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Old 06-29-2016, 08:44 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by FCStreamer View Post
GYMs have gotten a bad forum reputation, yet thousands of trailers are using them today. Yet Michelin doesn't even make a trailer tire. People use light truck tires on their trailers, and call that safe. I just don't get it.
It comes down to how you use your trailer and the amount of weight the tires much bear. Obviously failures of ST tires are just not an Airstream thing. Go to any national RV site and there will be threads regarding ST tire failures.

Goodyear Marathon's take the brunt of the failure posts simply because there are more of them used as OEM's than any other ST tire out there.

Personally I don't blame Marathon's specifically as a brand. I blame ST tires in the fact that under higher load conditions they fail sooner as they age. Many folks aren't pulling heavily loaded trailers, inflate to proper pressures, and stay within the rated speed limits for ST tires. In those cases they may get many years of problem free use. On the other hand ST tires don't seem to have the stamina to handle long term use if any potential abuse occurs or in my case have about a 3 season life before the belts start to experience slippage or separation. I've tried Marathons and E rated Maxxis ST tires with belt slippage occurring on both. In both cases the tires were running below 65 mph, at max sidewall pressures and the trailer stored inside. The Marathons failed on the last trip of their 3rd season and the Maxxis failed on the first trip of the 4th season.

If you take a look at Discount Tires' discussions of ST tires, here is a quote.

"Time and the elements weaken a trailer tire.
In approximately 3 years, roughly one third of the tire's strength is gone.
Three to five years is the projected life of a normal trailer tire."

I am pulling a heavy trailer and in my situation if Discount's statement regarding tire strength is accurate, it probably hits the nail right on the head with my experience. If my ST tires have lost on third of their strength by year three, then there is no doubt that my trailer is technically over loading those tires at the end of year three.

My dealer who also sells fifth wheel trailers noted that many of the heavy fifth wheel units are now equipped with LT tires. From my experience, just from the economics alone long term, going to a 16" LT tire and replacing after 5 seasons of use makes more economic sense than replacing my ST tires sometime within their 3rd season of use.

From the wealth of experience here on the forum, many who have made the jump went to Michelins and have reported excellent results. Many of us therefore have chosen Michelins based on those reports.


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Old 06-29-2016, 09:17 PM   #16
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Installed 15" SenDel T03-56545T wheels and Michelin LTX (P) 235/75R15 XL tires with Centramatic wheel balancers #200-221, Dill 1506-453 TPMS on our 2015 23D International Serenity. Made custom tire carrier for 15" spare. Had to trim about 1.5" off of the front edge of curb side wheel well to make it the same measurement as the street side. Then the 15" ties fitted.

Fully loaded with all the modifications we have made, the trailer scales 6,068 pounds camping ready with the heaviest tire load on one tire of 1,360 pounds. All the rest are under 1,290 pound tire loads. Derated capacity of my prior version of the Michelin tire is 1,968 pounds, so more than enough safety margin.

No Michelin tire failure in nearly 50 years of using them. Have had GYM ST tire failures with trailer just sitting there.
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Old 06-29-2016, 10:25 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FCStreamer View Post
And it does. My GYMs do not lose any pressure. And did not explode after a 1200 mile trip. These are also "objective" facts.

GYMs have gotten a bad forum reputation, yet thousands of trailers are using them today. Yet Michelin doesn't even make a trailer tire. People use light truck tires on their trailers, and call that safe. I just don't get it.
I liken this to the Ford vs Gm vs Toyota vs Dodge vs whatever. And PP vs Equalizer vs whatever.
Everyone has grown up with their favourite "whatever" and seem to be willing to forgive their favourites if they fail or cause problems that they wouldn't be willing to forgive otherwise.
I have had only one GYM tire failure in 20 years of trailering and it was my fault. If I was inclined to follow the crowd as so many others are then I would have ditched my GYM's and my GM and my Equalizer and probably soon to follow would be my Interstate Batteries.
But, they have all functioned well for me. I don't abuse them.
I have had one set if Michelins on my vehicle and quite frankly I was unimpressed so I went back to Goodyear.
I have found in my 30 years of sales experiences that people tend to forgive their "favourites" and find excuses for their "favourites" so why don't we all let everyone use whatever they want and move on.


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Old 06-30-2016, 10:22 AM   #18
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I have found in my 30 years of sales experiences that people tend to forgive their "favourites" and find excuses for their "favourites" so why don't we all let everyone use whatever they want and move on.


