Realistically, What Tires Should You Run?

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For some reason, people tend to ask me this question alot, so I figured I'd make a nice thread to go over the variations I've run, what I liked, and what I didn't.

Smallest to Biggest

Not really worth mentioning, but I started with 265/70/16 Firestone Destination A/T's. Had a defect sidewall that blew a tire sitting in my driveway.
Bottom Line: Too small, scary dangerous when roads were wet, not a good tire.
DSC_0180_zps17262aff by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
330378_366927329993678_1962888456_o by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

So after I installed a Toytec Ultimate lift, I went to 255/85/16 BFG KM2's. These were much taller and gave me the ground clearance I needed. Gas mileage was great because it was a tall skinny. Decent traction aired down. Aggressive, I liked them. Minimal clearancing. Just pinch weld and some trimming of plastic. Gearing was fantastic too. 4.10's, 5 speed, and skinny 33's got me over 20 mpg without issue.
DSC_0041 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
DSC_0535 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
DSC_0533 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
DSC_0142 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

All the cool guys at the time were on 35's though. So I had to step up after the KM2's were fairly worn.
Enter 315/75/16 Goodyear MTR's. This is where clearancing really came in to place. ADS front coilovers and LC 8 wraps in the rear. No body lift at the time.
DSC_0094 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

Really filled up the wheel wells. They looked fucking awesome, and they hooked up even better. To this day, best tire I've run. They weren't round, never balanced for shit, but they hooked up great on everything.

They rubbed the firewall like a bitch. So I read online that you have to tub the firewall. I think I was about 18 at this point. Didn't own any tools, so I took it to a shop and was quoted $800 to tub the firewalls. I said fuck that, went to Harbor Freight, bought an angle grinder and a $100 flux core MIG and started cutting.
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
This ended up looking like ass, so I redid it 6 months later.

Shortly after this, my friend had mentioned a tapered body lift. 2" in the front, 0 in the rear. Helps level the truck, keeps CV's flat in the front. Doesn't raise the center of gravity a noticeable amount. So I installed that and redid the firewall tub
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
Definitely got better at it
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

Also had to cut my fenders for 35's too. Can kind of tell in this picture:
DSC_0443 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

Drove 25k miles on those tires in the first year I had them. They were great.
DSC_0458 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
DSC_0264 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
DSC_0163 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

Towards the end of my time on 35's and MTR's, I regeared from 4.10 to 4.88 with front and rear lockers
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

There went all gas mileage. 35's and 4.88's with a manual sucked. Freeway RPM's were way too high, mileage sucked. But I could crawl again.
 
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Then my friends tempted me into trying 37's. So enter 37x12.50x17 Falken M/T's
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

God damn these things were big. They're skinny though. They might be listed at a 12.5, but tread width measures 9.5" on mine. They were super smooth on the freeway. Highway MPG was about 16.5. They do not hook up nearly as well as the MTR's did. They're still good though, very happy with them. It's nice having tires that are round and actually balance. Surprising I know.

DSC_0023 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
DSC_0171 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
DSC_0172 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

Firewall tub had to be far more aggressive on these.
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

Also cut below the airbox, and below the battery tray
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

Driverside:
Untitled by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

So ya, that brings us to her current form
image 4 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
image 7 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr
DSC_0342 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

Final Thoughts:
If you're building a truck for general use. Trail runs, camping, etc try a 285/75/17. It's a skinny 34. You're going to have to clearance, maybe even a small tub, but you won't have to deal with the width of a 315/75/16, and you only lose a half inch of ground clearance.
 

RPS1030

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Very well said. Only thing to add in would be wheel offsets (effective offsets with spacers).

I’ve been pleased with the 255/80/17s on the new 4Runner and impressed with 285/75/17s on a lot of Toyotas.

But long live #Dirty7s
 

Theblackflag

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Guess Ill throw my thoughts into the mix as well. So so far I've only had 2 sizes of tire on my truck but I have wheeled a lot with both.

