or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Snow tires!!! X-Ice's, Blizzaks, SJ6's, and...?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Snow tires!!! X-Ice's, Blizzaks, SJ6's, and...? - Page 4

post #91 of 109

I got my Hakkapeliittas on just in time,  Dumping here in Montana.  My husband and daughter still haven't swapped their tires and it's a 12 hour backlog and no appointments allowed at the tire place now. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz View Post

wow, awesome to hear exracer.  i bought them for my outback and they're sitting in the garage on steel rims next to my new floorjack waiting mounting when it snows here.  lots of research led to them, great to hear you first hand experience.

 

BRING ON THE SNOW!

post #92 of 109

That's why I have them on rims and can just do it myself, no appt. needed.  Wait until the snow so I use them as little as possible on the pavement.

post #93 of 109

 Blizzaks and X-Ice2s work great, but

 

REPLACE THEM WELL BEFORE THEY LOOK WORN. 

 

That 2nd half of tread or so is nothing like the outer tread.

 

This past summer i used my X-ice2s since they were past their outer snow tread, & they behaved very well.

post #94 of 109

How many miles do you think you could get on them in winter only driving conditions before they cease to be good snow tires?  I probably put 10K a winter on my car.

post #95 of 109

I got 25k on last set.

post #96 of 109

There is also a growing consensus that it's also not a good idea to use a tire after 6 years even if they only have 10K on them.

post #97 of 109

Good snow tires?  The bigger question to me is good ICE tires.  I find the studs wear down WAY before the tread.  I have four Cooper studded tires in the garage, great tread on them, the studs are next to useless. I got two good winters out of them, maybe 20k AT MOST, probably less, before the third season of scary driving on them.  My Hakkepellittas are on season four, but I think I've been putting fewer miles on them than the Coopers got.  I was a ski race mom back then.  Now it's only to and from the ski area for the most part. 

post #98 of 109

sounds like 2-3 seasons max for mine.  if i was really energetic I'd take them off and on and off again during the season, only use them when there's a lot of snow around.

 

but i'm not.

post #99 of 109

never had snows before, so i'm looking forward to it.  had Nokian WRG2's on my last outback which worked really well, but were still all-season.

post #100 of 109
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz View Post

How many miles do you think you could get on them in winter only driving conditions before they cease to be good snow tires?  I probably put 10K a winter on my car.


You should get about double the usable mileage out of them compared to most other winter tires.  The siping is full depth, so the tire will still perform properly even when it's 90% worn. I saw a photo where the tires were cut down to 6/32's, and they still had full siping, compared to a Blizzak which would have long before turned into a three season tire (I like to refer to "all-seasons" as "three seasons", because they're useless in the winter).  The 60,000 km tread wear warranty on the Michelin Xi2 should cover about 8 years of normal winter driving for most people in the U.S. (6 years in Canada due to the longer winter seasons).  With your stated annual winter mileage, you're probably good for about five years under warranty and after that you might even get another good season out of them.  I've found with Michelins, about 1/32" wear per year is what I experience (switching between all-seasons and winters during the year).

 

I just came in from a drive in -16 temps, and the tires are amazing.  I have a big grin on my face.  Next, I'm off to pick up a couple of sand bags to put in the trunk over the tires to help the 'bite' even more (an old Winnipeg trick).


Edited by exracer - 11/19/10 at 8:32pm
post #101 of 109
Quote:
Originally Posted by mpskier View Post

 Blizzaks and X-Ice2s work great, but

 

REPLACE THEM WELL BEFORE THEY LOOK WORN. 

 

That 2nd half of tread or so is nothing like the outer tread.

 

 

That comment is true for Blizzaks, but not true about X-Ice Xi2's. 

 

Blizzaks, like most winter tires, only have siping that is about half the tread depth.  Once you've worn down the siping, you lose most of your ability to grip on slippery surfaces (but still maintain some snow holding ability).  The Xi2 sipes and micro pumps are full depth (both the main tread and sipes are 10/32's deep) so you maintain the full performance ability of the tire right to the end of its life.
 

post #102 of 109

I can report that the Xice IIs do a pretty good job of maintaining directional control while navigating curves with tracked out wet snow (2 to 3 inches with ruts from transport trucks coming in and out of pssing lane) at imprudent speeds.

 

I got 5 years out of the old Latitude X ice tires on the wagon, but they were pretty much shot when I took them off last spring.

 

I've noticed a steady improvement from Michlin.  The Latidude Xice had better forward traction than the old Arctic Alpins, but at the expense of less side to side steering grip.  The X ice IIs seem to have the side to side control back, and kept the forward traction.  It's a little hard to judge 'cause I've also changed cars.  The Pontiac G3 Wave tends to ride over snow and slush rather than plow through it like the old Caprice Wagon.  The old wagon (which sits in the parking spot with it's all-seasons as I couldn't afford two sets of snow tires)  would ride over some of it, but it would also pack it tighter under the tread.  Driving on the snow, the new car is a little "squirmier" at the limit.  It's just as much fun keeping the front tires spinning round at just the right rate, as pushing the back end just as much as it can handle on the Caprice, but I prefer the older heavier car for getting through snow; guess I'm a bit of an old dog.   The Caprice was like my Volants in crud, the G3 is more of a SL ski.smile.gif

post #103 of 109

Important to note that there are 2 categories of non-studded winter tires, performance winter and regular. The regular non-studded winter tires are tires in the category of the Blizzak WS60/WS70 and Michelin X-Ice Xi2. Examples of performance winter tires would be Blizzak LM25/LM60, Dunlop Wintersport 3D, or Michelin Pilot Alpin PA3.

