Let's Talk Tires... Again - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 11-15-2013, 01:27 AM   #1
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Let's Talk Tires... Again

Yes... I'm bringing up tires yet again, because I'm in the process of shopping for new shoes to replace the Akuret's that came with the rig. One of those developed a sidewall bubble last summer that I had to get replaced... and, of course, I've read the threads about blowouts with them.

So now the question turns to... which tires? Should I stick with ST-type tires, or go with LT-type? Then what brand... what model... what price?

Obviously the size is pretty much set in stone: 235/80R16 (or something very close)

Looking at what's on the rig now... they have an "E" Load Range rating... meaning each tire is theoretically able to handle 3420 lbs at the full inflation rating of 80psi. Multiplied times 4... that means the max load on the tires should not exceed 13,680 lbs.

I have a rig with a GVWR of 16,000 lbs... and when I'm loaded & moving down the road, I figure I'm pretty much right at that weight. Now if we figure that I have 20% of the rig's weight on the 5th wheel (3,200 lbs of hitch weight)... that leaves 12,800 lbs on the tires & axles.

Ok... while that's only an 880 lb cushion, I'm still within spec, provided I'm vigilant on keeping my air pressures checked.

But now let's add what I've began calling the 'unknown factor' into the equation, which is... these tires have no speed ratings. Over the past few days, I've done a few Google searches... but I can't find anything official that tells me what speed these tires can handle. I've "heard" from various people, and "read" on various forums where the max sustained speed that should be put on ST-type tires is 65mph.

Well, in the northeast, that's good enough... as there are few highways with speed limits greater than that. But down here in the south where I live, and in the southwest where I'm going to be headed this spring... if you're not doing the 70mph speed limit, you're being a nuisance & holding up traffic.

So considering that I have a lead foot that has no problem doing 70 (and even 75) for miles on end... the question then becomes do I want to ride on tires that are loaded near to their max rating at speeds that may or may not be over what they are built to withstand?

If not... what are my options?

Well, yes, I could slow down... but I'm not one for wanting the be the guy that's a burden on others by holding up traffic on the road so I can go on a pleasure trip.

The other option is to obviously look for other type tires that can handle both the load & speed... which leads me to Light Truck tires (LT)

During my shopping, I came upon the Goodyear's UNISTEEL G614 RST tires... which they say are suitable for 5th wheel trailer applications. They only come in one size, which is 235/85R16, which means the tire is just a tad taller than OEM. They each have a "G" Load Rating, which is 3750 lbs at 110psi... and an "R" Speed Rating, which is 106mph.

The load x 4 = 15,000 lbs of capacity, which gives me a decent size buffer between actual load & capable load... and the speed factor becomes a non-issue.

As all of that to ask this...

Is there anyone else running these tires on their rig? If so, what's your experience been? Satisfied? Any issues?

My Google searches on these tires always tend to send me to a lot of rancher & cowboy sites, where they discuss pulling horses. Apparently, this is one of the tires of choice for those folk who are moving livestock around... and it's hard to find anything negative said about them.

My only holdback at this point is the price. At over $300 per tire, these puppies ain't cheap. But if they do the job, then fine. I guess I'm just looking for other feedback from this community before I shell out the money for them.

Ok... that's it. I'm sure I've bored you enough. Looking forward to any feedback you guys care to offer.

