Second Generation Nissan Xterra Forums banner

1 - 20 of 43 Posts

·
on line
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Location: Northern CA near Tahoe ( Nevada City )
Snow Type: "Sierra Cement" High water content heavy snow
Vehicle: 2006 XTerra OffRoad
The Challenge: Get down the steep 1100ft driveway, then up the 2.2 mile gravel road ( 600ft elevation change ). It's on the north face so it gets less sun.
I'm trying to avoid getting a SnoCat...

So what can I do to the X to make this happen?

Lift ( body, suspension, both?) + Tires ( make room for chains in front as well as rear? ) + Shrock bumper + ?
Thanks!

-Jedon
 

·
on line
Joined
·
3,217 Posts
Welcome to the club. :wave: It's going to depend on the tires that you have. There are those specially designed ones that have spikes built in to them. You can run chains but they slow your speed down. Also make sure that you don't travel by yourself unless you have a winch to extract yourself. Of course there might not be anything close enough to ya to act as an anchor point.

You'll want to air down your tires to allow more flotation in the snow. A lot of it will also depend on the kind of snow, soft snow vs hard snow.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
1,716 Posts
Welcome :cheers: I live in Reno and deal with the snow @ Tahoe all the time. Your best bet is to get some good M & S tires try to get the widest you can fit, 285/75/16 on stock or get the lift and go with the bigger sizes. Keep up your momentum and I would suggest getting a winch for the "just in case" on the way up. If we get another winter like we have had in the last couple of years there is not much you can do to your vehicle that will get you through everything. Hate to say it but if you want to get up there no matter what then the snow cat is your best bet.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thanks guys!
My plan was to get some black steelies and put BFG AT KO's on em, 3" body lift and a winch in a Schrock bumper.
Anybody have and exact tire/wheel/lift combo that they are running so I can get the same thing? I don't want to mess with getting the brake clearance wrong or having the tires rip up my fenders.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
117 Posts
How deep is the snow?
In some cases its best to have narrow tires that 'dig' down past the soft stuff to the solid stuff below. Same goes with mud.
Wider tires sit on top of the snow and 'float' around making you drift and slide around.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
107 Posts
I am no expert here, but just a few comments. Black steelies will require spacers, at this time. You might want to check out the wheel & tire forum for suggestions on alloy rims that don't require spacers.

Regarding interference/rubbing , a 3" body lift (AC has one) should probably eliminate your chances for that. I think someone is running 34s, but I don't exactly remember the width (but I do remember they have a body lift and a suspension lift).

With snow, it sounds like the experts call for width - not sure what the widest tire that can be mounted without rubbing - lift or no lift. I am suspecting 305mm . . .
 

·
on line
Joined
·
1,884 Posts
Any true snow tire will out perform any summer or all season tire no matter the size...I tend to go for the narrow tire based on past experience in the back country but here is a quote and a link for you:


Plus-sizing is popular for summer tires; plus-sizing means choosing a larger wheel size and corresponding tire than originally specified for your vehicle. For example, if your car specifies a wheel size of 16-inches, increasing wheel size by one inch would result in a 17-inch wheel, or 'Plus One' for your vehicle. The tire you buy will then need to have a shorter sidewall and wider tread to accommodate the same load and tire diameter.

Although many drivers are doing this for cosmetic reasons -- a larger wheel and narrower tire has a sportier look -- reviews say plus-sizing is a bad idea for winter tires. That's because wider tires must carve a wider path through snow; that means more resistance and drag. Instead, experts recommend using a narrow winter tire. Narrower tires can more easily cut a path through snow and slush. You can also "minus size" your original tire size by selecting a narrower tread and smaller wheel size. This can also save you some money, since narrower tires and smaller wheels are usually cheaper than wider tires with larger wheels.


