Can I run V Steel radials and cross ply tyres together ?

Submitted: Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 13:08
ThreadID: 32348 Views:2816 Replies:9 FollowUps:30
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I am a bit worried that these new Bridgestone V Steel radials might prove a problem with staking and I thought maybe I could fit cross ply ( 10 ply ) tyres to my two spares wheels .

Then I could use them as pretty bullet proof substitutes if the Bridgestone are not up to the job . Of course it would mean I had two of the Bridgestones still on , but I would have only half the chance of trouble then .

Can I run a mixture of tyres like this without causing problems ? It will only be on the dirt as my insurance ( I think ? ) and my need for safety , would not let me run the cross plys on the highway from Sydney to WA .

Problems with this are ? :
- Without split rims I would not be able to get them off to repair them .
- I doubt the cross plys will be as good on sand dunes .
- Can it affect the diffs , having such radically different tyres on ?( I have no mechanical knowledge , so this is a genuine question )

IS THIS A DUMB IDEA ?

Thanks ,

Willie .

Willie .
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Reply By: dinodog- Central Coast NSW - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 13:35

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 13:35
dumb idea willie

firstly, illegal
secondly, illegal because of extremely different handling and grip characteristics which may see you on your lid. don't mix the two.
AnswerID: 163877

Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 14:46

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 14:46
OK thanks ,
Willie .
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Reply By: Rob from Cairns Offroad Training & Tours - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 13:37

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 13:37
Dumb idea, 6 BFG MT on steel rims not split rims will handle all your problems on all terain. You can also get them just about anywhere if you do have a problem. Tubeless tyres run a lot cooler than tubed tyres on split rims. The Bridgestones have very soft sidewalls. Hard to find a tuffer all round tyre than the BFG MT very popular up this way even in the deserts where there is no mud just strong and reliable. Cheers Rob
AnswerID: 163878

Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 14:50

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 14:50
I have staked three Cooper AT 10 ply sidewalls on previous trips and I don't think the sidewalls on the BFG will be noticeably better . At least these Bridgestone V Steel have steel in the sidewalls , so I hope they will go better off track .
Thanks Rob .
Willie .
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Follow Up By: V8Diesel - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 19:28

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 19:28
No good in WA Goldfields (if my memory serves me right that's where you are going). I have BFG M/T's on my 75. Great tyres but you'll be walking home it that's where you intend to travel.

Don't take my word for it, talk to the folks who earn their living out here. Radials are rubbish. For track or dirt work only. Off-track, they're crap.

12 - 14 ply cross ply on splits with the least agressive tread are what you want.
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Follow Up By: Bilbo - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 20:43

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 20:43
I have to agree with "V8 diesel" here. Yer standard "look good" radials are crap in the WA Goldfields. Mulga stumps go through 'em like a hot knife through butter. Side walls are too soft.

If you must go fer radials then get some that 10 ply or greater. At least then you'll have a fighting chance.

Somebody up above made a comment about "tubeless tyres on split rims"??? Is that possible?

I don't think so??

Bilbo
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Follow Up By: Richard - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 05:23

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 05:23
Quote "6 BFG MT on steel rims not split rims will handle all your problems on all terain".

Hope so. I've just replaced the D694's.
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Follow Up By: V8Diesel - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 07:38

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 07:38
Richard, just out of interest (and not wanting to hijack the thread) were you unimpressed with the 694's? I've heard some good reports, and not many bad ones about the new 694 and the price seems right. From all reviews a big improvement over the D693.

