Daily Features

HISTORICAL TIRE CHOICES DO NOT BELONG ON EVERYTHING

By on January 8, 2018
tires

tires

 

One of the best ways to identify the history of a vintage car is the set of tires on the stock version.

 

Tire choices tell the story behind the car and the skins were installed for a reason back in the day.

 

The choices from the past offer plenty of options for car guys on a mission because they add a dimension to their rides-unless the tire choices does not belong on the car in that one-of-these-things……- Sesame Street kind of way.

 

For example, the wide whitewall tire has been around for a long time and was usually found on a pre or post war car that pushed the upscale needle in to the extreme zone. Wide whitewalls added an extra dimension to a luxury car (or a car owner who wanted to “identify” as a luxury car owner) from a bygone era.

 

IMGP1907

 

White whitewall tires rode at the front of the line until the early 60s, typically on big cars that made an even bigger statement about its typically upscale owners.

 

IMGP0815

 

The whitewall tire got considerably narrower as car guys hurtled into the Sensational Sixties and morphed into a sportier look for cars that typically had less doors and more horsepower, although the luxury car owners also had narrower whitewall tires on them.

 

IMGP0494

 

The narrow whitewalls were a fresh new look for the tires and were a big hit with car guys at the time.

 

news-002

 

The redline (red wall) tire began to muscle its way to the top of the Big Three street wars by the late 60s after the mid-60s Corvette made the redline tires a must-have fashion accessory for brute force street machines.

 

IMGP0912

 

There were color variations like gold and blue line tires that extended beyond the redline versions, but the other colors were a small part of the automotive past.

 

IMGP0730

 

One of the most popular changes in the tire world was the dawn of the raised letter tire. These tires became very fashionable in the 70s and 80s, but they gained a foothold in the performance tire world in the 60s.

 

IMGP8734

 

The raised letter tires gave cars a sportier look and were an easy choice for car guys when they wanted to add a performance style to their cars.

 

_IGP2967

 

The least desirable tire from the past was the black wall tire. The non-decorated black wall usually meant an owner was frugal, cost-conscious, or a law enforcement agency where its passengers were likely not particularly interested in whitewalls.

 

IMGP7742

 

 

There were a few benefits derived from black wall tire choices. The obvious benefit is cost because a black wall tire typically cost less than other more colorful choices. The less obvious benefit was performance because a black wall tire could also have meant an ability to handle high speeds on some cars like a Highway Patrol car.

 

IMGP0633

 

The go-fast black walls were typically found on bigger and wider wheels that put more grip on the road when high speed was a part of the game plan.

 

_IGP3100

 

 

The brief history of tires brings MyStarCollectorCar to the question about where tires from the past belong in the 21st century. We believe the retro tires belong on any retro car that had them as an option when they left the factory.

IMGP8697

 

The answer gets a little murkier after that conclusion because other car guys will question the owners’ sanity if they make the wrong choice for their car.

 

For example, a raised letter tire does not belong on a four-door sedan and most vehicles that did not offer them as a tire choice when the cars were new. The big exception to this rule are pre-war hot rods that are decades removed from the dawn of raised letter tires and 40s-50s cars that have been built into street monsters.

 

IMGP5939

 

 Narrow band whitewall tires have not found their mojo in the 21st century, although they will always have a place on vintage cars that offered them as a luxury item.

 

IMGP1037

 

Wide whitewall tires have gained a foothold with custom builders and car guys who want their vintage car to stand out in a crowd. They are also a big hit with car guys who restored their classic cars back to their original look from a bygone era.

 

IMGP1971

 

50s-era vehicles seem to be the primary wide whitewall tire choice for 21st century car guys, although they are also used by custom builders to add a new/old dimension to their cars.

 

IMGP3779

 

Redline tires are usually found on muscle cars from a bygone era and their owners want their vehicles to reflect that era in a big way.

 

IMGP0922

 

Black wall tires are the norm in today’s world because these formerly humble tires have become associated with high speed performance in the 21st century. Most of these tires can easily handle high speeds and they have become associated with sleeper cars from the past.

 

IMGP0658

 

Sleeper cars are barebones cars that offer huge horsepower under the hood and little else that indicated these vehicles were untamed beasts camouflaged with little bling and dog dish hubcaps.

 

IMGP7743

 

There are plenty of reasons to apply any of the above to a vintage car. They just have to be the right reasons.    

 

BY: Jim Sutherland

 

Jim Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer whose work has been published by many major print and online publications. The list includes Calgary Herald, The Truth About Cars, Red Deer Advocate, RPM Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Montreal Gazette, Windsor Star, Vancouver Province, and Post Media Wheels Section. 

 

print
24928 Total Views 3 Views Today

About admin

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Facebook

Featured Ads

Rear View Mirror

64-imgp6225

MARCH 27, 2014: HAPPY 50TH BIRTHDAY TO THE FIRST PONY CAR-THE BARRACUDA

  There are indelible memories in life and one of mine is the first time I saw a 1964 Barracuda.   I’ve talked about this before but this was...

March 27, 2014 View more...
apr13-68bujimpix 036-001

MARCH 26, 2013 (APRIL 2013) A 1968 BUICK SPORT WAGON IS A RARE VISITOR TO ANY CAR SHOW

  The Buick Sport Wagon was a first cousin of the more famous Olds Vista Cruiser and there was reason to confuse the two luxury wagons from the General....

