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Old 08-03-2010, 09:06 PM   #15
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Our experience with the 16" Michelins has been fine so far—more than 13,000 miles. They are wearing at a rate that indicates a life of at least 55,000 miles. They do not lose air like Marathons did. While I had the Marathons, I had the valve stems changed from rubber to metal and they still lost air, so it's not all that likely it was the valve stems, though it's possible.

Fit works for some, perhaps not for all. It seems some Bambi's would be a problem and some long trailers also, so measuring carefully is important. Check Michelin's website for the exact outer diameter of their tires. This is not something you want to get wrong. Some people have trimmed the wheel cutout at the bottom and bent the shiny trim back a little—there are photos of that on a thread somewhere and you may find it if you look hard enough. 2air calls them molding lips. It did not look all that hard to do.

This is an expensive change. You will also have to get a 16" wheel for a spare. Getting an expensive matching wheel instead of a steel one means you can rotate the spare and not waste that tire. This, it seems to me, gets 20% more miles from the tires.

The 16" wheel and tire means the spare tire carrier has to have some parts bent outward for the tire to fit. It can be done, but i prefer to carry the tire in the bed of my pickup.

Since your trailer will be 1/2" higher, you may have to re-adjust your hitch.

There are long threads on the differences between LT and ST tires. It is good to consult them. The main difference as I understood it is the ST has stronger sidewalls, but everything else about the LT's seems superior to me. Stronger sidewalls matter most, I think, when backing at an extreme angle, something to be avoided if possible anyway.

C Load Range? Seems pretty unlikely to me, but it's best to check manufacturers' load ratings. If you use a C rated tire and it blows because of more weight than it is rated to carry, any warranty would be void.

Gene
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Old 08-03-2010, 09:18 PM   #16
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I don't know much about trailer tires and such but I have PowerKing Towmax tires on my little 22' Liner and I've not had any problems with them. I upgraded to a 15" wheel and using ST 205/75R15's. This is a load range C but my trailer is light to say the lease. I noticed PowerKing does make a 235/75R15 in a load range D and E. It's called the Equalizer Sport AP tire. I found the site tires-easy.com helpful in tire research. They have many brands and a great knowledge data base section to reference. My biggest issue is trying to find steel wheels that fit a 1950 Airstream Liner. It's a 15" x 6" wheel with a 5 lug 5 1/2" bolt pattern. So far I've found this wheel to fit a 1953-56 Ford F-100 pickup.
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Old 08-04-2010, 10:13 AM   #17
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My C's

2Air,
There is probably no one I respect more in the forum than yourself.
I find your knowledge to be second to none.

Ok, here goes...

That being said; I don't believe you can "always" rely on just the numbers to make a choice. There are a multitude of reasons why various manufacturers will apply ratings, recommendations & limits to their products.

i.e. Years ago when Chrysler came out with their first minivan, it's engine produced something like 130hp and similar torque. That pile of cr%p was rated to tow 3500lbs. A 2010 Dodge Caravan with a 4.0 V6 with 250hp, better suspension, more rigid body structure has the same 3500lb tow ratings. Why? Maybe to protect the RAM's sales, the RAM's profits.

The Chrysler 300 in the USA is rated to tow 1000lbs; but the same vehicle sold in Europe is rated to tow 3500lb. Why? It's the same car; just a different market.

Everyone knows by the shear volume of posts here in this forum about trailer tire problems. I don't have to go in detail about them; if you're reading this post, you know them all.

My buddy had 2 of his Marathons blow on him during his first season! When's the last time you've heard a 'C' Michelin coming undone after only a couple of K miles; or after 50K miles? Many people are using them with excellent results regardless of their ratings. What comfort do you have with the Airstream running on a properly "rated" tire that explodes? I'll take the 'unrated' tire that stays round.

To me the proof or myth is in the experiences of all us "ONE SHOP" followers; who RV happily & safely I should say with our unrated equipment. I read lots of posts from people unhappy with their dealers or service shops. Can you find me one post from a client from that "ONE SHOP" guy up here that's unhappy with their dealings or experiences?

Nuff said,
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Old 08-04-2010, 01:06 PM   #18
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as far as the tow ratings go, there are at least two points to be considered.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f463...ies-31559.html

the other is that towing a trailer in europe is a whole different story. they are set up for very low tongue weight, among other things.
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Old 08-04-2010, 01:08 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richinny View Post

the other is that towing a trailer in europe is a whole different story. they are set up for very low tongue weight, among other things.
You've got to be kidding me!
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Old 08-04-2010, 01:33 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rawn77 View Post
You've got to be kidding me!
no joke, read this and tell me what you think.
Product Family | Airstream Europe : Airstream, overview of the most recognizable caravan in the world

many of the folks that import built4us models also tow with built4us tow vehicles.
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Old 08-04-2010, 01:43 PM   #21
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The cars may be the same, but they're definitely NOT THE SAME!

