Best 4x4 tires for deep sand





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  1. #1
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    Default Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Hello everyone. Which tire profile do you think is best for sand? ATs (All Terrain) or MTs (Mud Tracks)?
    I preffer the less aggressive AT tires but the MTs look damn nice
    Which are the most effective ones though?
    I love Mozambique!

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    I did extensive reading into this subject while preparing for an rather ambitious Dune trip , there is a lot of different opinions , but in general you want as much surface area as possible , apparently a tire with less or zero sipping is better.
    I went with AT in the end as I deflate as much as I can and try to drive on top of the sand, though if you have lots of torque available and can fit huge tires for serious dune climbing MT will do better.

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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Have both sets for my Wrangler. ( muds and ATís ) found ATís better in sand...muds want to dig in rather than float over sand.....maybe just my driving style.

    Now donít ask forum for advice on which brand is best

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  6. #4
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    We have tested them side by side. Same vehicle, same day, same dune. MT did go further.
    It is not what you buy its what you build.

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  8. #5
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Here is a simple test for you:

    Fit one of each of the tyres you have to decide between (Widths must be the same to compare apples/apples)

    Pump the tyres to 2.5 Bar

    Park the vehicle on sheets of A3 paper

    Trace the tyre contact perimeter on the paper

    Repeat with different colours while lowering the pressure

    Do it at the following pressures
    2.5
    2.0
    1.5
    1.2
    1.0
    0.8
    0.7
    0.6

    You will be supersized which gives you the largest contact patch
    Last edited by Dungbeetle; 2020/06/01 at 12:13 PM.
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  10. #6
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Quote Originally Posted by Gomario View Post
    Which are the most effective ones though?
    The one you have. Unless you drive 90% of the time sand . Then is it dunes or flat areas?
    Last edited by JLK; 2020/06/01 at 12:47 PM.
    Johan Kriel

  11. #7
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Here are the two profiles in question. Both are Bridgestone Duellers. They are the exact same size but I could not get the pictures right.
    I love Mozambique!

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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    There is a reason why Sandrails and Dune buggies run scooper tyres
    It is not what you buy its what you build.

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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Have a look at this video as well, might help:

    https://youtu.be/M6j2jia0kII
    2015 Pajero Sport Shogun
    2012 Kia Cerato Hatch

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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    My understanding is thus:

    If your vehicle is not particularly powerful, and/or if the sand you want to drive on is relatively flat, you want the smoothest and softest-construction tire you can get away with. H/T (highway/road) even better than A/T.

    But if you want to go upwards, and if you have a seriously powerful car, MT is the way to go.

    I also suspect that a set of bead-lock rims may be a better upgrade for sand than any given set of tyres. The lower the pressure you can run at, the more footprint you have, the better you will do on sand.
    1996 Patrol 4.2SGL with lots of stuff to make it heavier and thus increase traction?

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  17. #11
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    From the one or two dunes I have driven the answer is MT, no question. The bigger the better, depending on what your engine can turn.

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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    The tour guides on the Namib Desert dune trips use Mud Terrain tyres on their vehicles.Enough said.
    Swakopmunder

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  21. #13
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Connan View Post
    My understanding is thus:

    If your vehicle is not particularly powerful, and/or if the sand you want to drive on is relatively flat, you want the smoothest and softest-construction tire you can get away with. H/T (highway/road) even better than A/T.

    But if you want to go upwards, and if you have a seriously powerful car, MT is the way to go.

    I also suspect that a set of bead-lock rims may be a better upgrade for sand than any given set of tyres. The lower the pressure you can run at, the more footprint you have, the better you will do on sand.
    Peter I have successfully run tyres at 0.5 bar for many years with no bead-locks with only a few debeads. Yes the wider the footprint the better. That is why 35 x 12.5 and 33 x12.5 work so nice in sand.

    I grew up with the believe that smooth tires are the way to go for sand. Over many years of all sorts of sand driving I doubt that smooth tyres are the best for sand even flat sand. More important is tyre pressure and footprint like you have said.

