Old tires

tires
mg

#1

I was lucky enough to find a 1964 MGB that had been in dry storage for 34 years. It is in great shape and has no rust.Since I am involved in public education, money is very tight. My question-- do I need to replace the tires eventhough there is no checking and no sign of wear??


#2

You might want to drive it slowly over a smooth parking lot or driveway, feel for tires lumping.
When a car sits on it’s tires for a long time the tires can develop flat spots.
When the manufacturers ship cars they over inflate the tires to prevent this problem.


#3

Hi hondadude, I live in the deep, dark forest and have driven the MG at speeds up to 40. I have detected no abnormalities. Smooth sailing all the way.


#4

Tire salespeople will tell you never to drive on tires that are more than 10 years old, but then, they have a bit of bias…

What I would do - I would drive on those tires until they failed. I would not, however, let my wife or daughters drive on 34 year old tires.


#5

The safety nannies would never advise driving on those tires, and you know you really ought to do something about them. Eventually. Well, maybe some day. For now, always carry a good spare. Or two.


#6

JMHO, but I would be nervous (very) about driving on tires that old, dry storage or no.
If you drive it then I would advise not burning up the freeways at high speed with it.

Some tires can survive without damage and can be very useable but there has to be the right conditions present and a little luck.
I’ve seen some New Original Stock antique motorcycle tires that were 50 years old and perfectly useable, but these tires were stored well and many of them back then were covered with talcum powder and paper which prevented dry rot.

I would take a flashlight and a magnifying glass and eyeball down in the tread grooves after a couple of days of driving and note if any cracking has appeared. Even if there is none, I would still keep this car as a low speed one until proven otherwise.

Just a thought but what digging around at the salvage yard, Craigslist, etc. for a good set of used tires. If this car has 185/70 14s then I think? that some Mitsubishis used this tire size; maybe the early model Eclipses, etc. One of the local yards here sells sets of good removed tires (80% tread +) for about a 100 a set as an example.
(Neat car and no rust. Cool!) I’m a sap for the old English stuff.


#7

Are you joking, replace them before you go anyplace near a public road. These tires are about 4 times older than any manufacture would recommend for use. You are about to spend a significant pile of money to get this car on the road, new tires will be a relatively minor expense. Check these guys out as a tire source:

http://www.cokertire.com/


#8

Most manufacturers recommend replacing tires that are six years or older… REPLACE ALL 4 TIRES YOU KNUCKLE-HEAD.


#9

It is possible they are safe, but not likely. Take a good look at them. even if you don’t see cracks in the sidewalls, they are toast. 34 years is a very long time for tyres, especially with for the tyres made that long ago. Rubber does not last forever. You should expect some problems with other rubber parts as well, like belts, and gaskets. I certainly recommend against driving at high speed on them.

Money may be tight, but the cost of tyres is nothing compared to hospital cost.

The problems are not flat spots, although it may have them, it is structural problems that can cause a blowout.

http://www.aa1car.com/library/tire_expire.htm

http://www.hfes.org/Web/HFESNews/tireaging.pdf


#10

The tires are at least 34 years old. I’d rather err on the side of safety and replace them than suffer a catastrophic failure (sudden blowout).

Coker (see Craig’s post) makes excellent tires for antique cars that meet all modern safety standards. Consider it cheap insurance.

Congratulations on your acquisition.