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215/70/16 on a syncro with tire chains???
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markmc90
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 3:56 pm    Post subject: 215/70/16 on a syncro with tire chains??? Reply with quote

Does anyone have 215/70/16 tires and run chains in the snow. I'm planning on buying this size tire but want to make sure there is clearance for chains. I have a stock height syncro, using MB wheels, I think ET 37.
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agreendaya
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why have a syncro and not snow tires? I'd been under the impression that they're great in the snow...
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

agreendaya wrote:
Why have a syncro and not snow tires? I'd been under the impression that they're great in the snow...

Because even snow tires will slip and slide as conditions get icy.
And braking downhill.. flatout dangerous.

Here in California, Caltrans closes most HWYs before conditions require
"4WD AND chains".. but that does not mean the conditions do not exist.
In fact, Park Rangers turned me back from the road to Badger Pass (Yosemite) a few winters ago... I had 4WD and M&S tires.. but had left the chains at home.. OOPS!
They were letting 2WD with chains thru. (No. I did not successfully argue thier logic.)

Try getting up a 10-15% icy grade (like a curvy county road into a cabin, as an example).
The worst winter roads I've ever driven were back county roads after snowfall that had partially melted and refrozen.

PS.. don't know if chains will fit the well with that tire size, but I'd sure like to know since I've been toying with the idea of 16" Hydroedges for my 2WD.
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markmc90
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They are great but even a snow plow needs chains sometimes. I would just like to be able to if needed.
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agreendaya
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aha, good to know. I've driven over Donner pass a couple times in gnarly weather in my '74 Westy with chains on, no problem, and our family's Suburban with snow tires, but hadn't had any experience with it being that bad.
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markmc90
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even in Portland this year chains were required on all highways for a couple of days due to ice. I'm planning on just using AT tires year round and selling my snow tires as well.
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WestyBob
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
but I'd sure like to know since I've been toying with the idea of 16" Hydroedges for my 2WD.


I'm interested in hearing about too. I know clearance to the trailing arms is close using 215/75 sidewalls on 15" steelies.

Never had to use chains on the syncro yet but could have used them on solid road ice last year in Northern Idaho.

About four years ago .... headed west from Susanville got caught in a major snowstorm at the pass - @ 1.5 feet of snow .... syncro pulled through ok. Then headed north to the Siskyous .... mandatory chains .... I drove straight up to the nearest standing cop, said I have mountain rated nokians, he just waved me through. The whole way up and over only about an inch of snow and no ice. But I always carry chains in winter anyway just in case the next cop isn't so nice or they're 'really' needed.
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insyncro
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have owned so many Syncro vans I have lost track.
I have driven them all over the US during the snowiest of conditions.
I have only used Nokian studded snow tires and I have been able to drive these vans without issue.
I pull allot of people out while on my journeys.
Chains are for low speed only and have a nasty habit of banging up your fender wells if not kept tight.
A diff. lock is a much better option IMHO.

dylan
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sunshine_norway
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For winter and snow there`s only one thing! Studded tires...!
I`m in LOVE with my Cooper wheatermaster tires.
215/75-15

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Not many cars have overtaken me this winter. I just love the way they connect my syncro to the road....! Smile
In the curves I easily hold 50 mph, where others are down to 35-40 mph....
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vwsyncroguy
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And now for your question.....

I rarely drive in the snow...so I'm only speculating here...and do not have experience with your size tire w/ chains.....that being said.....

You didn't say what make tire you have...but BFGs are the most common....so lets start there...

The largest tire you can get on a Syncro without custom rear trailing arms is 29.5" tall. This size only leaves about 1/4" of clearance to the rear trailing arm. You cannot fit chains on this tall a tire.

BFG says a 215/70-16 is 28" tall...so you should have 3/4" (half the total height difference) additional room for chains with your tire.....however, that to the real trailing arm. The danger is in the front......I have used 215/75-15" tires which are about 27 3/4" tall and they rubbed the rear of the front wheel well if you hit a dip with the wheels turned....a friend of mine has this size BFG on his Syncro and has even crumpled his fender lip a bit.

