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Morgan +8 Forum

Tires

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Tires
#1
jblake9000 Jack B
Johns island, SC, USA   USA
Any suggestions on tires for a 1988 +8 with 205-60-15. Plenty of all weather touring tires in that size, but having trouble finding anything "Morgan appropriate"

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DuncanCharlton Avatar
DuncanCharlton Duncan Charlton
Elgin, TX, USA   USA
1967 Morgan 4/4 "Toly's Car"
1967 Unknown Unknown
1971 Morgan Plus 8 (+8)
What type of tyre are you looking for -- high performance summer tires, or something with a little less "edge"? Some claim that a Morgan does not benefit much from super-high performance tires and use something like a Michelin Michelin Primacy Sports or Goodyear F1 GC-D3 (I'm not sure they come in the size you're looking for); I haven't tried either of these tires on a Morgan (I did have the Goodyear F1 GC-D3s on a VW R32 but much preferred the Michelin Super Sports Pilot tires), since my '71 Plus 8 doesn't allow much room for experimentation unless I add wheel spacers. I ended up with some Bridgestone 195/65R15 Potenza RE 960AS Pole Position tires on our 1971 Plus 8 (primarily because they were a modern tire that fit without looking too odd on a car that was designed for 185/80R15 tires) and I have autocrossed on them. They felt controllable, although not anywhere nearly as sticky as the Hoosier race tires (which need to be heated up to have good grip) that I had on my 1952 Plus 4. The Bridgestones were good enough for "fastest Plus 8" at MOG 44. Link to the autocross video:

David P. of Maryland was using these a few years ago: Michelin Primacy MXV4 - 205/65-15 VR 94V

Richard R. in rainy Ireland was happy with these on his daily driver Morgan Plus 8: Michelin 205/65-15 Primacy MXV4 VR

If they were made in the right size for our Plus 8 I'd get the Michelin Pilot Super Sports in a second. They have a good combination of grip, wear, noise, wet traction, dry traction and stability.

Morgan13 Timothy Barlow
Vancouver, WA, USA   USA
I just put a full set of Michelin Pilot Exalto 205/55 ZR 16 97Y that I like. It's a stock tire size and I don't race but I have been known to do spirited driving at times.

2013 M3W
Morgan stage ll motor kit
cats removed

1998 +8
SS sport tuned exhaust

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jblake9000 Jack B
Johns island, SC, USA   USA
Decent 15" tires are much harder to find than 16".
I would like to keep standard wheels.

GoMoG Avatar
GoMoG Lorne Goldman
Cuenca, Azuay, Ecuador   ECU
1984 Morgan Plus 8 (+8) "The Phoenix"
1990 Morgan Plus 8 (+8) "Humpty Dumpty"
Yes. Both Richard and David took my suggestions for the tires they bought. I have used both and been very happy. I used to adore Michelin tires for my Morgans..especially after trying the Factory's Pirelli P6000s...the open joke among dealers

Sadly, Duncan is right. 15" tires in a decent quality in North America have become unobtainium. You can still find great 15" rubber in Europe..but nothing in the US/Canada. Someone told owners that less air and more steel is better. (I don't why anyone would believe that..but there you go) And air, not steel, is critical to the rudimentary suspension. However, Morgan had no choice but to turn 16". The overall diameter of wheel and tire is the same..only the suspension and handling suffer badly.

But you may be lucky. I just put my last Morgan back on the road and went searching for new tires. I settled on Goodyear Eagle Sport 205 R15 60 in the W quality The only other tire for your Morgan I would consider is 195 R15 65 There are not Michelins but they are a quality tire that has been around so long it is not that expensive!!

THERE IS NO COMPONENT ON PLUS 8 MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE TIRES. NONE!!!

SJM1 Jan Morgan
Thousand Oaks, CA, USA   USA
I am really good at finding things, like tires. I have also had manufacturers put tires back into production for short runs. Sometimes, all you need to do is ask, and have good data.

I have a couple of tires that are WAY better than what anyone has mentioned here, and they are road drivable. I have used both of these tires for quite some time, and have fitted a set of the recommended tires to my own Morgan.

I thought that tires for my Morgan would be hard to find, but, well... I called some friends (vintage racing Morgan pilots), and the tire manufacturers (also my friends), and then the race tire dealers both here in the US and in Europe. What I found was interesting.

