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Carver Dude Thu Feb 24, 2011 3:53 pm

Just checking in to see if anyone has ever used tirecrawler.com

erdonline Thu Feb 24, 2011 9:14 pm

I'd never heard of them, but just checked out their site. They don't seem to list Vanagons as on of the VW choices, so I looked up 185/14 tires and found one choice- a Nexen load range D tire for $70. I think Bus Depot has better tires for only a few dollars more.

Ed

vanjoe Thu Feb 24, 2011 9:48 pm

I posted a similar back in I believe December about Tirebuyer.com. Do yourself a favor read the Bus Depot info on tires. Thanks to them they opened my eyes on the safety of tire I ended up putting on the Hankook RA08 tires. I got them for $427.00 installed at Big Brand Tires. They are located in the Central part of California. I will tell you from my expierence with the Hankook tires that my van drives like a completely different van. They are 8 ply sidewall. I cannot express enough how great these tires are. My wife was also very shocked at the difference in how quiet the ride was and the handling. I hope others on here that have them also encourage you to go with the Hankooks if they have had the same experience I have had. I also want to add that I did change from the 205/70/14 to the 185R14's. As far as I am concerned there is no safe 205/70/14 tires for our vans. This is just my opinion after getting all the great info from the knowledgable people on here and elsewhere. The 8 ply sidewall for this size tire is obsolete and no longer available from any manufactuer.

Here is a link to my post and I was very stubborn and stupid. Like I said thanks to the Bus Depot I got a little wiser. I would have purchased from them if they lived by me though. :D

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=444120&highlight=vanjoe

Wildthings Thu Feb 24, 2011 9:56 pm

vanjoe wrote: They are 8 ply sidewall.

Somewhat closer to two plies actually. The number of actual plies in the sidewalls or under the tread has nothing to do with the load rating of the tire.

vanjoe Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:16 pm

After talking with a tire store that is more familar with these vans than other tire stores is they came with 8 ply sidewall tires and Continental use to make a 8 ply for the 205/70/14. There are no 205/70/14 tires that meet the pressure rating for the van. My RA08 tires are rated up to 65 psi. VW specs is 39 psi front and 49 psi rear. This is the info right inside my door. It also shows the 205/70/14 "reinforced." I am guessing that they are talking about the sidewall when they mean "reinforced".

Wildthings Thu Feb 24, 2011 11:04 pm

vanjoe wrote: After talking with a tire store that is more familar with these vans than other tire stores is they came with 8 ply sidewall tires and Continental use to make a 8 ply for the 205/70/14. There are no 205/70/14 tires that meet the pressure rating for the van. My RA08 tires are rated up to 65 psi. VW specs is 39 psi front and 49 psi rear. This is the info right inside my door. It also shows the 205/70/14 "reinforced." I am guessing that they are talking about the sidewall when they mean "reinforced".

The 205/70R14 were a reinforced 4 ply rated tire, the reinforced rating would be similar to today's "extra load" or XL rating. Regardless of the rating, they probably only actually had two sidewall plies though. The Continental 205/70R14's (which I know nothing about) likely only had 2 plies as well, even if they were 8 ply rated. Few radial car or truck tires have many plies in the sidewalls, they would be way to stiff if they did and would give a poor ride, sorry handling, and very short tread life.

syncrodoka Thu Feb 24, 2011 11:06 pm

It often says the ply count and where they are on the sidewall.

Carver Dude Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:35 am

I ended up ordering from Tirecrawler.com They seem pretty good. I ordered my BFG AT's 195 75 14 for a super deal. I had been waiting for mine to come in from a local guy in Denver and was waiting for ever when i finally canceled my order and found Tirecrawler.com!! My suggestion is to search by size and load range rather than your vehicle. The guy I talked to said he cant keep the BFG's in this size in stock... he says the VW community is buying them up like crazy!!

r39o Fri Feb 25, 2011 10:02 am

Paraphrasing:

Wildthings wrote: vanjoe wrote: VW specs is 39 psi front and 49 psi rear. This is the info right inside my door. It also shows the 205/70/14 "reinforced." I am guessing that they are talking about the sidewall when they mean "reinforced".
The 205/70R14 were a reinforced 4 ply rated tire, the reinforced rating would be similar to today's "extra load" or XL rating.
It seems even though XLs do not need to be derated load wise (9%) like passenger tires, it still holds true the tires need good side walls. The RF designation seems to have almost disappeared these days. See below just how quickly and extremely a 205/70-14 XL tire failed (for more than one person.) This is a tire I considered until I saw the below thread:

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=433120

SWbySWesty Fri Feb 25, 2011 1:43 pm

I ordered my 14'' BFG tires from them. I had them delivered to one of their dealers listed for free so I went and picked them up and had them mounted there.

