April 2008 Issue
Aircraft Tire Burnout Goodyear is Tops
He with the most tread wins and that would be Good-year’s Flight Custom III, along with Desser’s Monster retread. Cheaper tires aren’t always top value choices.
While car tires are all about the finer points of traction and resistance to hydroplaning, the best we can hope for with airplane tires is that they’ll make it through a couple of annuals. To do that, they need a lot of tread depth, the right rubber compound and a pilot whose idea of making the first turnoff doesn’t involve landing with the brakes locked. Heat is hard on tires, but landings chew up the rubber so to find out which tire is top dog, we conducted the second Great Florida Tire Death Match, subjecting each of 11 new tires to 300 blistering, rubber-burning simulated touchdowns on a flat stretch of I-75. Conclusion? He with the most tread wins, and that would be the Goodyear Flight Custom III. In this case, "wins" means delivers the most landings for the money—in other words, the best value. But that doesn’t mean the most expensive tire is always the best choice for every owner. More on that later, but first, on to the tests.
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