Dunlop made a Direzza Z11 Star Spec in the right size, 185/70/15 and also a 205/60 and 205/60 and they were cheap. Very popular among some Morgan drivers here in the US. This tire may still be available, or in a new version. I have not followed up on this particular tire.

I wanted a current tire, so...

Yokohama Advan A048 is available in 205/60/15. This is an excellent road and track tire, and it works reasonably well in the rain.
It will fit your wheels and matches your size requirements. Tire Rack

This is far better than any of the other touring type tires. There doesn't seem to be much in the way of high performance tires in this size other than this one. I have put a lot of miles on this type of Yokohama, and found that they are relatively long lived and very sticky and very stable over many heat cycles.

So, maybe it is Morgan appropriate.

I went to the Avon CRZZ in 185/70/15 for my '70 +8 (the recommended tire size for the car). It is also a ultra high performance road/ race tire. Work's great. Roger Kraus Racing, and other Avon race tire dealers. Yes, expensive, but worth every penny. and they give good mileage and are stable over numerous track heat cycles. These were more expansive than the Yokohama, and I forgot this when I ordered a few for my just acquired '70 +8. Could have saved maybe, um...$200 over what I spent for the Avons.
Not complaining. I really like the Avons.

Also available in 215/60/15 I believe, and in 205/70/15.

Both the Avons and the Yokohama are predictable have lots of grip, and give it up gradually.
The Yokohama are NOISY.
So there you go...

So, I was able to get the tires I wanted to fit the car, and they were not a compromise in size or performance. AND... Here is a surprise... The price was actually less for the tires in the US than through my usual contact in the UK, Longstone Tire. See, I buy a lot of Dunlop 4.50X15 and 5.00X15 for the Westfield 11s from them. Anyway, the US price for the CRZZ Avon was a few bucks less expensive here in the US.
And you can get the Yokohama Advan 048 for even less.

There are also tires available through Coker tire, but why bother? Expensive, and not as good.

While the CRZZ is expensive (and the Yokohama less expensive) they work far better than the all season passenger sedan radials that the other guys here are using while being the right size.

DuncanCharlton Avatar
DuncanCharlton Duncan Charlton
Elgin, TX, USA   USA
1967 Morgan 4/4 "Toly's Car"
1967 Unknown Unknown
1971 Morgan Plus 8 (+8)
Jan,
No doubt for some people it comes down to looks and/or cruise rpm. The original size for my 1971 Plus 8 (according to the owners manual) is 185R15 -- no aspect ratio given, so that's about an 80% aspect ratio. A few years back I put 195/65-R15 Bridgestone Potenza RE960AS tires on the car to use more modern rubber and pattern than the Vredesteins and the cruise rpm at 60 mph increased by 200 rpm. I can live with the look of the lower aspect ratio tires (and these are adequate and predictable enough for fun autocrossing) but I'd like to have those cruise rpms back. On my particular car I was limited in how wide I could go without using spacers (and before I forget it, preloading the Mulberry Panhard rod allowed me to center the rear axle and keep the tires from rubbing on the plywood cheek boards in hard cornering). You've probably already seen how close the upper part of the suspension (the upper spring perch) is to the sidewall. Although I did have clearance it wasn't much so I ground away excess metal that projected outward beyond the upper, outer edge of the main road spring. That leaves roughly 1/8" on either side.

Longstone has a bit more choice than Coker for 185/R15 tires and I'd bite if I could get another free shipping offer from them as I did for the Blockley tires I put on the 1931 Morgan Super Sports Aero.

When I bought my car in 2003 it had some ancient Goodyears on it that were 195/75R15s, so the rolling diameter was the same as original 185R15s but my search found only tires for trucks and vans in that size.

Duncan

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GoMoG Avatar
GoMoG Lorne Goldman
Cuenca, Azuay, Ecuador   ECU
1984 Morgan Plus 8 (+8) "The Phoenix"
1990 Morgan Plus 8 (+8) "Humpty Dumpty"
In reply to # 12171 by DuncanCharlton Longstone has a bit more choice than Coker for 185/R15 tires and I'd bite if I could get another free shipping offer from them as I did for the Blockley tires I put on the 1931 Morgan Super Sports Aero.

Agreed. For earlier cars, Longstone is far and away the best in the world. Coker can't compare. Pity Longstone is in the UK. eye rolling smiley But their shipping rates are very fair (though admittedly unwanted).

