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mausersmth
04-01-2009, 04:31 PM
I'll be buying tires soon for my '57 Commander and maybe for the '64 Cruiser, don't know what's on her until I close the deal and bring her home. I've been reading about the different tires on the market and I thought it might be good to get some first hand reports.

1. What model and year Stude?

2. Are you running Bias or Radial?

3. What size?

4. What brand?

5. How many miles/years on your tires?

6. Would you buy that tire again?

I'm leaning toward 205 or 215/75R15 radials on new 15x6 Mopar style rims. I'm a little confused about which brand to choose: American Classic, B.F.Goodrich, Coker, Diamond Back or Goodyear? I've heard good and bad about all of these, but never from someone who drove on them. [:0]

It's time to ask the men (and women) who own them![8D]
Thanks!

Charles Eck
Essex, MD

'57 Commander 4 door sedan
'66 Ford F-250
'66 Ford F-100
'53 John Deere 50
'41 John Deere H All-Fuel
'41 John Deere B All-Fuel

Studebakers were made to drive! (Besides, they don't get lost as easy in the Wal-Mart parking lot!)

blackhawk61
04-01-2009, 04:44 PM
I have 205/75 x 15 BF Goodrich Silvertown Radials (from Coker)on 15 X 6 Chrysler wheels.........Have over 3,000 miles on them with Very little wear.

http://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg72/blackhawk61/Feb2008scan.jpg

1961 Hawk 4BC,4-SPEED,TT
http://i133.photobucket.com/albums/q55/chevpartsman/61HawkChevypartsmanreduce.jpg
Ken Byrd
Lewisville,NC

clonelark
04-01-2009, 04:46 PM
I you can afford the WW/Radials that would be your best option if you are going to drive it any distance at all. The Bias tires will squeel around corners and be harder steering. I have Bias tires on my Conestoga and radials on my 64 Commander,and the difference is like night and day.your 57 probably had 7:10-15s when new and 195 or 205r-15s would be just about right Sams had 195s and 205s in stock the other day.

http://i40.tinypic.com/o759c1.jpg

JBOYLE
04-01-2009, 04:47 PM
My only piece of wisdom would be to remind you to get the correct width of white wall. You don't want the post-62 narrow whites.

63 Avanti R1 2788
1914 Stutz Bearcat
(George Barris replica)

Washington State

StudeDave57
04-01-2009, 05:05 PM
My piece of advice has to do with that choice of rim size and offset.
If that offset ain't right- what tires you get won't matter much.

I tried 6" wheels on my '57 Commander. It all looked good on paper~
but the rears rubbed~ BIG TIME!!!

Coker Tire and Wheel Vintques made out okay, though...

Somewhere in the mess of tire/rim posts here I have posted
what I started with, and what I ended up with.
Good luck.


StudeDave '57 [8D]

'54 Commander Regal 4dr 'Ruby'
'57 Parkview 'Betsy' (she's a 2dr wagon)
'57 Commander DeLuxe 2dr 'Baby'
'57 Champion Custom 2dr 'Jewel'
'58 Packard sedan 'Cleo'
'65 Cruiser 'Sweet Pea'

vegas paul
04-01-2009, 05:17 PM
I have the same BF Goodrich Silverton wide whites that Ken has above... ride great and improved the handling 1000% over the bias tires that were on it when I first got it running. I got them (believe it or not) from my local Firestone dealer - he got them to me way cheaper than through Coker, and they are the same tire.

Las Vegas, NV - Stop by, coffee's on!
'51 Champion Business Coupe G899965 10G-Q4-1434
http://i151.photobucket.com/albums/s144/vegas_paul/graciestude_edited.jpg

bradnree
04-01-2009, 05:23 PM
Helpful info here...

http://www.dbtires.com/

BRAD

mausersmth
04-01-2009, 05:34 PM
Got the catalog from Diamond Back. I like all the options they offer. Never talked to anyone who owned a set so far...

Charles Eck
Essex, MD

'57 Commander 4 door sedan
'66 Ford F-250
'66 Ford F-100
'53 John Deere 50
'41 John Deere H All-Fuel
'41 John Deere B All-Fuel

Studebakers were made to drive! (Besides, they don't get lost as easy in the Wal-Mart parking lot!)

stude-sled
04-01-2009, 05:59 PM
I have around 50,000 miles on my Diamond back radials with no problems. They are on a custom 1952 Studebaker pickup.

