Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

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horizon
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Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby horizon » 11 Sep 2014, 12:41pm

Winter tyres are now available for bicycles (if they haven't been already). What is the difference between these and ordinary tyres? Is there any point to them if they don't stop you sliding on ice and snow? if they do, what's the point of studded/spiked tyres?

Any thoughts gratefully received.

http://www.madison.co.uk/products/cycli ... lack-tyre/
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mig
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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby mig » 11 Sep 2014, 12:54pm

much like car winter tyres they display two benefits - they're made from a compound that stays soft at low temperatures and also have a tread pattern with small 'fingers' that splay to increase the contact area.

i have a pair of the continental winter contacts and some schwalbe marathon studs. the former are better in more usual winter conditions of dull, cold, wet etc whilst the studs are mostly only for truly icy surfaces. they are a good laugh though in those conditions as you trundle past the lines of cars crawling along :D whilst studs can be used on the 'usual' days they are hugely heavy. good training though!

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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby [XAP]Bob » 11 Sep 2014, 2:20pm

Studs are for ice, winter compound/tread are for snow/cold.

At low temperatures rubber is less flexible, so the winter tyres are made of a compound which is softer at low temperature (in car tyres I think the cutover is often about 7 degrees)

But they still deform around what it on the ground to give grip. Studs dig into ice to provide excellent traction where nothing else will do. On tarmac they get pushed back into the rubber a bit, so they have slightly lower grip than a full winter tyre - right up until you hit ice...
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horizon
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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby horizon » 11 Sep 2014, 2:43pm

I'm just wondering whether, since winter bicycle tyres don't cope with ice, they don't do much more than a good ordinary tyre, especially in SW England. I'm thinking that on cars (which drive through snow etc even without winter tyres) they could bridge a much larger span of conditions. It may be a faff to change to snow studs but ice is ice.
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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby Mick F » 11 Sep 2014, 2:50pm

We had a thread on here some winters back asking about winter tyres.
I maintained that they are pointless because normal tyres would work ok in a normal winter. Maybe not in The Cold North, but for the vast bulk of us, normal tyres are ok year-round.

Studded tyres are different thing altogether as they grip on snow and ice. Winter tyres would slip just as easily as "summer" tyres in that situation.

Personally, I wouldn't use them because if it's too icy to cycle, it's too icy to leave the warm fire. :wink:
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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby andrew_s » 11 Sep 2014, 3:02pm

Winter tyres aren't as good as studded tyres on ice, but they are a lot better than regular tyres.
I've ridden up hills to about 5% on Conti Top Contact Winter. Mostly there are just occasional patches of ice, and there isn't too much problem just riding over them so long as you are paying attention and taking care.

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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby AM7 » 11 Sep 2014, 3:46pm

andrew_s wrote:Winter tyres aren't as good as studded tyres on ice, but they are a lot better than regular tyres.


+1

I fitted a pair of Continental Top Contact Winter II tyres to one my bikes at the beginning of last year and they are far more confidence inspiring in wintery conditions than any other tyres I've tried. To give you an example, myself and two others set off on a 100k audax in Cambridgeshire last March after a period of snowy weather. The other two were younger and fitter than me and - for the first 5/6 miles on gritted roads - I struggled to keep up with them. Then we went onto ungritted lanes for several miles. The other two guys were slipping all over the place while I cruised through with no problems and had to wait for them :)

Anyone who says that these tyres are no better than regular tyres has never tried them. Whether they're worth it depends on how much riding you do in winter I suppose. For me, the only problem with them is they don't make them in 406 size to fit my Moulton APB.

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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby The fat commuter » 24 Nov 2014, 7:11pm

AM7 wrote:I fitted a pair of Continental Top Contact Winter II tyres to one my bikes at the beginning of last year and they are far more confidence inspiring in wintery conditions than any other tyres I've tried.

Are those these tyres?
http://www.rosebikes.co.uk/article/cont ... aid:528029

I'm after something for my commuting bike that will allow me to cycle into and home from work safely. I'm not sure about studded tyres as most of the time the roads will be clear. Also, with Sheffield having tram lines for part of my journey I'd rather not be putting metal on metal at the points where I have to cross.

I keep meaning to get winter tyres for the car - but never have. A couple of years back though when we had loads of snow, I was trying to get into the car park at work and had loads of trouble. Finally managed. A Mercedes Sprinter van then went past and up the steeper hill as though it was summer. I noticed that he had winter tyres on.