Europe is kinder to cars than North America. There is still plenty of choice in 15". I refuse to switch from 15" to 16", though advised to do so by the Factory in 2002...when they re-created my current Morgan. They were only interested in availablity 16" might be a bit easier to find but the effect they have on the comfort and comportment of a Morgan is undesirable. I spend too many hours in the mog to tolerate trading air for metal.

In NA, I now lean towards top summer rubber. In Europe and the UK, I look to top tires with excellent characteristics in the wet and surface water. Last time around, I concocted a tire-selecting method that seems to work. http://www.gomog.com/allmorgan/TyresSelecting.html

I cannot think of another component on a Morgan that is more important or has more of a detrimental or beneficial effect. You are a wise man Duncan. winking smiley

SJM1 Jan Morgan
Thousand Oaks, CA, USA   USA
Longstones prices on the race Dunlops are about 30% less than our domestic suppliers, including the shipping, and I get the tires in 4 days or less here in Ventura from the UK.
I have bought several sets, and recommended others to do the same with excellent results.

Excellent service.

But, you can get the right size Avons for the same price from Roger Krause Racing or the other US Avon distributors.
Or the Yokohamas. All the right size, and you will get your 200 RPM back.

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Re: Tires
#10
DuncanCharlton Avatar
DuncanCharlton Duncan Charlton
Elgin, TX, USA   USA
1967 Morgan 4/4 "Toly's Car"
1967 Unknown Unknown
1971 Morgan Plus 8 (+8)
Thanks Jan -- I've looked at Roger Krause's race tire pricing before but not street pricing (looks like I have to call or email for street tire prices).

Duncan

Re: Tires
#11
SJM1 Jan Morgan
Thousand Oaks, CA, USA   USA
You can find the CRZZ, a DOT approved competition tire with a good reputation for wear (one racer said that they would last for the rest of my life... I hope not...'Not that close to my "sell by" date, yet), in the race tire pricing list for Avon (You don't need to call. If you do, talk to Sean. Very helpful and got me the tires quickly, and followed up on the spare I ordered. They have the tires in stock. I believe $294, ea. Expensive, but the Morgan racers here on the coast swear by them, and have run more than two seasons on a set without deterioration in performance. Not sure I believe all that, but if they are comfortable with the tires after that many cycles, I will try it for myself. One of the guys I talked to is an old friend and neighbor.

The Yokohamas are found at Tire Rack or other Yokohama dealers. Model is Advan A048. This tire also has pretty good wear characteristics, and went through multiple heat cycles over two seasons without reduction in performance on my heavy Mustang. They also had several thousand road miles on them. Around $240 each. I would buy these without hesitation as I have quite a bit of experience with the Yokohama DOT R compound tires.

The Dunlops are also available at Tire Rack as the Direzza ZII Star Spec This is a discontinued version of the tire. I saw them at prices as low as $49 in the 185/70/15 size. Very limited availability. The new version of the tire may have the required size. Again, a popular tire among the Morgan performance enthusiasts flinging their cars through the local canyons.

All three available in 185/70/15, which is the current available 185 size and will give you the same speedo and tach readings within a few RPM. Close enough to the 80 aspect ratio that you wont notice.

I have been running DOT approved competition tires on my cars for decades without any problems. No punctures and no problems with excessive wear. This has been mainly with the Yokohama Advans in 032 or 048R compounds. The cars ran from my R5 Turbo Renault to my Fox Mustang Saleen sedan variant. The Yokohama were really good in all conditions, but were very noisy. This may not be a problem with the Morgan, however.
Not much of a problem for me, as I am nearly deaf. I just switch off the amplifiers when I am driving the Morgan, anyway.

One thing to remember is that the +8. and other Morgans, is light in weight. This really reduces the wear, and you can get quite a few more miles, if not years, out of the tires, even the R compound racing tires. With the newest compounds delivering excellent heat cycle resistance, and long life, there is no reason not to try them, especially if the come in the right size.
The performance at the limits of adhesion are really excellent. The tires are predictable, and you can push them to the limit with confidence.
Much more forgiving than the all season junk that many of the owners settle for.

