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  1. #1
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    DIY Studded winter tires.

    Got bored today and the trails around here are icy. After seeing studded tires selling for 189.99 +tax I decided to try a ghetto solution.
    I had an old Rapid Rob that I meant to throw out in the summer so I bought some screws and went to it.











    It took me a bit to find clear ice but when I did the tire hooked up great!
    Now I need to sniff out a cheap tire I can stud for the front (my WTB Nanos knobs are too narrow for screws) and I'll be unstoppable!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DIY Studded winter tires.-dsc09214.jpg  

    GTA
    Ontario

  2. #2
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    DIY Studded winter tires.

    If your looking for a "cheap" option to stud, I just got these at WalMart for $19. Just started the studding process.


  3. #3
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    Holy crap, Walmart sells 29er tires? I haven't been in there in years.
    I put an ad of FB looking for donation of an old tire but failing a reply to that I'll go buy one of those tomorrow. Good knobs too, maybe I'll get 2 and unscrew my Rapid Rob!

    Thank you Hobine!

    BTW are those #4 or 6 you have in there?
    GTA
    Ontario

  4. #4
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    DIY Studded winter tires.

    I was as surprised as you about the Wally World 29ers. They're actually CST tires, same company that makes Maxxis.
    I weighed them at about 815 grams. Not too shabby.

  5. #5
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    DIY Studded winter tires.

    I'm using #6 x 1/2" screws. 3/8" length would have been perfect. I cut down the half inch screws after installing.

  6. #6
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    Re: DIY Studded winter tires.

    I made some a few weeks back. Finally found a use for a nevegal I had sitting around. Bought a brand new crossmark off a fellow mtb rider for $10. I used #8 x 1/2" screws. Put two layers of duct tape inside then put an old split tube around my real tube. Cut the screws off pretty short to reduce leverage and reduce the chance of them pulling out.
    So far they only have about 12 miles on them, but they work great! Total investment - $15.



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  7. #7
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    I did DIY a few years ago with some spare Ignitors I had: DIY Studs and Tubeless

    They worked really well, but also wore pretty quickly. After ~3 months of commuting this is where I ended up:


    (A new #6 3/8" screw on the left
    A typical screw from the front tire in the middle
    A typical screw from the rear tire on the right)

    They'd definitely be good on snowy trails, but careful if you ride much pavement.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hobine View Post
    If your looking for a "cheap" option to stud, I just got these at WalMart for $19. Just started the studding process.

    After calling around 20 Walmarts this morning, Did you buy these in Canada? I can't find a Walmart with 29" stuff at all.
    GTA
    Ontario

  9. #9
    sheep in FOX clothing
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuckeieio View Post
    Are there any trees down in East Point Park, or is it clear sailing?

    As you know there are some major blockages in Highland Creek past UTSC.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
    Are there any trees down in East Point Park, or is it clear sailing?

    As you know there are some major blockages in Highland Creek past UTSC.
    Eastpoint and all (that I have seen) of the paved paths and cedar chip are clear to morningside. Snow covered and very little ice. Easily done without studs right now.

    The UTSC construction is hit or miss. Today they (construction workers) put the run on me when I tried to go through and I ended up crossing the bridge after a failed river crossing. Weekends there's nobody there so cruise on through.

    Today was so cold my GPS was acting up so this ride is off. It went nuts when I stopped at the library to fix a flat.


    GTA
    Ontario

  11. #11
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    Oh yea, so back to the tires. WalMart was a bust but Crappy Tire had 29er for $20. Each took about 120 screws offset on the knobs.
    Here's the result.









    They hook up amazing on the ice.
    Last edited by chuckeieio; 01-21-2014 at 04:46 PM.
    GTA
    Ontario

  12. #12
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    DIY Studded winter tires.

    Quote Originally Posted by chuckeieio View Post
    After calling around 20 Walmarts this morning, Did you buy these in Canada? I can't find a Walmart with 29" stuff at all.
    That's too bad. I'm in the US. Just happened to be in Walmart when I noticed the tires.
    The tires you found look better for studs anyway.

  13. #13
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    wow great idea guys!

