Screw It; I’m Making Studded Tires

As the title of this post implies, I’ve gone and gotten myself a pair of studded tyres on the cheap – by fabricating them. Those old Chen Shins I had on the bike’s rims came off without a single stud, but went back on with a ice-grippin’ 104 studs per tyre. Total cost: $12.78 for 250 1/2 in. 8-size screws, compared to $100 + tax for the cheapest pair I could find elsewhere (including the interweb).  My time is valueless, so I won’t put a dollar value on the 2 1/2 hours I spent on the endeavor.  

Drilling, and a lot of screwing-in 

On the road, they are really grippy on ice – like being glued to it, even while riding on an outdoor skating rink! But, since the tread pattern isn’t that deep, it still has trouble in the slush or packed snow. On fresh snow, however, it performs quite superbly! One really can notice the clickity-clickity-clickity of the screws on the pavement, and feel the drag also.

Tyre #1, finished – look at that! 1/4 in of spike showing!

Here’s how I done it:
1. Pulled off the tyres
2. Flipped tires inside-out
3. Drilled holes, from outside in, into the knobs I wanted studs in.
4. Spent a whole lotta time screwing screws into these holes, inside to out.
5. Turned tyres back to right-side-in
6. Got duct tape, and covered all the screw heads with multiple layers of tape to prevent puncture
7. Re-install and re-inflate. Be careful – it’s like wrestling with a rosebush!

Mounted and ready to roll!

I plan to get at lest 100km on the tyres this winter, if for nothing else but to measure the longevity of the screws.

4 thoughts on “Screw It; I’m Making Studded Tires

  1. Hey those are cool studs! A lot cheaper than my Schwalbes! I’ve been bailing out of riding the past two weeks up here in Northumberland County we’ve had a couple -36C mornings which is hard, but the snow has been falling every other day, not in big amounts, but just enough so that several km’s on my route are like riding on a Sandy beach. Too much effort on these hills already to add a “sand-like” stretch. Also, had to get the Ferguson tuned up she died for about a week there, but got all new plugs and wires and a new rotor and she almost sounds new. Also got my gas leak fixed which means I’m saving in the fuel department. Bad news is the compression test showed that she will need a total engine rebuild in the not too distant future. She’s plowing snow really well and I’ve finally worked out a pretty good system of pushing it with the blade rather than pulling.
    BTW, I really like those cool google images, how you do dat nephew?
    Take Care
    Uncle P

  2. Well, they may be cheaper than commercial snow-studs, but a few days ago the front tyre popped the innertube. It seems as if the duct tape in the tyre resettled and let a screw have its way with the innertube. Oh well. I took a few minutes and added another layer of tape, so is all gud. The Fergie really died? Hmmn… maybe it was the cold weather messing with the contacts/magneto/sparkplugs. Can she hold out on the rebuild until the spring, and what needs to be done? The pictures are just taken on macro; stay tuned for more macro’ing in the future!
    -Ryan

  3. Hey,

    Yeah, she’ll be fine…I think! I have a lot to get done on her. But, I definitely will need new sleeves and the pistons redone, and at the same time, he will do the rear engine seal and (while the chassis is split) the clutch. Then maybe a rear PTO seal…in short almost everything on that little tractor. It is probably only a few hundred in parts, but the labour and tools will shake down to around $2500. Until then, I have to check the oil often and pray…she could last 5 years are a week without this rebuild.
    You still have to explain macro’ing to me. Say Hey to everyone
    -Pete

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