and the best tyre is..............?

Submitted: Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 21:49
ThreadID: 22042 Views:3009 Replies:6 FollowUps:15
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I have a beef with all of you who claim to know something about 4wd tyres.

For the record I don’t claim to know much about them myself. I have learnt a lot about all things 4wd on EO and I really appreciate that, but tyres, well that’s another story.

I know people will always have different preferences, but I have lost all confidence in what people say about tyres.

In a recent 4x4 Aust mag a group retracing an overgrown Len Beadell track were travelling through difficult scrub (“razor sharp fire hardened stumps”) and only “MRF 14ply” tyres offered any resistance to punctures. That is to say, all common tyres have problems at some point.

When tyres are said to have performed badly or failed, readers need to know what type of terrain they were travelling through, what the tyre pressure was, was the vehicle heavily laden (what vehicle?), how many km had tyre travelled, was it a side wall puncture, etc. If a tyre performed great, you got 90000km out of it, what % off-road, what type of off-road terrain has it mainly travelled etc.

And what about the tyres themselves, I was looking at the new Cooper ATR’s on the Cooper website. They come in 6, 8 and 10 ply, light truck and non light truck. But all of these variations have just one name – “Cooper ATR”. How can anyone say how good/bad these tyres are when they come in at least 5 distinct packages? And if you had a new 4 ply tyre fail in extreme conditions, that's more a reflection on you not the tyre.

If you’ve had a bad experience with tyres I am sure everyone's wants to hear about it - but we need to know the basic facts.

I have a suggestion for EO. Can a table (say like the one for fuel data) be set up for tyres listing of the facts? Instead of vehicle category (as for fuel), there could be a table for each tyre brand.

I heard a story a few weeks ago that a road was littered with damaged BFG’s along the side – the point of the story was that this meant nothing, just (may be) that BFG’s have the lion’s share of the market. Not sure how to deal with that. Perhaps market share information could be provided with each table (tyre and model)?

Any thoughts anyone????
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Reply By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 22:06

Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 22:06
My only thought is that I went out on a limb yesterday and bought a set of Goodyeay MTR's and I hope they are worth the money!! ;-)

Have'nt seen many on the road at all, none in the size that I have (31"10.5R15). But from what I can see by resarching on all their websites I think they are the best suited for us. Time will tell hey! Wish me luck.
PS. If nothing else, they look cool! LOL
AnswerID: 106605

Follow Up By: Member - Bernie. (Vic) - Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 22:55

Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 22:55
Hi Jeff I just fitted 265/75/16 MTR's on the Prado ( would weigh about the same as the Surf) just completed 5700klm trip which included about 2000Klm on Gibbers, dirt etc and the Birdsville Track, no marks on the tyres at all untill the Mungerannie to Lyndhurst section, where I noticed the
"rears "only had some little slits between the tread blocks & very minor chips, after seeing what the Flinders Rangers did to the BFG A/T last year I'm am impressed , I must add whilst at Mungerannie 2 x travellers had stuffed 2 tyres each between Lyndhurst & Mungerannie.

On this trip of 9 vehicles there was about 12 flats all on the tread, Prado on Grandtreks 1 Flat & 1 damaged steel rim, Troopy (heavy load) on BFG muddies several on rears 1/2 worn, 100 series (light) desert duelers 1/2 worn several (rears), 80 series heavy BFG A/T 1/2 worn 1 (rear).

I think "Go Off Road" said on another post no punctures in the 1st 40% of tread, as I mentioned above most punctures on worn tyres of different types or heavy loads.
I did a weigh in loaded and came in at 1220 front & 1540 rear.

Most on the "lcool" prado forum seem happy with the MTR's but how that relates to a heavier vehicle I'm not sure.

sorry the post is a bit long hope it makes sense.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Bernie. (Vic) - Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 22:59

Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 22:59
I must add we all ran lower tyre pressures off the bitumen.
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Follow Up By: Coops (Kalgoorlie) - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 10:51