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Old 06-30-2016, 11:12 AM   #19
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Based on these posts, no one should own a travel trailer, catastrophic events occur on an hourly basis. I just pulled my 31' 1975 Airstream 3000 miles at 70 MPH from Kansas City to Florida and back, through the Smokey Mountains on the way there and the Arkansas Mountains on the way home. I do have the TPMS so I know the air pressure and temp of the tires. I had zero problems and we will drive the trailer another 5000 miles this year with ST tires. For some reason, tire companies make trailer tires.
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Old 06-30-2016, 11:22 AM   #20
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I have been using Maxxis M8008 ST rated tires for a number of years. One set on my previous Jayco and I just installed my second set on the Airstream yesterday. The ones I took off were 7 years old (6 years on the trailer) and were in perfect shape. I think the whole Michelin thing is fine, but like others have said nothing is perfect. Since (so far) I have had good luck with these Maxxis ST rated tires I stuck with them. We'll see how it goes. One thing I like about ST tires is that (as I understand it) they are designed for the more intense sidewall loads that they are put under when we make sharp turns with our trailers (you are basically "skidding" the tire at times). Passenger vehicle tires are not designed for this as I understand it. Although, folks seem to have a good bit of success with them. Of course, there are other brands besides Michelins that you could use in lieu of ST tires if you so desired. BTW I use Michelins on my other vehicles, LTX2 on my truck and Premiers on my car.

One note for you Costco members. They will now mount and balance tires that they did not sell. I loaded mine up in the truck (2 at a time as I alternately ran one axle up on ramps while I took the others up to Costco - which is only about a mile from my house). I like getting my tires serviced there. The folks are well trained by Michelin and really seem to know what they are doing. Plus the price is right: $14 to dismount the old tire, mount the new tire, spin balance and dispose of the old tire. That would be hard to beat at most chains, who's service writers usually leave something to be desired and their prices are sky high. After using mail order and later the internet to order tires for the past 45 years, I now just head right to Costco. Easier and cheaper. Plus they have a great road hazard and rotation policy. Heck I had the Kelly Springfields on my daughters Civic rotated and balanced the other week. Only $25. A very good deal. Of course, this service would have been free if I had purchased the tires there. It goes without saying that when the KS wear out (they were on the car when we bought it used and have been fine) I'll be throwing a set of Michelins on that care too. This just FYI, FWIW.
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Old 06-30-2016, 10:55 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Action View Post
In my opinion (which is about worthless unless you read this on the internet. Then it is factual because everything on the internet is true)

It is a higher end tire that you will pay a premium to obtain
If you are operating a high end travel trailer, high end tires may be the match you seek.
As far as I know none of the Michelin tires are designed for trailers - they are designed either as passenger car tires or light truck tires
As a LT tire the load capacity may be greater
You may be able to drive continuously at speeds greater than 65 mph - unlike a ST tire
You may be able to abuse them to a greater degree than a lower end tire
There may be some ego involved in owning a set

Typically owners will up grade to a larger diameter rim size when replacing tires as well which allows the user to have greater load capacity or a greater margin of reserve load capacity.

And in the arena of damage to a trailer, (with some restrictions) greater load capacity may reduce the possibility of a major tire event causing damage to the coach.

Individual results may vary
Some assembly required
Batteries not included if you get TPMS

>>>>>>>>>>>>Action
I have an Eddie Bauer and it came standard with Michelins.... Airstream must think they are trailer tires.
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Old 07-01-2016, 05:58 AM   #22
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I have avoided commenting on the tire debate threads for most of my 3ish years in AF. Too controversial.

However, our Pete's GYMs are right at 3yrs old (2413 build dates), rarely lose air from the 65 lb AS recommended pressure for our 27fb (6500 lbs wet), live in the pole barn covered when not rolling, and have rolled maybe 5000 miles with no issues.

I'm interested in better tires certainly if they will work. I've waited for the new Michelin P-rated 15" XLs and apparently they are now available. So the other day I asked a local 2nd generation tire man(two family stores) that I trust about ordering me a set (do a good bit of business with him) and he said no.

No, as in, he won't mount P-XLs nor LTs on our AS. He said I'll sell you the best STs I can find (may have Been Maxis actually), but I'll only put STs on your coach. Hmmm well now that is interesting.....

Anyone else had this discussion with their tire dealer? I'm just curious not trying to stir a huge debate.


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Old 07-01-2016, 06:03 AM   #23
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. . .
Anyone else had this discussion with their tire dealer? I'm just curious not trying to stir a huge debate.
Too late, the flood gates are now officially open!