What didn't you like about them? They would seem to be a good 'compromise' tyre.
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Follow Up By: Snowy 3.0iTD - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 08:22

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 08:22
V8 Diesel
I have been running Bridgestone D694 in a 285/75R16 for the last 40,000km, expect to get at least another 20,000 km from them probably another 40,000km. I was in the Pilbara at the time of buying them and the bulk of my travelling was bitumen with a bit of dirt, so far to sum them up:

Life expectancy: Good to excellent
Dry bitumen: Excellent
Wet bitumen: Excellent
Dirt/Gravel Roads: Good
Sand: Good to Excellent
Rocky stuff: okay
Mud: okay but nothing flash

When it comes time to replace them I am not sure if I will stick with them because they are a great tyre or go for an AT with a little bit more of an offroad bias, Cooper ST or BFG AT etc.
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Follow Up By: Richard - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 09:06

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 09:06
Maybe I just had some bad luck but this thread details my woes with this tyre.
Tyres

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Reply By: Rob Ackland - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 13:39

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 13:39
Willie you need to check with your RTA and insurance company. In most if not all of Australia it is illegal to have different tyres on different axles and also illegal to run different tyres sizes from those placarded on the vehicle.

You have not explained what Bridgestone tyre you are using and equally where you do most of your driving. Experience with split rims is that they certainly offer some benefits but also there are plenty or risks with inexperienced people getting killed or injured when not correctly reinflating them and the ring explodes off with very nasty results. We use D694 AT and D693 LT with no problems across all of Australia.

Normal AT type tubless tyres are able to be repaired (temporary only) using plugs and can be partially or fully dismounted using one of the two tyre changing kits available from any 4WD store. Tyre pliers and R&R beadbreaker.

Changing tyre size from placard will impact on overall gearing and so the speedo reading will be inaccurate. This is one reason why staying inslide placard is a good idea. Taller tyres can improve ground clearance but with the increased in gearing they also reduce gearing reduction for low range descents and this is more of a problem with auto than a manual but it remains an issue.

Cross plys work fine in sand it all depends on tyre pressure and I have seen plenty of split rim vehicles with no problem on beaches and in deserts.

Bottom line and first question is it legal.

I hope that helps in your quest

Rob
AnswerID: 163879

Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:02

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:02
Rob ,

I was not so worried about legal / illegal because I will be off track in the Gibson Desert , but I will check as you have suggested .

The Bridgestone V Steel MIX ( VSXDZ ) LT 235 / 85R 16 , 10 ply are the tyres I have fitted to my new narrow 6.5 inch rims .

Apart from not really liking split rims , nobody makes them in the correct offset for a TD Cruiser although I have heard that the latest Troopys sort of fit .

I know about repairing tubeless tyres and putting temporary tubes in them , because I have torn the sides out of three new Cooper ATs on my last trips in the desert . I have a large repair kit of patches and three spare tubes .

I would be carefull to get as close as possible to the same diameter cross plys , but I was wondering if there was a small difference , what it would do to the diffs .

The cross plys are just soooo good at avoiding stake damage , I thought I might be able to use them as spares and have them put on the rims before I leave Sydney .

But it sounds like nobody thinks it's a good idea !

Thanks for your answer ,

Willie .

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Follow Up By: GaryInOz (Vic) - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:38

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:38
"...I was not so worried about legal / illegal because I will be off track in the Gibson Desert , but I will check as you have suggested ...."

If it is a declared track on a map, it is defined legally as a road, and therefore treated no differently to if you were on the Hume Freeway from Melbourne to Sydney. Still illegal.

If you do use the bias ply and radials in any sort of a mix and are involved in an accident involving other vehicles, you probably (read: certainly) won't have any insurance cover, and may be up for dangerous driving, culpable driving, driving an unroadworthy vehicle, and a raft of other charges.

