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Snow Chains vs Tyre Socks

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Snow Chains vs Tyre Socks

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Currently I carry/use snow chains when driving in the winter and they are a terrible pain to put on and take off.

Has anyone used both snow chains and what seem to be referred to as "tyre socks" and can comment on both how much easier they are to fit, and also if they are as good as using chains for grip???

Thanks Pinky
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I've not used snow socks but they do get terrible reviews compared to regular snow chains.

I also hate fitting snow chains and for this reason try to ensure I have winter tyres on whatever I'm driving as this significantly reduces the number of times chains are required. But sometimes you just need them, so for those occasions I've paid a bit extra for when I have my own car in the alps and bought a set of Klack 'n' Go Quattros - more expensive than normal chains, but easier to fit as you don't need to scrabble behind the wheel to link the chains together.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Quote:

they are a terrible pain to put on and take off.

generally if you pay a bit more you will find it easier. Cheap chains are hard to fit and they break readily. I can fit them pretty smartly - I always use bare hands, which is faster, and if you're quick you're done before your hands freeze. Taking them off can be harder. I ALWAYS practice before the first drive down to France - just to make sure I've not forgotten.
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
With a bit of practice chains can be fitted in around 2-3 mins. The secret is to put them away correctly coil them back into the box and make sure the linking chains are not twisted. A quick spray of WD40 or the like 2/3 times per season stops them from rusting up. Saying that I avoid usung chains if I can humanly avoid it usually when forced to by the gendarmes.

Andy
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=39925&highlight=snowsocks
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Quote:

Saying that I avoid usung chains if I can humanly avoid it

I don't. I have learnt that it is best to put them on at the first sign of trouble.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Pam to clarify my position I spent last season working for a transport company and thus had full winter tyres fitted front and back.

Was fun driving up to tignes with 10cm of snow on the road (early december at night and no snow ploughs in sight), guests were quite pleased only had to stop for some numpty who had lost traction going up hill on the ice. His mates pushed us off again and then it was plane sailing.


Andy
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Snow socks are not a substitute for chains. They may help a bit, but not enough. Link above by DB is very good. I would second the tip of a headtorch. Makes it much easier to see what you should be doing.
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
I followed a car with socks on one very dark snowy night - when I'd had to stop in a blizzard to put chains on top of my snowtyres. I was intrigued by the way his front wheels looked when he was going round a bend ahead of me, couldn't quite make out what it was - then realised it was socks.
I was quite impressed actually - he seemed to keep going very well.

I am always very apprehensive about becoming the "numpty" who loses traction and causes curses and chaos - hence my tendency to put chains on, if in doubt. I've probably done so on various occasions when I didn't really need to. I have no problem putting them on - in fact I'm usually quite excited to have enough snow to need to bother. What I really dislike is taking them off, especially if the heavy snow in which I started down the mountain has turned to heavy rain. The chains I have have a "pull" cord which undoes the link behind the wheel, which otherwise you have to grovel for. It does occasionally stick, then it's a pain.

I have one friend who, when he had to put chains on, jacked the car up, took the wheel off, fitted the chains on, put the wheel back on and then noticed the Frenchman looking incredulously over his shoulder. The French guy did the other one for him.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Pam

You are totally correct in putting on chains often before you need tore taking them off I have seen people drive throgh a alpine village with no snow on the ground with chains still attached!!!!!. I recall a real numpty who stopped on the road to put his chains on for the guy behind him to slow down then try to over take car in fromt and got stick next to car no one. Road to Avoriaz was total chaos for about an hour. Oh and by the way there was about 1 mm of snow on the road.

Andy
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Not all snowsocks are the same ....

The "Gima trendy" is not as easy to install as normal snow chains (montage / demontage = install/taking off). They brake slightly better on snow than a winter tyre but lags behind a proper winter tyre in all other areas (snow traction, ice traction, ice braking etc) their performance on snow / ice is a long way from normal snow chains.

http://www.oeamtc.at/refresh/frameset.php?p=http://www.oeamtc.at/netautor/html_seiten/schneekettentests/schneekettentest_2008/index.html

The "weekend elastic" model is a lot more difficult to install/take off and in general inferior to the "Gima trendy"

http://www.oeamtc.at/refresh/frameset.php?p=http://www.oeamtc.at/netautor/html_seiten/schneekettentests/schneekettentest_2008/index.html

All snowsocks wear very quickly in comparison to proper snowchains, don't be suprized if after 100 km or so that the snowsock tears/rips.

In summary a snow chain is generally easier to install, performs (grips and brakes) a lot better and will last a lot longer.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Cheers snowHead's, looks like chains it is. Those Klack 'n' Go Quattros look an interesting bit of kit, but a bit on the pricey side! The last ones I bought only cost €12 so might try spending a bit more next time!
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
As far as I know, the French gendarmes do not accept snow socks as adequate when there is a requirement to put chains on. Mind you I don 't always know very far so some corroboration of this would be useful
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
French Gendarmes are not supposed to accept socks. Have you looked at these www.spikes-spiders.com ? Bit pricey but look good and more effective than socks. I understand the thing about socks is they need to be cold. If they are warm they have all the traction of water skis. When they are cold they stick to the snow. So good in the white stuff but not so good in slush. THey are very popular in Scandinavia where you get plenty of firm white snow under tyre, you leave them on and they get really cold.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
I've been using Spikes Spiders for years. They don't come out well in comparitive tests I understand, but they've never let me down and they're very easy to fit or remove. They can be adjuested to different tyre sizes (within limits) if you change your car, as well. I wouldn't want to go back to conventional chains.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
There is indeed a lot of discussion about the snow socks versus snow chains, snow socks are an excellent choice for aiding traction on snow covered roads. The socks work very ingeniously by sticking onto the snow generating friction and grip. Although as a lot of you are mentioning that they are not a substitute for snow chains. However, they really are a valued aid! As the most of you would be going abroad to ski, it is in most ski resorts a legal requirement to use snow chains. As a special offer to all Snowhead members we are providing a 10% discount on all our snow chains and snow sock products.
Simply go to http://www.snowchains.co.uk/trade/ and login in using the following details.

Username: snowheads
Password: snow11heads

Or visit our normal pages on http://www.snowchains.co.uk
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
ccl, 22 dropout,
Quote:

Snow chain equivalent
Since 2010 AutoSock is certified to comply with the French winter equipment regulations and can be used in France where the snowchain sign (B26) is in place. See below. AutoSock are the only snow socks that have been tested and approved to be used in France as an equivalent snow chain product. You will need to make sure you have the correct sticker if you are going to be using AutoSock in France. Please click here for details.

Taken from
http://www.autosock.co.uk/ Botom of home page
If you have a Vauxhall they are currently giving a pair of socks with each winter service (subject to T+C's)
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
When an ice glaze under the snow challenges snowsocks and winter tyres then you really need the bite of metal but all that faffing around with chains is a pain in the rrr's. I have a pair of these Rud snow socks and can vouch they provided enough traction to get up a steep boilerplate ice covered track that a farmer neighbour had resorted to using his tractor with metal studded tyres for.

http://www.rud.com/en/produkte/snow-chains/schneeketten1/hightech_textil_stahl.html

They're a skoosh to fit & the wire weave in their design is also supposed to extend their life on asphalt. I haven't needed to test their bare road endurance but as I have seen conventional snowsocks wrecked in a short distance on mixed snow & tarmac, I'm prepared to believe it. As the Soft Spikes don't cost much more than other snowsocks & promise better durability & ice performance, they seem more suited to being ready in the car boot for UK winter conditions.
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