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The Winter Driving Video Thread

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 

I thought I'd start a video thread to capture some of the fun this year.  I also often jump in other threads with opinions about 4x4s and tire types and figured I'd start my own.


I am going to do some testing during the season from two extremes:  a modified older 4x4 SUV and a modern luxury front wheel drive minivan.  The 4x4 wears the same aggressive offroad traction tire year round, and the minivan wears dedicated studded winter tires from October to May or June.  The 4x4 predates modern electronic control except for ABS that can fortunately be turned off, and the minivan has it all.


I want to show what happens when you take the focus away from tire "seasons" and place it purely on traction (and making other major compromises), as well as to capture some of the mess we see each year when it is safe to take the vid and doesn't embarrass the driver(s), although if it is me being humiliated I'll definitely post it up :D.


Hopefully others will find or take some personal video that demonstrates what is often posted on Epic in guidance to other drivers.  The first myth to bust is going to be that a 2WD with winter tires is better than anything else without winter tires (the car type with mountain snowflakes)...

post #2 of 2
Thread Starter 

First up:  The 2WD test with continental ice.  Comparing Apples and Avocados.


Date:  November 11, 2014


Conditions: Packed ice (the continental climate type).  This was the morning after Indian Summer became Arctic Fall in 30 minutes, creating as much ice as I have seen in my neighborhood in 9 years of living here.


Vehicle 1:  The Apple:  2007 Nissan Quest minivan SE.  Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC), ABS.  Front wheel drive.  Tires:  studded Cooper WeatherMaster S/T 225/60/75 (stock size) with approximately 10,000 miles.  Other tires previously used on this vehicle with substantially lesser performance in icy conditions: Nokian Hakka Q, Hankook iPike, both studless.


Vehicle 2:  The Avocado:  1995 Toyota Land Cruiser.  ABS that turns off when the center differential is locked.  AWD in base mode via a viscous coupler over the center differential (in plain English, silicone oil will thicken when a driveshaft spins more than the other, providing limited resistance and transferring torque - this is a classic rear wheel drive biased system with no electronic braking control).  Transfer case with differential lock (center diff), low range, and electronic differential locks (diff locks not used in this test).  Tires:  37x12.5x16 Interco Trxus MT (with 4" suspension lift and 5.29 gears in the differentials to account for the larger tires) with approximately 25,000 miles and custom owner siping/grooving to replace worn through factory siping.


Test 1:  Stopping


Test Factors:  Quest - ABS = On.  Land Cruiser #1 - ABS = On.  Land Cruiser #2 - ABS = Off (different spot).  Full braking at 10 mph until stop for the ABS test, variable speeds for the Land Cruiser with ABS off.  Approximately 3% grade downhill.  Land Cruiser in green.





Test 2:  Starting (with a slight turn at the beginning after backing out of a driveway)


Test Factors: Quest - VDC = On, normal throttle only.  Land Cruiser #1 - 4WD = Off (AWD only), normal throttle plus heavy throttle in the middle (when the tread visibly cleans).  Land Cruiser #2 - 4WD (center differential locked) / ABS off, heavy throttle plus heavy braking.  Approximately 3% grade uphill.



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