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Old 07-01-2016, 06:13 AM   #24
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where is the build date on GYM tires ?
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Old 07-01-2016, 06:17 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShinyPete View Post
I have avoided commenting on the tire debate threads for most of my 3ish years in AF. Too controversial.

However, our Pete's GYMs are right at 3yrs old (2413 build dates), rarely lose air from the 65 lb AS recommended pressure for our 27fb (6500 lbs wet), live in the pole barn covered when not rolling, and have rolled maybe 5000 miles with no issues.

I'm interested in better tires certainly if they will work. I've waited for the new Michelin P-rated 15" XLs and apparently they are now available. So the other day I asked a local 2nd generation tire man(two family stores) that I trust about ordering me a set (do a good bit of business with him) and he said no.

No, as in, he won't mount P-XLs nor LTs on our AS. He said I'll sell you the best STs I can find (may have Been Maxis actually), but I'll only put STs on your coach. Hmmm well now that is interesting.....

Anyone else had this discussion with their tire dealer? I'm just curious not trying to stir a huge debate.


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Yes.

I have a homemade race car trailer that has used P215/75R14 Passenger Car tires since the day I bought it (as part of the race car purchase.) The trailer has no suspension - as in the tires are the only thing that flexes. I back calculated what pressure I would need and came up with somewhere about 20 psi - I use 25 psi. Admittedly, I don't put many miles on the trailer as all the tows were short distances - a couple hundred miles at most!

When I went to order tires for the trailer (that size isn't normally stocked!), I was informed that because it was for a trailer, not only would they not mount the tires directly on the trailer, they wouldn't even order the tires for me - that the only tire appropriate for a trailer is an ST tire.

I didn't bother to argue with the guy. I just asked if I brought in wheels with tires on them - and new tires to be exchanged, would he do that? He said he would, so I ordered tires from Tire Rack and did the exchange 2 at a time.

So there are ways around this problem.

But I would caution everyone to completely do your homework before you do this. There are situations where you can get yourself into trouble.

My personal recommendation is to weigh your trailer fully loaded - even if you are going to use the size that came on the trailer. It is known that some trailer manufacturers have not done a good job of sizing tires for their trailer. I don't know if Airstream is one of those or not. It is important that you know what the loads on the individual tires are. Be sure to account for side to side and front to rear variation Tires on a trailer are not evenly loaded!
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Old 07-01-2016, 06:40 AM   #26
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where is the build date on GYM tires ?


Here ya go:

http://www.tirebuyer.com/education/h...-of-your-tires

"The first two digits are the week of manufacture, and the last two digits are the year. For example, if the last four digits of the DOT code are 0203, that means that the tire was manufactured during the second week of the year 2003."
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Old 07-01-2016, 08:08 AM   #27
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Airstream is installing the current model of the 16" Michelin LT225/75R16/E LTX M/S2 tires on 16" SenDel To3-66655T wheels on both the Pendleton and all Classics since 2015. These are their two heaviest trailers now.

That is what I retrofitted to our 2014 31' Classic. In the 2014 and earlier models of The Eddie Bauer models, they had these same tires and wheels as well.

What I read here on the forum are folks experience. Only two or three posters are real tire experts that often chime in with important details concerning tire loads etc.

Use what tires or whatever you want. It is your trailer after all. We have all made choices and get to live with the results.
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Old 07-01-2016, 09:37 AM   #28
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Why Michelin tires?

Many tire dealers will not mount any tire other than a ST tire on trailers. I really believe it is because of one of two reasons. One is warranty and possibly an agreement with the manufacturer not to sell or mount tires on a class of vehicle that they weren't designed for.

Since we know that Airstream and some 5th wheel manufacturers are using the 16" Michelin LT tire on some models there must be some implicit understanding with Michelin. I can't see these manufacturers sending trailers out the door with tires that Michelin wouldn't stand behind.

Also keep in mind than other than road hazard damage, we have folks who now have at least 6 years of experience with their Michelin's. If this tire wasn't up to the task, we truly would have started seeing some reports by now.

At this point I'm into year 4 with my set and have surpassed the life I got from my Marathons and Maxxis ST tires.

At this point I think I'm very comfortable with the safety and performance on the 16" LT tires. I'm not sure however how large the universe is of those going with the P rated Michelin offering. I think we may need a few more years of feedback before we reach the level of comfort that we see with the 16's.

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