53k
04-01-2009, 08:15 PM
quote:Originally posted by mausersmth

I'll be buying tires soon for my '57 Commander and maybe for the '64 Cruiser, don't know what's on her until I close the deal and bring her home. I've been reading about the different tires on the market and I thought it might be good to get some first hand reports.
1. What model and year Stude?
2. Are you running Bias or Radial?
3. What size?
4. What brand?
5. How many miles/years on your tires?
6. Would you buy that tire again?
I'm leaning toward 205 or 215/75R15 radials on new 15x6 Mopar style rims. I'm a little confused about which brand to choose: American Classic, B.F.Goodrich, Coker, Diamond Back or Goodyear? I've heard good and bad about all of these, but never from someone who drove on them. [:0]

I don't think the brand is too important because, unless you are driving a lot of miles, the tires will run out of years long before miles. The only reason to consider bias tires is to be really authentic.
I have 215x75x15 Firestone radials on 15x6 Magnum wheels on my '64 convertible- have about 1,000 miles on them. I found that 215x75 is closest in height (or diameter) to the original 6.70x15 tires that came on the car so you have a more accurate speedometer than with the smaller 205s.
In this picture the tires are, from the left, an original 6.70x15, then a 215x75x15 then a 205x75x15 and on the right a 195x75x15 (these tires are all mounted).
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/195,%20205,%20215,%20670.JPG




Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia. '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Daytona convertible, '53 Commander Starliner, Museum R-4 engine, '62 Gravely Model L, '72 Gravely Model 430

http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%20broken%20circle.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20002.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20004.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20006.jpg

S2DSteve
04-01-2009, 08:28 PM
1. '53 Commander convertible.
2. Radial.
3. 225/70rx15 rear, 215/70rx15 front.
4. Diamondback Classic.
5. 33,000 miles in 6 years.
6. Yes.

Diamondback does not actually make tires-they just apply the whitewalls on whatever brand you pick. They are roughly twice as expensive as a comparable non wide white tire. Only hassle I've had (other than maintenance/detailing of wide whites and spoke wheels!) is tubes were required due to the type of wheels.

http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u57/S2DSteve/Family12-1-2.jpg
Steve Hudson
The Dalles, Oregon
1949 "GMOBaker" 1-T Dually (workhorse)
1953 Commander Convertible (show & go)
1953 Champion Starliner (custom/rod project)
1954 Champion Coupe (daily driver)
1960 Hawk (future project?)

Gunslinger
04-01-2009, 08:52 PM
'70 Avanti

radial tires
P215/70R15 (on Magnum 500 wheels)
Cooper Cobra redlines (purchased through Diamondback Tires)
tires are two years old...1500 miles
5 of our 6 cars wear Coopers, only one without is the '02 Avanti still wearing factory BFG's, I would definitely buy Coopers again.



Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, cocky and in general a malcontent.

Pat Dilling
04-01-2009, 09:18 PM
Currently have 235/70-15 Diamondback performance radials on 15x7 wheels on the back and 195/75-14 Cokers on the front. I have gone through several sets of Cokers replaced due to whitewalls cracking or bubbling. Coker always stood by them and replaced one set pro rated even though I was not the original buyer. Tried the Dbs because I was tired of messing with the Cokers. DiamondBack performance is far superior IMO. Mine are actually Yokohama tires, current performance tires from them are Firestone 500, which should be better still.

Pat

Pat Dilling
Olivehurst, CA
Custom '53 Starlight aka Stu Cool
http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n194/stucool53/StuCoolsmallerSigpic.jpg
LS1 Engine Swap Journal: http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/journal.php?action=view&journalid=33611

STEWDI
04-01-2009, 09:25 PM
I'll tell you about three Studes owned by myself, my son and one of our best friends. In order ,a 55 Champion, a 56 Power Hawk, and a 62 Lark 6. All are riding on BFG bias-ply 670-15's with 2 1/2 inch wide white walls.

The front end on the Power hawk has never been rebuilt and when we bot it, it had black-wall radials (205-75R15 I think) installed. The car of course handled better on the road, but was a brute to park and move around the driveway with no power steering. We refitted it with the BFG's since we couldn't stand it without wide whites and we were very used to the way Studes handle with bias plies. She was then a dream to park compared to manouvering with the radials.