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 10:51
Jeff
I've had LT 285/75R16's on my 80 series for 2.5 years and 50 000 kms' now and they don't even look like wearing. During this time I've been all over the Pilbara and done some pretty hard tracks. I've also done the greater portion of my driving on bitumen through sheer location and I can say that I am so impressed.
I did manage to stake the sidewalls on 2 tyres but that was on an expedition where others were having their tyres shredded and all I needed was a couple of plugs and I was on my way. The tyre dealer (who uses them himself) was disappointed and said they were the first ones he'd seen staked. When I explained where we were when it happened then he was back to being impressed.
I had the very first set of these in Port Hedland and in fact probably the Pilbara but I can tell you they're on every second vehicle up there now.
The security and versatility they give me means so much. I''ve completely given up worrying about tyres ever which in itself is a huge bonus and for a big trip all I do is take along a second spare (just in case). They're not too flash in the soft sand making the cruiser work a bit harder but for the little amount of time I spend there well it's hardly a worry.
I reckon I'll get 100 000 km's out of my current set and you can't beat that. They'll go onto my 2 trailers after that. I rotate all 5 of them every 5000 km's and other than that all I do is monitor pressure. Just basic tyre maintenance is all.
Sure beats the hell out of the almost new set of BFG A/T's I have sitting in the shed that I couldn't trust at all.
If you want pics I can do that for you too.

Hope this helps
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Follow Up By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 12:05

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 12:05
Thanks Bernie and Coops, I'm still trying to patch the whole in my wallet! ;-)
It's good to know that it may not be in vein!
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Follow Up By: Coops (Kalgoorlie) - Friday, Apr 15, 2005 at 20:03

Friday, Apr 15, 2005 at 20:03
one thing I never see mentioned is that Goodyear MTR's are "D" rated whereas others are generally a "C" rating.
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Follow Up By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Monday, Apr 18, 2005 at 11:30

Monday, Apr 18, 2005 at 11:30
Coops, what is the "d" rating relating too? It does not appear to be a speed rating nor a load rating??
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Reply By: Member - Davoe (WA) - Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 23:11

Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 23:11
Its not that simple I have destroyed 4 tres in 2 years 2 saveros,1 kellyawr and 1 toyo And I wouldnt recken any of them was worth the money I paid for them. On the other hand for work I have deen bushbashing over deadfall stumps etc etc with conditions that would destroy the most expensive radial in seconds for genuine puncture/damage resistance there is only 1 choice split rims and rag tyres and if you cant put up with that then accept the compramise that better roadholding/higher speed rating and better flotation that radials give
AnswerID: 106626

Follow Up By: muzzgit (WA) - Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 23:46

Wednesday, Apr 13, 2005 at 23:46
AMEN !!!
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Follow Up By: BenSpoon - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 18:05

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 18:05
Davoe- have you come across "wiries" before? I have heard exploration folk jabbering about them before, but certainly have not seen them for sale. Apparently they are LT tyres with super thick rubber and steel belted all round to the extent you can rip off a decent chunk of rubber and not have a problem.
They are LT's, on split rims, but im yet to see anything like them.
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Follow Up By: Mad Dog (Australia) - Friday, Apr 15, 2005 at 20:25

Friday, Apr 15, 2005 at 20:25
Davoe, I don't know much about tyres and don't really want to as I find them boring but would you please explain to me what you mean by rag tyres
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Reply By: basecamp15 - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 04:23

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 04:23
A mate runs a Safari in the buch on the Cape. He tried out a set of 16 ply radial skinnys and found them to be not as good as his 8 ply rag tyres.
In conditions where there are a lot of stakes etc, brand does not matter, nor ply rating (to a certain degree), all radial tyres will cop it so really you need to avoid those areas or take a second set of rags with you.
Cheers, Mark
AnswerID: 106640

Reply By: Willem - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 08:24

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 08:24
Hmmmmm .............Yes

Most travellers on this forum travel on bitumen, good gravel roads, bad gravel roads and some sand tracks. I would also venture to say that most also live in the cities or large towns and a greater percentage of their driving is on well built sealed roads.

Tyre pressures and drivng style contribute to a tyre's longevity. Vehicle suspension set-ups play a big part as well.

We have had claims on this forum of 160,000km out of a set of tyres. We have had claims of averaging 120km/h on the Birdsville Track without punctures. When posting to challenge these theories I have been met with agro.

Recently I replied to a post here that the best offroad tyre for serious bush work was a 14 ply rag. It was a tongue in cheek comment but another luminary on this forum took my views to pieces.

For years I ran 8 ply skinny tyres on split rims (mainly Dunlops). I did a fair amount of serious offroad stuff and buggered quite a number of tyres. Then I went to radials and these days I have conformed to what the majority have, tubeless. I now have the earlier version of Cooper STT's and have done around 5000km. These tyres have seen minimal bitumen, mostly rough gravel roads, endless gibber plains and some rough bush tracks in the Flinders ranges and elsewhere. I run 35psi all round when loaded up and 32 all round when unladen. I run 28 all round on the gibber and rough gravel roads and 15 in the sandy desert or on the beach. I take care where I place the wheels when driving. The tyres are showing small cracks in between the lugs and some scuff marks on the outer tread. I will see how they perform in the next 10,000km trek which is coming up soon.

