View Full Version : Rubber snow chains?
February 26th, 2006, 02:48 AM
OK. I finally got sick of doing bus trips all the time and have deciced to start driving to the snow on my days off.
I`ve been looking at snow tires and chains. Seems expensive.
Do snow tires only work for a couple of years after which time they loose there grippyness? Or is that just a marketing rumour?
The cheaper alternative they have here in Japan is these really funky rubber snow chains which are supposedly OK to use with normal tires on the snow.
Anyone had any expirence with rubber snow chains?
Any other helpfull hints for a first time driver in the snow?:o
February 26th, 2006, 05:31 AM
Snow tires do wear out faster because they are made of softer (and thus grippier) rubber. I've gotten two seasons out of mine so far, and I think I may be looking at a new set next fall. It is definitley a worthwhile investment though. The traction on snow and ice can't be beat by anything less than a set of studded tires. Never heard of the rubber "chains" but I have Yak-Trax for my shoes http://yaktrax.com/ if they're anything like these, then be careful because they also break fairly easily, but I suppose if you were going to use them, you'd take them off before driving on snowless pavement. I defintley reccomend the snow tires though.
VAPORIZER WIKI (http://vaporizerwiki.com)
February 26th, 2006, 09:23 AM
I ordered some chains for my truck-"Super Z Lt"-they look like the Yak-traks 'cept they go on the truck tires....very easy-steezy to put on, about 5 minutes each tire(go on the drive tires, BTW)...
Have you driven on snow at all?
I'd definitely get some experience before you throw in mountains and dodging tour buses :smashfrea
February 26th, 2006, 12:47 PM
easiest thing is to get some snow tires with studs, nokian hakapalitas(sp?) are like crampons for your car. that way you don';t have to worry about getting all wet and snowy putting chains on and can get to the mountain that much faster. Snow tires do wear out faster, but all tires wear out, so IMO having to replace the tires every few years is a moot point, becuase you have to replace regular tires every few years too. just have a set of winter and a set of summer, that way you can wait longer before buying new tires, plus summer heat takes a serious toll on the soft rubber of snow tires.
I'd also advise practicing in a snowy, empty parking lot before heading up to the mountains, not only will it make you a better snow driver, it's fun too :biggthump
February 26th, 2006, 01:24 PM
Why snow tyres AND chains. Depending where you live (how the roads are ploughed) you may get away with normal tyres and occasional/permanent use of chains. As for the rubber ones, I've seen them and wasn't impressed - preferring chains.
February 27th, 2006, 08:05 PM
Thanks for the feedback team:biggthump
I should clarify my question about how long the tires last. I`ve heard from a few people I`ve talked to that the tires are made in a way that allows them to grip the snow really well through some sort of heat generation at a molecular level when they are in use(moving). Rumour has it that this effect decreases with time whether the tires are in use or not. Any validity to the rumour?
The rubber chains look kinda flimsy but I see them being used alot more than chains in this part of the world.
Here is a link to the ones I think look like they`ll stand the most use.
February 28th, 2006, 08:06 AM
Good snow tires rock. I've used studded on my old Dodge Durango (not sure which model) and studless (Nokian RSI) on my Subaru Outback. I find that the studless work better in loose snow, packed snow and dry pavement, the studded work better on ice. The RSI's weren't cheap but I am so glad I have them. I have to remind myself I'm still driving on snow and to slow down, especially when I get out early and there's nobody else on the road.
I have similar Z-chains as skatha; for both my subaru and my Nissan Maxima. I've had to use them on my Nissan half a dozen times this winter, mostly to get out of my neighborhood, its tires are decidenly winter-unfriendly. It only takes me 2 minutes / wheel now that I've practiced. The ones for my Subaru have never come out of the packaging - I have them "just in case". They definitley help but honestly a good set of snow tires is better in my experience.
February 28th, 2006, 02:48 PM
It says u live in Texas? Why do u need snowtires there:confused:
January 6th, 2007, 09:18 PM
in response to your question.. yes.. as i understand it most snow tires have an outer tread layer that is soft and then as the treads wear down you get into a harder rubber compound, i can't remember the reason they do this.. other than to make you get new snow tires, but i think there was some specific design consideration involved. i can try to find the article i saw this in... it was something i found while searching for the info on some snow tires i was thinking of selling. These are unused, but i think the point was that buying used snow tires wasn't such a good idea.
January 6th, 2007, 10:30 PM
For vehicle's under 10,000 GVW on paved roads(regardless of whether or not they have packed snow/ice on them) chains are a waste of time. I know nothing of rubber chains, as I have yet to use tire chains on a paved surface EVER, nor will I. When I do use chains nothing less than REAL CHAINS will suffice, these cable/mini-chain cute thingymabobs are only good for breaking and whipping hell out of your fenders.
Studs work fine until you spin the tires ONCE. If you have the ability/control to not spin your tires EVER they will work fine. One of the dumbest things I've ever heard is to run studs in conjunction with chains, the chains compeltely negate the studs. If you run the studs on bare pavement even infrequently you will destroy the studs in short order, thus rendering them useless.
The number one rule of driving on snow/ice conditions:
If you break the vehicle loose, you're going for a ride in whatever direction momentum and gravity take you. REGARDLESS of chains/studs/traction tires/bellowing prayers/clawing wife/howling dog/ etc...
The best advice I can give you is to maintain a steady constant speed, and no matter what you do, do it calmly(which can be hard) in a steady even manner. Whether its acceleration, braking, turning, whichever. ANY sudden change in the vehicle's stable direction of travel is NOT A GOOD THING.
First time out maintain a speed between 25-35 m.ph. give yourself plenty of room between your vehicle and the one in front of you. Be AWARE of oncoming traffic(you just never know what the fool in the other lane may be upto). If you get a pile-up of traffic behind you have the decency to use a pull-out and allow them to pass you. Going too SLOW is AS dangerous as going to FAST, the banking in the road can toss you in the snow bank as quickly as excessive speed.
If worse comes to worse, take the snowbank vs. going headlight to headlight.
Remember the "LAW OF LUGNUTS". Whomever has more wins, period.
Best of luck.
p.s. Take plenty of sushi. Well, I love the stuff anyway. :cool:
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