Consumersearch
 

·
on line
Joined
·
82 Posts
We get lots of snow here in Minnesota. Last winter I took my 2005 Offroad in some deep snow and got "hung up" on the undercarrage. All 4 tires were spinning, and I had to dig it out. When I got her free (diging and backing out) there was a compacted table or shelf of snow that was pretty flat that I was lodged on. That was a stock Offroad and if I had a lift kit I might have been able to make it further, but it still would have got hung up (it was some deep snow). This was far off the road so not some thing I encounter every winter. But my point is some times even the best snow tires can get you stuck, compacted deep snow under the body can stop anyone.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
1,831 Posts
RogueClimber said:
Ant true snow tire will out perform any summer or all season tire no matter the size...I tend to go for the narrow tire based on past experience in the back country but here is a quote and a link for you:


Plus-sizing is popular for summer tires; plus-sizing means choosing a larger wheel size and corresponding tire than originally specified for your vehicle. For example, if your car specifies a wheel size of 16-inches, increasing wheel size by one inch would result in a 17-inch wheel, or 'Plus One' for your vehicle. The tire you buy will then need to have a shorter sidewall and wider tread to accommodate the same load and tire diameter.

Although many drivers are doing this for cosmetic reasons -- a larger wheel and narrower tire has a sportier look -- reviews say plus-sizing is a bad idea for winter tires. That's because wider tires must carve a wider path through snow; that means more resistance and drag. Instead, experts recommend using a narrow winter tire. Narrower tires can more easily cut a path through snow and slush. You can also "minus size" your original tire size by selecting a narrower tread and smaller wheel size. This can also save you some money, since narrower tires and smaller wheels are usually cheaper than wider tires with larger wheels.


Consumersearch
Ah yes, finally someone brings it up.
Yes, a taller, more narrow tire is better for really deep snow. You actually don't want to aim for achieving "floatation".

I frequent a site called Expedition Exchange, a group of guys who do an immense amount of off-roading, arguably moreso than anyone in these forums. It's their job. They all use taller, more narrow tires for everything. These guys all own Rover Discoverys but nevertheless.

They also all have 4wd, so if you've only got 2wd, you've got a better chance with wider tires for floatation.

Also another tip for driving in extremely deep snow is to go slow. If you're going slow, you'll feel it before you get hung up and stuck. If you're going fast, your undercarrage will slide up onto compacted snow, lifting your tires away from traction, and get stuck before you even realize it's happening. You better have brought your shovel in that case.

If you're thinking of buying snow/mud tires, you should also keep in mind that, aside from their cost, they're only going to be their most effective in snow and mud. If you do any sand driving, forget about it.
________
Schizoid libber
 

·
on line
Joined
·
80 Posts
RogueClimber said:
reviews say plus-sizing is a bad idea for winter tires. That's because wider tires must carve a wider path through snow; that means more resistance and drag.
Plus sizing only refers to going to a larger diameter rim, and has nothing to do with the width of the tire.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
14 Posts
Jedon,

Suspension lift is not going to do anything there. You can either get it or not, but it won't either improve or deteriorate winter driving.

As far as tires, go as narrow as you can (everyone can jump on me now). Everybody in this forum likes fat doughnut tires, but for deep snow and mud there's nothing like a pizza cutter tire. You can stick with 265/75/16 or even go with 235/85/16 (those who didn't jump before can do it now). Really, I've been there with 33x12.5x15 and with 33x9.5x15 (on my old truck) and I would rather have the pizza cutter for the winter.

As far as which tire to get there are two options: first go with a dedicated winter tire like the Bridgestone Blizzak, and the other is to go with full MT tires with studs. I would recommend a studded Firestone Destination MT or a studded Kumho Road Venture MT.

One other thing: the winch is a great idea.

But then again these are just my recommendations from my experience and what I've researched online (from pseudo-scientific sources like google).
 

·
on line
Joined
·
80 Posts
A suspension lift will help. We're not talking about winter driving on roads here. Jedon wants to be able to drive though very deep snow on an unplowed driveway and short road. At least that's what I am reading into this. A suspension lift will give more clearance for the deep snow. Sure, you'll be dragging the rear diff through the snow, but it will get the rest of the truck up higher so you're not plowing snow with the front bumper (depending on the depth).
 

·
on line
Joined
·
429 Posts
Jedon said:
Not sure yet, but could be 4+ feet.
No tire on any X is getting you through more than four feet. Unless maybe you're talking about blasting through an occasional drift. But if you mean four feet of fallen snow, good luck with that.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
239 Posts
I didn't read much in this thread, but I will make a quick comment. I've been offroading in the snow for years and I can say I was extremely disappointed with the X in the snow. The electronics are too aggressive when they cut power and limit wheel speed. I'll take my ZR2 back for deep snow wheeling any day over the Xterra.

