Michelin 550/16" Tires

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Jim Liberty
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Michelin 550/16" Tires

#1 Post by Jim Liberty » Thu Jun 29, 2017 6:17 pm

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OK guys, I'm getting my '55 out of paint next week, and have been searching for the finishing touches for the car. I've talked at length about AVON radials, and have fitted several sets of them on my cars. I have found a US distributor that will supply a Michelin "X" radial out of Europe. Here it is, and is just right for our cars. Email me if you want the distributor here on So. Cal.
Jim Liberty

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Spencer Harris
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Re: Michelin 550/16" Tires

#2 Post by Spencer Harris » Fri Jun 30, 2017 12:06 am

Jim,
Are you going to mount them tubeless or with a radial tube?
Spencer Harris
San Joaquin Valley, CA.

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Jim Liberty
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Re: Michelin 550/16" Tires

#3 Post by Jim Liberty » Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:54 pm

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Like the AVONs, they require a tube. Here is the car at Shane East's shop. It will be done next week, then back to my shop for finishing.
Jim Liberty

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Donald Zingg
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Re: Michelin 550/16" Tires

#4 Post by Donald Zingg » Fri Jun 30, 2017 6:09 pm

Jim,

What is the diameter of this Michelin?
Compared to the diameter of the 16" radial tires you've installed in the past??

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Jim Liberty
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Re: Michelin 550/16" Tires

#5 Post by Jim Liberty » Fri Jun 30, 2017 6:47 pm

Original Continental bias-ply with lots of ware- 25-1/4". AVON TURBO Steel 165/80/16 - 26-1/8". Michelin 550/16 "X" Radial - 26-1/8". All measurements are on unmounted tires.
Jim Liberty

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Re: Michelin 550/16" Tires

#6 Post by Rainer Cooney » Fri Jun 30, 2017 8:24 pm

I ran these tires for 20+ years on my '55 Speedster and they work great. You can get them to slide in the corners but nowhere near as bad as a bias ply tire. I grew up riding dirt bikes and driving cars on frozen lakes and have learned to appreciate a good slide on both two and four wheels. Best deal for these is from Longstone Tyre in the UK. Delivered for free to the US. If I order them on Thursday they are at my local , NH, Post Office the next Monday. No idea how they do this but I've done it many times.

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Jim Liberty
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Re: Michelin 550/16" Tires

#7 Post by Jim Liberty » Sat Jul 01, 2017 5:24 pm

Longstone is a great supplier. I've used them for my AVON tyres. Thanks for the heads up on the Michelins.
Jim Liberty

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James Davies
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Re: Michelin 550/16" Tires

#8 Post by James Davies » Mon Jul 03, 2017 1:34 pm

Here's some comparison of tire widths and diameters (manufacturer spec). As you can see, the Michelin X tires are 20mm taller than original spec, close to what Jim reports. And 30mm wider.

Original spec tires from the ’54 Service manual:

5.00x16 Sport
670mm diameter
141mm section width
20 psi front
25.5 psi rear

Radials
Michelin X 550HR16 TT Radials (Longstone Tyres or Coker) 690mm diameter, 170mm section width
Avon 165HR16 (550HR16) Avon Turbosteel Blackwall (Universal Vintage Tire) 674mm diameter, 165mm section width
Excelsior Stahl Sport radial 550R16 (Coker) 673mm diameter, 150mm section width
Coker Classic Blackwall 550R16 (Coker) 683mm diameter, 133mm section width

Bias-ply
Firestone 525x16 (Coker or Lucas Classic) 673mm diameter, 134mm section width
Dunlop 500x16 C18 Blackwall (Universal Vintage Tire) 678mm diameter, 144mm section width
Excelsior All Black 550-16 (Coker) 679mm diameter, 114mm section width

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Jim Liberty
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Re: Michelin 550/16" Tires

#9 Post by Jim Liberty » Mon Jul 03, 2017 6:51 pm

James, great information, thanks for posting. The reason I first went to the AVON radials was for driving. My Pre-A cars just tracked down the road so much better than with bias ply tires. I just love driving these "Old Girls". Maybe because they were my heart throb when I first started to drive (1954). Couldn't afford one until I was 40.
Jim Liberty

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