Make my DD 2WD drivable in snow... possible? how? - Page 2 - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #26  
Old 08-22-2006
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My first winter with my old 2wd Ranger was misery. I didnt get sandbags soon enough before the first snowfall (which happened to be a big storm) during lunch that day I shoveled the parking lot at work and tossed the snow in the bed.

The next winter I put snow tires (on the back only, I was too cheap to do it right) and 210 pounds of sand. Once I was going nothing would stop me, and getting going was a piece of cake also
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  #27  
Old 08-22-2006
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BFG AT's are good in snow, but what might be better is a snow tire. I have heard a lot of good things about bridgestone blizzaks. I am not sure about non-winter wear but you could always buy a cheap set of wheels and just swap them just before and after winter. A guy I work with swears that his blizzaks without sand bags perform eqaul to his BFG's with sand bags in the bed.

I can't say weather a LS is a good idea or not but me personally if i was going to swap in a LS I would get a good aftermarket one and not the stock ford t-lok one. Not that I ever had any issues with mine but if you are going to go through the trouble of swapping diffs setting up ring and pinions and all that you might as well put a good diff in and do it right. I like the torsion unit that comes in the FX4L2. The ECTED LS to locker might be a good idea also that way if you do get stuck you could hit the button and lock it up and maybe the locker would get you out. ECTEDs are pricey though.
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  #28  
Old 08-23-2006
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I had a 2WD Ranger for 4 years. I hated every freakin' snow-storm. I used to get stuck in the parking lot at my local grocery store. I finally broke down and bought a 4x4 because I just couldn't take it anymore.

You are definitely on the right track. Tires will help you. I personally love the BFG ATs (that came from the factory on my truck) in the snow, but I do not have a lot of experience w/ other ATs either, there may be other great choices as well. The benefit of ATs over full-on snow tires is that they wear better, so you can use them year 'round. My AT's are absolutely great both on and off-road, in dry, wet, or snowy conditions. They fall apart on ice, but I have yet to meet a non-studed tire that doesn't.. and I wouldn't want to run a studded tire for very long.

I condsider the weight in the back mandatory for a 2WD pickup. I even do it in my 4x4 some years. Sand bags are easy to aquire each fall at your local home-improvment store. I used to run w/ 4x 60 lbs bags in my '99. I go a little lighter now that I have 4WD.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyC
Am I right in aiming for a limited slip as opposed to a locker?
Yes.. In my opinion most definitely! I would much rather have an L/S for 'normal' snow driving than a locker. The locker would only be really valuable if you are in very deep snow off-road quite a bit. It is (in my opinion) not very usefull on the street.

You don't really have any choice but to look for a clutch-type L/S. There are these 'automatic' lockers, but I would avoid those. A traditional L/S is much more livable in my opinion..
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  #29  
Old 08-23-2006
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Thanks for all the replies so far, good information.

I'm still a little confused.... would limited slip be a benefit in snow or a hazard? Seems like I'm getting mixed feedback.

The snowtires are a good idea, but I don't really think it would be logical for my uses. I don't live in a snow area, I would be driving 100+ highway miles to get to the mountains.... I don't know how many times I will be doing this, but probably not enough to justify the cost and storage.

Would there be a real difference between 31", 32", or 33" tires?
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  #30  
Old 08-23-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyC
Thanks for all the replies so far, good information.

I'm still a little confused.... would limited slip be a benefit in snow or a hazard? Seems like I'm getting mixed feedback.


In my Experiance no, for the reasons listed in my first post. Different strokes for different folks I guess, but I think they are unsafe in snowy/icy weather. If you would wait at home until the sanding trucks get done then you will be OK, but when that snow hits the warm tar and melts and refreezes I wouldn't want a limited slip if I can help it. Now if I was Drag Racing, mudding, or Drifting then Heck yeah, but if my main objective is to be safe in the ice, then no. IMO.

~HJ
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  #31  
Old 08-23-2006
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A limited slip is good for not getting stuck.. bad for handling.

WithOUT a limited slip you may not go anywhere.
With you may spin out into a ditch
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  #32  
Old 08-23-2006
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halftrak the rear
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  #33  
Old 08-23-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyC
I'm still a little confused.... would limited slip be a benefit in snow or a hazard? Seems like I'm getting mixed feedback.
You know what they say about opinions!

