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Jeff
Ramen Elitist



Joined: 18 Aug 2008
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Location: Someone get me out of Everett, WA
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Ramen Elitist
PostTue Feb 11, 2020 2:10 pm 
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Has anyone used Autosocks as alternatives to tire chains? I am wondering how durable they are for getting through unplowed trailheads with wet chunky snow. Nothing crazy, just for situations where a 2wd car needs chains.

Definitely don't want to drop a hundred bucks if they only last a few miles.
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InFlight
coated in DEET



Joined: 20 May 2015
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coated in DEET
PostTue Feb 11, 2020 6:37 pm 
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Washington allows the socks for chains required.

The socks might make the most sense on low-profile tires, where regularly chains might damage the rims.  For 50+ series tires, chains are likely more effective for larger variety of conditions and last longer.

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I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately...  ― Henry David Thoreau
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Jeff
Ramen Elitist



Joined: 18 Aug 2008
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Location: Someone get me out of Everett, WA
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Ramen Elitist
PostWed Feb 12, 2020 5:10 pm 
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Sorry, I should have been more clear. What I am looking for is first hand experiences with their durability from people that have used them.
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Ski
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><((((>
PostWed Feb 12, 2020 7:31 pm 
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I looked on a couple of the other sites I haunt, Jeff, and all I found was a link to a YouTube video which was essentially just a sales pitch.

Trying to think of where you'd want to look for feedback. Snowmobile crowd? Skiiers?

BK

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"I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. 
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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catsp
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PostFri Feb 14, 2020 4:45 pm 
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One person's recent experience. YMMV.
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Jeff
Ramen Elitist



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Ramen Elitist
PostFri Feb 14, 2020 8:00 pm 
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That is the exact usage I was looking for. I guess I'll spend a hundred bucks on something else.
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Malachai Constant
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PostFri Feb 14, 2020 9:02 pm 
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I have diamond chains, they are more expensive than ladder chains but to not raise as much. Many cars now do not have enough clearance throw unless the suspension is modified which can lead to center of gravity problems. You can take what I say with a grain of salt as my cars are 4Runner and full sized pick up.

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"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
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moonspots
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PostSat Feb 15, 2020 12:30 pm 
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InFlight wrote:
Washington allows the socks for chains required.

I cannot imagine why - both why they're allowed, and why anyone would use 'em. Tire "socks" immediately should indicate no better traction than street tires in wet snow. If whatever your car is wearing for shoes doesn't bite down hard, it's generally going to be useless for traction in west coast snow and ice. IMHO, that is...

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"Out, OUT you demons of Stupidity"! - St Dogbert, patron Saint of Technology
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ejain
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PostMon Feb 17, 2020 12:43 am 
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I have a pair, but have only put them on once, to make sure they fit... I don't expect that they would be much help in deep snow, or very durable. They do however fulfill the chain requirements in WA, while taking up no space :-)

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Randito
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PostMon Feb 17, 2020 5:20 am 
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moonspots wrote:
If whatever your car is wearing for shoes doesn't bite down hard, it's generally going to be useless for traction in west coast snow and ice. IMHO, that is...

Apparently you've never used climbing skins...
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moonspots
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Happy Curmudgeon
PostMon Feb 17, 2020 6:11 am 
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RandyHiker wrote:
moonspots wrote:
If whatever your car is wearing for shoes doesn't bite down hard, it's generally going to be useless for traction in west coast snow and ice. IMHO, that is...

Apparently you've never used climbing skins...

No, I have not. However, the torque put on tires vs that put on skis is significantly greater. So once they "break loose" (by applying torque, attempting to gain/re-gain traction), I would  have to say the ever so slight mechanical advantage of "socks" (over bare tires) would be seriously overwhelmed by the power being applied to the wheels, and they would just spin. As in the referenced link earlier.

I've used chains in west coast snow, in the Rockies on snow/ice, and have even spun tires (briefly on deep snow) with chains on which have a good amount of 'bite", so this leads me to guess that socks would not be all that useful.

Anyway, that's my opinion, based on experience with chains, which I would believe will offer far more traction than "socks", but not on experience with the devices in question.

And I may be wrong on this, it's happened before, and if so, then I'll learn something. But for now, my life experience tells me that socks would be a waste of money.

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"Out, OUT you demons of Stupidity"! - St Dogbert, patron Saint of Technology
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Randito
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PostMon Feb 17, 2020 6:56 am 
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moonspots wrote:
However, the torque put on tires vs that put on skis is significantly greater

Only if you drive like a Los Angeleno.   One that presses the accelerator more and more when the car doesn't leap forward.   

I helped such a driver at Hyak recently.  After pulling them out of a high center with my tow rope and getting them back on the plowed, but still snow covered road,  they immediately slid off to the edge again by gunning the engine.  I asked them to let me drive, with a gentle touch on the accelerator and patience I drove their rental FWD minivan with bald tires up the snow covered road until reaching bare pavement (only 200 feet)  and tried to communicate they should drive as if they had a raw egg between their foot and the pedals.  Their English was limited,  but not as limited as my Mandarin. 

IME experience studless snow tires make a huge difference, more than AWD in terms of starting and STOPPING.   

Carrying chains (or approved traction devices in WSDOT speak) is mostly a WSDOT requirements issue, this season has had an unusually high number of days with "chains required, except AWD".  A more typical year it usually less than a handful.

For getting unstuck in a snowy parking lot, I've found my avalanche shovel and couple of rubber door mats to be useful and less futzing than putting on chains.   The door mats are also great for changing in/out of ski boots.
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catsp
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PostMon Feb 17, 2020 11:29 am 
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WSP list of Alternative Traction Devices.

In case you are wondering, AutoSock is approved for your vehicle or vehicle combination over 10,000 lbs as long as it has five or less axles.
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Cyclopath
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Faster than light
PostSat Feb 22, 2020 9:59 pm 
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RandyHiker wrote:
The door mats are also great for changing in/out of ski boots.

Huh.  Why didn't I think of that?  I always balance next to the car when I do it.  Thanks for the tip!
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