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Radial Tires?


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Why are radial tires not included as a "safety" enhancement. I'm new to the AACA and was told that some eqpt ( not original eqpt ) is allowed if it is a safety improvement. I asked a judge about this and he said radial tires have not been proven to be safer! I can't believe that, they let a car stop shorter, especially if road is wet, handle much better, and have less chance of blowouts. Any thoughts on this.

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Radial tires on a car not originally equipped with them will get a significant deduction - 3 points per tire, including the spare if applicable. AACA does not consider this a safety exception. If you are driving the car enough to be concerned about the safety advantage, then you are most likely showing the car as well. My '61 Cad has radials, but it is strictly used for touring.<BR>Some owners have two sets of wheels, one set with radials and one with the proper tires. They switch them for judging.

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Steve, <BR>I agree with that judge to a point. <BR>However, as long as some of the old car hobbiest have it in their minds that they must drive their 50 year old (or whatever year old ) antique car into a hard curve at 80 MPH, so they can grip the road or drive in pouring down rain at the same speed and want to feel like they are riding in their living room sofa, then I say, put on the radials. What other purpose is there for running them? There is no doubt in my mind that they ride better than a bias tire and that they cover up most of the sins of a neglected worn suspension. However, I don't agree with a radial having a less chance of a blowout over a bias tire or belonging on a show car that did not come equipped with them originally. Those Explorers your seeing on the news every night are not running on bias 820 X 15's.<BR>The AACA is a great club for owning and enjoying cars for the way they where when there were new. Lets continue to enjoy AACA for what it stands for.<P>Rick

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First, I drove a few hundred thousand miles before there was such a thing as a radial tire, and had no safety difficulty, or any other kind of difficulty, except they didn't wear as long.<BR>Second, while radial tires have been available in 15 inch sizes for some time and people have complained about not being able to use them, they weren't available in 16-inch sizes (now apparently they are) so I couldn't run them on my pre-War car anyway, even if I'd wanted to. Same is true of 17 inch tires now. What's fair for 14 and 15 inch cars is fair for the rest in judging.<BR>Third, I put radials on my 66 Chrysler because they were cheaper (49.99) than the correct 8.55x14 tires, which also wore poorly, wearing bald at around 10K miles. They do not ride any better, or perhaps even as well as the 8.55x14 tires.<BR>Much of it is hokem, sofar as I'm concerned. The fact is, radials ride the truck grooves better (and in the 50s&60s there weren't truck grooves from those heavy monsters) and they wear longer, and they are cheaper than collector tires. That's the big difference.

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A lot of car clubs deduct points for radial tires and some even go as far as to deduct for not having the correct white wall.Tires always seem to be an issue when it comes to judging with radials or bias tires.It might not seem fair to some but I think the whole idea is to have the car as it came from the factory. I was asked at Hershey this year to provide proof that my car came with radials because it is a '73. Its just something that we all have to live with.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Getting back to the radial tires.The tires on my 69 mach One were a option in 69,so don't tell methat they are a piont dection.Do the judges deced points on a daily driven show car?

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Alllyn,<P>The radial was a option on the 1969 Mustang GT 390 and 428 V-8s. However, that tire was the FR-70X14 which is not available in reproduction and would have to be located though means of finding new / old spares and such. Therefore, to install new market available radials such as T/A's for one, you would be incorrect running that metric size radial and points would be deducted. If you are having your Mustang judged within AACA judging, I would recommend showing with the standard tire, being the F-70X14 which is available. <P>I do not fully understand your last sentence.<P>Rick

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I agree with you Rick but I have had a few of my Cadillacs that the original whitewall design is no longer produced at this time. I first of all bring documentation that radial tires could have come on the car.Since the original style is not reproduced I took and put the closest that I could find staying within the brand name that came on the car. So far I have not had any problems with judging at national shows.

