john hess

53 going for paint... Now tires, bias or radial

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No updates for awhile on my 53 4 door... Long wet winter here in Pa. But now weather is breaking.... Car is scheduled for the paint shop Friday..... Can't wait !!!   My question for all of you is....... Bias or radial tires ?    My decision is made. Just curious on your thoughts.... John

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Radial if you intend to drive it much, or plan any long distance touring. Bias might look better.

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Bias ply, wheels and suspension designed for bias ply, steering works easier with bias ply, car looks correct with bias ply, did I mention bias ply tires ?, lol.

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I have Coker radials on my '56 and would NEVER go back to bias ply tires.  I drives much better and does not want to follow grooves in the highway.  

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I would imagine radial working better. I like originality and my bias ply's are in great shape. Sure brings back memories of driving with them and no power anything. 2 hands on the wheel. I would step back and look at the car. Does it look all original? Then decide how original you want to keep it. But, it's a personal preference. I putter around town so I'm good with bias.

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Thanks for your thoughts... Since my intentions were to keep the car original, I had already decided to go with bias ply tires... Now just need to decide on 2.75 or 3.25 inch white walls...... Looking at lots of photos.... Some paint combos compliment wider ww, others look better with the lesser..     hmmmmmm. Decisions decisions.................  John

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I use Universal 7.10-15 bias ply tires with 2 3/4" whitewalls on my 1953 Chieftain 8. I drive the car a lot and I'm on my second set. I think bias ply tires look better but radials will last longer. I wouldn't use radials on my car because I chase after enough loose wheelcovers already!

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55er...... Beautiful car..... Thanks for the picture and your input.   I agree on the radials... Won't use them on this one... I have a few spare hubcaps of marginal quality that I may sacrifice by drilling center hole to make some type of wing nut/bracket  to secure them. Probably be of 1/4 inch wire. 1/4  20 thread with stainless/chrome acorn nut or similar to not be noticable on  hubcaps.. 

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my 760-15 tires have 3 inch wide whitewalls, i have never had a 53 pontiac hubcap come off when driving the car. as pictured in my avatar, i'm now using 1952 oldsmobile wheels and 1953 oldsmobile wire wheel hubcaps that i modified with the 51 to 53 pontiac rear fender emblems.

 

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On 3/27/2019 at 7:26 AM, Summershandy said:

I would imagine radial working better. I like originality and my bias ply's are in great shape. Sure brings back memories of driving with them and no power anything. 2 hands on the wheel. I would step back and look at the car. Does it look all original? Then decide how original you want to keep it. But, it's a personal preference. I putter around town so I'm good with bias.

What do you guys run your Bias Ply at for Air pressure?  Cant seem to find a recommend pressure

 

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Posted (edited)

Well, I'm surprised nobody has answered, but I'll have a go. I am the wrong guy to ask because I am a radial fanatic. 35 pounds in radials.

 

My Pontiac has 600--16 Bias on it right now, and I run them about 30 pounds. I don't like soft tires. Back in the bias days, something in the high 20s was typical for bias. Check the shop manual. The owners manual should have it too. If you don't have one, get one. I don't mean to sound glib about the shop manual, but I have questions about little things this all the time, and thats where I get the answers.

 

Factory spec for my car (as an example) is 25 pounds in the front and 30 pounds in the rear. It does matter because bias ply tires are very sensitive to pressure. Too low and it wears on the outsides of the tread too fast, too high and it wears off the middle.

 

Sorry about the lousy answer, but at least this will bump your thread to the top and maybe someone else with a 53 will see it.

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
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Page is from a 1953 Pontiac Owner's Guide. I keep the bias-ply tires on my 1953 inflated to 30 lbs. cold. They say 32 lbs. max. on the sidewall.

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I am going with the book pressure of 29 After 1 year l see no wear on my 5 new 7.10x 15s at all !!!!!!.... might be cause they are still not on the car.... Painter has the car over a year now and not finished yet. Not happy...  Wish i could be of more help.... Wishing all a safe day... Hopefully this lockdown will soon be over......

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2 hours ago, john hess said:

I am going with the book pressure of 29 After 1 year l see no wear on my 5 new 7.10x 15s at all !!!!!!

 

Ya got me there John...read that and thought to myself, what?! No pics of Johns finished car??

I would be a little pissed too! 

I've got the same tire pressure info as 55'er for my 54'er....

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April 6 was 1 year since we moved it to the paint shop... I guess most painters have suffered from to much exposure to fumes over the years... SLOW... But the price was right... Heres all I have for now, as of two weeks ago.... 2 coats filler primer... Blocked between each..  minimum filler on this car as I spent many hours (months) tapping out any imperfections... Not perfect, but not bad for my first one... Painter says wet sanding next and then color..... Sorry for no updates, but nothing to report.. stay safe..... John

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