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Bob Lincoln said:
The original donut spares in both my 84 and 93 Daytonas are in great shape.

The full-size spare underneath my 92 Dakota had deteriorated enough by last year that I bought a new tire. People thought I was foolish to invest in a new tire, especially since I drive it about 3K to 4K miles a year, and don't have occasion to rotate them. But it's crazy to have a spare and for it to be non-functional. It's good insurance. And I winch it down at least once a year to be sure the winch works and I can actually get at it.
That's part why I wonder if the shelf life of a donut spare that's kept protected is better than a conventional daily-use tire or not.

When I bought the Impala it still had its original tires on it, as the car had less than 7K on the odometer. I had the tires changed before I drove it on the freeway or extensively. It came with a 15" steel wheel with conventional-seeming tire as a sort-of full-sized spare, when I pulled that wheel out to replace it with the factory 17" wheel and tire that I acquired I think my placing it on the floor of the garage was the first time that the tire had been on the ground or even out of the trunk since that car left the factory.


digitalrailroader said:
I've only had a blowout once in the 5 years I've been driving, and it happened in the Breeze; I had picked up a piece of metal from the parking lot at the Technology Center when i was getting my Automotive Degree, and it had actually blown out the sidewall. a little bit after that, I went to the local Pull-a-part, and picked up a full size 14" Steel wheel, and had a Brand new tire put on it; that Full size Spare has NEVER Seen Road Ever Since I put it in, because after that, the Breeze's engine Blew Sky High. of course, all Three of the cars we drive now (Dad's Silverado has a full Size 17" spare, The Breeze's Replacement has a 14" Dunut, and my mom's SX4 has a 15" Dunut) the Spares in them have NEVER Seen Pavement (and Hopefully NEVER Will) but one of my Pet Peeves when driving is seeing people driving on a Donut Spare as if its a Full Size Spare! (the Automakers need to put BRIGHT RED Warning Labels on the Space saver Rims that say DO NOT USE YOUR SPACE SAVER SPARE TIRE LIKE A FULL SIZE SPARE TIRE!)
Some of the T-bucket hotrodders like using the donut wheels with replacement tires on their rat-rods, but with the replacement tire it's not unsafe.

I've heard that the XJ Cherokee donut spare tire is a good spare for sixties and seventies RWD Mopar cars, anyone tried this?
 

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TWX said:
That's part why I wonder if the shelf life of a donut spare that's kept protected is better than a conventional daily-use tire or not.
According to the Goodyear info I posted (either here or in the other spare thread) the spare lasts longer if used and not stored for over 6 months. The rubber must stay pliable and in better shape when run through the heat/cool cycle, rather than sitting stored, but that's just my extrapolation of their suggestion.
 

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When my grandmother sold her house in 1992 and moved to a retirement home (where her 66 Newport would be out to the weather for the first time), her front tires were from 1970 and the rears from 1978. They were pristine. I suspect today's tires are very inferior to old bias ply tires as far as ozone and UV resistance, or at least the rubber compound is.
 

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Bob Lincoln said:
When my grandmother sold her house in 1992 and moved to a retirement home (where her 66 Newport would be out to the weather for the first time), her front tires were from 1970 and the rears from 1978. They were pristine. I suspect today's tires are very inferior to old bias ply tires as far as ozone and UV resistance, or at least the rubber compound is.
I use to notice the same thing in regards to German cars, from the '60's and '70's, their wipers, window gaskets and tires simply fell apart in SoCal's environment. A restoration of a German car always needed to include all new rubber.
 

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TWX said:
I've heard that the XJ Cherokee donut spare tire is a good spare for sixties and seventies RWD Mopar cars, anyone tried this?
I used the Grand Cherokee spares on B and J bodies, it was bigger around than the factory compact spare tires. I never drove on them, but did install them when the cars were sitting and wanted to use the regular tires and rims for another car. As Norm mentioned in another thread, in the late 90's Chrysler recalled some Grand Cherokees to remove the temp spare and install a full sized spare. My friend at the dealership hooked me up with half a dozen of the temp spares they removed.

