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Unfortunately right now, Michelin is the only tire available in the US in 16" and is no where close to the right size. The UK has several 16" gravel tires in 205/55/16 that would be perfect. Ken from Rally Performnce has agreed to look into getting a shipment of tires based on availibility, volume needed for discount, price etc.

I'd like to gauge what kind of interest there is (besides me;) ) in a gravel tire that would fit our oe (or other) 16" rims. These would be nice for rally, rallyx or just playing in the dirt!

thanks

Big Sky
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Jim,

Speed spec winter tires definitely work better than "normal" winter tires because of their stiffer sidewall, however they are still relatively soft in the sidewall and while the tread pattern of most winter tires is good- they don't compare to a true gravel tire. Talking to Ken, he said if you've never been on a true spec gravel tire your in for a wonderful suprise.

The tires look like they come in three different compounds- soft, medium, hard. Ken thought medium or hard would work for most people.

I'll post details when I get them, hoping there is some interest in these.

Big Sky
 

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Discussion Starter #6
We're hoping for a very good price (hopefully somewhere near the $100 mark).

here's the tread of one of the tires that's being looked at:

 

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Those tires are purdy. I'd kick some butt on the rallyx'es with these. I personally would like something that would be good for a WI winter as well as gravel, but I realize that they are different things. Any idea on how these would work for winter with snow sometimes and clean pavement others?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I wondered the same thing, here's a reply from Jon Bogert (pro-rally)

quote:
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I don't know how gravel tires work for winter tires
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Not at all. Don't even think about it. Rally tires are like race tires--they are very temperature dependent. Take all the heat out of them and all the stick goes with it, no matter how cool the tread pattern looks.

I definitely trust his judgemnt. It would be nice to have a double duty tire, but just as a winter tire won't work well for gravel, the opposite also appears to be true.
 

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thechickencow said:
Those tires are purdy. I'd kick some butt on the rallyx'es with these. I personally would like something that would be good for a WI winter as well as gravel, but I realize that they are different things. Any idea on how these would work for winter with snow sometimes and clean pavement others?
Gravel is one of the most challanging surfaces for rubber.

tcc, if you are looking for a kick ass winter tire, get those Nokians that we discussed on the winter tire thread. They look to be reasonably priced, too!

-Jim
 

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Either of you know how much a set of steel rims cost? I don't know if I can justify all these tires...

17's with Kumho's for summer
16" stockers for drag and spring/fall snow
15" steelies?? for snow/winter
15" or 16" for gravel for rallyx.

Luckily I've got a garage big enough, but thats a lot of money to put into tires/wheels. Probably most likely what I'll do is:

17's for spring/summer/fall
16's for snow/rallyx/gravel (probably snow tires rather than gravel)
My drag tires will have to be the 17s. I'm not too worried about that.

(this will be after I wear out my RE92s this winter)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Don't know what steelies run (cheaper than aluminum;) ).

Also it's official Ken from Rally Performance will be getting these tires, he's going to try to get as close as possible to $100 shipped /tire.

Let me know if anyone is interested.

Big Sky
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Yes, stock size- in tread pattern shown above. Most are looking at the medium/hard compound- good grip, but still good wear. Also most are ordering a spare or two (some are even ordering a couple of sets).

Big Sky
 

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Big Sky WRX said:

I definitely trust his judgemnt. It would be nice to have a double duty tire, but just as a winter tire won't work well for gravel, the opposite also appears to be true.
I don't think it is a matter of Winter street tries or gravel street tires (I dunno, maybe some sort of light truck tire?) crossing over - but rather the fact that these aren't street tires at all. They're race tires and, as such, are tuned to a very small window of conditions. They talked a bit about this during Speed Channels Rally Deutchland coverage this weekend. Michelin had three different tread patterns, each in a couple of different compounds. And this was an all (or at least 90-something percent) tarmac event with just a bit of rain. Start talking about crossing over to gravel or to snow and you can imagine how many different tire options there are total.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
At the level of the WRC, a slight change in tread can make the difference in a podium finish or not. In mere mortal's hands, probably not a lot of difference.

These tires are a "general purpose", forest/gravel tire. Most are looking at the medium/hard compound- a good compromise between wear and grip. If one was very serious about his rally (I can only dream) he would have a whole cadre of tires to fill many niches. These tires would however be a vast improvemnt over any street or winter tire in a dirt/gravel scenario ie rally-x, gravel runs etc.

Big Sky
 

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Of course, the Club racer just gets the trickle down from those World-level development programs. I just meant to reinforce the point that the tires are designed to operate in a relatively narrow window compared to a street tire that can go from snow to gravel to tarmac to snow and still maintain reasonable effectiveness.

C
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Well it's officially on. Maxsport was in the process of moving their entire facility, that's done. Ken said the tires will be no more than $106/tire (RB3) in the oe size- 205-55/16. Shipping will run from $50-75 (for four tires) depending where you live (Ken's on the east coast). You can choose a different tire or size, but you'll have to contact Ken for pricing.

Maxsport tires (tyres) can be seen here:

http://www.maxsport-competition-tyres.co.uk/

If interested please email Ken at

[email protected]

These tire will absolutely rock for rallyx and any other gravel endeavor.

Big Sky
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I'd say we are probably a couple of weeks out before finalizing the order. Ken's going to try and come as close to filling a container as possible (saves $), what he can't fill w/ tires he's going to try and fill w/ exhausts.

I'm guessing there is a pretty good lag w/ stuff shipped by boat (not sure how long).

I know once Ken gets the merchandise he is very quick getting it out.

Hope that helps.

Big Sky
 
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