  14. #14
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    In the late 90s I made a set for my FR bike with nuts on the outside to stabilize the screws, which made for 'studs' so huge I basically needed to get off the bike and walk it over bare pavement. But the traction on icy downhills was hard to argue with, especially with the 15km+ loop route in south Scarborough that involves almost no bare pavement at all. Where I live now they'd be of no use.

    Are these being set up tubeless or with some kind of tire liner? Before the dawn of Stan's, I had repeated problems with even low-profile screw heads rubbing through all kids of tape and improvised liners and flatting the tube.

    I suppose a thick piece of another tire would have worked, but the tires were getting ridiculously heavy even with only duct tape in them.

  15. #15
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    Hmm, I never thought of the screws rubbing through. I didn't put anything in between. Maybe I can glue some self amalgamating tape around the inside of the tires if it becomes a problem.
    Thanks for the heads up.

    Now that I think about it, I can't gho tubeless if I tried because I drilled every inline knob and only put screws in every second knob.
    GTA
    Ontario

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuckeieio View Post
    Now that I think about it, I can't gho tubeless if I tried because I drilled every inline knob and only put screws in every second knob.
    Duct tape, then Stans.

  17. #17
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    You'll definitely want to add a liner, sooner rather than later.

    Even with all of the extra holes, I wouldn't be surprised if tubeless would still work. You might just need extra sealant, and more time to let it seal up. The one problem I had with tubeless was that the screws on the rear tire started to get pushed back into the tire:



    So I took them all out, gooped them up with contact cement, and that seemed to work okay.

  18. #18
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    So the tube isn't going to work for me? I'm not set up for tubeless and don't plan to be any time soon. Not with this bike anyway.
    GTA
    Ontario

  19. #19
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    Thanks guys, you probably saved me buying a bunch of tubes.
    I thought I had revolutionized studding by buying rounded screws.

    Here's a new tube I threw in the rear tire yesterday after pinch flatting half way through my ride. (think I pinched only because I was low due to a pinhole likely because of the screws now)


    I taped up a few layers of duct tape and threw the same tubes in and I'll just hope for the best.
    GTA
    Ontario

  20. #20
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    I actually assumed you were running tubeless. A lot of people, me included, have tried the "ghetto" stud method with similar results. For me it would have been about '96 or so. I semi-fixed the problem by taping thick vinyl on the inside of the tires but then just saved my pennies and bought proper studded tires. Live and learn!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  21. #21
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    I was racing against a guy with ghetto studded tires at the Frostbike a couple of years ago. He made it about 500m from the start before flatting
    Strava made me do it....

  22. #22
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    I'm just about out of stan's, so mine is tubed currently. I've thought about painting the inside of the heads with plasti-dip like you use for tool handles.
    Once I make up my first batch of homebrew sealant I'll make these tubeless like my regular tires.

    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk

  23. #23
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    Re: DIY Studded winter tires.

    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    I was racing against a guy with ghetto studded tires at the Frostbike a couple of years ago. He made it about 500m from the start before flatting
    I think that was the Toddler aka El Nino. A failed experiment that ended his race quickly.



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  24. #24
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    Ok so to update.
    After learning the screws were damaging the tubes I threw 2 layers of duct tape on each tire and I pulled off almost 100km over about 6-8 rides on the ice trails and pulled the tires to inspect today.

    The tape had wore pretty much through and I may not have gone much farther before flatting.


    I decided to go with the heavier more reliable solution of splitting a tube for a barrier.



    How heavy did it end up? (weight weenies please leave the room)

    Studded tire 855g
    Complete wheel without rubber 1232g (stock Giant SXC-2)
    2 tubes>400g
    2487g Front tire studded and installed. (never weighed rear)

    All in all I love these things. Saved a bunch of money over the the $400 pair while having fun screwing around in the workshop. Screws+tubes+tires+band-aids, under $35 each wheel.
    I've been able to make great use of the local paved (iced over) paths which are plentiful around here and even ripped around on the frozen bay where I also went Ice fishing this weekend.
    Thanks for all the help and advice.


    GTA
    Ontario

  25. #25
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    DIY Studded winter tires.

    Your finished weight doesn't seem too bad. My front with 238 screws came out to just under 1000 grams and the rear with 120 screws was 920.

    I tried two layers of Gorilla tape over the screw heads. Not many miles yet so I can't comment on durability. Does work pretty damn good though.

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