In my opinion it helps. My truck is MUCH better in the snow than my '99 XL 4x2 was. The '99 was a short-bed, regular cab, short-wheelbase on Wildernes HT all-seasons and had an open diff. The new '03 is a super-cab, short-bed, long(er) wheelbase on BFG ATs w/ a Torsen L/S. How much of the improvement is from the tires and how much is from the diff, I can't tell you. I can tell you that the package is MUCH more predictable and MUCH easier to drive. W/ intelligent use of the throttle (or non-use, as it may be) I have very few problems.

I will add that I was able to get the rear end in my old 4x2, open diff'ed truck to come around quite easily in the wet. In fact one day I spun out in a rainstorm in the old truck and ended up w/ about $600 worth of damage when I hit a telephone pole.

An easy solution if you are still on the fence about the diff is to get the tires first and try it out. If you find the tires alone are more than enough, then you can skip the diff. If you find you still need help, then you can spring for the diff later.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyC
The snowtires are a good idea, but I don't really think it would be logical for my uses.
I don't find them a good idea for myself either. I live in a relatively well developed area and we have excellent plow crews. My biggest problem is getting home when caught in a snow-storm.. or like you; getting to the mountian after I've convinced the boss-man it is not fit for man nor beast out there and I can't make it in to work that day! I would really 'need' snows for probably less than 3-5% of my driving. This makes the ATs a much more attractive buy as they provide good snow handling, good road handling, and wear well.

Getting a second set of wheels and fitting snows to them would be quite expensive. I think the money is better spent on a good set of AT's. YMMV.

My buddy on the other hand drives a FWD 'sporty' sedan. He picked up a set of steel wheels for his car for peanuts and slapped ~$60/ea snows on 'em. He swears by them. The difference: tire costs. I don't think you can get a set of true snows for our trucks for $60/ea. .. Oh, and his 'summer' tires are Z-rated and run like $175+ ea! Makes my ~$125/ea ATs-which I use year round-much more attractive. He has no alternative on his FWD car.
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  #34  
Old 08-23-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rand
A limited slip is good for not getting stuck.. bad for handling.

WithOUT a limited slip you may not go anywhere.
With you may spin out into a ditch
That said if you drive cautiously you are better off with one.

Sounds like what would be perfect would be a selectable locker maybe. Leave it off until you need it.
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  #35  
Old 08-27-2006
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I am in the same boat as you, I drive a 04 ranger edge 2wd, I have 31" bfg all terrains and when I go up to the mtns I have 4 small filled sandbags and 2 extra just in case. The thing is, is that the police wont let you go up w/o chains in a 2wd, so get chains anyway, they arnt that hard to put on.
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  #36  
Old 08-27-2006
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4 steel rims from summit racing = 160$
4 winter tires from tirerack = 240$

400+ mount and balance.
Winterforce M+S
(Studdable Winter)
Overview | Specs | Warranty | Reviews
Tire Photo Warranty Rating 3.5 Sidewall Style: Blackwall

Size: 235/75SR15
Serv. Desc: 105S
Load Rating XL
Price: $58.00 (each)

You could probably find even cheaper wheels too.


Quote:
Originally Posted by NHBubba
A He picked up a set of steel wheels for his car for peanuts and slapped ~$60/ea snows on 'em. He swears by them. The difference: tire costs. I don't think you can get a set of true snows for our trucks for $60/ea. .. Oh, and his 'summer' tires are Z-rated and run like $175+ ea! Makes my ~$125/ea ATs-which I use year round-much more attractive. He has no alternative on his FWD car.
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  #37  
Old 08-27-2006
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Living in the Great White North, I have a little experience with snow, both , in 2 wheel, front and rear drive and in 4 drive.
If its bad enuff that you need 4x4 to get around, Maybe,,,,Just maybe ....you shouldn't be on the road at all....

LS will send you across lanes of traffic in a heartbeat if your not carefull. Snow tires are your friend.
FWD will send you into a wall faster then you can blink.

If your ranger won't roll in the snow, its too slippery to drive safely.
Leave the sand and gravel at home, they will bust through the cab in an accident and kill you, Get bags of chicken grit, won't freeze into a block, and bag will tend to explode on the cab wall in an accident, also becasue it won't freeze into a lump, you always have an available traction aid if required
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  #38  
Old 08-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martiangod
Living in the Great White North, I have a little experience with snow, both , in 2 wheel, front and rear drive and in 4 drive.
If its bad enuff that you need 4x4 to get around, Maybe,,,,Just maybe ....you shouldn't be on the road at all....

