Friday, July 30, 2010

Tires

I have a love-hate relationship with tires. I like being around tires. I love the smell of new tires. I love the smell of melted tires at the autocross track. I love the super soft and bouncy shredded tire bits they use at the rock gym to cushion your falls. What I don't love is paying for them, and that after over 100 years of tire technology advancement, they still require air, can be punctured, and wear out.

If you hadn't guessed, I had to buy tires today. I hadn't really budgeted for tires for another six months or so. This set lasted a full 19 months. That's an improvement over the first set, which only lasted 14 months. That's the one downside to performance cars like the Porsche. The only tire option is the super sticky low profile tires. They're softer than normal tires to provide better grip. However, that means they disappear extremely fast. If you're going to buy a Porsche, you can buy cheap parts online and turn the wrenches yourself, but make sure you budget for the tires.

It's not all bad news, though. The car came with tires on it, which were slightly too large in the rear. I'm not talking about they were large and rubbing. I'm talking they were 5cm too tall in the sidewall. That 5cm was enough to throw off the speed sensors monitoring the front and rear wheels, which in turn made the traction control computer believe the car was out of control. In turn, if you hit the clutch, it would keep the idle up around 2000rpm thinking you were making emergency manuevers.It took me over a year, hundreds of dollars and thousands of posts on car forums to finally solve this riddle. All of that just because a tire had a 40cm sidewall instead of a 35cm sidewall. Go figure.

I'm about to update my car's maintenance record and file this receipt. I'm crossing my fingers for 24 months this time.
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