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tires for a C3

i know this thread is under the C4 forum, but my questions are the same.
i have two very big jobs left on my baby. painting her, and wheels and tires. not in that order. i figure i will end up paying more than $2k for the paint job because i will want the best i can get. i have that same mindset as far as tires go. so i have been looking at BFG g-force ta's. well i keep my eye open to other tires and i like plenty of them. my problem is this. i'm pricing a set of four tires and wheels at about $2k. and i don't wanna spend that much. it'll take to long to save up for that. the tire and wheel combo i have now sux. i will not be able to hold out for too long.
does anyone know a great, and inexpensive pair of high performance tires that they can recommend.
i want to put a a pair of 285(or wider)/40(or less)- r18 or r17 on the back
and a pair of 245 or 255/40(or less)- r17 on the front
i have checked tirerack but the tires i find are all about the same price, and if i am to spend that much money, i don't know what tire to get. and i can't call them for advice because i never have time once i get home from work.

any advice is welcome

I've got a healthy amount of tread on my Eagle GS-C's right now. I was looking at the tires on my neighbors C5 hardtop and thought the Eagle GS F1 tires would be a better bet, looks like a better tread design for wet driving, plus a treadwear rating of 300 versus the 220 on the GS-C. (I guess you could only improve the treadwear rating. ;) ) After checking Goodyear's site it seems they ony have the 285's for the rear and don't have a 255 for the front. :( I really enjoy this car and love to drive her, but I can't afford to put $1000 worth of tires on her all the time.
i couldn't find any smaller sizes for eagle f1's on tirerack either.
Firestone SZ-50's...

Had goodyear...hadkumbo...had goodrich...nothing handles like the SZ's. And you can get a decent price from tire rack.
Well, they are probably sick of my tire lectures on the other forum that I frequent (different brand car,) but you guys haven't heard it yet. Ultra low profile tires like on the Vette present a different combination of tire manufacturing methods for certain manufacturers, but the basics still apply.

There are two configurations for tire manufacturing molds. There is the clam shell mold that has two pieces that clamp together over the tire like a waffle iron, this is the type that has been used since the beginning of tire manufacturing and most widely used by the US tire manufacturers even today, although they are gradually moving toward the newer type.

The newer type pioneered by Michelin with the introduction of radial tire technology after WWII is the radially sectioned mold that consists of "pieces of pie" that come together from the outside of the tire toward the center, radially. This is sort of like if you had all the pieces of the pie around the edge of the table and pushed them all together toward a common center.

This newer radially sectioned molding provides a much more consistent placement of the belt during the molding process which minimizes or eliminates excessive road force variation(sttiff spots.) Again Michelin pioneered this process and used it exclusively, for decades. Michelin is probably the most secretive company you can imagine, so they held an advantage for a long time. To give you an idea of their security, I have visited the engineering facility in France, and they take away my passport at the door in exchange for a security badge and an escort. You don't get back the passport until the escort says you can have it back. I can tell several interesting stories surrounding their secrecy.

So, now other manufacturers are starting to use radially sectioned rather than clamshell molds. In the more mundane tire sizes as used in passenger cars, I have confirmed only Michelin, Continental, Yokohama and believe it or not, Cooper to now use such molding methods with all their passenger car sizes. I'm sure there are others, but I have not confirmed any others. You can tell by looking at the flashing on the tire. Many tires have the flashing all the way around the center of the tread, this is a clam shell molded tire. Radially sectioned molds leave flashing marks that run across the tread.

I have not examined many 50 series tires, but I have noticed radially sectioned mold marks in this tire type in; Michelin, Pirelli and (again surprisingly) Cooper. I have not had a set of 50 series Goodyear Eagles in many years, but I expect that they use the radially sectioned mold technology. I also fully expect that Yokohama's use radially sectioned technology and my Kumho's use some variation as best I could tell by looking at them.

When examining and choosing tires, you will always be better served with a tire built in a radially sectioned mold. As I say, I have not looked at a lot of 50 series tires since I have learned this. I expect that MOST, if not all of them use this mold technology.

A tire molded with this method will require much less external balancing weight and continue to run vibration free (if of course they were properly, dynamically balanced) at whatever speed you have the nerve to reach. The consistently placed belt provides this more natural balance and maybe more importantly, consistent road force (minimal stiff spots.)