Bob Lincoln said:
When my grandmother sold her house in 1992 and moved to a retirement home (where her 66 Newport would be out to the weather for the first time), her front tires were from 1970 and the rears from 1978. They were pristine. I suspect today's tires are very inferior to old bias ply tires as far as ozone and UV resistance, or at least the rubber compound is.
Also, a bias ply tire won't do the damage to a car that a steel belted radial will do if it shreds though it's still a handful if it happens at speed.

I'll admit I don't keep a "new" spare in my cars. A couple years back when I was driving the 1989 Fifth Avenue, I had a flat and had to install the original 1989 full sized spare. I figured if I kept off the freeway and kept speeds below 45mph (to keep heat build up down) I would be OK and I was. Now if that tire hadn't been in the trunk, I am sure it would have dry rotted and been unsafe after that time.
 

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I have used the Donut spare on the 2008 Sebring Vert...that was fun! I hit a brick that was on the Freeway, while doing 70mph...not a fun experience. Lucky I had my spare. Since I had the Top down, I had to put it up inorder to get to the spare, but othere wise it was rather easy.

 

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A few years back I had a very low milage 1977 Aussie Valiant Charger. The original owner had removed the original styled steel rims and tyres, and installed a set of alloy rims with wider tyres when the car was nearly new and luckilly stored the originals. Occasionally for local shows I'd put them back on and drive the couple of low speed miles to the show and back. To all intents and purposes on the outside the tyres looked fine. Great tread depth, supple sidewalls and tread with no visible weathering. One day whilst pushing the car around in the garage, I hear a 'sloshing' sound coming from the tyres after stopping. Thinking that they had somehow absorbed water (mirraculous has they held pressure perfectly) I took one and had it pulled from the rim. Inside were hundreds of rubber 'ball bearings' ranging up to an 1/8" or so in diameter. The tyres were literally disintegrating from the inside. After that I would only put the tyres on at the shows after getting there........

As an aside they were around 25 year old OEM tyres, called Dunlop Aquajets - used on all Aussie performance cars of the day. Similar I suppose to Polyglas GT's.

They were more popularly know after the technology passed them by in the late 70's as Dunlop Aquaplanes' though.

These tyres
 

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1999 Grand Caravan. When I bought a new set of tires back in March, I had my tire man keep the best tire that was on the van and rotate it to the spare tire. My spare was in good shape, tread wise, but it was the original tire and had a LOT of sidewall cracks in it from dry rot. I also lower my spare 3 or 4 times a year, just to make sure it works properly. I don't want to have to need it and not be able to get it out from under the van.
 

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DO NOT FEED THE TROLLS!
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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Aldo said:
Norm, you would be surprised by the number of self-identified "enthusiasts" who screamed when I suggested SRTs offer a spare tire. I was called a bad driver, a poser, told to buy a Ford, to get a lifetime AAA membership, etc.

To your point about "marketers": they have convinced a number of buyers that driving w/o a spare tire is actually "cool"; like a badge of honor --I imagine until they, or one of their loved ones, gets stranded...
Hey, kind of a change of direction here, but what size is the tire for your new aftermarket spare, and how thick is that spacer?
 

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I knew someone was going to ask me all the technical questions sooner or later! LOL

I don't have it in front of me, but I believe the donut is on a 18-inch steel wheel and the spacer looks like 1.5 inches.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
Makes me wonder what that spare tire was OEM on... I would expect it's an off-the-shelf part for some other vehicle and just happens to clear the brakes with the spacer.

Mind you, I'm not objecting to this. That someone has made an SRT spare solution is in-of-itself a very good thing.
 

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I posted my spare tire kit discovery on Challengertalk.com, and apparently a dozen members ordered a spare tire kit from performancespare.com.

