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Technical No Radial Tires?

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by PhredH, Aug 28, 2021.

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  1. PhredH
    Joined: Feb 28, 2015
    Posts: 101


    I enjoy taking my warmed over Banger to an occasional time trail or vintage drag event (ie: Trog, Showdown, FAST). Why do the regulations seem to specify NO RADIAL TIRES?

    Is there a performance advantage on a relatively low powered flathead engined car with radials over bias ply?

    Is there a safety issue?

    Is it merely an appearance issue?

    Just curious...
    Peace, Phred

    Stogy likes this.
  2. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 50,932


    I would guess it's totally an appearance issue. They look like crap on an old car!
  3. chopolds
    Joined: Oct 22, 2001
    Posts: 6,023

    from howell, nj
    1. Kustom Painters

    Just being very commited to being "traditional". Radials are a modern invention.
    mgtstumpy, Stogy, kadillackid and 3 others like this.
  4. Special Ed
    Joined: Nov 1, 2007
    Posts: 7,130

    Special Ed

    It's an issue of aesthetics ... radial tires stand out like a sore thumb when mounted on a fenderless car.
    Think of it as; 'wearing tennis shoes while dressed in a tuxedo'

  5. If you don't have rules then you have anarchy. :oops:
    joel, Desoto291Hemi, Stogy and 4 others like this.
  6. GeeRam
    Joined: Jun 9, 2007
    Posts: 460


    Yes there is.
    If you allowed radial tyres that would allow all sorts of modern higher tech tyres to be used and you start another spiral of costs and performance etc.
    By restricting to bias ply, you are limiting the performance to the period of the cars and before radial tyres came into use, and thus creating a more level playing field to the era for everyone.
    ClarkH, Carter, Blues4U and 5 others like this.
  7. rusty rocket
    Joined: Oct 30, 2011
    Posts: 4,543

    rusty rocket

    I don’t see any problem with that! EFDBF83A-D6CE-4AE2-BB5E-D26498AE9D1D.jpeg

  8. But if you don't break rules, then you have...sheep!
  9. 48fordnut
    Joined: Nov 4, 2005
    Posts: 4,133


    There are radials that look like bias ply.
    1971BB427, Blue One and Hnstray like this.
  10. BJR
    Joined: Mar 11, 2005
    Posts: 7,473


    I thought this site was for hoodlums!
    19Eddy30, VANDENPLAS and scotty t like this.
  11. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 20,273

    Staff Member

    hoodlums with an appropriate flair for aesthetics. Radials are nerdy.
  12. prpmmp
    Joined: Dec 12, 2011
    Posts: 1,093


    All of the above!! 0111201342a.jpg
  13. It is about period correctness. Consider the era that your time trials are based on. Were radial tires an option in that time period? The organizers are just trying to keep things correct for that specific time period.
  14. The promoters of these vintage event's make the rules, radials are not traditional, I realize they are now making radials that appear to be bias plys.

    There are no hard fast rules on how you build your car but to participate in the event's you gotta play by their rules. HRP
  15. Flathead Dave
    Joined: Mar 21, 2014
    Posts: 3,637

    Flathead Dave
    from So. Cal.

  16. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 30,845


    I'd have to say it is called dress for the occasion. Having studied the Trog rule book pretty tight and even asked a few questions when I was thinking about entering a car at Pismo Beach the rules are just as others stated. To have the cars (and bikes) have a total appearance that says they actually could have raced or been driven in the timeframe they represent. I don't think a set of skinny radials would have helped you run any faster in the rain at Pismo Beach but they would have really looked out of place in the pits.

    For Trog style cars if you run the correct wheels about the only radials you will find are going to be Excelsior from Coker. No running down to the local tire store to get a set of 50 buck each radials to get by cheap there.

    I'll throw in the simple: Why not just have an extra set of wheels and tires that fit the wishes of certain event promoters better for when you go to one of their events if your normal rolling stock doesn't fit in with the look that meets event requirements. I saw that on several cars at Billetproof a few years back. They weren't running the same wheels and tires that you saw the car with at Goodguys on a different weekend. I'm thinking that the same thing was done with a couple of cars that were at Hotrod-A-Rama. They had a different set of wheels and tires than you normally see them with.
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2021
  17. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 50,932


    Good idea. I bring a pair of bias ply slicks with me when I go drag racing, to replace the bias ply street tires on back....

    joel, alanp561, brando1956 and 4 others like this.
  18. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,998

    jimmy six

    How about requiring leaded gasoline? Authenticity is king.
    As for multiple sets of wheel/tire combinations; I don’t run a quick change at ElMirage or Bonneville anymore but travel with 3 mounted sets of tire diameters. 3 gear pumpkins, and now a .96 OD in my transmission. One must be prepared..
  19. rusty rocket
    Joined: Oct 30, 2011
    Posts: 4,543

    rusty rocket

    I changed to bias look radials on my T modified, it made all the difference in drivability. I’ll take that any day over a trog rule.
  20. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 8,419


    ^^^^ But you are not entering those events;)
    jimmy six likes this.
  21. The TROG rules are for an event. Play by the rules or don't enter the event. It's simple.
  22. rusty rocket
    Joined: Oct 30, 2011
    Posts: 4,543

    rusty rocket

    Exactly, I’d rather drive my cars safely at speed than run down a sandy beach
    chiro, saltracer219, Fordors and 7 others like this.
  23. 5window
    Joined: Jan 29, 2005
    Posts: 8,743


    Sheep have rules, they just aren't your rules.
    ClarkH, Carter, Stogy and 3 others like this.
  24. v8flat44
    Joined: Nov 13, 2017
    Posts: 980


  25. As I recall there's only one rule in Hot Rodding.
    "There are no rules"!
  26. twenty8
    Joined: Apr 8, 2021
    Posts: 931


    Best explanation of the "traditional" concept I think I have ever seen. Short, to the point, and delivered without judgement or agression. Well done @porknbeaner .................:)
    Baumi, Carter and Stogy like this.
  27. ^^^ Yea, well, @porknbeaner IS known as a silver-tongued devil after all!
    jimmy six and Stogy like this.
  28. saltflats
    Joined: Aug 14, 2007
    Posts: 11,252

    from Missouri

    His meds are working. :D
    alanp561, Blue One, Beanscoot and 2 others like this.
  29. PhredH
    Joined: Feb 28, 2015
    Posts: 101


    Thanks to all. I will conclude the following and consider my curiousity satisfied:

    Is there a performance advantage on a relatively low powered flathead engined car with radials over bias ply? Nope

    Is there a safety issue? Probably not

    Is it merely an appearance issue? Yes, I suspected this all along.

    Peace, Phred
  30. Mimilan
    Joined: Jun 13, 2019
    Posts: 1,104


    With racing the rules are different
    "If you get caught ,it is cheating! If you don't ,it's innovation."

    Another thing to consider is the mismatch of bias ply tyres and radials [eg: rear bias cheater slicks and radial front tyres]
    This can be quite dangerous, and most competitors don't think about it when they only swap the rears to go racing
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2021
    egads and Stogy like this.
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