Bill asked about tires for his TR3...
Just over a year ago I was in need of a set of tires for my TR3; no
problem, call a couple stores, get the best price, and schedule to have
them put on. They're 165x15; the old set of Michelin's had dry
rotted...no problem, everone carries Michelins. Well, no exactly...at
least not in the size needed. What to do?
I found a couple alternatives; I could get Kumhos for about $200 a for a
set of 4...cheap and a brand I've heard of; Firestone Gillettes for
about the same price, and another option, don't remember the (off) brand
for about $260. All the tires recommended were available as a blackwall
(my preference), radial, and tubeless.
Before I went talked with any of the local dealers I checked out the
internet...Coker.com. They listed Goodrich (two styles, a narrow
whitewall and a wide whitewall) and their own Coker brand (again, a wide
white); I eliminated both because they were only available as
whitewalls. That left Michelin (same as what was on the car) and
Vredestein (never heard of them). The Michelins ran $130 per tire plus
$15/tire shipping. I passed over the Vredestein, but the Coker rep
brought me back to it. Seems it is made in Sweden, looks good, good
tread pattern, and according to the rep, can't be beat for the
price...$85/tire (and again $15/tire for shipping). It's a 40,000 mile
tire like most of the others. The clincher was this, the Michelins were
out of stock and not expected for a couple months; the Vredesteins could
be delivered within a week (turned out to be three days).
During all this talk with Coker I learned a bit about
wheels/tires...certainly more than the local tire store staff knew. Pat,
the Coker guy, took a lot of time to explain about liners and whether or
not to use a tube in a tubeless tire...remember, wire wheels. I ended up
going with the Vredestein, with a heavy tube, and a liner. Only one
place locally that I checked knew anything about liners in wire wheels,
and they could not get 15" liners from any of their suppliers.
I bought the Vreds from Coker and have been very pleased with the
decision. They mount up nicely, balance well, and I've had no leak down
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