Goes to show you the demand out there looking for a "solution" to the lack of spare tire problem.
 

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I`m glad to here you guys expressing the same concerns we have down south. Here in Venezuela areas without wireless coverage are extremely common outside major cities. Road conditions are not better than those in Michigan in spring and you simply cannot find all tire sizes all over the country. Don`t get me started on the possibility of being assaulted, robbed or killed by the road side while waiting for a tow truck... All of them very good reasons to NEVER give up on Ful Size spares. Nevertheless that is not allways an option on our products. My Caliber has a space saver. I've had to use it a couple of times, for only short drives, thanks God, but each time I had not very kind thoughts for those that made it impossible for me to replace that doughnut by a proper spare... I like to think some of you guys have a say on what`s coming. PLEASE Keep the Full Size spare an option for any/all vehicles that might end up in emerging markets! The space savers might be a great gimmick to reduce weight and optimize space when, as one of you put it " you have wireless coverage and a Starbucks close to where your tire broke" But it is a pain in other circumstances, even more a risk and a liability. Oh and about replacing it... Simply can`t do. Those temporary tires are not manufactured locally and the Looney Tunes government we have won`t allow for importation either... (The current -fairly old- local Tire standards do not include Temporary tires, thus it is hard to prove we comply with them in order to import the tires...)
 

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obviously this isnt a financially optimum option, but I have always tried to locate another stock rim and tire for my vehicle(not a spare steel or donut, but a regular rim and tire like whats on the vehicle), and use that as my spare. If its a truck or SUV, and it hangs beneath the car, I usually dont have to modify anything ab it fits just as easily as the original steel or donut spare, but on some of the sedans I have had to remove or modify the styrofoam insert in the trunk to get it to fit. Anyways, I prefer this route because it allows me to have a straight up permament replacements for a flat tire instead of a temporary one, and it also allows me to rotate it in with the other tires whenever i rotate them every 3,000 miles. that way i can ensure my spare is always in good usuable condition and it helps slow down wear on the rest of my tires by cycling in a fifth one every rotation. Now obviously if you have tires that cant be rotated side to side because they are unidirectional, this wont work. I just like it because then i dont have to change my tire back from a steel or donut to the original, i can just leave it and then after getting the other tire fixed, it becomes the new spare. Plus, they all wear evenly, instead of having 3 worn tires and the spare with a brand new tread. So i would love it if the OEM's included an extra identical 5th wheel instead of a donut or steel spare. But thats just me. like i said at the top its probably not a financially viable option. us the extra weight would be a detrime t to fuel economy.
 

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Very good point, Suchislife. I grew up in Perú and remember how nothing less than a fullsize spare was necessary to get you home, given lack of assistance facilities and proper road infrastructure.

To Sunburnt's point, unfortunately, a fullsize spare won't work on many of today's vehicles: they just don't have the space for it.
 

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The term "full-sized spare" takes on a whole new meaning when you drive trucks with 34-35" tires on them. For one thing, they don't fit in the normal spots made available to carry them. Then you may have to consider securing a $500 custom tire/wheel combo wherever you do end up putting it, if you decide to go the 5-way rotation route. There are various aftermarket mounting solutions available, some of which are rather impractical and none of which are inexpensive. Even finding a cheap 34" truck tire to use for a normal spare is a challenge these days.
 

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Full size spares started to disappear when standard tires exceeded 14 inches. Coincidence?

Actually I'd rather have a donut in my Valiant... and get some trunk space ;)

When wheels cost $500+ I can see why they'd use donuts, too.
 

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I bought a 5th pizza wheel and now have a full size spare for my Daytona. The donut is a back up in the garage now. It fit in the spare tire well and I cut the well cover and carpet so it can be seen in the hatchback top.

 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
That looks pretty nice actually. I just hope that the tire doesn't suffer any unusual sun-based aging or start to smell funny in the back area.
 
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