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Old 09-05-2020, 12:42 PM   #1
blucar
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Default Tires... Radial vs bias

I'm in the process of freshening my '36 up. Tires were on the list because the tires on "Henry" are over 25 years old.
I love radial tires, have been using them on everything except the '36 for the past 30 + years. I have talked to Coker Tire on several occasions during the past two years, I finally pulled the trigger on Thursday.
"Henry" has always had white sidewalls on it, it had white walls when I bought the car in '52.
I decided to go with Coker's Classic, 16" Bias Profile Radial 600R16 3" WW with 16" tubes..
My timing was perfect, The 600R16 tires have been on back order for seven months, they recently got 100 tires in, on Thursday they only had 14 tires left.
Coker has a sale going on through the end of September so I got a pretty good deal on the set of 4 tires..
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Old 09-05-2020, 12:54 PM   #2
Jeff/Illinois
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

Good to know and thanks for posting.

I don't know of anyone who switched over to radials for their antique car that was unhappy about the decision Let us know how they ride and handle for your '36. Neat thing today is they make a radial that looks a lot like an original bias ply tire.
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Old 09-05-2020, 01:05 PM   #3
Joe Immler
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

I had radials installed on my '41 Coupe and WHAT A DIFFERENCE!! The car is now much more fun to drive and enjoy.
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Old 09-05-2020, 01:20 PM   #4
RalphG
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

Only complaint I have on radials on the 52 Merc is that they seem to be harder riding. Seems like I feel every pebble on the road. Even with the pressure down in the 20s and new shocks all around. I don't recall the old bias plies riding that hard when I was a kid riding in the back seat in the 1960s but maybe my memory is faulty or I"ve been spoiled by the ride in my "cowboy Cadillac" GM pickup. Otherwise the Merc handles great with radial tires.
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Old 09-05-2020, 01:40 PM   #5
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

Bill, I have exactly those tires on my '47 and I love them. I was, however, able to use them without tubes and that's also worked very well for me. Extremely pleased with how they handle vs. the original bias tires....marked difference.


BTW, there is/was just a series of posts on Diamond Backs....unrelated, that term has a special significance here in AZ!!....seems like another alternative for Cokers....maybe next time.


Best of luck with yours!
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Old 09-05-2020, 02:59 PM   #6
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

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The set of Coker Classic's are the only components that are not factory correct on my '51 Mercury. Radials made the car so much more drivable. No regrets.
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Old 09-06-2020, 12:53 PM   #7
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

Quote:
Originally Posted by RalphG View Post
Only complaint I have on radials on the 52 Merc is that they seem to be harder riding. Seems like I feel every pebble on the road. Even with the pressure down in the 20s and new shocks all around. I don't recall the old bias plies riding that hard when I was a kid riding in the back seat in the 1960s but maybe my memory is faulty or I"ve been spoiled by the ride in my "cowboy Cadillac" GM pickup. Otherwise the Merc handles great with radial tires.

You are playing a very dangerous game if you under-inflate your radial tires down to 20#... Radial tires are high pressure tires and should be inflated to 32-34 lbs. Under-inflated tires will cause sidewall and early tread wear/failure.


Under-inflated tires is what caused the serious accidents in the '90's on many Ford SUV's with Firestone tires.
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Old 09-06-2020, 01:18 PM   #8
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

Quote:
Originally Posted by blucar View Post
You are playing a very dangerous game if you under-inflate your radial tires down to 20#... Radial tires are high pressure tires and should be inflated to 32-34 lbs. Under-inflated tires will cause sidewall and early tread wear/failure.


Under-inflated tires is what caused the serious accidents in the '90's on many Ford SUV's with Firestone tires.
I just tried it for a test. Normally I'll run them up around 30.
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Old 09-06-2020, 01:30 PM   #9
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

Quote:
Originally Posted by blucar View Post
You are playing a very dangerous game if you under-inflate your radial tires down to 20#... Radial tires are high pressure tires and should be inflated to 32-34 lbs. Under-inflated tires will cause sidewall and early tread wear/failure.
Under-inflated tires is what caused the serious accidents in the '90's on many Ford SUV's with Firestone tires.
My two cents, radials need at least 32-35 lbs.
I would definitely look elsewhere if low pressure gave a rough ride.
Ah 3 cents, I am aware that you drive nice and easy. You still will shorten the wear life with under inflation.
Final thought for Ralph ( not sure if your area has any rumble strips or zipper strips ) I have found that the slower speed amplifies the vibrations and jarring shocks to the suspension. ( Try a slow roll on these modern driving aids ) Dad did not mess around when he had someplace to be.

oops hijack
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Old 09-06-2020, 01:30 PM   #10
RKS.PA
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

According to the sidewall of my Cokers, the max load is 1520 lbs at 41psi. Not sure if 41 psi is the recommended pressure, but I try to keep mine around there. The '47 has pretty soft suspension, so don't experience any harshness in the ride.


I remember Ford's problems with the Explorers and the roll-overs!!


Ralph, your Sask., "ride comfort measuring device" and my AZ one, have gotten more sensitive with wear!!! That's my story and I'm sticking to it!!
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Old 09-06-2020, 02:01 PM   #11
Joe Immler
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

When I purchased the radials for my '41 I asked Coker for the tire pressure. They said that mine should also be inflated to 41 psi.
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Old 09-06-2020, 02:26 PM   #12
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

Quote:
Originally Posted by blucar View Post
You are playing a very dangerous game if you under-inflate your radial tires down to 20#... Radial tires are high pressure tires and should be inflated to 32-34 lbs. Under-inflated tires will cause sidewall and early tread wear/failure.


Under-inflated tires is what caused the serious accidents in the '90's on many Ford SUV's with Firestone tires.
Running radial tires on my '41 with 15" rims and no tubes. Put tire pressure sensors on the valve stems. I just plug the display sensor into the cigarette lighter socket when I want to check pressures. In about a minute of driving, I get a read out. = Peace of mind.
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Old 09-06-2020, 02:39 PM   #13
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

I bought a set of Coker's Classic, 16" Bias Profile Radial 600R16 3" WW with 16" tubes.. for my stock 37 Ford deluxe coupe about a year ago. Not cheap at about $1200.00 but the improvement in ride quality and handling was worth the money. Also made this old car cruise down the road quiet solitude.
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Old 09-06-2020, 05:05 PM   #14
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Default Re: Tires... Radial vs bias

Wow,your 37 coupe looks magnificent.
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