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Old 02-27-2016, 06:17 AM   #99
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Originally Posted by Ted S. View Post
So here's a question, what do UPS trucks use in the winter if the Rib is a summer tire?

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Old 02-28-2016, 07:56 PM   #100
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I always understood the summer/winter tire ratings as having to do with traction and rubber compounds in the tire. Summer tires had less aggressive treads and lugs and harder compounds because traction wasn't an issue, and the harder compound wore better and was more impervious to heat. Conversely, the winter treads were more aggressive for traction and steering, and softer rubber blend gave a better purchase on the pavement. Heat/wear not a primary concern. When I lived in the snowbound north, I always drove studded snows on all 4 wheels (even on the two-wheel/front wheel drive cars) and summer touring tires with a unidirectional tread (i.e. Michelin Pilot Exalto), which gave excellent traction and hydroplaning resistance.

But, on a trailer, where you do not have to worry about traction or steering, I don't see the issue - and the advantage seems to go to the Rib, as it is the stronger tire. Am I missing some vital tire specification here?

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Old 02-29-2016, 07:24 AM   #101
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Allow me to clarify:

All Season tires are designated by the letters "M" and "S"m, with perhaps a symbol between them, such as "/", "-", "+", but a symbol is NOT required. The tire itself has to meet some tread geometry criteria, such as a "luggy" shoulder (my term!), and some amount of sipes and cross grooves.

A summer tire is one that does not meet the criteria above.

A winter tire has to pass an actual test and can use the "Mountain/Snowflake" symbol. Prior to the creation of this test/symbol, there was no criteria and it was up to the tire manufacturer to decide what did and did not constitute a winter tire - and I think we are long past the point where the transition between those 2 systems has taken place.

So what about the actual construction and tread compound?

Construction wise, summer tires TEND to be H and higher speed rated, so their construction generally has a cap ply or 2. They also tend to be lower aspect ratio.

Compound wise, summer tires TEND to be better grip/ faster wear - however, that is NOT a defining characteristic and you may find some summer tires with decent wear characteristics - although I don't think it makes a lot of sense for a tire manufacturer to do this.

The construction of All Season tires is geared towards the speed rating - and that can range from S all the way to Z (although I can't think of any Z rated All Season tires!) Tread compounds also are wide ranged, but TEND to be better wearing / lower grip than summer tires.

Winter tires are constructed appropriate to the speed rating. Compound wise, they use colder weather compounds (ones that are more flexible at colder temperatures), but that is also not a defining characteristic.

At this point it might be useful to point out that there is a category of tire that seems to be developing - the All Weather tire. That's a tire that has a Mountain/Snowflake symbol, but is compounding for hotter weather, and, therefore, can be used year round. Please note that I am NOT saying All Season tires can not be used year round, but that a common complaint about All Season tires is the poor snow traction (that an All Weather tire addresses.)

And lastly, I want to address the issue of a trailer tire's traction:

Obviously the trailer must be slowed down by either the brakes on the tow vehicle or the brakes on the trailer - preferably both. What you do NOT want is for the trailer tires to lock up as that causes the trailer to try to get in front of the tow vehicle - very bad!

So I think the traction of a tire on a trailer is fairly important - one worthy of consideration.
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Old 02-29-2016, 07:29 AM   #102
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I don't know why people are saying the traction is not needed on a trailer. There are unexpected storms, snow, ice and rain. The trailer must brake, may be exposed to hydroplaning.

Like I said, they may be right, but acceleration is not he only reason a tire needs traction, correct?
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Old 02-29-2016, 08:54 AM   #103
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Old 02-29-2016, 06:55 PM   #104
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Michelin XPS RIB vs. LTX M/S2

I have towed our 28ft International with both LTX and Ribs in wet,cold,snow, and mud.From 10 to 108 degrees.I have made panic stops and quick turns with both.
I am happy to report that I could not tell any difference in the ride or braking and handling.
I can tell you that the Ribs have a thicker sidewall which is more durable for multi axel trailer use as they have a tendency to drag the forward tires sideways on slow sharp turns (thus the black marks when maneuvering around gas pumps ,medians etc).Both tires are leaps and bounds ahead of Goodyear Marathons!

I have been fortunate enough to drive most of the fastest exotic cars on the planet on majority of famous race tracks around the world over the last 40 years and I do understand tire compounds and evasive driving maneuvers.

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