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Old 08-20-2018, 09:53 AM   #1
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Light truck tire alternative to ST (trailer) tires

When I decided to see what was out there to replace the Castle Rock tires currently on our Flagstaff (has 225/75/15 "E") I began by looking for truck tires. I did this (replace the ST tires with truck tires back in 2005 on our new Wildcat 5er) years back and was glad I did. No issues and I even liked the truck tires (BFG) better when doing tight maneuvers, they didn't get all bent out of shape like the ST tires.

I came up empty (tire size/load rating) but I recently received a PM telling of a light truck tire I'd never heard of that fits the bill. Nokian Rotilva AT. They make a 235/75/15 in a load "E". Made by a Finland outfit that happens to be building a plant in Tennessee. These tires are primarily a snow tire it appears, but I don't think the Flagstaff will notice.
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Old 08-20-2018, 10:00 AM   #2
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I will only run STs on my rig (trailers not class A or C) stiffer sidewall, higher weight capacity for same size tire, less chance of inter ply shear. Less rock and roll. JMHO
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Old 08-20-2018, 12:21 PM   #3
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Having run both type tires on fifth wheel RV's, my choice is the light truck tires. I just wanted to let folks know that someone does offer a truck tire that will work for us with 15 inch rims and has a load rating "E".
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Old 08-20-2018, 01:05 PM   #4
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Here is a well written and researched article on the LT vs ST question.

https://rvingwithmarkpolk.com/2012/1...s-vs-lt-tires/

Take note of where he mentions a time frame that Chinese made ST tires had most of their problems.

Also note the comment from a Goodyear employee explaining material differences in LT and ST tires.

For the speed demons who refuse to drive less than the rated speed of an ST tire (at the time of the article it was only 65 mph. Today some are 75) it's recommended that the cold inflation pressure be raised by 10 psi but without adding any more load.

For those that have tires properly sized for their vehicle, keep them inflated properly, and drive at speeds the tire was designed for, a quality ST tire will be a better choice than an LT tire that more likely than not will cost a LOT more.

Of course there are some that will pass on a premium ST tire in favor of a cheap LT thinking they're solving the original problem. Good Luck.
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Old 08-20-2018, 01:23 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by dieseldodge View Post
I came up empty (tire size/load rating) but I recently received a PM telling of a light truck tire I'd never heard of that fits the bill. Nokian Rotilva AT. They make a 235/75/15 in a load "E". Made by a Finland outfit that happens to be building a plant in Tennessee. These tires are primarily a snow tire it appears, but I don't think the Flagstaff will notice.
Problem with a tire built primarily as a snow tire is that it was designed to be soft at cold temperatures with plenty of "voids" in the tread to allow it to pass water out and grip compacted snow. Drive that same tire on a hot freeway at speed and wear will more likely than not be very rapid.

Probably a great tire if you take your trailer skiing or snowmobiling and want to have good control while braking on a slick winter highway.
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Old 08-20-2018, 01:46 PM   #6
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TitanMike….you toss around words like 'quality' and 'premiun' ST tires. Care to elaborate on what those might be?
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Old 08-20-2018, 01:50 PM   #7
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FWIW....the Nokians are rated at 40,000 miles (on a light truck of course). Not great, but probably last awhile, even under an RV.
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Old 08-20-2018, 02:14 PM   #8
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TitanMike….you toss around words like 'quality' and 'premiun' ST tires. Care to elaborate on what those might be?

With ST tires it's a little like buying produce. You have to look and feel to determine quality. You can also look for higher "Service Description numbers". That is the number/letter combination that shows the load and speed rating of the tire.

With LT tires they have a UTQG marking which consists of a 3 digit number along with two letters following it. The letters will be "A, B, or C" in any combination. The number is representative of how that tire will wear compared to the manufacturers test or reference tire. The first letter is an indication of traction and the second is the tires resistance to temperature, as compared to the manufacturers reference tire.

While these UTQG numbers are not absolute, they are a fair indication of quality versus crap when comparing tires from manufacturer to manufacturer. A tire with a "150 CC UTQG rating" certainly can't be expected to wear as long, grip under wet conditions, and stay together when it gets hot as well as a tire with a 500 AA rating.

Same for an ST tire with a lower "Service Description" number/letter.


Note: Only tires built for passenger service have the UTQG rating. ST tires will have a Service Description which will also appear on passenger service tires.