Seriously, just a bloody bad idea. Forget it, and move on.
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 16:00

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 16:00
No really , I am not kidding , there is no track for 135 klm .
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Reply By: Flash - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 14:28

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 14:28
Ugghh!
Cross Plies- do they still make them? What a horrible thought!
No Willie don't do it IMHO. Stick with radials, by all means a different brand if you want.
Cheers
AnswerID: 163886

Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:05

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:05
Flash ,
Cross plys are the ducks guts off track in the desert where stakes from burnt out grevilleas etc are a constant problem .They have no bulging sidewall .
Cheers ,
Willie
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Reply By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:50

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:50
pffft lrgal this legal that It is only illegal if you come accross the fuzz in the middle of no where. Cant see whay it would effect your diffs especially as you will be running in sand with plenty of slip. i have used a crossply on the front mixed with a radial when i had to (it was very interesting pulling up in the wet with no rear brakes). You can still let them down and they are serficible in sand (I have run them and seen them run in soft beach sand)
i wouldnt fit 8 ply rags as they would only be a bit better than coppers, bfg etc try 12 or 14 ply
AnswerID: 163896

Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:53

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 15:53
If they are just spares you can pick up the likes of triangle 12 ply for around 120 each
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 16:01

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 16:01
Thanks Davoe
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Follow Up By: Bilbo - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 21:03

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 21:03
I agree Davoe. When I've been out prospecting, years ago I learnt my lesson north of Meeka where I ripped 3 almost new "Bridgestone Desert Duellers" (yeah - right!)in 2 hours cross country. Cost? $750.00!!

I was 3 ounces (at the time) of gold "behind the 8 ball" before I even started!

NB - these days that's only an ounce behind the 8 ball ;)

After the above event with my old Maverick (God rest her soul - I hope she's out grazing somewhere in the sunshine), I used anything I could get my hands on that was black & round and held air in. I bought 'em from mine sites, servos, indigenous cousins, 2nd hand any old thing and never paid more than $40.00 for a tyre. And I used to travel on the bitumen on 'em. The diff never complained - but it was a Nissan diff after all ;)

The cops wouldn't know or wouldn't care about a radial from a cross ply from a black Livesaver!! It's "The Bush" fer God's sake, anything goes out there.

Have you seen the tyres that aborigines travel on?? Geez, now that is scary.

After you've ripped a few theyll get the message eh, Davoe ;)

"Legal this, legal that" ,,,,,,,,chunner, mutter, chunner, mutter, mutter,,,,,,,,the country's going to the dogs.

Is there any REAL bush east of Balladonia?? Or is it all civilised these days?

Bilbo
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 21:58

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 21:58
Davoe , Bilbo ,
I like your style . Your comments make sense to me ?
Cheers ,
Willie .
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Follow Up By: V8Diesel - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 08:02

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 08:02
Bilbo, if you're back in that area again, when you come across a glavanised fence dropper with an aluminium tag that's been number punched, and then another either N, S, E or W 4 lineal km's away (give or take a few hundred metres), chances are I may have put it there. I was involved as a subcontractor with the Geological Survey of WA and worked on the geo mapping of each map sheet. Did quite a few of them. Good job for a single bloke, still miss it to tell you the truth.

Also did a bit for Mark Creasy up around Bronzewing, Bogoda Bore, Jundee etc and soil sampled sections of the Horseshoe Lights lease too.

Re: the plod. I got breathalised yesterday at 10.30am on a quiet suburban street near my house. This was not a quick setup to catch someone, there was a bus, witches hats everywhere, four cops, a chase car etc. WTF?

How's the V8 progressing mate? I've got my 6.5 advertised as it is 'surplus to requirements' and I really don't need it anymore, but everytime I drive it I just don't want to sell it. Towed a mates stuffed Hilux a couple of days ago and you really can't tell it's on there. An expensive toy now, but it still makes me smile.
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Reply By: Kiwi Kia - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 17:17

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 17:17
Using cross ply and radial tyres on the same axle is not legal, ask yourself why?

IT IS NOT SAFE, thats why !!