So first up 265/70/16s (stock size for a limited) I originally bought the truck with a bald set of michelins, immediately replaced those for Bridgestone Bilzzaks because it was winter, the truck was and is my daily, and I hadnt really ever thought of turning it into a wheeler before. These tires are the absolute tits in the snow and ice! but that's what they're designed for. Overall was very happy with them for the winter but they wont wear well in hot weather because winter tire.

So next up was the Bridgestone Duellers, I got them super cheap at costco so thats what I went with. Shortly after getting these tires I started getting the bug to wheel and mod the truck and that's when I really learned the hard way highway tires SUCK for anything but the highway. Treadwear was great, MPG was great, but they wouldn't hold traction even in dirt. I ran them through the summer and then was back on the Blizzaks for the winter.

At this point, I had lifted the truck added sliders and was planning a trip to moab, so I needed new tires. Enter the 265/70/16 Falken Wildpeak AT3W.
The main driving points behind this size and tire combo was I didn't want to sacrifice MPG on my daily, I needed good traction, they were cheap, and had good reviews. I absolutely loved these tires, they hooked up amazing on everything and were tough as hell. They survived 2 week long trips to Moab, 1 Montana winter, and 1 summer wheeling on Colorado granite. Only problem? they wore like ass, I got 20k miles into them and was at roughly 60% tread used. I mostly blame this on them being a passenger rated tire on a 5,000lb truck.

Some of what I put the tires through
IMG_3061 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_5196 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_5111 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_4926 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

Over time the 265s started to just look to small, I was getting a lot of rock rash on my rims because of the lack of sidewall, drug my skids on everything, and they weren't very good for snow wheeling. They were just too narrow. The final nail in the coffin came during the last day of my second trip to moab on gold bar rim. I took a bad slide on my line which resulted in this
IMG_7723 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

The damage was only cosmetic and I drove 700 miles home on this, but it was the final trip for those tires. Enter the 285/75/16 Wildpeak AT

I was very happy with how the wildpeak had performed through everything I put them through but was hoping the new larger size and LT trad compound would last better. To fit my 285s even with a perfect alignment I had to cut a lot more than most but I never rub now.
IMG_8081 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_8089 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_8091 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_8114 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_8097 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

At the time I also blew up my front spider gears and ended up with a slight regear to 4.30s. This gear ratio has proven to be a bit too high with my auto and the truck really struggles to use 4th gear. I get around 14mpg but the tire size works amazingly well. They are also incredibly durable. I have 12 thousand miles on them and have only used 1/32nd of tread. They also have been hammered on in the Colorado Rockies and Montana and I have yet to have any chunking or any other problems. All being said for a mild wheeler on 16-inch rims I feel like this is a perfect tire size. Its practical to daily but does very well in the rocks. However, I will be going to 315/75/16s next year sometime. This is mostly for snow wheeling and because since I will be regearing and adding a front locker I might as well go all out.

Bottom line for a dual purpose rig on 16 inch rims, 285/75/16s are perfect. If you plan to be wheeling harder, don't necessarily daily your truck or are willing to live with power loss, and don't mind cutting a lot then 315/75/16s would be what I would go with.
 
Joined
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Guess Ill throw my thoughts into the mix as well. So so far I've only had 2 sizes of tire on my truck but I have wheeled a lot with both.

So first up 265/70/16s (stock size for a limited) I originally bought the truck with a bald set of michelins, immediately replaced those for Bridgestone Bilzzaks because it was winter, the truck was and is my daily, and I hadnt really ever thought of turning it into a wheeler before. These tires are the absolute tits in the snow and ice! but that's what they're designed for. Overall was very happy with them for the winter but they wont wear well in hot weather because winter tire.

So next up was the Bridgestone Duellers, I got them super cheap at costco so thats what I went with. Shortly after getting these tires I started getting the bug to wheel and mod the truck and that's when I really learned the hard way highway tires SUCK for anything but the highway. Treadwear was great, MPG was great, but they wouldn't hold traction even in dirt. I ran them through the summer and then was back on the Blizzaks for the winter.

