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  #1  
Old 02-10-2011
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Abandon truck!

We had about 3 inches of snow on top of about 1/2 inch of ice fall in a few hours yesterday. My truck is about 5 miles from my house, parked on the side of a hill because I couldn't get around a bad wreck and got stuck! It's (obviously) a 2 wheel drive XLT so I'm considering getting some snow chains. Has anyone else with a 2 wheel drive Ranger had good luck with these?

It sucked because even if I could have gotten around the wreck I wouldn't have been able to make it up the hill. And this morning it's 11 degrees so there's no thawing until tomorrow. It's a crummy feeling to know my baby is stuck on the side of a hill.
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Old 02-10-2011
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I had a Dodge a while ago, Snow chains worked pretty good on it. I don't see why a Ranger would be any different.
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  #3  
Old 02-10-2011
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Also sand bags. We got a total of 8 inches in a little over 24 hours. I have 240# in the back of my 95 2.3 5 speed (no chains, though) and it works great...theres been a couple of "oh **** I hope i get traction soon" but I haven't gotten stuck at all yet.
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Old 02-10-2011
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The hard part being parked on a hill will be just getting the chains on , esp if you are not used to it.
Drape the chains over the tire and just let the truck roll back about 1.5 - 2 feet .
Chock the wheels before hooking the chains together.
Don't drive over 20 MPH.
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  #5  
Old 02-10-2011
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I really would just try the sand bags first since you only have 3.5 inches of snow before you go through the trouble of chains tough.
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Old 02-10-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by computerflake View Post
We had about 3 inches of snow on top of about 1/2 inch of ice fall in a few hours yesterday. My truck is about 5 miles from my house, parked on the side of a hill because I couldn't get around a bad wreck and got stuck! It's (obviously) a 2 wheel drive XLT so I'm considering getting some snow chains. Has anyone else with a 2 wheel drive Ranger had good luck with these?

It sucked because even if I could have gotten around the wreck I wouldn't have been able to make it up the hill. And this morning it's 11 degrees so there's no thawing until tomorrow. It's a crummy feeling to know my baby is stuck on the side of a hill.
I'm assuming you have all season tires and they're hard as pucks right now. Chains and some weight in your bed will work (the weight being the important part), You might even be able to get out with only weight in the bed and some sand on the ground to get you some traction. Get at least 200lbs
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Old 02-10-2011
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look into your state laws. not all states allow the use of chains. since you are slightly southern in location i'm willing to bet that TN's DoT will say pound sand and use some.
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Old 02-11-2011
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I know you mean well by saying I should research the local laws but I honestly couldn't care less about them. It took me 4 hours to get home the other day and I still ended up having to abandon the truck because of a massive wreck on a bridge I had to cross. Sand is a good idea because 1) it'll add weight 2) I could use the sand on the road to get out of a bad spot. But I want a guarantee I can still get home if I need to. Sand might help but if chains more or less guarantee I can climb a hill to get to the house...I'm buying chains. :D

I also see mail jeeps using them on the rears. They have to be pretty light so I figured if they worked for those folks, they should work for me. I'm willing to give it a try if you guys have had good luck with them. (Wishing I had bought the 4x4 Ranger when I had the change to make that decision! Heh)

What was really embarrassing was my brother-in-law had to come pick me up...and he did in his CHEVY...while my Ford was "Found on road dead." Hah!
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  #9  
Old 02-11-2011
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Originally Posted by computerflake View Post
I know you mean well by saying I should research the local laws but I honestly couldn't care less about them. It took me 4 hours to get home the other day and I still ended up having to abandon the truck because of a massive wreck on a bridge I had to cross. Sand is a good idea because 1) it'll add weight 2) I could use the sand on the road to get out of a bad spot. But I want a guarantee I can still get home if I need to. Sand might help but if chains more or less guarantee I can climb a hill to get to the house...I'm buying chains. :D

I also see mail jeeps using them on the rears. They have to be pretty light so I figured if they worked for those folks, they should work for me. I'm willing to give it a try if you guys have had good luck with them. (Wishing I had bought the 4x4 Ranger when I had the change to make that decision! Heh)

What was really embarrassing was my brother-in-law had to come pick me up...and he did in his CHEVY...while my Ford was "Found on road dead." Hah!
Oh common, you don't need 4x4 for a little snow. I drove my 240sx for 3 winters in ottawa and then drove a ford exploder for 2 and its 4x4 wouldn't engage and never had a problem, unless you count having to much fun in parking lots a problem. Weight on the rear tires and momentum is your friend.
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Old 02-11-2011
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I live in Ohio and I have ran 2 winters of hellish ice and snow with regular old all season and 200-300 lbs of sand in the bed. You will in Tennessee. One bad winter does not warrant the need for 4x4, snow tires, tire chains (lol those are Alaska), or anything of the sort. Just make sure you have sand bags at home to throw in if it gets bad. If you do anything "extra" all-terrains couldn't hurt. Or maybe you just need new or better tires in general.

You're not used to the bad weather so I understand the frustration. Nothing you can buy will make the weather any better, make the winter commute times improve, or anything of the sort. Just stay on the road, do what everyone else does, drive for the condition, and be smart about it.

