most winter driving wont be in heavy storms, just light stuff. but i am aware that a light storm can quickly become a heavy one. so i guess im looking for a 185/65/r15 in a studless winter specific tire.
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Old 07-26-2006, 01:04 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spegull03
I have a mustang for dry performance, so i dont really need a good dry tire for the volvo. I would like to take the volvo to Tahoe and the mountains around chico in the winter, so i was thinking of a dedicated snow tire. I also dont want to be switching from studded tires to non studded tires, or run studded tires all winter. most winter driving wont be in heavy storms, just light stuff. but i am aware that a light storm can quickly become a heavy one. so i guess im looking for a 185/65/r15 in a studless winter specific tire.
Sounds like you would lean toward something like the Blizzaks then from reading your post. The tire industry is using some new fangled snowflake rating on the tires now to show superior ice and snow performance. Sounds like something that would work well in the conditions you describe.
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