I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

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mat_fenwick
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by mat_fenwick »

MULLEY wrote:who the hell is going to come to the rescue at that time of night
Or even in the middle of the day!

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I was there for over an hour fitting the chains at around 9 in the morning, didn't see a single other vehicle. TBH, the pain of taking chains on and off is the main/only reason I'd consider winter tyres - I only use them 2-3 times a year but it's just such a ballache to take them on and off. Probably we're a fairly untypical example for the UK though.

I guess part of the reason for their popularity is a similar reason to why some people buy 4x4s - to make them feel more confident that they can cope with more difficult driving conditions, even if they rarely/never have to. It's spreading the mileage over two sets of tyres rather than one, so apart from the initial outlay on wheels and the storage of them, there's no downside I can see.
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citsncycles
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by citsncycles »

We rarely get bad snow here, and with careful route planning you can avoid most of the steep hills and all the ones with bends or junctions at the bottom.

I am curious about these tyre socks though - has anyone tried them?
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MULLEY
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by MULLEY »

Is it easier to fit Snow Socks rather than chains? Either way, i'd rather not be outside in conditions such as the above, but i guess needs must when stuck out in the wilds. If you get stuck in town, you just park up or abandon your car, find a pub or resturaunt & have a bite to eat in the warm :)
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by Dollywobbler »

We were bloody lucky that someone did turn up. We'd been driving for 14 hours (well, four hours of that was stuck in south Wales on a closed road) and were truly at our wits end. We actually got snowed out of our village! We still had to abandon the car the other side of the village and walk the last bit. Had to go and dig the car out of a snowdrift a few days later (the snow plough had gone past several times and pretty much buried it!).

Oh and I got my 4x4 stuck in snow earlier this year. That was snowdrifts again, though I think I'd actually driven off the now-invisible road when I got stuck. Thankfully it was on the flat and wife-power got us moving again. I then realised why there were no other vehicle tracks on that section of road. The locals rightly gave it a wide berth! Just goes to prove that a 4x4 isn't a miracle cure either. (in hindsight, tackling that mountain road was a bad idea, but at least we were still pretty close to civilisation (ie a pub) that time...)

Note to self. If snow is forecast, stay at home!

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electrokid
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by electrokid »

It's a horrible feeling when you're miles away from civilisation, at about 11pm, and utterly incapable of going anywhere.
Normally I fill the fuel tank to the brim and only fill up again when it's almost empty - except in snowy weather when I keep it topped up and never let it fall below half full. If the worst happens then at least the engine can be kept running and provide cabin heat.
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Caffiend
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by Caffiend »

Stop me if you've heard this one ....

We've had 2 inches of snow. If my side road is entirely gridlocked and it takes me 20 minutes to drive a 5-minute walk and I'm *still* not on the main road, I know I'm screwed. Judging by the number of sirens in the background and the fact that my boss wasn't in the office when I called in (and she's an early bird) I'm going to guess that there have been accidents on both possible routes into work.

Will try again in an hour. Why are people such (numerous expletives deleted) idiots? - I sat behind a BMW through 2 right hand turns (out of my road and the next junction where I turned round in a car park) - the driver hadn't cleared their rear windscreen and wasn't bothering with indicators. You'd think they'd make an exception to being an arrogant twat in these weather conditions :roll:
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Philip Chidlow
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by Philip Chidlow »

In my experience the winter tyres we had on the BX made little difference in deep snow. It was more the narrow profile that helped. Winter tyres come into their own in temps below minus 7 degrees where there is ice everywhere, and, as I recently found out - are particularly good in minus 10 or below when compared with standard tyres. It has to be said that a premium standard ('summer' as some people call them, but in speaking to tyre people, this is a little misleading) tyre is still going to be reasonably good if the temps just hovering around the zero, minus 1 mark. Shallow snow will defeat them fairly easily though. Ironically wet weather performance at warmer temps is better on the standard tyres. Budget tyres are not much cop anyway, so their performance will feel that much worse as temperatures fall - in icy conditions - but it'll be the profile of the tyre as much as anything that'll dictate how the tyre performs in deeper snow.
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electrokid
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by electrokid »

2 inches of snow... chaos... sound normal to me :shock:

The BMW driver was making 2 mistakes - first driving a RWD in the snow and second not clearing the snow from the car - it's illegal and the police do crack down on it when it gets to silly proportions.