You southern guys crack me up when you get hit with bad weather.
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Old 02-11-2011
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Snow wouldn't be an issue. We don't usually get snow. We get solid sheets of ice! We had a nice layer of ice and then got 3 inches of snow on top of it and the city snarled to a crawl and it happens at least once a season here. Most of the nice snow goes north of us and blasts central KY and beyond. We are in the ice belt.

I actually was doing fine until the other people screwed up the streets. I was on the back side of a hill and couldn't get turned around. Snow chains might have been able to get me back up the hill from a standing position. I refuse to be left high and dry again!
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Old 02-11-2011
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I was honestly shocked by the price of snow chains, too. A pair for my truck look to be around $80?!
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Old 02-11-2011
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$80 isn't too bad. Honestly chains aren't going to be your friend. Ice is ice. You can't walk on it and your truck's not gonna be able to drive on it. Plus once you get on dry road you will have to stop and take them off.
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  #14  
Old 02-11-2011
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I wouldn't mind taking them off or putting them on. Sitting on the side of the road with no options for 4 hours is insane. Wouldn't chains dig into the ice a bit and at least provide some grabbing power? There was a tractor trailer that was stuck on the hill behind me and he put chains on his two rear wheels (granted, he had plenty of weight on it, too!) and drove around me and another truck without chains and was long gone. :(
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Old 02-11-2011
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Originally Posted by computerflake View Post
I actually was doing fine until the other people screwed up the streets. I was on the back side of a hill and couldn't get turned around. Snow chains might have been able to get me back up the hill from a standing position. I refuse to be left high and dry again!
Living in Seattle i can totally relate to your plights. Nobody here knows how to handle snow and ice and the stupidity of a few make the entire city slow down to a crawl. We got some pretty serious ice back in november and it gave my new tires a solid work out (geolander at-s) a couple times i had to dodge cars sliding down a hill i was climbing. People will forget that you need momentum (even with a 4x4) to climb a slippery hill. However all I needed for traction was 100lbs of sand and my 4 old tires.
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Old 02-11-2011
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Originally Posted by computerflake View Post
I wouldn't mind taking them off or putting them on. Sitting on the side of the road with no options for 4 hours is insane. Wouldn't chains dig into the ice a bit and at least provide some grabbing power? There was a tractor trailer that was stuck on the hill behind me and he put chains on his two rear wheels (granted, he had plenty of weight on it, too!) and drove around me and another truck without chains and was long gone. :(
correct that is how chains work. But like someone else said if you do go the route of chains do not driver over 20 mph and take then off the second you are off ice. Last thing you want is for those to snap while driving.
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Old 02-11-2011
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Originally Posted by Masteratarms93 View Post
$80 isn't too bad. Honestly chains aren't going to be your friend. Ice is ice. You can't walk on it and your truck's not gonna be able to drive on it. Plus once you get on dry road you will have to stop and take them off.
not true, the best thing on ice is either studs or chains. However neither is really needed unless you live in Alaska or in the Mountains where snow and ice is always present. For the rest of us in the norther parts of NA snow tires and weight is all you need.
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  #18  
Old 02-11-2011
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But with snow tires you have to change them out in the summer. I just want to use the same tires and add chains when needed, which wouldn't be often. Unless Al Gore is right and my truck is polluting the environment to the point I'm personally creating another ice age.
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  #19  
Old 02-11-2011
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you may also try letting a few pounds of air out of your tires. Weight in the back is a good idea too. I used to throw a bunch of cinder blocks in the back everytime it snowed.
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Old 02-11-2011
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here is another option. https://www.maxtrax.com.au/products

if those don't fancy you, purchase a set of winter or ice tires.
kitty litter (non clumping) also works
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  #21  
Old 02-11-2011
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My wife's dad and grand dad used to keep bailing wire in the vehicle. If it got bad they would run wire through the holes in the wheels and around the tires. They said it helped them a lot, and would last several miles if you don't spin your tires.
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  #22  
Old 02-11-2011
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Nice idea with the bailing wire, never thought of that!
I bit the bullet and bought chains, if for nothing else than a piece of mind. Driving down the coast highway into California, there was a mandatory chain up, and most people were just waiting by the side of the road. Coming home over Shasta, same thing.
IMHO, You can always sell them on CL for at least half of what you bought 'em for. I have Snowies, as well, but nothing beats chains, especially actual chains, as opposed to cable chains. Buy 'em and forget about it, time vs. $, luck favours the prepared, whatever.
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  #23  
Old 02-12-2011
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I'd be afraid the bailing wire would come loose and pop my tires!

That's also my thinking on the chains: I'd rather have them and never need them than need them just once and not have them. Sitting on the side of the road for 2 hours wasn't too bad (since I had my hockey game to listen to [my Predators beat the Wings on the road!]) but if I had been low on gas, that would be a whole other story.

Thanks for the info, gang. I appreciate all the input.
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  #24  
Old 02-21-2011
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Buy a 4x4.
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  #25  
Old 02-22-2011
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I wish I had but I didn't. And I like my truck. I just need to have an answer when the weather is at its worst. It doesn't happen but every few years and if I had left the office when I first thought about it, I would have been fine but I had a project I wanted to get finished before I left and it cost be 4+ hours on the side of the road. Besides, chains are cheap if it'll solve this worst case scenario issue.
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