How Retractable-stud Snow Tires Work

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Author's Note: How Retractable-stud Snow Tires Work

I watched the video, and I was intrigued. I live in Oregon, and I've had the rotten experience of crawling around in freezing slush while someone rocked the car back and forth to adjust the chains and get the lock up and around so I could tighten those stupid things. And then they whap, whap, whapped against the wheel well, or the mud flap, or who knows what. And then we crept along at a mile and a half per hour and seriously questioned our commitment to snowboarding. No chain monkeys in Oregon.

So deployable studs sounded like a great idea. I eagerly contacted Nokian, excited to do yet another international phone interview, but all I got was a disappointing e-mail: "That tyre set is a concept tyre and we do not give any details about technology used out. No plans either to implement that technology to production tyres." No tires, no international interview. Nothing. Just the whap, whap, whap of chains echoing in my head.

Related Articles


  • Consumer Reports. "Putting studded, studless tires to the test." Oct. 16, 2012. (March 3, 2014)
  • Goodyear. "Tire and Vehicle Info: Studded Tires and Tire Chains." (March 3, 2014)
  • LeDuff, Charlie. "Low pay at high altitude: The life of a 'chain monkey.'" The New York Times. Jan. 15, 2005. (March 5, 2014)
  • Magliozzi, Tom and Ray. "Do you really need studded snow tires in winter?" Dec. 1, 2008. (March 3, 2014)
  • Nokian Tyres. "Nokian Tyres: The world's first non-studded winter tire with studs." Feb. 13, 2014. (Feb. 25, 2014),%202
  • Tire Buyer. "Winter tires: To stud or not to stud?" (March 3, 2014)
  • Washington State Department of Transportation. "Studded Tire Information." (March 3, 2014)