The Survival Center: Is Your Tire Worthy of a Survivalist?

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Time to go a little off of the “beaten path today”.  I have finished up my basic gardening series; however, as I think about it, I could do at least 1 more.  I was getting a little “tired” of doing gardening for now.

Speaking of awful segways, Today’s post is about my favorite tires for survival.

Paul Blart on a Segway

There are tons of wheels or rims and tires to choose from.  Some are cheap and some expensive.  There are specialty grade and touring.  How do we look at the different tire characteristics, and how they relate to survivalism.

I want to consider today as a very important day in my choice for a tire.  Where did I travel?  I went to work, on a road.  Does it do me really good to get a huge super-swamper or mud king for daily driving?  No.  Of course not.

Rolling Resistance – I want a decent (low) rolling resistance, so I am not sucking fuel to overcome the tires.  Usually the tread pattern and weight of the tire has a lot to do with this.  We choose something that will roll well for fuel economy.

Tread Pattern – We would want a clean tread for road conditions, but we are SURVIVALISTS, so we don’t want no wimpy touring edition tires.  We want rock climbing and mud tires!  Problem with these are the transition between tread patterns is extremely inefficient and the rubber is soft, so the treads do not last long.

Side Wall Pattern – As long as the sidewall pattern doesn’t cause many problems in the way of resistance, we would like to have them.  They allow us to grip in dirt, mud, and on the sides of rocks.  I see no real reason to deny your tire this tread.

Rubber/Sidewall Thickness – Thinner tires are cheaper and have better rolling resistance than thick heavy tires.  Thicker tires puncture a lot less than the thin-walled tires. You also want reinforced rubber if possible.

Rim/Rubber size – If possible, we choose smaller rims and larger tires.  They are cheaper and provide with greater deflation of tires, allowing more ground contact resulting in less getting stuck in ruts and mud.  It is also less likely that you will ding the rim.  Less Rim / More rubber.  I think 16 inch rims are probably the cheapest base rim right now, with 15 close behind, and then with 17 it goes up.  As the size rim goes up the price goes up drastically.

There are some really neat tires coming out now that may be advantageous in a survival scenario, but for now we will stick to basic types of tires.

So we drive on the road a lot now, but could end up on dirt roads, or in fields in a survival scenario.  Plus, we could be in fields or on mountain roads when camping, hiking, biking, etc.  We need to make our tire ready for all of these.

I want to choose as aggressive a tread pattern with an efficient rolling resistance as possible, and made from harder rubber so it will last longer.  I want a nice enough sidewall pattern to grip a little.  I want a thick, reinforced sidewall if possible.  I want a small cheap rim, with a large tire.

Enter the ALL-TERRAIN tire!

I like all-terrain tires (non-radial) because they are typically made of harder rubber, has a fairly aggressive grip, doesn’t affect fuel mileage too much, many have sidewall tread.  I found a good deal on my set.  I got several hundred off of the set, so that is how I chose mine.  They may not be the best, but the BF Goodrich T/A All Terrains have done me well.  I would say that we will ultimately get 50-60,000 miles on these tires easily.  They are also very capable for what we do with them, and should be nice for a survival situation with varying terrain.

The tires on my auto.

Don’t choose the tires because I have a set.  You need to look at your situation, research the tires, and decide what you want.

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So, if you want to go “all around” and you actually understand that the chances of you joyriding in the 3 foot mud pit isn’t very likely during a survival situation, then you can’t go wrong with a good set of all-terrain tires.

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Ken is addicted to fitness and mountain biking. He is such a thrill seeker, people are starting to be concerned!He enjoys MTBing, Hiking, Climbing, Geocaching, Orienteering, Weight Lifting, and Wilderness Survival.

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