 

The performance winter tires trade some snow and ice traction for much better dry and wet handling/braking, and usually have much longer tread life. If you don't drive in severe conditions that often I'd lean towards getting a performance winter tire because they are a lot more pleasant (and safer) to drive on clear roads. If you have a RWD car with an open differential (like a BMW 3 series minus the M3, or a RWD Merc) you might want to consider the "snowier" snow tires anyway but it depends. Keep in mind that AWD doesn't help you stop, so don't think you can get away with all-seasons in really bad weather just because you aren't getting stuck.

 

I had the Michelin PA3 on a BMW M roadster and I was able to get around the NJ/NYC area just fine in any snow that the front lip could clear. I actually got rear ended in a storm by a Jeep that couldn't stop that had all-season tires! Just in case anyone crazy is wondering, you can actually fit skis up to 170cm in the passenger seat of a Z4 but they have to be put in with the top down.

 

Just in case anyone was considering the Michelin PA3, it's pretty much the least snowy snow tire made, they have tremendous dry grip in the cold and are quiet and stable over 100 mph. I have Dunlop Wintersport 3D's ready to be put on my Mazda 3 this year and I'll let you know what I think once they are mounted.

 

Oh, and if anyone is choosing between Blizzak WS60/WS70 and the Michelin Xi2, one important thing to note is that the Blizzak has a "gritty" compound through the first half of the tread on the tire, as exracer and SkiMangoJazz mentioned. This gives it slightly better ice traction but makes it wear faster than the Xi2. Once the first half of the tread is gone on the WS60 or WS70 they will not be nearly as good.


Edited by chris719 - 11/19/10 at 8:54pm
post #104 of 109
Quote:
Originally Posted by chris719 View Post

 

Oh, and if anyone is choosing between Blizzak WS60/WS70 and the Michelin Xi2, one important thing to note is that the Blizzak has a "gritty" compound through the first half of the tread on the tire, as exracer and SkiMangoJazz mentioned. This gives it slightly better ice traction but makes it wear faster than the Xi2. Once the first half of the tread is gone on the WS60 or WS70 they will not be nearly as good.


That's always been the deal breaker with the Bizzaks for me; you pay for 4 tires, but only get 4 half tires. 

post #105 of 109

Here's a vote for the Firestone Winterforce on a Subie Forester. I put in about 50 miles tonight on I-80 and then on assorted backroads with wet heavy snow ranging from a light splatter to 4-6" of cut up slop. Eventually, I was defeated by road closures but the tire worked superbly. Never a wobble or even a threat of slippage. For a bargain priced tire this baby works.

 

SJ

post #106 of 109

Another inexpensive tire that gets good reviews is the General Altimax Arctic. Good in snow but mushy on dry roads.

post #107 of 109

I've been using Dunlop SP Winter Sport 3D's on my Jetta TDI wagon for the past 3 winters and they have been great for anything that the Midwest US and Shield area of Canada could throw at them.  I think they are ideal for areas where a studded winter tire is overkill. I've put at least 45k miles on them, this is probably their last winter but they've lasted longer than my summer performance tires. They make only slightly more noise than my summer tires, even at high speeds.

post #108 of 109

On my RWD 328i,  I've usually just run cheap studded snows on the back.  Never had a problem commuting to the CO ski areas from the front range.  I just scored a complete set of 4 Pirelli 210 SnowSports in like new condition mounted on OEM rims for cheap on craigslist.  I'll be good for the next 2-3 winters,  and no more trips to the tire store for changeovers!

 

Everyone discounts all all-season tires as similarly worthless in snow.  Simply not true.  All-seasons vary widely in their winter effectiveness.  I've had excellent results with Goodyear's Assurance Tripletred's in snowpacked conditions.  While not as effective as a true snowtire (especially studded),  a tire like that is night and day better than many other all-season designated tires.  I've commuted repeatedly into the mountains with those tires on my RWD car in conditions where I was weaving lanes to navigate around cars spinning out on ice.  That said,  a true snowtire is still the best choice for such conditions.

 

AM.

post #109 of 109

Yeah if you are going to own the car for a while you're better off buying a set of cheap wheels from like tirerack so you don't have to pay for mount and balance every single time you change.

 

I'd be really careful running snows on only one axle, really bad idea. On RWD you will have trouble braking because most cars are heavily biased to the front, on FWD you can spin if you slam on the brakes because the rear has no grip and no weight on it.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Snow tires!!! X-Ice's, Blizzaks, SJ6's, and...?