At this point, I had lifted the truck added sliders and was planning a trip to moab, so I needed new tires. Enter the 265/70/16 Falken Wildpeak AT3W.
The main driving points behind this size and tire combo was I didn't want to sacrifice MPG on my daily, I needed good traction, they were cheap, and had good reviews. I absolutely loved these tires, they hooked up amazing on everything and were tough as hell. They survived 2 week long trips to Moab, 1 Montana winter, and 1 summer wheeling on Colorado granite. Only problem? they wore like ass, I got 20k miles into them and was at roughly 60% tread used. I mostly blame this on them being a passenger rated tire on a 5,000lb truck.

Some of what I put the tires through
IMG_3061 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_5196 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_5111 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_4926 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

Over time the 265s started to just look to small, I was getting a lot of rock rash on my rims because of the lack of sidewall, drug my skids on everything, and they weren't very good for snow wheeling. They were just too narrow. The final nail in the coffin came during the last day of my second trip to moab on gold bar rim. I took a bad slide on my line which resulted in this
IMG_7723 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

The damage was only cosmetic and I drove 700 miles home on this, but it was the final trip for those tires. Enter the 285/75/16 Wildpeak AT

I was very happy with how the wildpeak had performed through everything I put them through but was hoping the new larger size and LT trad compound would last better. To fit my 285s even with a perfect alignment I had to cut a lot more than most but I never rub now.
IMG_8081 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_8089 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_8091 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_8114 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_8097 by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

At the time I also blew up my front spider gears and ended up with a slight regear to 4.30s. This gear ratio has proven to be a bit too high with my auto and the truck really struggles to use 4th gear. I get around 14mpg but the tire size works amazingly well. They are also incredibly durable. I have 12 thousand miles on them and have only used 1/32nd of tread. They also have been hammered on in the Colorado Rockies and Montana and I have yet to have any chunking or any other problems. All being said for a mild wheeler on 16-inch rims I feel like this is a perfect tire size. Its practical to daily but does very well in the rocks. However, I will be going to 315/75/16s next year sometime. This is mostly for snow wheeling and because since I will be regearing and adding a front locker I might as well go all out.

Bottom line for a dual purpose rig on 16 inch rims, 285/75/16s are perfect. If you plan to be wheeling harder, don't necessarily daily your truck or are willing to live with power loss, and don't mind cutting a lot then 315/75/16s would be what I would go with.
I had those Falken A/T's on my F150 DD and they worked way better in snow than I would have thought. Loved those tires.
 

AssBurns

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This is a great thread for new wheelers to see, so that they don't have to start a new thread with every question on tire size.

I might as well post my thoughts on this as well. I agree with what has been said above. I initially went with 285/75r16 Pro-Comp MT2's for my first tire. I didn't have any sort of lift, so I had to trim the pinch welds and hammer the firewall a bit to clear. They rubbed the UCA sometimes and the frame when turning. It wasn't bad but with aftermarket UCA's and wheel spacers, it eliminated this issue. I added a lift a few months later and wheeled the hell out of them and daily drove on them for about two years. They were awesome for 90% of the stuff I was doing at the time. The power loss wasn't too bad with 4.30 gearing. I would have rather had 255/85r16's though for most of the stuff I needed a tire for, but happened to come across a deal of a lifetime with the tires I got so went with 285/75r16.

IMG_3176.JPG

Eventually I started wheeling harder and was ready to replace my tires. I went with 315/75r16. I still had 4.30 gearing for the first 9 months and it was doable but not much fun on any sort of hill. I had to do quite a bit of clearancing to fit these tires without rubbing. I extensively tubbed the firewall and trimmed the fenders so that I could easily clear the tires with full range of motion. These tires definitely take some work to clear properly, but the increased ground clearance, and traction was absolutely worth the effort. What I don't recommend is getting 35's and getting a huge body lift or letting your tires rub all over the place. Not only is that going to tear up your tires, but it also puts a ton of stress on your CV axles when your tires are bound up against your firewall. If you want to go to 35's, do it right and tub the firewall. Also if you have an auto trans, 5.29 gearing is absolutely perfect as long as you are okay with staying under 80mph on the highway.

