Home > VansAirForceForums

- Donate yearly (please).
- Advertise in here!

- Today's Posts | Insert Pics

Old 10-21-2017, 10:53 AM
David Paule David Paule is offline
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 3,611

Originally Posted by DanH View Post
To be perfectly accurate, tread grooves and other molded patterns in the surface of a tire reduce paved surface traction. Maximum dry traction is found with a smooth tire, aka a slick....
Dan's quite right for friction in the rolling direction.

However, lateral friction on paved surfaces is HIGHER with tread grooves because they tend to dig in slightly. For nosewheel aircraft with the tread on the main tires, this promotes straightness down the runway, but for taildraggers, this increases, slightly, the tendency to depart from straightness in the direction of a ground loop.

I worked this out some decades earlier and ordered a pair of smooth tires for my Cessna 180. They proves so successful that I continued for well over 1,000 hours. I've landed with them on dry pavement, on wet pavement, on glare ice, on dirt, on grass and on gravel. And on a beach down in Baja. In every case they proved honest, reliable, and easier to control than treaded tires had been.

Smooth tires on pavement are a bit closer to what landing on grass is like, in terms of lateral control.

Tire wear was superb.

The tires were custom-ordered retreads from Wilkerson Tires in Crewe, VA. I discontinued doing this after they sent me two sets in a row with very poor sidewalls. Now the handling is back to normal (i.e., worse), and I've got to be a bit more careful.

I suspect that treaded nosewheel tires (that is, on the nosewheel rather than the mains) might tend to be a factor in nosewheel shimmy, but have nothing concrete to base that on.

On tailwheel airplanes, I do recommend that the tailwheel be treaded. Easier on the C-180, though than our RVs.

RV-3B, skinning the fuselage
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:01 AM.

The VAFForums come to you courtesy Delta Romeo, LLC. By viewing and participating in them you agree to build your plane using standardized methods and practices and to fly it safely and in accordance with the laws governing the country you are located in.