So, look for the radially sectioned mold marks across, not around the tread, and see that your favorite tire is molded this way. I do realize that there are other tire parameters, such as traction (important to most all of us,) treadwear (Vette tires are not known for long treadwear anyway because of how many of us drive them) and noise (personally, I don't give a hoot about whether a tire is "noisy" or not.) Regardless of your personal favorite tire parameters, I'm sure you can find one to suit you from the selection of radially molded tires that are available.

My $0.02,
Eagle85C4 said:
Firestone SZ-50's...

Had goodyear...hadkumbo...had goodrich...nothing handles like the SZ's. And you can get a decent price from tire rack.

checked tirerack. those sz-50's have a rating of 9.1
that's great. with a treadwear rating over 8. which is good. becuase treadwear usually gets the worst rating. and prices. all under $200.
thanks eagle.

anyone else, have a great recommendation like that?

About the Goodyear F1's

I had a full set of F1's on my '93 Vette, 255's up front, 285's in the rear... At the time the front tires were only 150 each, rears a bit under 200 each... I don't know if Goodyear stopped making them, but if they haven't, they are still out there somewhere....

BTW, I had a ton of miles on those F1's... I could have easily had 50k out of them.... i sold the vette before that though:(
what about the quality of the ride on those F1's?
any perofrmance details you can give me. ride comfort? handling? traction? any info is useful.

I had the GSC's before on three vettes... An 87, a '93, and my other '93... The F1's are hands down better in all aspects... One thing that I hate about the GSC's is the outside tread depth... If you look at the depth on the outside 'row' it is not as deep as the rest of the tread... this is why the tire gets bald on the outside first, and you can't get them to wear evenly... the F1 is not like this at all... the grip was so good I almost stalled at the track when I first ran them... Noise... well, I couldn't hear the GSC's over the exhaust, and couldn't hear the F1's either... The ride quality seemed to be better, but probably because i could actually run a normal tire pressure (I had the GSC's cranked up to over 40psi so they wouldn't wear out on the outsides)

hope this helps:)
f1's and sz-50's so far
as of right now, it's all up to price i guess.
I put a set of Falken ZE-502 ZEIX tire on mine, I am not into racing or autocrossing so the performance was not a major concern, they ride great and handle fine and were pretty cheap.
I like them and have no complaints, I am sure a more performance minded user would probably not go with them. See the below link (if I did it right) for more info:

Vettelt193, what was the size of the tire on your 93? (I assume it's the same as the LT4 you're currently running.) I was at tirerack and they said the front tire size 255/45 and I could swear that I currently have 255/40's on the front. Anyone confirm this? I will check my tire size when I get home. There also didn't appear to be any mention of factory tire size in the owner's manual. If the 255/45 is indeed the factory size, then the GS F1 has a size for my fronts as well as the rears.
On a standard suspension car, it is 255/45/17 on the front, 285/40/17 in the rear... the guy may be confused with the C5, they use 245/45/17 in the front...

My new vette is Z51, 275/40/17 on all four corners

BTW, i just found out that my corvette tech quit and bought a daycare center:confused
Cool, thanks. I was just basing my sizes from memory. I will take a closer look at the front tire size and then verify with the sticker on the car. If this is the case then I will try the F1 tires when it comes time. Unless I can't find a place that can get them in for me. TireRack doesn't have them in the size for the C4's.
my work uses a network, and it's rather picky. it doesn't seem to wanna let me use ur link. is there another way i can find some info on those tires?

Yep, that is link to another post on this forum, just do a search for jeepie and you should find a post about tires and you can check out all the other responses.
Eagle HP Ultra Plus
Front: 255/45-17
Rear: 285/40-17

Just put them on two weeks ago for $888 after tax and with all wheel alignment. Tire tread wear is 340 which is the most you can get (I think). The ride is quite and smooth. Remember in most tire stores they mark up their prices so you can negotiate the price. Shop around before you buy you will save a lot.
I believe tread wear ratings go a bit higher than 340
i just bought some radial t/a's (decided to go with the muscle car look on my C3, $$$ is tight) and those BFG radials are rated 360 or 400. the ones i got are 400. but as far as i can tell from looking at bajillions of tires this week, is that anything over 300 is great.
so good luck!

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