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Thread: My tires surprised me.

  1. #1
    Silver Hawk Member 52-fan's Avatar
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    My tires surprised me.

    I thought about the thread about how old is too old for tires when I was looking at mine.
    The tires on the 52 pickup I recently got are of undetermined age. I knew the tires were old and did not plan to go anywhere except around the block. I decided to paint the wheels while I had them off to examine/repair the brakes. While I was sanding and then painting the wheels, the tires looked fine. A day after the paint dried I was walking by the tires and could see cord showing on both front tires and they were just leaning against the garage!
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    "In the heart of Arkansas."
    Searcy, Arkansas
    1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.

  2. #2
    President Member tsenecal's Avatar
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    Wow, it's a good thing you noticed before you headed down the road. Better yet, you were lucky that one didn't blow out, while you were working on them. I bought an old M series truck, that had been sitting a long time. We put just enough air in the tires to make them come up off the ground, so it could be towed onto my trailer. When I got home with it, I was walking around it, unhooking straps, and one of the tires blew out the sidewall. Luckily I was on the opposite side of the truck.

  3. #3
    President Member TWChamp's Avatar
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    Looks like a job for Super Glue. You were lucky it didn't blow while driving and wreck your nicely paint rims.

    Two years ago I was stopped beside a semi at a red light when his tire blew. It was like a bomb exploding, and I was lucky it was the inside dual that blew because rubber flew and would have put a big dent in my car door.

  4. #4
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    That's how the tires on my Kaiser failed, with less than 5,000 miles on them. Looked fine one day, and the next had to limp home on the spare and one bad tire.

  5. #5
    President Member Commander Eddie's Avatar
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    The tires that came on my '55 Sedan looked brand new so I thought they were fine. I did notice that they felt a bit lumpy on the highway, however.
    I finally read the date code on them and discovered they were 17 years old. They came right off and new ones put on. It is not worth the risk even though the old tires looked fine.
    I am glad you noticed this problem on your old tires. But it would have probably been wise to replace them even if they looked good.
    Ed Sallia
    Dundee, OR

    Sol Lucet Omnibus

  6. #6
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    The sad part is I have some old tires laying around that are probably 40 years old that I used to roll cars around with & the rubber on them is still pliable. Although tires do go more miles these day, the stuff they call rubber aint much to brag about.

  7. #7
    Silver Hawk Member 52-fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TWChamp View Post
    Looks like a job for Super Glue. You were lucky it didn't blow while driving and wreck your nicely paint rims.

    Two years ago I was stopped beside a semi at a red light when his tire blew. It was like a bomb exploding, and I was lucky it was the inside dual that blew because rubber flew and would have put a big dent in my car door.
    I worked in the parts room for a trucking company. Just after it was parked in the shop, a trailer tire blew about 15 feet from my desk. It certainly got my attention.
    I was mostly using these for rollers. I have some tires I took off my Dodge pickup I am going to use until I get new ones for the Stude.


    "In the heart of Arkansas."
    Searcy, Arkansas
    1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.

  8. #8
    Golden Hawk Member StudeRich's Avatar
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    I think the problem IS these are Radials! If they had been 30-50 Year Old Bias Ply, they would be fine "rollers", they last MUCH better.
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner




  9. #9
    President Member Lou Van Anne's Avatar
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    Dang!....guess I ought to buy some new tires for my '62 Champ...the fronts are 18 years old and rears are 32....do you think it's time?
    Lou Van Anne
    62 Champ
    64 R2 GT Hawk
    79 Avanti II

  10. #10
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    Yeah, I think I'm going back to bias on my 2R5.
    I've got a bias spare that's been around for ages, but the Brand New one's I put on in '07 I won't even drive on.
    Less than 1000 miles on them, but they're shot. Serious Cracking and one won't hold air for more than a day or so.
    Check the DOT codes on all your tires. They now recommend that any tire older than 5 years be replaced.
    WHY? Simple. They don't make decent tires anymore. Just enough real rubber to get you to end of life (5 years).

  11. #11
    President Member 62champ's Avatar
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    This reminds me of a story my Uncle used to tell about a blowout - the only blowout that was not on a trailer he had in all the years of driving. Had stopped in town for fuel, oil check, etc, and the attendant asked to check the air pressure in the spare tire ('52 Commander hardtop). Young guy got the air hose out and added the "needed amount" of air to the spare. He said he made it about a half-mile from the station and it sounded like a bomb went off inside the car and dust flying everywhere. Pulled over and opened the truck and the spare had a hole blown in it...