LS will send you across lanes of traffic in a heartbeat if your not carefull. Snow tires are your friend.
FWD will send you into a wall faster then you can blink.

If your ranger won't roll in the snow, its too slippery to drive safely.
Leave the sand and gravel at home, they will bust through the cab in an accident and kill you, Get bags of chicken grit, won't freeze into a block, and bag will tend to explode on the cab wall in an accident, also becasue it won't freeze into a lump, you always have an available traction aid if required
Chicken grit works good and if you use sand, make sure it is strapped down good, Don't ask me how I know!
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  #39  
Old 08-28-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rand
400+ mount and balance.
Winterforce M+S
(Studdable Winter)
Overview | Specs | Warranty | Reviews
Tire Photo Warranty Rating 3.5 Sidewall Style: Blackwall

Size: 235/75SR15
Serv. Desc: 105S
Load Rating XL
Price: $58.00 (each)
That would be great if I were interested in driving a tire that is only 29" across-roughly 2" or 6% smaller than my factory tires-and dealing w/ the innaccurate speedo/odo that would result. ..But I for one am not.

The only option that TireRack offers in the 31x10.5R15 size is the Bridgestone Winter Dueler DM-Z2.. at $126/ea.

Things would be better if I had a regular XLT 4x4 and wore 245/75SR16's.. Then I could get away w/ generic 'Winterforce M+S' tires at $67/ea. (Although brand name Blizzaks still run $106/ea in that size.)

Meanwhile, BFG AT's run $121/ea in 31x10.5R15. Most all-seasons seem to run $90-100 in the same size. Let's call it a $25/tire premium for the ATs over all-seasons. Considering how well the AT's handle in the snow, I personally consider it money well spent. Now my winter-tire expense is $0/ea and I get the convenience factor of being able to run the same wheel/tire package year 'round..
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  #40  
Old 08-28-2006
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this is when i say..... im SO glad i live in a warm climate. lol... mud is my only issue
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  #41  
Old 08-29-2006
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I wasnt posting for your truck.. thats his tire size.. Yes you cant
get LT snow tires. Look for similar sizes.


Quote:
Originally Posted by NHBubba
That would be great if I were interested in driving a tire that is only 29" across-roughly 2" or 6% smaller than my factory tires-and dealing w/ the innaccurate speedo/odo that would result. ..But I for one am not.

The only option that TireRack offers in the 31x10.5R15 size is the Bridgestone Winter Dueler DM-Z2.. at $126/ea.

Things would be better if I had a regular XLT 4x4 and wore 245/75SR16's.. Then I could get away w/ generic 'Winterforce M+S' tires at $67/ea. (Although brand name Blizzaks still run $106/ea in that size.)

Meanwhile, BFG AT's run $121/ea in 31x10.5R15. Most all-seasons seem to run $90-100 in the same size. Let's call it a $25/tire premium for the ATs over all-seasons. Considering how well the AT's handle in the snow, I personally consider it money well spent. Now my winter-tire expense is $0/ea and I get the convenience factor of being able to run the same wheel/tire package year 'round..
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  #42  
Old 08-29-2006
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If you got Stock 16" rims they are available in
265/75SR16
Blackwall Serv. Desc: 114S Price: $68.00 ea
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  #43  
Old 08-29-2006
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You're right. I was thinking in terms of my truck, not his. I also assumed that the 'Sport' and 'Edge' packages came fitted w/ XLT/FX4 sized rubber since they shared suspension setups. That's why I included the XLT/FX4 pricing.

I still can't find brand name snows at anything close to $60/tire in either 235/75R15 or 215/65R15, sizes tire-rack suggests for an '06 2WD 'sport'. Blizzaks run at least $90/ea. Are the $60/ea 'Winterforce' tires worth a damn? I've never heard of them..

Still, that's $60/tire + wheels + the hardship of swapping tires and wheels everytime he wants to go to the mountian.. or lots of wear on the snows when running around at home. Like I said, the $20-30/tire premium the AT's run over brand name all-seasons still seems like a nice comprimise to me.
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