    But when it comes to tyre pressure and sand driving I keep a low profile on these topics. Everyone have his own idea and experience
    about sand driving. Have read here that guys think the sand in the Letaba and Molototsi riverbeds is serious sand driving. When doing the River Trip a few years ago I found the sand very easy going. The criteria of sand driving is just too big.

    Wat vir party ouens se berg is as dit by sandry kom is die volgende ou se molshoop.
    Last edited by grips; 2020/06/01 at 02:52 PM.
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  23. #14
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Quote Originally Posted by AboutAfrica View Post
    From the one or two dunes I have driven the answer is MT, no question. The bigger the better, depending on what your engine can turn.
    The truth short and sweet
    It is not what you buy its what you build.

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  25. #15
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Quote Originally Posted by grips View Post
    I grew up with the believe that smooth tires are the way to go for sand. Over many years of all sorts of sand driving I doubt that smooth tyres are the best for sand even flat sand. More important is tyre pressure and footprint like you have said.
    Even Google believe in smooth tyres, but to me it make no sense. Maybe for an aeroplane yes!
    Johan Kriel

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  27. #16
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    I live in Namibia and know a little bit about sand driving.
    Surveyor, worked extensively in the southern Namib.
    Driven my own vehicle to Meob bay (and back) 5 times.
    Etc.
    Tyre pressure is important and you can drive for 100's of km at 0.8.
    Softer sidewall tyres with rounded contact areas best.
    My best tyres for sand (worst for everything else) was the Bridgestone dueler at.
    Worst Tyre for sand but best for everything else is the bfg at (sharp sidewalls, cuts into the sand).
    I say best and worst but either is fine for a trip through the dunes and there is no reason to buy a set of tyres just for a big dune trip, just go with the ones you have.
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  29. #17
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Quote Originally Posted by KimballR View Post
    I live in Namibia and know a little bit about sand driving.
    Surveyor, worked extensively in the southern Namib.
    Driven my own vehicle to Meob bay (and back) 5 times.
    Etc.
    Tyre pressure is important and you can drive for 100's of km at 0.8.
    Softer sidewall tyres with rounded contact areas best.
    My best tyres for sand (worst for everything else) was the Bridgestone dueler at.
    Worst Tyre for sand but best for everything else is the bfg at (sharp sidewalls, cuts into the sand).
    I say best and worst but either is fine for a trip through the dunes and there is no reason to buy a set of tyres just for a big dune trip, just go with the ones you have.
    I am hearing you. Powerful enjine + mud tires = Trouble on Sand. OK, if you are very experienced, have a foot reaction time of less than 1/10 of a second AND know EXACTLY when to lift of the accelerator, than MT are for you. But for everybody else, including Johny Bravo and myself, MT will help you more to get stuck than move forward. The Duellers ATs are damn good tires for sand but the MTs look like a million dollars
    Thank you every body for the nice inputs
    I love Mozambique!

  30. #18
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Connan View Post
    My understanding is thus:

    If your vehicle is not particularly powerful, and/or if the sand you want to drive on is relatively flat, you want the smoothest and softest-construction tire you can get away with. H/T (highway/road) even better than A/T.

    But if you want to go upwards, and if you have a seriously powerful car, MT is the way to go.

    I also suspect that a set of bead-lock rims may be a better upgrade for sand than any given set of tyres. The lower the pressure you can run at, the more footprint you have, the better you will do on sand.
    I concur. Two previous sani's. First one had near racing slicks when it was purchased and those floated over the sand even at full psi. Second Sani had MT's and struggled over the same sand time and time again.

  31. #19
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    The Arabs use tyres with no tread. They should know best.
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  33. #20
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    Default Re: Best 4x4 tires for deep sand

    AT in my view.

    I think that it's important to consider what you're driving on to get to the sand and back again. If you're going to drive 1000 Km of tarmac before reaching the dunes, you may not want MTs...

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