Anyway, I'm after something for the bike. Saw the above from Rose and they look very similar to car winter tyres. They've also got good reviews - even if most are in German and I can't read them. Bit expensive though - but so long as I don't tell the missus exactly how expensive, I should be OK.

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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby AM7 » 24 Nov 2014, 7:55pm

The fat commuter wrote:Are those these tyres?
http://www.rosebikes.co.uk/article/cont ... aid:528029

Yes, that's them. :)

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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby Vantage » 24 Nov 2014, 8:02pm

Dunno 'bout you lot, but with the exception of blizzards, I've rode through every weather the UK has thrown at me. The only tyres for snowy conditions I ever used were the Panaracer Spikes on my mountain bike and they were (I think) the only tyre that actually had to be inflated to their max pressure for them to do their job. It helped to keep the kobbles upright.
Other than those things, if I ever needed a bit more grip in cold conditions, my inner tubes had these things called "valves". What you did to the valve, was to either unscrew the top bit and press (on presta) or push in the pin (Schrader) and let a little bit of air out. Instant grip improvement!
I can appreciate having softer rubber on yer tyres for more grip, but surely, the softer the rubber, the quicker they wear out? And at the prices that these tyres go for, surely sacrificing a little air is much cheaper and easier?
Bill


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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby Vorpal » 24 Nov 2014, 8:22pm

viewtopic.php?f=5&t=70034 is the previous thread on non-studded winter tyres. 8)
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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby Vorpal » 24 Nov 2014, 8:27pm

Vantage wrote:Dunno 'bout you lot, but with the exception of blizzards, I've rode through every weather the UK has thrown at me. The only tyres for snowy conditions I ever used were the Panaracer Spikes on my mountain bike and they were (I think) the only tyre that actually had to be inflated to their max pressure for them to do their job. It helped to keep the kobbles upright.
Other than those things, if I ever needed a bit more grip in cold conditions, my inner tubes had these things called "valves". What you did to the valve, was to either unscrew the top bit and press (on presta) or push in the pin (Schrader) and let a little bit of air out. Instant grip improvement!
I can appreciate having softer rubber on yer tyres for more grip, but surely, the softer the rubber, the quicker they wear out? And at the prices that these tyres go for, surely sacrificing a little air is much cheaper and easier?

I think even with studded tyres, letting some air out puts more studs in contact with the ground and improves the grip. I ride with them pumped up fairly well when there is just a risk of ice, but ride with them on the minimum inflation pressure (or even a bit less) when it's actually icy or snowy.
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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby gaz » 24 Nov 2014, 8:40pm

It was frosty this morning. My studded tyres will be coming out to play very soon. Once they're fitted they will stay on until winter's over.

Whilst winter tyres sound useful without a spare set of wheels I'll stick to studs.

Edit - Studded tyres fitted today ready for Monday's commute. Unexpected heat wave to be expected as a result :wink: .
Last edited by gaz on 6 Dec 2014, 12:14pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby sreten » 25 Nov 2014, 1:17am

Hi,

Winter tyres on cars are coming on leaps and bounds, to the extent they last just
as long as summer tyres, but have much more grip in winter but less in summer,
than "summer" tyres, which have more warm grip, but much less when cold.

In terms of things that can go hideously wrong they now make more sense
than summer tyres all year round for most people, who don't slow down
enough in cars when things get chilly, i.e. they are inherently safer.

Standard UK new car tyres are progressing towards being winter tyres.

i.e. in the UK only "performance" tyres are "summer" tyres, but
the same tyres might be standard in a more temparate zone.

Bike winter / training tyres are similar, only good tyres are "summer".

If the stuff I read on car tyres is anything to go by, bike winter /
training tyres have a lot more grip in winter than racing tyres,
and have no real problems with the summer either for most.

Studded tyres are of course a diffrrent ball game.

rgds, sreten.

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Re: Difference between "winter" tyres and studded tyres

Postby broadway » 25 Nov 2014, 8:32am

Vantage wrote:I can appreciate having softer rubber on yer tyres for more grip, but surely, the softer the rubber, the quicker they wear out? And at the prices that these tyres go for, surely sacrificing a little air is much cheaper and easier?


They will wear out quicker, but maybe the lower winter temperature result in similar hardness?

And if your that worried about the cost of the rubber don't ride on hot days. :)