Don't worry about where you may do it, it is still very unsafe. The vehicle will not react the way it is designed to. Any person who sugests otherwise is lacking in certain genes.
AnswerID: 163908

Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 12:16

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 12:16
No it would not be really safe for willie to drive from sydney to Perth with 1/2 radials and 1/2 crossplys no one is suggesting that. I have mixed them when I had to and you drive accordingly. Willie is talking about as spares driving offtrack where he would be lucky to top 20kph and probably not even - I cant see the danger myself
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Reply By: Exploder - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 18:05

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 18:05
IF you did it you would need to have both Cross ply’s on the same axle so if you shredded 1 rear Radial you would then need to put both the Cross ply’s on the back then return the still good Radial to be the spare, this would help with the hole handling issue as you will have the same type/ pattern tyre’s on the back, but you are still mixing radial and cross ply together and both have very different handling characteristics, so travelling at any sorter speed is not a good idea.

From you post I get the idea that you are more a less making your own track throe the bush/desert/ Spinifex so going would be slow and I can’t even see handling differences caused by the 2 different tyres even coming into it as for insurance or legality problems well you are in the middle of the bush not even on a marked track so what insurance.

The problem would come when you do hit the sealed hwy and if you have destroyed 1 or 2 radial’s and are only left with the 2 Cross ply’s then what? You would need to risk travelling on the hwy to get a new set of radials for the trip home
AnswerID: 163918

Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 21:59

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 21:59
Thanks Exploder ,
That's about the way I had it pegged too .
Cheers ,
Willie .
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Reply By: V8Diesel - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 19:32

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 19:32
On another note, be prepared to remove your radiator every night and clean it. Doesn't matter what you put around it, they still get clogged. I ended up carrying a big petrol powered compressor - a hassle but efficient.
AnswerID: 163938

Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 12:20

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 12:20
I found the best way to clean the front at least was with a brush - brushed all the crap out. However there is still the crap that gets sucked up between the condenser and the radiator. Luckily with bush driving it isnt as bad as spinifex country. The only time i had a problem was driving a track in spring with this cotton weed stuff that made me have to clean the rad off
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 21:40

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 21:40
We hang shade cloth along the bul bar so and it extends down under the car . This stops some , but cleaning out the radiator and around the exhaust is still needed .
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Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 20:49

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 20:49
Willie,

If I were you I'd Keep It Simple

Just get 6 of the V-steel radial tyres and do what most bone lazy desert travellers (like me) do these days - repair with tubeless plugs. When you get the hang of the plugs, its a simple no-sweat 5 minute job to repair a puncture with the tyre still on the vehicle. If the first plug doesn't quite seal, you can slip a second and third plug in.

I run very low pressures for desert travel and a bit of cross country - 18-24psi and believe the low pressures protect your tyres from staking - they have plenty of "give".

Cheers
Phil
AnswerID: 163967

Follow Up By: Bilbo - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 21:14

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 21:14
Hmmm,,,,,Phil, my Golden Rule and just about anyone else I know that does hard cross country work, is run 'em hard, as hard they can stand. The less sidewall bagging out, the better. The majority of staked tyres come through a wooden stumps going through that weak point just on the corner of the tyre where the flat tread meets the sidewall. This is where the "2 ply textile wall" meets the "steel belted" radial tread.

Thats' why cross plys are better in the bush - they don't bag out and stand higher.

I've done hundreds of bush punctures, both mine and other peoples and 90% of 'em are in that "soft, baggy bit".

By all means let 'em down for sand etc, but elsewhere - run 'em hard.

But every man to his own.

Bilbo
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 22:11

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 22:11
Phil and Bilbo ,

Both arguments make sense and I honestly think that some stakings could have been avoided with a flexible wall , but on the other hand , if there was NO bag there , what could you stake .

But I think the truth of the matter is , with those big fat AT tyres , even when they have 45 lb in them they still bag out with a decent camping load , so pumping them up does not fix the problem Bilbo .So I have to go with Glens theory because if you can't stop the "bagging " it is better to make it flexible . Saying that though , I have staked three Cooper ATs with only 20 lb in them .

With the rag tyres I think Bilbos theory is correct though , because with high pressures you have no sidewall exposed at all .