IMG_5711.JPG IMG_5712.JPG IMG_5724.JPG IMG_5713.JPG IMG_5715.JPG

I've always been temped to make the jump to 37's, but I don't know if cutting the entire wheel well out front and rear, plus the power loss, will be worth the added effort of making them clear properly without a huge body lift. We'll see, but I doubt I will ever make the jump to 37's unless I have more power and strength to handle the increased size.
 
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I did a similar progression - 225/75/15 to 265/75/16 to 285/75/16 to 315/75/16 to 35/12.50/17 to 37/12.50/17.

1" BL when the 285's went on. Firewall tub when the 315's went on (thanks @Tyler James Inc), 2" BL when the 37's went on. Maybe we can have a separate thread where we hash out the BL issue as I feel it deserves at least to be considered by anyone going big on tires and offroad.

I don't want to be left out on the tubbing pics...
20170827_100435-1512x2016.jpg 20170827_111240-1512x2016.jpg
 

Plastics Guy

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DAMN!!! This thread is Gold!! Thank you to all of you guys for putting this together. Not only do we have legit tire reviews from the Heavy hitters of the forum, but we also see approximately how much hacking of the firewall is needed. Awesome combination guys very useful!!
 

AssBurns

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DAMN!!! This thread is Gold!! Thank you to all of you guys for putting this together. Not only do we have legit tire reviews from the Heavy hitters of the forum, but we also see approximately how much hacking of the firewall is needed. Awesome combination guys very useful!!
That’s what this place is here for! We want real info from real wheelers with real experience!
 

Plastics Guy

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Sticky this thread as the poster child for others to follow.

This was seriously the best informational thread I've read in a long time. Back to back post's
 

Plastics Guy

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@AssBurns @4Running Daily @rkntoy

Whats the biggest tire I ca...... Oh wait wrong forum....


So I am finally looking to get into some bigger tires and I am looking at the Goodyear MTR in 315 x 70 x 17. But would like your guys input because you have the first hand experience.

I know you guys really like the MTR's. What are your thoughts on the Toyo MT's?? I have read a lot of good reviews saying that guys dont even feel they need to run with a spare because the sidewall is so tuff.

Please give me your guys opinion on the MTR vs. Toyo MT This is the first time Ive stepped up to a big (ish) tire and I am scared of the damn price!!! I want to make sure I dont get buyers remorse...
 
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@AssBurns @4Running Daily @rkntoy

Whats the biggest tire I ca...... Oh wait wrong forum....


So I am finally looking to get into some bigger tires and I am looking at the Goodyear MTR in 315 x 70 x 17. But would like your guys input because you have the first hand experience.

I know you guys really like the MTR's. What are your thoughts on the Toyo MT's?? I have read a lot of good reviews saying that guys dont even feel they need to run with a spare because the sidewall is so tuff.

Please give me your guys opinion on the MTR vs. Toyo MT This is the first time Ive stepped up to a big (ish) tire and I am scared of the damn price!!! I want to make sure I dont get buyers remorse...
I've had alot of friends run Toyo M/T's. You probably know that most of the AZ boys are Toyo guys. From my experience, watching them wheel, they don't have the same level of traction of the MTR's. Because of that thick sidewall, they take a while to break in and get soft so they actually grip.

Jon's truck has brand new Toyo MT's and I watched him spin all 4 on this "bypass" on lower terminator
DSC_0312 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

George's truck has some used and beat on Toyo MT's in the same size, and walks up everything.
DSC_0295 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

They're also heavy. I'd go back to my MTR's far before I tried a Toyo.
 

