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Old 10-16-2014, 11:11 PM   #1
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Trailer Tires vs. Truck Tires ON Trailer

At a rally today I spoke with someone that told me there are converting to a truck tire and rim moving away from the stock rim and trailer tire.

Does anyone know if this move makes sense? The reason given to me was to provide a safer more reliable tire.
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Old 10-17-2014, 06:21 AM   #2
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There are lots of threads on here on this subject for your reading enjoyment, and I would suggest you do a search for the subject "ST tires" and "LT tires".
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Old 10-17-2014, 06:33 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by jvcolaizzi View Post
At a rally today I spoke with someone that told me there are converting to a truck tire and rim moving away from the stock rim and trailer tire.

Does anyone know if this move makes sense? The reason given to me was to provide a safer more reliable tire.
Yes, moving away from ST trailer tires definitely makes sense. ST tires have a questionable reliability and longevity record. There are a number of threads here on the Forums that address this issue. One of the more complete threads is titled, 16" wheels/LT tires.

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Old 10-17-2014, 07:45 AM   #4
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In case you are looking for even more validation of moving from ST to LT tires, be aware that Airstream itself is shipping all of its 2015 and later models larger than 25 feet with LT tires.
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Old 10-17-2014, 11:51 AM   #5
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In case you are looking for even more validation of moving from ST to LT tires, be aware that Airstream itself is shipping all of its 2015 and later models larger than 25 feet with LT tires.
Not exactly. Our 28ft 2015 shipped with 15" Marathons. We had them replaced with Eddie Bauer rims and 16" Michelins.
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Old 10-17-2014, 12:17 PM   #6
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I was going to switch to the Michelin LT tires, but found that it is no longer made for 15" wheels. So, I would have had to go to the additional expense of purchasing 16" wheels to mount LT tires.

You may want to check out the new Carlisle Radial Trail ST tire. It has an 85 mph speed rating as opposed to the 65 mph speed rating of nearly every other Special Trailer (ST) tire. The lower speed rating I believe has been the major cause of ST tire failure. It only takes one minute or less travel in excess of that rating to damage the tire, so Carlisle has addressed that with their new design.

I bought the ST225/75R15 for my 32' Excella (GVWR 8,300 lbs.) and just returned from a 3,000 mile trip. They preformed well and though I normally only tow at speeds below 65, there were several segments of the trip when I exceeded that. There appears to be little wear on the tires and they are looking really good, whereas I replaced my previous Goodyear Marathons with only about 7,000 miles on them because of poor wear patterns, and indications of impending tread separation. I took good care of the Goodyear tires, used the Pressure Pro tire pressure sensors, never drove over their speed rating, used tire covers when not in use and even put the trailer on jack stands when storing to keep the tires off the ground.

The Carlisles though, do appear to be performing much better. I bought them from Discount Tire, $99 each plus replacement, fees, and balancing.
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Old 10-17-2014, 12:38 PM   #7
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There are lots of threads on here on this subject for your reading enjoyment, and I would suggest you do a search for the subject "ST tires" and "LT tires".

I've been over the endless threads on ST/LT and one question I have seems unanswered. With the sensitivity of the AS to jack points, do you take your TT to the dealer and trust him to correctly lift the trailer to change the tires, or do you remove your own tires and rims and take them to the dealer in the back of you TV?
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Old 10-17-2014, 12:42 PM   #8
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I've been over the endless threads on ST/LT and one question I have seems unanswered. With the sensitivity of the AS to jack points, do you take your TT to the dealer and trust him to correctly lift the trailer to change the tires, or do you remove your own tires and rims and take them to the dealer in the back of you TV?
I've done both, but when I take the Airstream to the tire shop, I insist on using the jack myself to lift the trailer, one side at a time, and let them change the tires/wheels.

I guarantee you that 9 times out of 10 they will try to jack it up under the axles.
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Old 10-17-2014, 12:49 PM   #9
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Yeah, I always take the wheels off myself. My tire dealer doesn't even have enough room in his lot to work on my Airstream anyway.
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Old 10-17-2014, 01:14 PM   #10
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I've done both, but when I take the Airstream to the tire shop, I insist on using the jack myself to lift the trailer, one side at a time, and let them change the tires/wheels.

I guarantee you that 9 times out of 10 they will try to jack it up under the axles.
Or, they try to jack it up with the jack under the fresh water tank pan. That makes for a real mess.
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Old 10-17-2014, 02:27 PM   #11
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Not exactly. Our 28ft 2015 shipped with 15" Marathons. We had them replaced with Eddie Bauer rims and 16" Michelins.
Silverbee, I am surprised. I thought that I had been told by Airstream at the factory during Alumapalooza that all 2015s over 25 feet were shipping with the Michelin LT tires. Hmm.. Glad you got them though. You won't regret it!
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Old 10-17-2014, 03:02 PM   #12
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I found that while the Michelin LT load range "E"s on upgraded 16" Sendel wheels gave me peace of mind on my 2013 19' Bambi, their harsh ride popped at least 8 rivets at 65-75 psi.

I went with Michelin LTX 15" XL (E2) P235 tires on Sendel 15 inch wheels on my 2014 23D. The ride is very plush. In fact on a 350 mile segment through Arizona on I40 this week, a tall jar of marbles we'd left on the kitchen counter didn't seem to move at all. I wouldn't have expected that with the much stiffer LR "E" LTs.
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Old 10-18-2014, 06:16 AM   #13
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Yeah, I always take the wheels off myself...
+1 With the proper tools (in my case a Trailer-Aid Plus ramp & DeWalt 1/2" cordless impact wrench) the job really isn't that hard.
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Old 10-18-2014, 07:25 AM   #14
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Some interesting facts about "ST" tires.

I've learned some things about "ST" tires vs. "LT" tires thru research and reading on this and other forums.

You will find there is no other tire rated to carry as much weight as a "ST" tire in a given size. The tire manufactures will tell you that the "ST" tires have been upgraded in weight capacity because they are restricted from use on a drive axle, a steering axle, from use on any vehicle carrying passengers, and restricted to 65 MPH. And I suspect the passenger vehicle restriction really is just a shield used to protect those manufacturers from liability.

You will also find the reverse is true when using a "P" metric radial on a trailer in that if used on a trailer, those tires should be weight de-rated by a certain factor although those tires were designed to be used on drive axles, steering axles, passenger vehicles, and not restricted to 65 MPH.

Seems like a contradiction in restrictions to me, and that the tire manufacturers are (a) trying to sell more and different types of tires, and (b) making every effort to not be required to warrant their product and (c) cover their back sides.

OK, off the soap box for now.......
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