Re: Tires
#12
DuncanCharlton Avatar
DuncanCharlton Duncan Charlton
Elgin, TX, USA   USA
1967 Morgan 4/4 "Toly's Car"
1967 Unknown Unknown
1971 Morgan Plus 8 (+8)
I haven't researched other sizes yet for the Yokohama 032R's but that's what I have on my 1967 Unipower GT street-legal race car (10" tires). I raced in rain last month at MSR-Houston and they had decent grip in the wet so I'm happy with them so far. I've heard complaints about the noise but I'm not sure how much that matters in a Morgan. I've got so many mechanical noises coming through the Unipower's body and frame (the BMC 1275cc engine is right behind my head) that I can't pick out any tire noise.

I understand that the sidewalls of R tires are sometimes easier to damage but my main concern would be that I would need to keep tires from freezing (I've had Hoosier Street TD S's that lost quite a bit of air over night after being allowed to freeze during the previous owner's time with my NSU). It does freeze every now and then in this part of Texas.

Duncan

Re: Tires
#13
Button Avatar
Button Silver Member Bill B
Seattle, WA, USA   USA
I used Yokohama (the one with the herringbone tread) for the first 20 or 15,000 miles. I liked them OK, but was fearful when they began to wear that the grip would go away. In anyevent were getting old and needed replacing. After a search I realized good tires were going to be expensive. I settled for COSTCO, Michelin Premium A/H 94H. Reasonable price and seem OK for My use. But I was amazed at the amount of weight it took to balance them. One tire was especially bad. Tire guy said to just put it in back when I complained. My friend in Sun Valley with Her 2000 +8 had TOYA tires from Les Schwab. Much more expensive but I think a much better tire and better suited for a +8.

Button

Re: Tires
#14
SJM1 Jan Morgan
Thousand Oaks, CA, USA   USA
Not sure if 032Rs are available in 185/70/15.
The tire you want is the Advan 048, available in 185/70/15.

Or, just spring for the Avon CRZZ. Both are excellent road tires and are the preferred track rubber as well.
I would not worry about the noise.

As for sidewall damage, I have not found in thee decades of running DOT race tires that they are any more susceptible to damage than the standard type radials. I have never damaged a sidewall of a DOT race tire, or failed one in an off course excursion (that bent a rim). I have damaged a sidewall on an all seasons radial, however... Perhaps it is because I am very careful with my R compound shod cars. The main difference is tread wear, but then this also varies. I have had some Bridgestones that lasted just as long as my road worthy Hankooks. Go figure. DOT ratings require specific engineering to ensure roadworthiness.

The Dunlops I listed are also highly recommended, but may be discontinued. I don't know if the size is available in the revised tire.

I have never been able to use the links that you have shown. The cars I have are not like other cars, and the tire size is the size... Also, the manufacturer was not listed and they could not find the part numbers. I do a lot of tire searching.
See, I needed 285/40/15s, and NOTHING else would do. I finally had to get Yokohama (the OEM) to make some for our community.
Michelin had the size in the TB15, but not for the front...
Always best to do your search by tire size. If you look a the manufacture's data sheets, you can easily compare the diameter, cross section, tread width and MEASURING RIM WIDTH (the actual rim width that equals the manufacture's tire measurement. This width may be narrower than you may think that you need.

The Morgan was pretty easy. I found two good tires that met my criteria. That's better than I thought. Both are excellent and both are repeatable for future purchase (So long as Morgans are still raced in series requiring DOT R compound tires, anyway).

There might be more tires in the 16" sizes, or the 17s, but you might not want a short sidewall with the relatively light weight, stiffly sprung Morgan chassis (or the heavier wheels). My experience is that many times, the taller sidewall gives a more forgiving, more predictable handling result. When picking tires for my Morgan, I wanted to stay with the 15" wheel (I had considered 16s, as there were couple of tires available in the 55 aspect ratio that might fit), mainly to keep the taller 70 series aspect ratio, and maintain the more predictable handling. My search turned up three tires in the right size, so I get to keep the right look, and predictable handling.
What I have found in my work as a development driver for small volume manufacturers is that changes to lower profile tires can change the handling to something less predictable and less enjoyable (read this as "incipient crash"winking smiley . That, and the lower profile can result in unwanted sidewall damage if a pothole or other road hazard is encountered. Less tire sidewall height means less tire to cushion the blow. The loss is rim and tire.

You have really good tires available for your Morgan. Perhaps the best selection that the early classic chassis have ever had.

Re: Tires
#15
SJM1 Jan Morgan
Thousand Oaks, CA, USA   USA
My experience with the Yokohama is that when the tread wears, the grip stays. Very stable over time and with wear.
Nothing to fear.

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