I have Universal T Driver Tires on my 1924 cut-off touring car with demountable rims.
I have been rotating my tires occasionally to even out the wear. As you might expect, the outer sections of the front tires wear the most.
I only drive my T when the roads are clear and mostly dry.
How far do you run the tread down on your tires?
Please share your experience, thanks!
To the wear indicators.
Run much further and they will be drag slicks
Bald like the top of me head with a little along the sides! Or depends on if I got enough for new tires!
stop just before the tube and you will be ok. ha,ha. charley
How do the guys running smooth tires know it's time for new ones?
Tim--when they blow out!
Dan, that's about where I let mine go to. Just put two new one's on the front of my '20 to replace similar looking to yours. Me & my passenger's life isn't worth risking the money. I keep 'em up to snuff.
I would keep very good tires on the front. I have had blowouts on the rear and was able to just let the car coast to a stop. I don't think I would want to chance a blowout on the front.
When the tread is worn smooth just call 'em Skidmores. When the cords are showing start calling 'em Maypops.
I'm thinking about good old Hank W's words in "Settin' the Woods on Fire": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3hzYRVAkUs
"..my tires and tubes are doing fine, but the air is showing through..."
Mark, In my opinion, you should have as much tread on your T tires as a modern car. A penny can be used as a tread depth gauge. Insert the penny into the tread with Lincoln's head toward the tire. If you can see the top of his head, you need new tires.
Here in New Zealand, our cars need to have a 'warrant of fitness' examination. In the case of Model T's, that is every six months. The tread depth required is 1.5mm
I can only dream of running the tires bald. Soon.... Soon......
I wondered when Terry was going to chime in!! I rode with him with those tires--had I looked at them before, I wouldn't have!!
When I bought Barney, one rear tire had lost the sidewalls--it would hold air, but had "visible cord" When I get my pictures downloaded from my back up disks (I hope I have them!) I'll have to post a pic.
Just turn that one around on the rim, Terry. It's good for another 1000 miles.
Ran one on the back till the cord was showing. Glad I did not hit a sharp rock. It was a Monkey Ward tire.
I had a '51 F-1 and I ran retreads on it in the 70's, until one threw a tread when I was passing a truck on the Interstate. I still don't know how I ended up sitting safely on the shoulder. I no longer take chances with tires.
I buy quality tires and drive them until there's nothing left. If you don't drive on wet roads, the less tread, the better the traction. There's a reason why race cars run slicks. I don't drive my T on wet roads. Bald is beautiful!
I run tires til the cords or showing, or the wires pop out on my modern car, but I've never had a tire crack like this. It doesn't go all the way around, only a foot or so. I'm afraid it might blow out.
Wow! If you had an accident in my country on bald tires, at the very least, your insurance company would not have to pay out. Then the Police would make your day worse!
With me when the tread goes, so goes the tire. Jerry.
I'm looking at these tired tires and am wondering don't you guys have to take your cars to inspection at least once a year? It's actually the only thing our inspection stations know to look at when I bring in my T.
They are always stumped when I tell them that inspecting my brakes can't be done by removing a front wheel. :-)
Back when California had "roadside inspections" for safety, I was driving my "under restoration" model A sport coupe, no top, just primer paint, and got "caught" in one of those inspections. The officer put his headlamp aiming checker up to my headlights, shook his head, put it down and just had me do High and Low looking at where it hit him. (now to his defense, at the time I did have sealed-beam headlamp adapters in the car, but the bulbs were from before at least the 50s, and had no bumps on them to put the aim test on, like the then-newer bulbs had. Then he said, "left turn signal" and was looking around, finally looked up at me, with my arm extend out the window, hand signalling a left turn, "OH!! UH, OK, Right Turn!" When I parked my car at high school some of the guys said, "How did THAT get a safety sticker? I can't get one on my car!" I think it helped that my dad was in the car with me at the time. . . The only thing they caught me on was a burned out brake light, which we replaced in town, and stopped by on the way home to get it written off and cleared.
Here's a pic of the A back then, in the Mt. Shasta 4th of July parade. My sister and a friend of hers are riding on the back as "princess" or something--I forget!! There's a sign on the spare tire, but can't read it from this angle.
Just for comparison, same car a few years later, probably 1978, yep Linda and I--MUCH younger!
I was told years ago by an old timer that the tires are good until you see air.
Just drive it in reverse until all the tread comes back on the tire!
When the rubber gets so hard that the flat spots cause a bumpier ride than the road ruts it's time to start looking for a tire sale.
P.S. This is a 30 X 3 1/2 that I found wedged between the rear chassis cross member and the bed of my TT. No telling how long it was there. The rubber is as hard as the rim metal. Interesting too is the fact that there are no wheels on the truck this size.
I should mention that when I first got my Model A running (the one in the pics above) I drove it on the tires that were on it--from 1954! One day I drove into town, then made a U turn--suddenly I had a flat, no sound, just a sudden flat. Figured out that the hard rubber sidewalls had held the car up until I put sideways pressure on them making the U-turn!
Now in the pics above, I'm riding on the new M/W tires my folks gave me for High School Graduation! They lasted until the 1990s!