March 26, 2013 View more...
mar12-55studebimgp6016-2

MARCH 1, 2012: 1955 STUDEBAKER PICKUP-WHAT A BIG RIG DRIVER RUNS ON THE WEEKEND

  Ted Draeger loves the big iron.   His full time job is pushing a big rig and on the weekends he’s still behind the wheel of a truck....

March 1, 2012 View more...
68 charger imgp6660

MARCH 16, 2010: SUPERSTARS ON FOUR WHEELS–WE PICK THE BRIGHTEST STARS OF A CAR BRAND NAME

  Everybody is entitled to an opinion.   It is a basic fundamental right in any country not run on the highly flawed North Korean model.   We’re all...

March 16, 2010 View more...

Most Viewed

My Star Showcase

news-mill-jjmscc_Neon-001

SIGN UP FOR THE MYSTARCOLLECTORCAR DAILY NEWSLETTER!

SIGN UP FOR THE MYSTARCOLLECTORCAR DAILY NEWSLETTER!   Are you too busy to check out MSCC regularly? That’s too bad because MyStarCollectorCar is updated every day.   You don’t...

October 25, 2017 View more...
mill-jjmscc_Neon

MSCC MARKET REPORT 2018

  MSCC MARKET REPORT 2018   Welcome to the MyStarCollectorCar Market Report.   This will be a regional look at prices for collector vehicles based on actual sales so...

August 3, 2017 View more...
products-IMGP5647

MSCC Products and Services Showcase

These are all great businesses and they support MyStarCollector Car through their advertising  so we can continue to bring you our  insight into the old car hobby 365 days...

July 13, 2016 View more...

More At My Star

A BOAT BY ANY OTHER NAME—WHAT’S THE TRUTH BEHIND OLD IRON’S WEIGHT PROBLEM?

  I used to get into some pretty serious debates when I owned a ’59 Plymouth–it was always about the weight of the car .   The term “boat” came up more often than the term “sketchy” does with online money requests from Nigerian royalty.   Boat is an uninformed opinion when it’s assigned to See More

DOES A BREXIT DEBATE BELONG ON A CAR HOBBY PAGE?

  I look at hundreds of car related pages every week because they relate directly to what I do at MyStarCollectorCar.   I get a trifecta out of this because these pages educate, inform and entertain — that’s nearly impossible in today’s cyber-connected world.   Car pages are a comfortable fit because they remove you See More

CRYSTAL BALL TIME: WHAT IS ON THE COLLECTOR CAR HORIZON?

  The source of the current collector car hobby is rooted firmly in the past.   Most car guys lean heavily toward the vehicles that lassoed their interests when they were kids with a paper route and a meager income source.   The proceeds from a paper route were a long way from the necessary See More

FIVE MUST SEE CONVERTIBLES FROM THE POST WAR ERA

  Post World War II Detroit played a big game of catch up because the factories were stuck in pre-war phase.   Nobody cared about the outdated style because every new car had a waiting list.   Most buyers wanted a sedan because this was the starting line for the Baby Boom so convertibles were See More

Editor’s Picks

SEAN-5

MSCC FIVE FOR FRIDAY: SEAN BELL–A FORD GUY PICKS HIS FIVE FAVORITE FORDS

  A guy who sells Fords for a living will definitely have a strong list of favorite Blue Oval rides.   Sean Bell is the General Manager at Cam...

January 11, 2018 View more...
5-auc

FIVE THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CAR AUCTIONS

  Car auctions have become a TV hit thanks to extensive coverage over the last twenty years so auctions have been turned into show business.   They are run...

December 14, 2017 View more...
sein

CONNECTING WITH SEINFELD—THE FRATERNITY OF THE JEROMES WASN’T ENOUGH

  MyStarCollectorCar is based on the average guy in the car hobby—the kind of guy who puts gallons of blood, countless hours of sweat equity, and a big pile...

October 11, 2017 View more...
IMGP7176-001

THE GUILD GARAGE: WHEN A HALF HOUR CAR SHOW JUST SEEMS LIKE AN HOUR

  Restoration Garage always lived up to its non-car guy producers’ goal to produce a docu-drama.   The producers appeared to believe in the standard TV playbook wherein a...

August 3, 2017 View more...

Car Shows and Events

ST1
SAINT ALBERT ROCK’N AUGUST—THE BIG SHOW RETURNS AUGUST 7-11

  Rock’n August is one of Western Canada’s biggest annual car shows.   The whole community gets behind this week-long event because this is a showcase for the best...

December 16, 2017
57-1
MICHENER ALLEN AUCTION OCTOBER 28, 2017: 1957 CHEVY 1500 STREET ROD

1957 Chevrolet Street Rod 1500      Make:   Chevrolet            Model:                 Street Rod 1500 Drivetrain:           RWD      Ext Color:             White Engine:                 4Spd Automatic TR700  ...

June 19, 2017
BACH2
MARCH 16-18 2018: 12TH ANNUAL RED DEER COLLECTOR CAR AUCTION & SPEED SHOW

12th ANNUAL RED DEER COLLECTOR CAR AUCTION AND SPEED SHOW  TIME TO CONSIGN 1888 296 0528 EXT 102     OVER 200 CARS UP FOR AUCTION FRIDAY NIGHT-50 CARS...

April 21, 2017
116
JANUARY 2018 CAR SHOWS AND EVENTS MYSTARCOLLECTOR CAR

  JAN 20: CALGARY, AB  Michener Allen Auto and RV Auction   JAN 27: EDMONTON, AB  Michener Allen Auto and RV Auction   JAN 28: WOODSTOCK, ON: Woodstock Automotive...

October 8, 2015

Ads

Ads responsive