  12. #12
    Speedster Member
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    Personally, I don't trust tires over 5 yrs old. With that said I am driving tires that I'm sure way past 5yrs old, but look great. So far I've been lucky. BABY NEEDS A NEW PAIR OF SHOES! A Stude friend of mine has a '53 coupe that he had been running on 20yr old tires. His luck ran out one day when a rear tire blew damaging the quarter panel to the tune of $3k. Unlike myself he has the bucks. He is still driving some cars on old tires, but is in the process of replacing them.

  13. #13
    Golden Hawk Member jclary's Avatar
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    Good Grief! Those tires look kinda like brand new Harbor Freight lawn implement tires after a few weeks exposed to the heat of the southern sun!
    John Clary
    Greer, SC
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    SDC member since 1975

  14. #14
    President Member thunderations's Avatar
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    Funny that we will spend several hundred dollars for a new do-dad that will make the old Studebaker look better, but not to get new rubber on the road that you risk your life driving on. A set of 4 new tires for most any Studebaker can be bought for around $250 with another $50 to get them mounted and balanced. You don't need 80,000 mile tires with 200 mile an hour speed rating. I usually buy Coopers because they are US made.
    I won't trust a tire, any tire, over 5 years old that I drive on the highway. I may take some older tires for a short drive around town on something I'm working on to get serviceable and dependable. Once that vehicle is roadworthy for the highway, it either gets new tires or I pull the good wheels and tires from one of the other roadworthy Studebakers to make the trip.
    Since I use Ford Ranger wheels on my cars, I even put my 3-5 year old tires and wheels back onto my Ranger pick-up to wear some of the rubber off before they get retired to rollers for project cars.
    I look at it as an insurance policy. Fifty to sixty dollars a year for 5 years and then start over. Fifty bucks about the same as the cost of one meal at an average restaurant for the wife and me. So once or twice a year have another meal at home instead of going out and buy a set of tires.
    1966 Daytona (The First One)
    1950 Champion Convertible
    1950 Champion 4Dr
    1955 President 2 Dr Hardtop
    1957 Thunderbird

  15. #15
    Golden Hawk Member BobPalma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jclary View Post
    Good Grief! Those tires look kinda like brand new Harbor Freight lawn implement tires after a few weeks exposed to the heat of the southern sun!
    Good one, John. BP
    We've got to quit saying, "How stupid can you be?" Too many people are taking it as a challenge.

    Ayn Rand:
    "You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality."

    G. K. Chesterton: This triangle of truisms, of father, mother, and child, cannot be destroyed; it can only destroy those civilizations which disregard it.

  16. #16
    President Member TWChamp's Avatar
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    John is right about those H/F tires. I had one tear open before I even installed it. Those things are very thin and cheaply made.

  17. #17
    Speedster Member whitehawk759's Avatar
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    I just put new tires on the Hawk. It pained me to see the narrow white wall tires with 90% of the tread left go into the trash but they had eighteen years on them and the rubber was becoming hard. I wanted American made tires but the total cost came to way over my CASO budget. I finally settled on a set of tires from South Korea that had a narrow white wall. Ride improved immediately.
    Don Watson
    61 Hawk

  18. #18
    President Member
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    Plus 1 on thunderations...

  19. #19
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    I also alway buy Coopers!
    They really wear well and reduce our trade deficit with China.

  20. #20
    President Member bensherb's Avatar
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    I've had new 5 year old tires crumble and have the tread fall off that had never touched the ground and 20 to 70 year old tires that are perfect with no signs of degradation. Old bias tires do appear to survive much better than radials too. The problem with tires is that sometime around 2010 tires makers were required to change their rubber make up so that tire would bio degrade; they will usually fall apart, used or not within 10 years. Tires made prior to that would sit in land fills almost forever. I have no problem driving around on 20 year old tires and do it regularly, but, on tires made after 2010 I inspect them often and replace them at the FIRST sign of degradation; the second sign is usually total failure. It's extremely rare for me to actually wear out a tire these days, with many vehicles, they typically fail while appearing almost new.

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