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Old 06-26-2015, 01:09 PM   #1
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Michelin XPS RIB vs. LTX M/S2

I know, I know...another tire thread. After days, no months...heck, maybe years of reading tire threads I still do not understand why Airstream owners pick the Michelin LTX M/S2 tires over the Michelin XPS RIB (commercial truck) tires when they switch to 16". My best guess is for a softer ride, but it seems like the stronger sidewalls of the RIB's would be beneficial. The LTX M/S2 is a great tire, but you still get the great Michelin quality in the RIB and have a tire that seems more suited to trailers. I know the RIB's are expensive, but contractors, horse trailer owners, and many 5th wheel owners seem to swear by them. They use steel in the sidewall instead of threads. I have found where a few people on the site switched to them and loved them, but it seems any talk of Michelins (or 16" tires in general) jump right to the LTX M/S2 and the RIB's are instantly forgotten. Has anyone else had a dilemma deciding between these two tires? If so, what swayed (shouldn't talk about sway on an RV site) you one way or the other?
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Old 06-26-2015, 01:21 PM   #2
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Airstream chose the LTX M/S 2 for the Eddie Bauer thus giving it their seal of approval. This of course is why so many people are using it. Not really hard to figure out. If you think the others are so good suggest you buy some.
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Old 06-26-2015, 01:45 PM   #3
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To be fair, Airstream still puts Goodyear Marathons on most their trailers so I have to be careful how much I trust their judgment when it comes to tires. It seems odd everyone would just take off using the LTX based on what they put on the Eddie Bauer, but you may in fact be correct. It just seems Airstream owners favor one tire while many other type of trailer owners are favoring the other. My main concern is how well a normal passenger tire sidewall will hold up to sharp turns, but my concerns my be unfounded as so many people have been using the LTX successfully.
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Old 06-26-2015, 02:04 PM   #4
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Echelon - good question. Hope someone has done a real comparison and can give you some insights other than tell you to buy some!
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Old 06-26-2015, 02:37 PM   #5
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A lot of margin in my applicatin

I considered both, but went with the LTX instead of the Ribs because of price coupled with the fact that my trailer GVWR is only 6300# against the rating of the 4 tires of 10,720#. Given 800# of tongue weight the tires are only carrying 5800#. 84% margin seemed like it should cover some sidewall stress. If I had a bigger trailer I would probably have gotten the Ribs.

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Old 06-26-2015, 05:15 PM   #6
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I guess it makes sense to go with the LTX if you feel the RIB is just overkill. Maybe the answer is Airstream trailers are just not heavy enough to justify the extra cost of the RIB's. Some of the
fifth wheel and gooseneck owners claimed they have had load range E or "XLT" rated truck tires pop off the wheel in sharp turns. I realize those setups can typically turn sharper than a "bumper pull" though. Anyone ever experience any problems with the LTX's when turning the trailer sharp on pavement?
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Old 06-26-2015, 10:14 PM   #7
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Price/Availability was part of my decision. I could get the LTX from Costco mounted/balanced at a fantastic discount. Or, I could pay full price for RIB's and shipping.
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Old 06-26-2015, 10:55 PM   #8
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Michelin XPS RIB vs. LTX M/S2

Price is the main reason.

I have owned both LTX and the Rib which is another step up in quality and sidewall thickness.Contrary to popular belief the ride quality is the same.I won't go back to the LTX's.Now have logged over 10,000 miles on the Ribs with my 28ft International and they show no wear and have performed flawlessly in all road conditions.
No such thing as overkill when it comes to safety.You get what u pay for in this case.


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Old 06-27-2015, 12:05 AM   #9
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It has been suggested the XPS Rib is a stiffer ride in reading I have done, and that's not the direction I want to go with our rather fragile Airstream. Airstream puts the Michelin 16" LTX M/S on their premium models. I have never seen a report of a blowout of these 16" LTX M/S so the reliability is there, although I doubt a blowout is a safety issue on a trailer, especially with tandem axles.

I see no advantage to XPS Rib over LTX M/S, and there may be a disadvantage in ride quality. Our LTX M/S have traveled about 20,000 miles so far with virtually no sign of wear.
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Old 06-27-2015, 10:31 AM   #10
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Thanks so much for the input. I think I have a handle now on what everyone perceives as the differences between the two tires. I just have to decide what makes the most sense for my application now. It was good to get some different point of views since I am trying to decide which to buy.
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Old 06-27-2015, 12:01 PM   #11
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I really think it depends upon your use of the trailer. For many owners, we never wear out tread. So if you follow the 5 year life rule in my usage, buying the Rib isn't cost effective.

I used that same justication in the premium I paid for the LTX over my E rated Maxis ST tires. I pretty much feel that the useful safe life of the Maxis E rated 15" tire is 3 years on my trailer. So I figured the cost of 3 replacements of the ST tires over 10 years, vs 2 replacements of the LTX tire. 3 sets of tires vs two.

Bottom line if the LTX tires perform for me like I am expecting, I will actually save money. Based on two sets of ST tires, Goodyear and Maxis, I've had belt slippage failure at the end of year three and beginning of year 4 on both brands of tires.

So to me the Rib is only justified if you truly are a high mileage traveler or maybe travel on some of superheated highways in locales that have hot climates.
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Old 06-27-2015, 02:29 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcanavera View Post
I really think it depends upon your use of the trailer. For many owners, we never wear out tread. So if you follow the 5 year life rule in my usage, buying the Rib isn't cost effective.

I used that same justication in the premium I paid for the LTX over my E rated Maxis ST tires. I pretty much feel that the useful safe life of the Maxis E rated 15" tire is 3 years on my trailer. So I figured the cost of 3 replacements of the ST tires over 10 years, vs 2 replacements of the LTX tire. 3 sets of tires vs two.

Bottom line if the LTX tires perform for me like I am expecting, I will actually save money. Based on two sets of ST tires, Goodyear and Maxis, I've had belt slippage failure at the end of year three and beginning of year 4 on both brands of tires.

So to me the Rib is only justified if you truly are a high mileage traveler or maybe travel on some of superheated highways in locales that have hot climates.
Jack
Jcanavera says it well.

We too have had tire blowouts between year three and year 4 with Marathons and Towmarks--plenty of tread, all sidewall issues. We suspect from scrubbing in shark backup maneuvering. So the supposedly stronger ST sidewalks did not hold up for us.

We just switched to Michelin LTX and 16" wheels. I still plan to switch out after the 4th season. XPS Ribs seemed unnecessary, but time will tell. This has nothing to do with Airstream Eddie Bauer--Airstreams official position is that 15" Marathons are fine, and Eddie Nauer insisted in the 16's for a more aggressive look.
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Old 06-27-2015, 02:59 PM   #13
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Here is a nice Michelin link for the XPS Rib line-up with all the sizes and specs.

Tire and Retread Selector | Michelin Truck

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Old 06-27-2015, 03:34 PM   #14
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I have had my LTX MS/2's on now for 3 years and about 25,000 miles along with the Centramatics; no wear can be determined without one of those tire depth gauges and then it is minimal. Love the combo and would never ever consider any ST tire again.
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