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Ronbarn, Rick, and others that can help:<P>I have been reading the posts for months, as you can see, I have only offered my .02 a couple of times. This time, I need sound advice.<P>This tire issue has been a concern of mine since removing the original tires 7 years ago. I own a 1974 Chevrolet Monte Carlo that came equipped with GR70-15 tires. I have contacted Lucas, Universal, Coker, etc. etc. etc. with the same response...there is not enough demand for those tires, sorry we don't have them.<P>Thus my problem: I have the 2000 Official Judging Manual in front of me right now. I think that I understand the information on pages 78 and 79 about tires and the appropriate years that tire markings were used.<P>When I replaced my tires 7 years ago, I used P225/70R-15 tires. (Never in my wildest imagination did I think I would be as involved with this hobby as I am now.) But according to the book, they were not used on domestic cars until 1975. I have searched Hemmings with no luck. I am also a member of the National Monte Carlo Owners Association, no luck there either!<P>My car has been fortunate enough to win the 1st Junior at Hershey in 99, the Senior Award at Winchester in 2000, and our First Preservation at Hershey in 2000.<P>Maybe the 15 points were deducted...maybe not. Maybe we won the awards because of the current lack of involvement and competition from other vehicles...maybe not. Maybe the car won because it was the best on that given day...maybe not.<P>Cindy and I are planning on going to Johnstown (only 1 hour from home) in the Spring of 2001, the A.G.N.M. in Moline IL and Hershey in the Fall.<P>The tires are a concern at all the meets. However, the A.G.N.M. is of great concern! It is going to be a 625 (+ or -) mile trip. I don't have to be the best, I just want to be ready to compete with the proper tires. As you know, a 15 point deduction at that level will kill my chances.<P>Looking for more wisdom from the veterans!<P>Thanks, John<P>------------------<BR><UL TYPE=SQUARE><BR><LI> 1974 Monte Carlo S<BR><LI> 1986 Monte Carlo SS<BR></UL>

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Ah, my favorite topic....again.<P>I strongly oppose "allowing" radial tires in judging where they were NOT original equipment. The arguement that they are "safer" is just a cop out. Fact is they're cheaper, easier to find, and generally ride nicer than the bias-ply or belted tires from the 50's-60's-early 70's.<P>If the point of enjoying your classic car includes "making it safer", then I'd recommend installing a dual master cylinder brake system, with a disc brake conversion. Why not add shoulder belts to cars with "only" lap belts while you're at it.<P>Automatic transmissions, power steering/brakes, and cruise control are proven to reduce driver fatigue, so they could be considered safety items and should be added to any car without them! <P>Of course, this is ridiculous and I'm not serious. However, my point is that if you want a car to ride and drive like a modern car, either buy a new car or dig in and modify your classic. <P>Original is original, and incorrect tires (like any other non-authentic part) should receive a deduction in judging. If you want radial tires, or disc brakes, or a modern 12-disc CD changer, then more power to you--but enter your car in a "modified" or "street" class, cause it ain't "original".<P>Of course the epitome of authenticity is seen at the Corvette Bloomington Gold and NCRS judging. Some of these guys spend thousands of dollars on rare NOS or used tires to get EXACTLY the correct part. Can you imagine one of these guys whining that he's using PEP-Boy radials because the correct tire wasn't reproduced and that he doesn't think any demerits are fair??<P>So, if you like radials, then use them. If you want to be competitive in judging, get the right tires. Now if you WANT the correct tires, but can't get them (like the Monte Carlo fella) then you have my sympathy--I'm in the same boat with one of my cars. Best of luck to you in locating what you need!

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I have been restoring and driving both show cars and driving cars for some years now. It seems to me that they are apples and oranges. The owner must deside to run or show. often the tires will make the differance between a 400 car and no prize at all, even if is the same car. the AACA rules say as the car was delivered to the dealer/ owner. This must sand fast if the system is to remain fair. Show or Go, make your bed and sleep in it.