Here is one thread I started. If you search for "snow" you'll see plenty more similar responses.

http://www.xterraownersclub.com/cgi-local/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=78;t=001400#000000
 

·
on line
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
NaughtyDread said:
Jedon,

Suspension lift is not going to do anything there. You can either get it or not, but it won't either improve or deteriorate winter driving.

As far as tires, go as narrow as you can (everyone can jump on me now). Everybody in this forum likes fat doughnut tires, but for deep snow and mud there's nothing like a pizza cutter tire. You can stick with 265/75/16 or even go with 235/85/16 (those who didn't jump before can do it now). Really, I've been there with 33x12.5x15 and with 33x9.5x15 (on my old truck) and I would rather have the pizza cutter for the winter.
I have heard this from others as well, that a narrower tire is better since it will cut through the snow, but if the snow deeper than the ground clearance of the vehicle, wouldn't cutting through the snow be bad? In the XTerra's case this would be about 9 inches right?

NaughtyDread said:
As far as which tire to get there are two options: first go with a dedicated winter tire like the Bridgestone Blizzak, and the other is to go with full MT tires with studs. I would recommend a studded Firestone Destination MT or a studded Kumho Road Venture MT.
Wouldn't those tires all suck on dry paved roads? My problem is that after the 2 1/2 miles of snow covered gravel I hit plowed paved roads for the remainder of the drive into town, 60 miles!

NaughtyDread said:
One other thing: the winch is a great idea.
Any recomendations on what winch to get?
 

·
on line
Joined
·
1,716 Posts
OK I'll try this again and see who jumps on me. :violent1:
I have lived in the Reno / Tahoe area for 34 years and have dealt with driving in the snow around Tahoe for 19 years. I have found that a good M & S tire such as BFG M/T will work better when you get into the deep stuff. You are exactly right that a pizza cutter tire in deep snow will just dig through the snow and strand you when they do not reach solid ground. I have stuck with a wider tire and use the flotation to my advantage. Also there is a limit to what you can drive through in any vehicle so good luck.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Thanks all, for now I think I'll try the BFG AT KO's 285/75/16 on the stock OffRoad wheels and see how that does, I'll put the money saved toward the shrock bumper.
 

·
on line
Joined
·
1,864 Posts
:clown: Gotta agree with JAdams on this--

--I lived in Sterling city Ca.3500 ft.(above Chico) and had a BFG tire shop for 10 yrs in PARADISE Ca.('70's)--
--Our 4wd cub would drive over the top of the Sierras to Lake Almanor in the summer and WINTER--

--There were Jeeps/Landcruisers/ Fords and my Heavy Dodge RAMCHARGER--skinny tires were worthless in 8 ft of snow--

--I was able to use BFG All terrain radials running at 15 psi (4ply) and "FLOAT that big 4800 # Dodge--

--Im not going to lecture or argue, but with low air pressure and a wide footprint--you have to drive like you're on EGGSHELLS--NO tire spin ever--

--Of course we had stuck vehicles, but that was because of to tight a turn or TIRE SPIN--

--Thats when I got my first HILIFT jack--PRICELESS--

--Now the Xterra is no different--you still have differentials and spring perchs pushing snow-you just have to know when to stop forward motion gently back up, then drive forward again GENTLY--it's slow, but you will make forward progress and Im sure that the E-LOCK on the OR rear will make it even easier to negotiate snow--

--Now as the ARMY proved during the second world war-jeeps and Pizza cutter tires-they will survive rocks/mud/land mines/jagged concrete--But not DEEP SNOW

--We can get into "lifts" another time My Ram was lifted--nother story

-- :geek: --JIMBO
 

·
on line
Joined
·
1,864 Posts
:clown: I just dug out an old picture of one of my Dodge Ramchargers-this one I had built with suspension and body lift--more story about it, but not now--

--


--440 ci/A727/B&M mod/full rollcage/34-11.50x16 / Centerline wheels--

--long before Nissan even thought of Xterras--

-- :drunken: :drunken: --JIMBO
 
1 - 20 of 43 Posts
Top