European cars have completely different PCM programming, emissions requirements, use different fuel of a much higher octane rating than the crud Americans get served up, and so on. European versions of cars get better fuel economy, handle differently, run cooler...

Is it a surprise that a car that can tow 1000 lbs in the US can tow 3500 lbs in the EU when it's being run on 104 octane fuel?
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Old 08-04-2010, 02:59 PM   #22
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No matter what brand you like or dislike. If you run a tire not spec'd for the weight and application and temperature and speeds you'll have failures.
A lot of people like to bash the manufacture and it's easy to climb on board that train, but mgf. use the specs to tell us how to use the product safely, if you choose to go under rated, beware.
There is a lot of hearsay about blow outs on trailers that someone else just bought. Just buying a trailer and having having blow outs on a certain brand means nothing. Some questions I would ask are: How long was that trailer sitting on the lot with the tires exposed to Ozone before the trailer was driven? How fast and for how many hours was the trailer going when the blow outs occured? Did the blowout happen because of a piece of scrap cut the tire? Did the valve stem fail? Was the tire over inflated, under inflated?
No one tells us that stuff.
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:00 PM   #23
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Hello to all ---

Interesting thread, and to add something else, I have heard from good sources that in this part of the country, if highway patrol/police see car tires on a trailer, you will be forced to get it off the road and replace the tires with ST tires. I'm sure you will not be stopped just to see what kind of tires are on the trailer, but if something else happens, the legal aspect could be dire.
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Old 08-04-2010, 05:24 PM   #24
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This is from another forum:
Quote:
Posted: 07/11/10 06:24am Link | Quote | Print | Notify Moderator HwyExplorer wrote:

Update: I've just read on another forum and I've learned that actually the local highway laws may prohibit the use of anything but an ST tire on a non [COLOR=#0072BC ! important][COLOR=#0072BC ! important]passenger [COLOR=#0072BC ! important]vehicle[/COLOR][/COLOR][/COLOR]. So I guess I'm stuck shopping for ST's, but the question still is radial or bias ply


Not so. Someone is spreading false/incorrect info. We have one member that has been spreading this type of mis info.
There is no fed law that says you have to use a ST tire on a trailer. There are no state laws pertaining to such as states enforce fed laws.

Here is what NHTSA/DOT says about choosing tires;
49 cfr 571 tire and rim selection.
S4.2.2 Tire load limits for multipurpose
passenger vehicles, trucks, buses, and
trailers.
S4.2.2.1 Except as provided in
S4.2.2.2, the sum of the maximum load
ratings of the tires fitted to an axle
shall not be less than the GAWR of the
axle system as specified on the vehicle’s
certification label required by 49
CFR part 567. If the certification label
shows more than one GAWR for the
axle system, the sum shall be not less
than the GAWR corresponding to the
size designation of the tires fitted to
the axle."
S4.2.2.2 When [COLOR=#0072BC ! important][COLOR=#0072BC ! important]passenger [COLOR=#0072BC ! important]car[/COLOR][/COLOR][/COLOR]
tires are
installed on an MPV, truck, bus, or
trailer, each tire’s load rating is reduced
by dividing it by 1.10 before determining,
under S4.2.2.1, the sum of
the maximum load ratings of the tires
fitted to an axle.

As you see nowhere does the reg say a specific tire type such as a ST or LT or P is required. Only the weight capacity.
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Old 08-04-2010, 06:31 PM   #25
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ron...

it's not my desire to post negatively about any specific shop,

especially one so apparently DEDICATED to it's unique approach ...

but i can say that i've communicated with a couple of customers

who suggest they were "talked into" using some components they'd rather not have used and can't easily UNdo.

________

what u kids do north of the boarder is not by concern really,

it's suggesting THAT APPROACH is OK to USE in the lower 48.

and MOST who follow the magic towing approach BUY into an entire set of conditions, tweaks and behaviors...

that NO ONE ELSE can or is willing to duplicate.

and the folks following the "go slow, PAY to change a lot of bits" approach really DO all seem happy about it...

i met a guy towing a 34 with a caddy

who was THRILLED with only traveling 100 miles per day and taking 30+ days to cross ocean to ocean.

but it's ONE shop in an entire industry,

which is VERY MUCH like going to one health guru who does things NO ONE ELSE in the profession supports.

i have also gotten UNsolicited commentary from state park rangers...

who FREQUENTLY see seasonal canadians enter their parks

with rigs that BARELY look stable at 20 mph.
_________

MUCH of this use of compromised towing vehicles relates to FUEL COSTS, i get that.

and there is ONE GUY here who regularly sings the PRAISE about towing with a small minivan....

but fails to mention his "TOWING" is only about 10 hours PER YEAR.

yes, ALL the details matter.
__________

the CONSPIRACY theory regarding ratings is often suggested...