So the chains....particularly cable chains...should go on...OK...but I think you're in real danger of some sheet metal damage to your rear front wheel well if a chain catches the lip. If you watch what you're doing and creep over any bumps or dips when turning....you might be OK.

Warren C.


Last edited by vwsyncroguy on Tue Feb 24, 2009 3:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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ThorAlex
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 3:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know, sometimes chains can be good to have rapid. Especially for poor students like me that cant afford 15" rims and good tires. I've got stuck twice since i got the syncro, both times in deep snow, no use for studs there. Would have gotten out in 15 minutes if i had chains, instead of 30-45. But i agree, you don't need chains for road use, only for emergency and offroad. And that applies to 2wd cars to, just drive according to conditions and you can get trough pretty rough weather and road conditions
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 4:00 pm    Post subject: Snow can trip up a Syncro Reply with quote

Riding with a friend, offroad, about 20 miles outside Bishop, CA in Syncro with 215/75-15 BFGs, ...no chains.

Road was 98% dirt...except for this north facing ravine

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


A long afternoon and a painful towing bill.

Warren C
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markmc90
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know that studded snow tires are great, however there are some situations where you just need chains. Not to mention when Johny law says you do, I dont want to argue with him about my locking diff, just the peace of mind that I have the chains and can use them.
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gator70
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 8:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would not put chains on those 16's. I think you will have rear trailing arm clearance issues.
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Jon_slider
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 01, 2009 10:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

> A long afternoon and a painful towing bill

lessons learned may include carrying a recovery kit, or did you have one with you that failed to extract the vehicle?

and maybe carrying a bicycle when offroading alone would be good insurance in case the vehicle is disabled and you have to walk out..

Here are the chains Bill Burke recommends
http://www.bb4wa.com/articles/Chains.htm

here is a review of a recovery kit based on either the HiLift Jack or Magnum Hand winch:
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=343910

and from
http://www.bb4wa.com/articles/Accessories.htm
"Say you are exploring a back country trail and you slide into a deep rut and get stuck. Yes, it's that easy! Do you:

a) throw your hands up, walk out and try to find a tow truck (for about $400);

b) grab any old blanket and bush and throw them under the tires hoping it'll work;

c) get your partner/wife/husband/kids to push on the bumper, spinning the tires, furiously slinging mud all over the place; or

d) have a plan and equipment to easily get unstuck and merrily on your way?"
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tencentlife
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 01, 2009 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ummmmmm.....let's see........

d!!


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kurt vonnagon
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

On syncro tire size must match for the all wheel drive. Doe's that mean you must use chains on all four tire's. I have 215/75/15 on audi rims so i have only about 1/2 " clearance on rear trailing arm how are the cable compared to the chain. Thanks
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WestyBob
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 10:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kurt vonnagon wrote:
On syncro tire size must match for the all wheel drive. Doe's that mean you must use chains on all four tire's.


Ideally on longer road trips, yes, or disengage (decoupler) the VC and drive in 2wd with rear chains and dif-lock (lower speeds) engaged where needed. On short runs it's not as critical, can go awd with chains on back (or front) only.

The main thing about front/rear tire match thing is allegedly not over-heating the VC material which is far more probable on sustained high speed drives when unmatched.

Chains/studs are primarily best for ice and dirt traction .... don't do a whole lot for snow, sand and gooey mud where your tire tread and material shedding matter more.
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r.e.wing_fc3s
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i have chains the same design as the RUD grip series. made by laclede. i have a 2wd and therefore put more stress on the chains when im offroading in the snow up steep hills. Almost every time ive gone out the side links on that style of chain mentioned above has failed. i started carrying around extra links to field repair but last time the the tension chain(red) which holds everything together broke. there not really designed for off road use according to the RUD catalog. easy to mount though. for my application ill be getting something with welded side links like the pewag austro super v.
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Oceanpro907
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you will have plenty of clearance but personally, now driving on ice and snow for the last 4 months straight, there is no need unless the law says you have to. Our roads here in Seward Alaska have been completely covered for 4 months. The one time is warmed up and rained, it was rain ON TOP of snow and ice and the Syncro still was great.
I think the weight distribution on these things make them perfect in the snow.
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