Thanks both for your input , and thanks to everyone for your great ideas and opinions .

Cheers ,

Willie .
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 23:18

Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 at 23:18
Hi Bilbo,

I know the "run em hard" theory is popular - its what I used to do years ago when I was running split rims, and I still suggest it to people running splits.

But for the 4wding I personally do - I've changed - these days, I do a couple of desert trips, a few Flinders Ranges trips and a bunch of 4wd club trips each year. For this I prefer tubeless and I like their pressures low. I think it suits the modern tubeless radial tyres. Over the past 6 years I've been puncture-free on desert trips - includes 4 Simpson trips including Madigan Line, and 4 GVD trips. In our groups of usually 6-12 vehicles we do many trips without a single puncture. Madigan Line trip had about 12 staked tyres amongst the 3 vehicles running the higher pressures - no punctures in 3 vehicles running lowest pressures.

Also BFG ATKO are not good in regard to the punctures you describe - the sticks get caught by a raised edge of rubber and in they go - I've got a photo of one BFG with three plug repairs all on this edge. And the 3-ply MTRs are still the best conventional tyre for puncture resistance that I've seen and used.

And with the exception of split rims, we have rarely had to take a tyre off a rim to repair it - we plug them, and its up to the owners about getting them formally repaired back in civilisation. Makes for a relaxing trip.

All this is anecdotal - there is no right answer, and I'm not in the tyre business - just pass on what's worked for us.

And to Willie: those V-steels are good strong tyres - have some faith in them take the plug kit and enjoy your 135kms of cross-country!

Cheers
phil
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Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 12:22

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 12:22
I tried the soft approach with 28 psi my last trip and My MTRs didnt last 10 minutes -I now have 4 plugs in the sidewall of one and one in another
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 20:34

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 20:34
Hi Davoe,

You've got to admit that you are exceptionally hard on tyres and what you do with your vehicle is the exception rather than the rule.

I like to simply say what I do and give some idea of where I travel. Thats what a forum is about - but stuff about tyre pressures, punctures etc is always a can of worms

But its good to share our different experiences.

Cheers
Phil
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 21:44

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 21:44
Phil ,
The three tyres I have staked have had such big holes there is no way we could have plugged them . I could stick two fingers into two of them .
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Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 22:22

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 22:22
Phil the first sidewall punctue I was giving them a real hard time - well for a radial anyway. the 2nd time I hope it was no more than just bad luck. I had just left the bitumen driving on a well formed track. it hadnt been used for a while and had alot of sticks blown over it I guess my front tyres kicked a stick up and i copped it in the sidewall needing 4 plugs (it is still up) No doubt I have seen where you go with good results - maybe i am jinxed by the tyre god I dunno. very disheartening to have a $285 tyre stuffed not 10 min off the bitumen
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 22:24

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 22:24
" The three tyres I have staked have had such big holes there is no way we could have plugged them . I could stick two fingers into two of them ."

Hi Willie,
No worries. If you get holes that big every time, I wouldn't use plugs either! Tyre dealers won't repair them anyway, so I guess the tyre's dead. In the bush I'd hit it with some Locktite 406 to mend the hole, then patch it with a radial patch from inside, just so I still have a usable spare.

I guess that sort of problem has been uncommon in my experience, and I'd guess I've plugged or seen plugged over 50 tyres over the past 8 years on trips I've run.

All the best with your plans.

Cheers
Phil

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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 22:48

Friday, Mar 31, 2006 at 22:48
Davoe,

I sympathise with what's happened to your MTRs and I tend to think I should never have suggested MTRs to you. I now understand what you do and where you go, and a cheap set of used Indian crossplies makes a heap of sense. But the rest of us need a tyre that is also usable on bitumen, and gives reasonable mileage.

I'm glad you've discovered the plugs. They work for us - reckon I could almost leave the tyre irons at home.

Cheers
Phil
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FollowupID: 419072

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