"underrated to boost sales of something else" or "liability causes them to UNDER rate a yaya..."

there is of course NO PROOF of this conspiracy...

and upon digging one will find...

the axles, bearings, springs, gearing, drive shaft, exhaust, fuel management, frame, unibody or TIRES...

account for the lower rating (or some other critical bit that is NOT engineered for towing stresses)

there is ALWAYS some component which is the weak link or lowest common rating factor...

the fallacy and TRAP is that folks think changing ONE BIT solves the limitation when it doesn't.

that's why reinforcing the receiver or shortening the overhang is NOT a complete solution.

but conspiracy theories are SO APPEALING...

and offer SIMPLE blanket explanations where boring old engineering TRUTHS or details put folks 2 sleep.

so it's very hard to disprove a conspiracy,

and when DISproofs DO exists, the theorists just move to ANOTHER angle on the theory...
__________

it may be one world and the web might make life ALL seem to be the identical

but small differences really do matter.

a monkey and a donkey and a human all have basically the same genetics right ?

so how about a blind date with someone 99.5% similar?
_____________

i'm not drinking ANyONES kool-aid (including goodyear)

but i do accept the notion that MOST tire calamities can be traced...

to a known or UNknown user abuse or error.

curbs, wheel chocks, pot holes, UNDER inflation, scuffing, prolonged parking or AGE, and so on.

_________

as just ONE EXAMPLE of this, consider the following...

IF one tandem tire is UNDER inflated or removed for a flat

and the trailer is towed more than 50 miles with the other tire OVER LOADED...

BOTH TIRES are due for replacement, not just flat/leaking one.


and how many folks buy 2 NEW tires for each solo flat,

even though NOT doing so means towing on a SPENT (now defective) tire ?
_________

it's my understanding, the op is looking at 30/31 modern CLASSICs which have gvwr approaching 10,000 lbs.

that's up to 9000 on the axles or 2250 lbs PER TIRE of CONTINUOUS LOADING with intermittent loads much higher.

so suggesting that a tire rated for INTERMITTENT LOADING to 1900 lbs

(and much LESS continuous loading) is an OK/wise choice...is simply foolish.
_________

no offense intended toward ANY folks using these tires.

just don't rationalize the choice with conspiracy theories or possibly poor performance by OTHER tires.

cheers
2air'
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Old 08-04-2010, 08:39 PM   #26
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That auto and truck manufacturers have tow ratings that seem inflated does not mean tire ratings are not correct. This analogy would be the same as saying some people may lie, therefore all people lie. Tire ratings are standardized, truck tow ratings have not been.

A C, D, E or any other rated tire will support a certain amount of pounds when inflated to a certain psi regardless of who made it. The tread may fly off or the tire may ride rough, but it will be able to do what it is rated to do.

So, I disagree with the statement: "I don't believe you can 'always' rely on just the numbers to make a choice." I am sure a C rated tire will roll along for a while and in some cases, for quite a while, but if it is rated for a lessor load, I'd pay close attention to that. The stress on the tire from a load for which is not rated would seem to result in a shorter life and possibly a greater instance of catastrophic failure (i.e., a blowout). Perhaps a 60,000 mile tire (Michelin does rate tires like that) may only last 30,000 miles.

It was also said "many" people use C rated tires on loads that are higher than the tire rating. Use of the term "many" or "some" is many times used by writers trying to prove a point without the facts to back up the assertion. I'm sure many people would agree with that. My guess is that very few people use C rated tires when the recommendation of tire companies is to use D rated tires. Because of the low instance of C rated tires being used, reports of failures would be very small (perhaps those "many" people would be too embarrassed to report a tire failure making reports 0).

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Old 08-04-2010, 08:53 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene View Post
... I'm sure many people would agree with that...


i certainly DO...

appreciate those folks reporting/responding to the original question, actually using the mich' tire.

please others that are USING this tire, don't be intimidated by our banter...

_________

but i suspect those folks using that tire (many/most/all)

have made this compromised choice IN ORDER to keep the 15 inch rims...

so let me REposition and suppORt that claim with a question...

?? if the mich' ltx in the 15 inch size was AVAILABLE in a higher load capacity (comparable to Dz)...

which tire would you choose, the ~C or the ~D version??


cheers
2air'
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:02 PM   #28
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We started experimenting with 235/75R x 15" Michelin LTX Load Range C tires on tandem axle airstreams 10 years ago. They have been to Alaska Mexico and everywhere in between. We have installed them on well over 100 trailers to date.

We simply never have trouble with them, I cannot think of anyone that has had a flat tire, they don't go out of balance like travel trailer tires do within 1 year. They have substantially more traction when breaking espessially in the wet and if you ride in the Airstream they are consderably smoother which will help your Airstream to last longer and loose fewer rivets.

Don't beleive everything you read about load ratings LT tires have to meet a much higher standard than travel trailer tires. If travel trailer tires were subject to the same level of testing they would have a lower rating than the LT tire. To put it another way if you kept overloading the tire until the point of failure the LT tire would carry considerably more weight than the trailer tire before failing.

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