You can also get a pretty good idea of "Quality" and "Premium" when you look at the average market price for a given tire. Tires are definitely a product that you get what you pay for.
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Old 08-20-2018, 02:28 PM   #9
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TitanMike…..very nice. Names of 'quality' & 'premium' ST tires is what I was after.
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Old 08-20-2018, 02:47 PM   #10
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TitanMike…..very nice. Names of 'quality' & 'premium' ST tires is what I was after.
You could start here:

https://www.etrailer.com/dept-pg-Tir...RoCIQIQAvD_BwE


Might also look at the reviews on Tire Rack
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Old 08-21-2018, 01:32 PM   #11
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Beating the dead horse again.
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Old 08-21-2018, 02:03 PM   #12
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First, I'd like to applaud jtesa1 for his eloquent, and yes, insightful post. Secondly I'd like point out that I started this thread to let others that see this ST tire thing as I do that there is an alternative....that at least I was not aware of until I received a PM about it.
Right away, everyone jumps in and says anyone running light truck tires on an RV is sure to go to hell. I did not start the thread to do the light truck vs ST thing.
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Old 08-21-2018, 03:52 PM   #13
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Maybe a link to the snow tires of which you speak would be helpful...
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Old 08-21-2018, 04:54 PM   #14
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st vs lt tires

I used to blow 1 or 2 st tires every year, E rated, the best I could get. Carlisle.I switched to E rated Bridgestone LT and haven't had a blow out in 3 yrs.
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Old 08-21-2018, 05:46 PM   #15
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And...

Quote:
Originally Posted by TitanMike View Post
Problem with a tire built primarily as a snow tire is that it was designed to be soft at cold temperatures with plenty of "voids" in the tread to allow it to pass water out and grip compacted snow. Drive that same tire on a hot freeway at speed and wear will more likely than not be very rapid.

Probably a great tire if you take your trailer skiing or snowmobiling and want to have good control while braking on a slick winter highway.
And it will be noisy.

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Old 08-21-2018, 08:06 PM   #16
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Dieseldodge, your profile says you live in New Mexico. Are you familiar with snow tires? I’m not trying to be a smart a** but snow tires are very soft and will not do well in the high heat of your summers. I find them uncomfortably “squishy” above 32F. I’d never consider a snow tire for a trailer. If you want to try a LT tire I recommend you look for an “all season” tire. Personally, I just put a set of Maxxis M8008 Load Range D tires on my TT. The previous Duro ST tires were fine, too.
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Old 08-21-2018, 08:41 PM   #17
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Didn't kenda or kumo make an LT in 15 " rim that has a high enough load rating? I had looked at them before getting the gy endurance.
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Old 08-21-2018, 09:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dieseldodge View Post
When I decided to see what was out there to replace the Castle Rock tires currently on our Flagstaff (has 225/75/15 "E") I began by looking for truck tires. I did this (replace the ST tires with truck tires back in 2005 on our new Wildcat 5er) years back and was glad I did. No issues and I even liked the truck tires (BFG) better when doing tight maneuvers, they didn't get all bent out of shape like the ST tires.

I came up empty (tire size/load rating) but I recently received a PM telling of a light truck tire I'd never heard of that fits the bill. Nokian Rotilva AT. They make a 235/75/15 in a load "E". Made by a Finland outfit that happens to be building a plant in Tennessee. These tires are primarily a snow tire it appears, but I don't think the Flagstaff will notice.
LT tires will not have the load capacity of an equally sized ST tire. However, there are no ST tires sized at ST235/75R15 LRE. The closest thing is the ones you have, ST225/75R15 LRE. And even there the larger Nokian AT tire does not have a load capacity equal to the smaller ST tire, ST 2830# vs LT 2760#.
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Old 08-21-2018, 09:51 PM   #19
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The load range lettering system is the only recognized load capacity for ST & LT tires.

Service descriptions found on the ST & LT tires are optional with the exception of the speed letter found at the end of the service description.

Background info; During the 2007 tire rules committee meeting the subject of making the service description official for all DOT highway tires was thoroughly discussed. By a narrow margin it was pigeonholed with an option for tire manufacturers to display them for future considerations.

The service descriptions on ST tires became very useful to their offshore manufacturers when they were faced with the decision to display speed letters/restrictions on their ST tires or pay tariffs. Most have opted to use the service description, followed by a tire speed letter. It now seems that all ST tire manufacturers have complied with the speed letter display on the ST sidewalls with few exceptions, Maxxis is the only hold-out that I know of. If it's not on the sidewall it's 65 MPH, max. A tire designer such as Tireman9 should know how the TRA came-up with that figure.
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Old 08-21-2018, 11:01 PM   #20
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After two of my Castle Rock tires blew, I went with the Nokian Rotilva AT...10 thousand miles later still running strong.......Smiles
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