A caution: you should not install radials and think you "fixed" the handling just by doing so. Yes, it improves "road wander", but the other two cars mentioned above have had front end work done, and wander is no big problem. The steering should always be inspected and fixed BEFORE any new tires are installed. And don't forget that radials make the rims flex more than bias plies do - and that original Stude rims are not rated for really high mileage with radials. Cracking could occur. Cars made later, and equipped from the factory with radials had thicker rims.

All three of us are happy with our BFG bais ply tires considering that the cars are just used for hobby driving - and all three have been driven hundreds of mile from home. However, if a Stude was used as a daily driver, properly rated and sized rims and radials would be the way to go.

Roger "153624" Hill

55 Champion
47 M-5
Izzer Buggy
Junior Wagon

Lenny R2
04-01-2009, 09:26 PM
On my 63 Avanti i have 205X75X15 American classictires from Coker&Magnum 500s
from Coker.I only have a thousand miles on them so far.

Lenny
Atlanta Ga.

mausersmth
04-02-2009, 09:37 AM
Thank you to everyone who has (or will) take the time to answer! Yes, I will be checking/repairing the front end as the '64 Cruiser I'm getting this month (Can't wait!) will be my daily driver, probably 20k a year or so. The Commander will probably hit 5-10k a year, more when work is due on the '64.

StudeDave, do you remember if the rubbing was on the inside (Too much offset) or the outside (Not enough offset)? It is the Wheel Vintiques Chrysler wheels I am looking at, and if I know what happened to you BEFORE I order it will save me trouble and money! I believe they will do a custom offset if needed.

Charles Eck
Essex, MD

'57 Commander 4 door sedan
'66 Ford F-250
'66 Ford F-100
'53 John Deere 50
'41 John Deere H All-Fuel
'41 John Deere B All-Fuel

Studebakers were made to drive! (Besides, they don't get lost as easy in the Wal-Mart parking lot!)

Gunslinger
04-02-2009, 12:56 PM
One thing to consider when replacing tires. No problems installing radial tires but you may find with modern rubber, which has better adhesion, handling, etc., will sometimes tax the suspension of older cars not originally designed for such sticky tires. New technology tires will expose old and worn suspensions for what they are and tax their limits. There's the distinct possibility to use such better tires could force someone to rebuild their suspension to take advantage of it or to keep from wearing the suspension components even faster or create funny wear patterns on the new tires.



Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, cocky and in general a malcontent.

S2DSteve
04-02-2009, 03:27 PM
Studebakers tend to need more offset (backspacing) to avoid clearance problems with the fender lip. Wheel Vintiques has a handy worksheet to determine the ideal backspacing for your application, and can custom lace your wheels to fit.

http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u57/S2DSteve/Family12-1-2.jpg
Steve Hudson
The Dalles, Oregon
1949 "GMOBaker" 1-T Dually (workhorse)
1953 Commander Convertible (show & go)
1953 Champion Starliner (custom/rod project)
1954 Champion Coupe (daily driver)
1960 Hawk (future project?)

StudeDave57
04-02-2009, 03:58 PM
quote:Originally posted by mausersmth

StudeDave, do you remember if the rubbing was on the inside (Too much offset) or the outside (Not enough offset)? It is the Wheel Vintiques Chrysler wheels I am looking at, and if I know what happened to you BEFORE I order it will save me trouble and money! I believe they will do a custom offset if needed. Charles
Yes, I do remember where they rubbed. The inside of the fender rubbed the letters clean off!!! How could I forget something as embarassing as being in South Bend for an International Meet, and having my mis-matched spare on the right rear.
Just keep in mind a 6" wheel is really 7" wide... [:0] :( [B)]

I do not recall which wheels I got~ While at the show I eneded up having to buy another set (on the car now) and not long after I got yet another set for a different car as well. That's why I suggested you do a search for comments by me in threads about wheels and tires or things similar.
It's all there~ somewhere~ cool story and all!!!

It could take me some time (I'm packing to move) but I could try to look for the paperwork and be able to tell you 100% for sure what that first set was, if you wish.