Best price for BFGs in 14''

vanjoe Fri Feb 25, 2011 3:36 pm

The BFG's you are mentioning are "AT" aren't those all terrain tires? Those are more for 4 wheel drives. If I had a Syncro I would probably run those. I have had BFG's before a 1990 Jimmy and I got a lot of miles out of them. They were a little rough riding but all around a pretty reliable tire. But if you are talking about 2 wheel drive The Bus Depot article pretty much speaks for itself. It definately scared the shit out of me and made me change my mind and order the Hankook's.

Wildthing I do want to thank you for all you do for us on here. I have a lot of respect for you. You have helped me numerous times and are a lot more knowledgeable than I am. The Capitol tires I ordered seemed pretty good but I just didn't want to chance a blow out. I am not an expert at all on this I am just giving the OP my personal experience. Again thanks for all you do.

SWbySWesty Fri Feb 25, 2011 3:40 pm

What's wrong with them according to Bus Depot?

If you go offroad in your 2wd, good tires are a must. The BFGs are D-rated. Vanagon only requires a C-rated tire. So you're more than covered. The only difference is that the 14'' BFG is ever so slightly smaller in diameter than the road tires.

vanjoe Fri Feb 25, 2011 3:49 pm

No I am not saying there is anything wrong with it all. I was not aware you go off roading. So if it was me I probably would have went with an AT tires as well.

Ahwahnee Fri Feb 25, 2011 5:09 pm

FYI... The 'Kooks RA08 has:

Tread -- 2 plies Steel
2 plies Polyester
1 ply Nylon

Sidewall -- 2 plies Polyester

As noted, the important thing is Load Range D, not so important is how they get there.

msewalson Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:41 pm

I just went down this road back in December and ended up purchasing my 14" BFG's from discount tires. It actually ended up being cheaper than www.tirecrawler.com once you figure in all of the extras like mounting, balancing and etc. It wasn't a huge savings but definitely helped and it also kept the funds somewhat local. The tires were a special order but I only had to wait about a week.

r39o Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:58 pm

Ahwahnee wrote: FYI... The 'Kooks RA08 has:

Tread -- 2 plies Steel
2 plies Polyester
1 ply Nylon

Sidewall -- 2 plies Polyester

As noted, the important thing is Load Range D, not so important is how they get there.
While the D Load Range is great and all it does not say what the ply rating is that I could find. That seems to be the stickler. No RF rating. While they do seem to work other tires with high load ratings don't always hold up so well. The RA8 from the hankookusa website says they are for vans which is likely why we don't see issues, thankfully.

I looked around and you can by them in the low to mid $70 range each which is fine in my book.

There are some Nexen tires which look good too, but for a similiar price the "kooks" seem to be fine.

BD is not the only place to get them from.

Carver Dude Sat Feb 26, 2011 7:06 am

Personally I think the BFG's look cooler than most tires available for Vanagons... Plus I drive mine year round and at 9000ft. they are put to very good use.

Wildthings Sat Feb 26, 2011 8:40 am

r39o wrote: While the D Load Range is great and all it does not say what the ply rating is that I could find.

A "D" Load Range translates into an old school 8 ply rating.

From Wikipedia:

The Load Range Letter on light truck tires indicates their ply rating.[7]
Load Range Ply Rating
A---2
B---4
C---6
D---8
E---10
F---12
G---14
H---16
J---18
L---20
M---22
N---24

They probably went to the alphabetic rating to keep the uniformed from thinking that an 8 ply rated tire would actually have 8 plys. Decades later it is obvious it didn't work out that way. They should have dropped all reference to ply rating, and not have kept with two systems.

86syncrowesty Sat Feb 26, 2011 11:05 am

Bought my BFG A/Ts from them, easy to work with and shipping was reasonable. I needed tires for the 14" wheel and really liked the BFG A/T - I would probably step up into a 15" or 16" wheel next time but didnt have the cash at the time and really needed tires on the van.

Carver Dude Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:48 pm

86syncrowesty wrote: Bought my BFG A/Ts from them, easy to work with and shipping was reasonable. I needed tires for the 14" wheel and really liked the BFG A/T - I would probably step up into a 15" or 16" wheel next time but didnt have the cash at the time and really needed tires on the van.


Word for word you said exactly the reason I ordered and wanted the info on Tirecrawler.com So far I have been very impressed. Ordered them on Thursday and they are set to arrive on Tuesday. Not bad for standard shipping.



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