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Tube or Tubeless for Model A Radial Tires?

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  • Tube or Tubeless for Model A Radial Tires?

    I don't plan to buy radials for my Model A, but many have, and there are questions as to whether it's OK to run tubeless?
    I'm on the fence, but here are my thoughts.
    My 1950 Studebaker has metal bolt in stems and no tubes with the radial tires. The Model A rims should be similar but narrower, so I'd think you could go tubeless. The thing is the rim doesn't have the extra ridge to hold the bead in place during loss of air, which could happen by taking a corner too sharp and fast, or hitting a bad pothole. Anything that could pop the tire away from the outside lip for a split second could cause loss of air. Under normal driving, this is very unlikely to happen, so I don't know what I'd do. Normally tubes hold air for much longer periods of time, so I like to use them, but radial tubes are so expensive, I'd have to think about it.

  • #2
    Not sure on the A rims but many with the 16" wires and/or steel rims (40 style) go tubeless. How many take a corner too fast or hit pot holes??
    Paul in CT


    • tbirdtbird
      tbirdtbird commented
      Editing a comment
      fast nephew......

  • #3
    My friend hit a pot hole getting off I90 onto hwy 18 and the car went airborne.everything seemed ok, so he drove 55 miles an hr 20 miles to Auburn . When he got off the hwy and made a sharp turn, his tierod end popped out.pretty hard to drive when your frt wheels point different directions.the way our roads in Washington are maintained, unusual, but,it it does happen.


    • #4

      Here is one opinion on your stating: "I'd have to think about it."

      My most sincere thoughts about if "anyone" is thinking about experimenting and installing 19" Model A radial tires without the radial tire manufacturer's recommended radial rated tubes:
      1. No matter who pays for it, the average cost of a non-elaborate funeral & burial is about $8,600.00.

      2. Next ..... think about the pain in the butt for both family members and friends who have to waste valuable time to wake someone & bury someone very healthy because he did not spend under $250.00 to install radial tire manufacturer's recommended radial tire tubes as directed ......... not to mention that $250.00 is not much for a one time Model A .................."Radial Tire/Inner Tube Life Insurance Policy."

      3. One can imagine a headstone inscription after a serious Model A blow out accident, like:

      He actually saved $250.00 with his Model A Restoration, and ....... He succeeded to "Travel Over The Rainbow!"


      You are far too kind and too valuable for all of us for you to try to drive without recommended radial tubes ..... but just one opinion.


      • #5
        If you are going to cut corners then you probably should not do it at all, H L made some great points and info in the thread i started about radial tires, I plan on following his advice.


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