Like with all items in life there are a variety of tyres to choose from. Outside factors such as weight of vehicle, suspension set-up and driver skills all add up as to how long a tyre may last on a vehicle. I travelled across the Simpson, 500km offroad on BFG Mud Terrains at 20psi. But in a Suzuki. Had no punctures for the entire trip of 800km. A strong tyre shod to alightweight vehicle. A friend of mine did a similar trip and they averaged 5 punctures per vehicle in ten days driving Toyotas and Nissans. I have a mate who runs a station in the Flinders Ranges. All vehicles there are shod with MRF 14 ply tyres. He still gets the odd puncture!

These days the Goodyear MTR's are all the rage especially in hard offroad situations but how far will they travel and how long will they last. It all depends on the factors I have mentioned above.

In the end we keep on experimenting with various brands. It depends on our specific choice and how deep our pockets are.

Thing is we can't do without them!

AnswerID: 106645

Follow Up By: warthog - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 20:43

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 20:43
I like that. Luminary. How does one go about becoming one?
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Follow Up By: Willem - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 21:02

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 21:02
warthog

You have to make outrageous statements sound like facts :o) Then you will be well on your way of aspiring to luminary status.
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Follow Up By: warthog - Friday, Apr 15, 2005 at 12:14

Friday, Apr 15, 2005 at 12:14
O.K thanks I'll try harder. Maybe I can find some pointers by watching parliament question time.
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Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 08:45

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 08:45
I'll Pass on this one.

Another Cruiser vs Patrol, Engel vs Waeco post:-)
Bill


I'm diagonally parked in a parallel Universe!

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AnswerID: 106654

Follow Up By: jdpatrol - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 09:25

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 09:25
Well I know what you mean Sand Man but I reckon tyres are a different story.

This forum guided me on lots of things – eg the decision I made for a fridge and I am now very happy with the choice I made. It also helped me on the form of rust protection I got and I am very happy with that. It helped me with my choice of vehicle and sure enough there's lots of debate on that but I am happy with the choice I made.

But as for a choice of tyre, well I have been swimming (and frustrated). Each time I read forum articles on tyres I have been more confused after than before.

Its great reading the comments that are coming forward. Thanks all.
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Follow Up By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 12:04

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 12:04
I agree with you jdpatrol, I have obviously been aware that the old Desert Duellers has seen better days and were going towards replacment months ago. I have been umming and arring, sweating and thinking all this time. It was mainly because of this forum and my own internet based research that made my mind up to go the MTRs. It was because of the endless tyre debates that anyone not in the market for tyres probally get's bored sick of that helped me in this decision. So with 30kms on the clock since they were fitted (including some 4wding LOL I took them straight from the tyre shop to a sand patch and did some hill climbs to see how much they dug holes in the sand, I was impressed actually they did well even at 38psi, more climbing than digging) I am happy with them, but that's no kinda distance/experience at all, so basically I'm happy with how they look and how they climbed one sand hill at high pressure.
Fingers crossed hey!! ;-)
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Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (WA) - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 13:10

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 13:10
jd patrol, as I hinted at earlier on the reason you are getting no clear answer is coz there isnt one. tres are a compramise, want good mud performance get muddies but they wear more and are noisy, want god beach tyre get all terrain but they suck in mud, want tough tyre get rags but they suck for everything else other than tough tyre conditions. My 50c worth is I currently have toyo opats and in 3 trips I have rippd the lugs off of them, got 2 flats and destroyed another (sidewall) I dont recomend them all in pretty tame conditions
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Reply By: Wayne (NSW) - Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 18:07

Thursday, Apr 14, 2005 at 18:07
jdpatrol,

I know this will not help you in the short term but I an going to keep a log of every kilometre that the new Cooper STT will travel. Black top, dirt, sand, tyre wear, flats, tyre pressure and weight of the vehicle
So far they have been on the M4 and a one day trip to the Garden of Stone NP in the Blue Mountians. There was not a problem on that trip as the tracks were dry and there is plenty of sandstone to grip when climbing some of the ridges. I think that there is little road noise that makes it's way into the cabin, but from the out side the Troopie can be heard a mile off.

Over the next few months the tyres will get a real good work out. Saturday I will be off to Bright (VIC) for a 7 day High Country trip, better start packing for that one, then the CRS in June and a run across the Simpson in July. The roads that I will travel doing the trips should just about cover every road condition that there is in Australia.

I hope by the end of the life of the tyres be able to give a good accont of the STT's, and this might help others make up there minds about them.

Wayne.
AnswerID: 106760

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