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BRAVO Paul ~~ You have just summed it all up in one small post. The rules are there before anyone starts to play the game. If they don't like the rules, then stay out of the game. No one has any right to expect the rules to be changed merely because they don't like the results from abiding by the rules. <P>But then on the other hand, the complainer could probably file a grievance with some government agency and would likely get the rules changed to suit them, especially if they belong to a special interest group such as the "Radial-Americans." wink.gif But that's just my opinion. I could be wrong. smile.gifsmile.gif ~ hvs

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My experience and understanding of this forum has been that we are not compelled to adhere strictly to the opening subject.<P>As many of us post, the threads tend to touch on other related and sometimes unrelated subjects. As a result things get discussed which none of us would have probably thought to start as a new thread.<P>I think we all learn and benefit as a result of this wandering process.<P>Dynaflash, you are quite correct in your statements regarding the substitutions allowed when an original tire size is not now available. But this thread has gone beyond that limited subject and I cannot see where we are hurt by that divergence.<P>Finally, yes rules can be changed. But the reason for change should be for the betterment of the operation and not just to appease someone's discontent with the system currently in place.<P>But then, that's just my opinion. smile.gifsmile.gif ~Howard

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Paul,<BR> I understand your post on the rules,but I say once again,you go on any AACA showfield in any part of the country on any weekend and you WILL NOT find cars displayed "as they were delivered to the dealer". With no hubcaps mounted,no Continental kits , no skirts, no radio antenneas on Fords,etc.<BR> This is the way they were unloaded from the carrier at the dealership and as Howard says,<BR>"this is etched in stone". <BR>

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They also were shipped with no gas in the gas tank, yet we require them to demonstrate that they run by driving them onto the field. Do you think it is a good idea to make the owners drain the tanks onto the field?<P>The people who volunteer to assess the quality of the vehicle when shown are called judges. They must use reasonable judgement. The intent of the "as they left the factory" statement is to preclude aftermarket accessories. That's all it means. As far as I know, that's all it was ever intended to mean. And I understand that there have had to be some adaptations for reality and the EPA may cause us to make some more exceptions, but the system has worked well and all the complaints about I can't do this therefore the rules should change for me are so much BS!!<P>And hvs - I absolutely agree, digression or wandering away from the original topic is sometimes good for the interest of the group.

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Father Ron,<BR> I'm a person who believes in correcting mistakes. For the past 30 years I have complained about AACA using the statement "as they left the factory", it makes no difference what the intent was, the statement is wrong!!<BR> And I feel AACA should drop this from all rules and regulations.<BR> If we don't intend to judge by this criteria, just stop using that terminology. The facts are that we judge cars the way they appear on the field by workmanship, and supposedly factory documentation (that's rarely asked for). In most cases the way we judge cars is as they set in the showroom ,not as they came off the carrier.By the way, they were shipped with gas in the tank . They were driven on and off the carrier. All I'm saying is , correct the terminology.

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I both agree and disagree with both Paul and Howard. The purpose of the post to begin with, I think, either in the judging area or the general area is what do you do when NO tires of the correct size are available? <P>Howard I had one job before you did, and when I had it the rules were, spelled out, if NO tires of the correct size were availablel the next closest size was acceptable. And, I am absolutely positive I am correct about this.<P>John Harvey and I both have cars in that category, and in my case, I have two cars and one of those does not have radials, but the next closest rayon bias tire available on the market.<P>And one more thing, experience has taught us that rules are made to be changed when found to be wrong or wanting.<P>And finally, it is possible to drive a Grand National Winner, and I've done it....for 20 years. It just takes care and planning. <p>[This message has been edited by Dynaflash8 (edited 11-05-2000).]

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In 1977 they absolutely meant "as they left the factory". During that period of time, the intent was changed to mean to include "any accessory listed in a factory parts book or brochure." If the accessory was listed, it no longer mattered who put it on, the factory or the dealer, ok? You could change the wording to "factory authorized accessoaries" but everybody knows what is meant after 25 years. HVS you are correct, there is no reason why the threads shouldn't ramble into neighboring areas.

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