Plastics Guy

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I've had alot of friends run Toyo M/T's. You probably know that most of the AZ boys are Toyo guys. From my experience, watching them wheel, they don't have the same level of traction of the MTR's. Because of that thick sidewall, they take a while to break in and get soft so they actually grip.

They're also heavy. I'd go back to my MTR's far before I tried a Toyo.


Exactly, Its all these AZ boys that had me wondering about the Toyo.
 

RPS1030

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I don’t feel like I’ve lacked traction with my RTs on the big truck or the old 4Runner running a hand me down set from the truck. All while being very round and smooth.

I wish Toyo made a legit sticky crawler tire.
 
Last edited:

AssBurns

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@AssBurns @4Running Daily @rkntoy

Whats the biggest tire I ca...... Oh wait wrong forum....


So I am finally looking to get into some bigger tires and I am looking at the Goodyear MTR in 315 x 70 x 17. But would like your guys input because you have the first hand experience.

I know you guys really like the MTR's. What are your thoughts on the Toyo MT's?? I have read a lot of good reviews saying that guys dont even feel they need to run with a spare because the sidewall is so tuff.

Please give me your guys opinion on the MTR vs. Toyo MT This is the first time Ive stepped up to a big (ish) tire and I am scared of the damn price!!! I want to make sure I dont get buyers remorse...
I love my MTR’s. I personally don’t have a ton of experience with a lot of different tires to do a legit comparison, but these MTR’s have a ton of traction. The road manners aren’t bad compared any other MT. The worst part is the cost for these. Luckily they have gone down in cost over the past year, so now they are a similar cost compared to other MT’s of the same size.

I don’t know many people that run Toyo but from what I’ve heard is that they are stiff, heavy and really durable. Like Connor said, the stiffness can hinder you offroad (at least until they are broken in)

My MTR’s didn’t need to be broken in. They worked great even brand new.
 

theesotericone

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Here's a very useful site to help you compare tires.

https://tiresize.com/tiresizes/315-70R17.htm

The Nitto and Toyo are almost 10 lbs heavier then the MTR w/ Kevlar. I've run Nitto and have nothing but good things to say about their Ridge Grappler. I actually have some 295/70/17's for sale if anyone wants them. I haven't listed them anywhere and will probably just keep it word of mouth for now.

@Plastics Guy

If you want to wheel harder stuff a bigger tire will help. I was able to wheel plenty of hard trails on 295/70/17's but my diff hung up a lot more compared to guys running 35's. That extra inch of ground clearance is more useful then I thought. lol
 

AssBurns

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Here's a very useful site to help you compare tires.

https://tiresize.com/tiresizes/315-70R17.htm

The Nitto and Toyo are almost 10 lbs heavier then the MTR w/ Kevlar. I've run Nitto and have nothing but good things to say about their Ridge Grappler. I actually have some 295/70/17's for sale if anyone wants them. I haven't listed them anywhere and will probably just keep it word of mouth for now.

@Plastics Guy

If you want to wheel harder stuff a bigger tire will help. I was able to wheel plenty of hard trails on 295/70/17's but my diff hung up a lot more compared to guys running 35's. That extra inch of ground clearance is more useful then I thought. lol
Yeah you caught on more stuff than us and weren’t aired down as much either. That little extra clearance is nice.

So when you doing 37’s?
 

Blender

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I've had alot of friends run Toyo M/T's. You probably know that most of the AZ boys are Toyo guys. From my experience, watching them wheel, they don't have the same level of traction of the MTR's. Because of that thick sidewall, they take a while to break in and get soft so they actually grip.

Jon's truck has brand new Toyo MT's and I watched him spin all 4 on this "bypass" on lower terminator
DSC_0312 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

George's truck has some used and beat on Toyo MT's in the same size, and walks up everything.
DSC_0295 by Connor Rhoades, on Flickr

They're also heavy. I'd go back to my MTR's far before I tried a Toyo.

difference must be the driver :fencing:
 
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