The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

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The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

Postby Ken » Tue May 09, 2006 11:49 am

I figured I'd give the subject it's own thread.

Radials by design, have more "footprint" because the tread is able to lay flat because the sidewall is not part of the tread.

Bias Ply the side wall and tread are the same material. That's why you see Bias Ply with massive thread on the sidewall.


Image

Image



Notice the sidewall of Bias-ply is much thicker, because it has to support the whole tire. Whereas the radial is thinner and has more flexing, with the a larger footprint.

This is GREAT...for asphalt. It makes for a much smoother ride, with more control and traction.


On rocks at low pressure...you have a thinner sidewall...and more tire height lost....causing more chance for damage, pinches and bead popping. So to compensate, people run with higher pressure or bigger tires with bead lockers to go lower pressure, but have the same height of a lower diameter bias ply.


The same bias ply will be higher with lower pressure than a radial. On my jeep tires. I ran my Radials at 12PSI for rock crawling.....much harder ride and less gripping around the rocks. My Super Swamper TSX Bias Ply's....I run them at 9 PSI and they are nearly the same tire height as with full pressure.




One interesting fact I've discovered, is IROK's are very popular rock crawling tires...both in Bias Ply and Radial. This guy on the Pirate4x4 website, did a little comparison...He loves the radial tires and has been impressed with their ability to withstand damage on the sidewall.

However...it looks like it's been at the expense of weight. Read on his post:

The biggest difference between the bias and radial versions is weight. I read in an earlier thread that the radials are supposedly lightweight. Well, that is absolutely not the case. While the bias ply version is definitely lighter than it looks (supposedly 66lbs for a 36/13.50-15), this radial of the same size measured 82 pounds on the scale at our shop. For comparison's sake, I weighed a 37/12.50-15 SSR (which are known for being heavy) and that tire was only 78lbs on the same scale. Mounted on the steel 15x8, the total for the IROK came to 108lbs.



To recap:

66Lbs - 36" Bias Ply
78Lbs - 37" Bias Ply
82Lbs - 36" Radial


I'm not sure how this all translates to ATV Tires...but it certainly bears noting.
Last edited by Ken on Wed May 31, 2006 12:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby ACLakey » Tue May 09, 2006 12:25 pm

Ken did you ever get that file I sent you on Bias Vs. Radial tires? If not get me a valid email addy and I will send it. If there is a way to post a pdf than the email is not needed.

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Postby Ken » Tue May 09, 2006 12:56 pm

No..I didn't.

send to my atvobsession email...I can host it.
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Postby Ken » Wed May 31, 2006 12:02 am

Here's the PDF file on Radial Vs. Bias Ply from Continental Tire Company. (Thanks Andrew)


http://www.atvobsession.com/files/radialvsbias.pdf


Text highlight:


"An application which has a high risk of sidewall damage, such as loader applications, would greatly benefit from bias tires."
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Postby BradM » Sun Apr 01, 2007 2:38 pm

Ken have you formulated an opinion yet on the radial Big horns vs bias ply?
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Postby Ken » Sun Apr 01, 2007 8:21 pm

So far..I love the tires...but I haven't rock crawled yet. Soon...another month and I'll be on the Rubicon...then I'll know.
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Re: The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

Postby MillerTime » Thu Nov 11, 2010 6:19 pm

Since im looking at buying the bighorns whats the verdict, the radials or bias ply?? I have read on some other sites the radials are easier to get holes in, any truth to this.

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Re: The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

Postby roon101 » Thu Nov 11, 2010 7:26 pm

well i have rode on rocks stick stumps mud and manznita and the only thing that put a hole in my big horn was me leaving a screwdirver on the ground in my garage and running it over like an idoit not looking before i rode my atv out of the garage that day.

matter in fact in muds and moutain 3 ken broke a rim and didn't put a hole in his big horn.
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Re: The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

Postby hemingray » Thu Nov 11, 2010 7:40 pm

For me, radials win big time. Better ride is what I wanted. Of course, my only experience is with Bighorns, so I'm biased. It's going to depend on the kind of riding you do for sure.

On our ride last weekend, I think we all were running Bighorns. I am not a big rock crawler but like the durability of the Bighorns - they ride well and climb rocks well! (I remember Ken's recommendation: "BUY THESE TIRES") Most of the roads and trails that I ride are bumpy and rocky so they are perfect.

Read more about Bighorns than you probably wanted to know here: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=618
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Re: The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

Postby Kendo » Thu Nov 11, 2010 9:03 pm

hemingray wrote:For me, radials win big time. Better ride is what I wanted. Of course, my only experience is with Bighorns, so I'm biased.
So wait, I'm confused Dave - are you radial or are you biased??? :lol:
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Re: The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

Postby hemingray » Thu Nov 11, 2010 9:12 pm

LOL - I was plying the radial road....
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Re: The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

Postby Ken » Fri Nov 12, 2010 9:59 pm

Ask me 10 years ago....

and I would have said Bias ply beat Radials for rocks.


But technology changes...and Radials...at least Bighorns....are superior.

I've had 589's, Mudlites, Carlises, Rawhide Grips and Bighorns.

Bighorns win hands down...unless you're a mud bogger. Then I'd look for a mud specific tire.
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Re: The Radial Vs Bias Ply Thread

Postby Sasquatch » Sat Jan 29, 2011 11:56 am

My last (2) sets of tires have both been radial's. The sets before those were all bias ply.

I do agree the the radials provide a smoother ride over bias ply. Another benefit to radial tires is generaly they will support quite a bit more weight than a comparably sized bias ply which is a plus for us "heavy" riders with large fully loaded machines. This also make's them the ideal choice for sideXside owners.

As previously mentioned, one of the biggest down sides is overall tire weight where a radial will be substantially heavier than a comparably sized bias ply. One other somewhat important downside is that radial's are almost always more costly to purchase...


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