Anyway... I was looking through the stuff I keep on the net for some electronicy stuff and came across a couple of pics which are relevant to this thread but also personally encouraging. It's easy for me to get fed up with not getting things done in the timescales I imagine - these pics from the winter of 2009 let me know that I'm actually making progress :shock:

The first pic shows the BX with half the roof cleared of snow - I measured the depth of snow on the roof and elsewhere - we had 10" of snow everywhere including the roads of course - so in my book that's time to go for a drive (snow tyres had been fitted the week before).

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So - having been for the drive, taken some pics, and done a bit of shopping the car is now back in it's normal parking space.

Image

And here's the personal encouragement so I'll describe the scene...

The blue car on the far left, mark1 Astra estate belonged to neighbour Eric - it lost the cambelt during this (2009) winter and for around £500 he got it repaired. Since then Eric has had a replacement hip and a dodgy knee has stopped him driving - so that car is no longer there (actually that's where my Granada lives at the mo).

Just to the right of Eric's car you can see a gap in the low front wall (my house is the nearest one). That is where the front path / entrance used to be - the wall is now higher and the gap is closed - the new entrance is now at the front of the house - level with the back end of the BX. The new wall extends quite a way off to the left - I found the bricks used to make the original build in 1960 were still being made so I've matched the new with the original.

The tree (that looks as though it's growing out of the BX :lol: ) has died and has been cut down. I've put lots of hedging behind my front wall and the scene looks quite different. The folks in the middle house have moved so I have new neighbours.

So that shows me that I'm making progress - there are just a few things that look the same today - the houses of course, and the Broad Leafed Lime tree on the left...

Oh - and the BX of course - that's in exactly the same spot =D>
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MULLEY
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by MULLEY »

Nice wintery piccy, my car was the only one on the estate to actually move & get off the estate, the snow depth in your piccy is fine for the BX with winter tyres, it gets tougher as the snow gets deeper, so i just raise the suspension up to make sure i clear the snow. I managed to get through some really deep stuff though with some effort.
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by hilarystone »

Winter tyres are designed to work at temperatures below +7°C , not -7°C. They became more effective at lower temperatures and my suspicion they start to work as well as standard tyres at about 3 to 4°C. The main problem is that the tread blocks squirm more as there is more space around each block and more sipes through the blocks…
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by Philip Chidlow »

Hilary, I stand corrected. Getting a bit OTT with the minus' :)
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electrokid
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by electrokid »

And for the sake of completeness... today's pic from almost the same spot as the snow scene

Image

showing relatively mature privet and buddlia the new wall and the Granny.
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by kiwi »

This threads gone well :lol:

When I started it I was just commenting on the irony of the LAST SNOW of the season that I could find to drive in. Takes a bit of effort even in winter to find snow on the roads here that have not been closed as soon as a couple of centimetres accumulate, even going up to the ski areas unless your the one who is going to clear the snow :lol:
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MULLEY
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by MULLEY »

Alway's good to have a debate about the pro's & con's of winter tyres. I'd always suggest to those who've never ever had winter tyres before, try them, you won't be disapointed when you rely on them. Everyone else is standing still, whilst you go past them with the minimum of fuss.

Today was a good example, i turned off a main road which had been salted, the minor road looked a bit shiny, so i did a throttle test which spun up the wheels & then i did a brake test, it was pretty slippy in both tests, however, there was plenty of grip if used the throttle gently & if a braked softly as well. With summer tyres it would have felt pretty dangerous & easy to slide off the road if either the throttle had been pressed a bit too firmly or even using the brake pedal softly. So not an ounce of snow around, but icy conditions & i still felt confident about driving on that part of the road :)
2002 C5 2.0 HDI Estate - Jasmine - Now SORN
2011 Mini Cooper D Clubman - SOLD
2016 Mercedes A180D Sport - Auto refinement
1992 TZD Turbo - Bluebell - My daily
1991 Gti 16V - Blaze - crash damaged, will get repaired.
1990 Gti 8Valve SOLD - looks like it's been scrapped
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1992 TXD - Scrapped in March 2014
1988 CX 25 GTI Turbo2 - SORN
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Wooscary
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Re: I took the BX our for a drive in the snow

Post by Wooscary »

My front tyres are marked "M+S", (Mud and snow I reckon rather than Marks and Spencer, although I hear their return policy is pretty good so may try taking them back). Anyway, they are getting a little low in the tread department and I'm deciding what to replace them with. But are these just a cop out?

I absolutely don't have space to store a second set of tyres, but would also like to be able to drive in a little bit of snow.

What do people reckon?