I do know one thing~
that first set (whatever it is) fits my '65 Cruiser just great... :D ;) [^]
http://i175.photobucket.com/albums/w143/StudeDave/My%20Rides/LaPalma04b.jpg


StudeDave '57 [8D]
big wheels ain't just for kids

mausersmth
04-02-2009, 04:34 PM
Guess I have to dig out a staightedge and ruler and do some measuring to get the offset right! StudeDave, thanks for the warning![:0]
Saw a device offered by Speedway that you can set up to simulate tire & wheel choices so you can check clearance. Might be worth it!

Charles Eck
Essex, MD

'57 Commander 4 door sedan
'66 Ford F-250
'66 Ford F-100
'53 John Deere 50
'41 John Deere H All-Fuel
'41 John Deere B All-Fuel

Studebakers were made to drive! (Besides, they don't get lost as easy in the Wal-Mart parking lot!)

ma1951
04-02-2009, 04:40 PM
Anybody out there with a 1947 Champion? What are you running successfully?

StudeDave57
04-02-2009, 05:16 PM
quote:Originally posted by mausersmth

Guess I have to dig out a staightedge and ruler and do some measuring to get the offset right! StudeDave, thanks for the warning! Saw a device offered by Speedway that you can set up to simulate tire & wheel choices so you can check clearance. Might be worth it! Charles
After thinking about it some more, and looking over a Coker catalog I have here~
I can tell you that I did NOT use any 'MoPar' wheels.
Here is what I am pretty sure of at this time~

I'm about 99% sure the first set I tried on my '57 were a 6" set of those 'Gennie' wheels. They have lug holes for two bolt patterns, and take the caps for the '40 Fords. That's what you're looking at in the picture above- installed on my '65. I didn't like them, so the moon caps came off, and are now on the '57 to go with the 5" 'smoothies' that fit her with no tire rub.
I bought another 6" set (OE style Ford/GM) for the Cruiser, but have yet to install them and the bigger flatter hub caps that came with them. The set on the Cruiser now will come off, and (hopefully) will fit my '54...

It's a lot to follow~ but hopefully it's a little bit more clear now.

StudeDave '57 [8D]

Andy R.
04-02-2009, 09:14 PM
quote:Originally posted by Gunslinger

...One thing to consider when replacing tires. No problems installing radial tires but you may find with modern rubber, which has better adhesion, handling, etc., will sometimes tax the suspension of older cars not originally designed for such sticky tires...


Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, cocky and in general a malcontent.


Amen to that! IMPE, the Wagonaire needed a rebuilt front suspension 4 mos. after getting new radials (and a 20 something driver fond of mountain roads). Tire life after that drastically reduced...though the negative camber made that thing corner like a sports car.;)

I have two Hawks, identically equipped w/PS) except for tires. One had Goodrich Momentum Radials and the other has repop Firestone bias plys that perfectly match the original spare in the trunk.

Personally, I prefer bias-ply. True it isn't as smooth or grippy as the one with radials, but the steering feels more communicative to me, with traction limits are approached more gradually. Plus the ribs along the sides of the tread are way cool, especially with a subtle tire shine in the sunlight.[8D]

If a daily driver or used in inclement weather, I'd go with radials.

It's a matter of personal preference. One person's ride harshness is another's communication with the road. Whatever you decide, the period-correct whitewall look fantastic and give folks a clue...Studebakers are confusing enough to the public as it is!;)

Andy
62 GT

http://a6.vox.com/6a00cdf7ec2443094f0109d0f5b14e000f-500pi

s1b
04-02-2009, 09:32 PM
My thought is 50's cars need bias tires to look good. Radials don't cut it. With that said ,I would have a set of radials on hand for major road trips though.

Orlando FLA
http://i145.photobucket.com/albums/r216/sbittla/mytrains047.jpg

mausersmth
04-04-2009, 08:37 AM
quote:Originally posted by s1b

My thought is 50's cars need bias tires to look good. Radials don't cut it. With that said ,I would have a set of radials on hand for major road trips though.

Orlando FLA
http://i145.photobucket.com/albums/r216/sbittla/mytrains047.jpg

Thought about that, having Bias 'Show Tires' on original rims that get hid away in a shed once the show is over, and a set of radials for everything else!

Any tips on avoiding age damage on stored tires?

Charles Eck
Essex, MD

'57 Commander 4 door sedan
'66 Ford F-250
'66 Ford F-100
'53 John Deere 50
'41 John Deere H All-Fuel
'41 John Deere B All-Fuel

Studebakers were made to drive! (Besides, they don't get lost as easy in the Wal-Mart parking lot!)