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Old 11-15-2013, 02:52 AM   #2
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I have not upgraded my tires yet as I haven't traveled very far yet. But when I do I'll go for overkill. Peace of mind is more important to me than price. I don't know the price difference between the ST and LT tires but if its even $100/tire, that's only $400 for added safety and peace of mind. Just my opinion.
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Old 11-15-2013, 03:36 AM   #3
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ATCguy I still have the lingering questions in my mind as you pose in your post... I had the china bombs aka Akuret tires on my rig which is the same as yours and I have the same motorcycle as yours. I frequently put two in the rear opposed to your one. I never had my rig weighed as you did yours but I am sure I am maxed out. Now to the tires. My china bombs blew at somewhere in the 5 to 7k range. Upon taking off the tires I found a second tire with a bubble on it. I changed all four tires after that episode with Maxxis tires of the same rating and size. I pondered going to the G rated tire as you did but one thing stuck in my mind. Will my rim handle the extra tire pressure of 110 psi opposed to 80 psi I now have. I could not find a rating on the rims when I looked. I will see if these tires hold up running at max ratings. Time will tell. If I have the first problem with the Maxxis my next tire will the the G rated ones you talked about. The cost was a big determining factor in Maxxis vs Goodyear so I will see if I wasted my money on the Maxxis.

If you do go with the G rated tire let us all know how that works out especially with the rims.
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Old 11-15-2013, 07:09 AM   #4
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I had the dreaded tire blow out on a travel trailer. call me lucky now but I believe in coveres on your tires. The sun here in Texas tears them up, everytime I pulled the trailer I had a blow out till I covered the tires!!!
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Old 11-16-2013, 02:03 AM   #5
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I have talked to the commercial tire general sales manager at a local tire shop, and he recommended Goodyear 614 tires for my Voltage 3905. He asked about my rims, and I took pictures of the casting marks on the backside. I discovered that my rims are rated for 3950lbs, which would require the 110psi, so the Goodyear's should be good to go. TThey are expensive, but if they last and can handle the weight, I think they will be worth it.
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Old 11-16-2013, 03:15 AM   #6
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Yeah, I had a discussion with my local tire guy too. According to him, while there should be a rating code stamped into the rear of the wheels... he said that there's a pretty simple way to be 90% sure a set of trailer wheels are rated for higher pressures.

He said... "Simply count the spokes. If you have 5-spoke wheels, they should be rated for up to 70psi. If you have 6-spoke wheels, 95psi... and 8-spoke wheels 125psi."

Since I'm the type of guy who likes to see written verification of anything... I asked where I could find this information? Of course, he couldn't tell me... but said it's pretty much industry standard.

I got tied up with other things after I got back home, so I haven't really done any research into that... but just relaying what he said.
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Old 11-17-2013, 03:36 PM   #7
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Interesting .... but I see no mention in the above discussion about side-wall rigidity, which I understand is the reason trailers should use ST tires. Also, I have heard that THE most important thing to avoid tire problems on trailers is to keep the pressures right and to monitor pressure and temperature closely. That is why I have installed a TST pressure/temperature monitoring system on my rig. It gives me a lot of peace of mind. By the way, based on all I have read, my next tires will be Maxxi's as good compromise between cost and quality.
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Old 11-18-2013, 08:13 PM   #8
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I for one really appreciate the info you guys are sharing. You have me scared to death about my China Bombs. We drive a lot of miles. We are currently in North Carolina and next week we head for the Brownsville, TX area. I must save up for those tire monitors.
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Old 11-18-2013, 09:55 PM   #9
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Where in NC? I'm live near the SC border, a few miles off I-95.

Yeah, I also wanna get a TPMS for my wheels at the same time I re-do the tires. Not sure, why, but Ford doesn't include the TPMS on its dually trucks... so currently I have nothing on the truck or RV, and I figure I may as well get a system that handles both.
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Old 11-18-2013, 10:08 PM   #10
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The TST (Truck Tire Systems) monitor I have works really well and, although I'm only using it to monitor the trailer tires, it can handle up to 18 or 20 tires. The in-truck monitor is compact and runs for days of driving before needing a recharge from the cigarette lighter. It cycles about every 5 seconds from tire to tire showing the current pressure and temperature of the tire. Although not intended for this, I am pretty sure you would see a big rise in temperature if you were experiencing a serious wheel bearing problem. Also, TST is s great company to work with. If you have a question or concern, you can contact the president by email and he responds quickly. Amazing!
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