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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
A local is selling a set of four studded snow tires on alloy wheels that were (reportedly) previously used for two winters on her 1995 Mercedes 220C. The tires are Nokian 205/55 R16 and the wheels are ATA H20 Alloys.

I am ignorant when it comes to after market wheels, but the price is right and I would like to get a set of snow tires. I know the tires are 10mm narrower than the stock wheels, but this might not be a bad thing in the snow. Will these work on my 2000 E 320 4Matic Wagon? Will I need to get spacers or make adjustments?

Thanks in advance.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Well, two of my local tire shops say they'll fit, so I went ahead and bought them. $100 for all four was too good of a deal to pass up.

The tires are definitely used, but they have plenty of life left in them. One tire, though, is missing about half of its studs. Strange. I'm considering either trying to have the studs replaced or removing all of them, but I need a little more info before I make that decision. Fortunately, I have until next winter to decide. Here's a photo of one of them:
 

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Check the back for the offset, those look a bit off.

From my days busting tires there was a rule that once a snow tire had been driven on, it could not then be studded because debris would get in the stud hole and there was no reliable way to clean it out. I'm guessing that's still the rule. I agree with you though that it's weird it's missing so many. So long as it balances okay I'd be tempted to just leave it alone, on the theory that half traction is better than none. ;)
 

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It's not so weird, you can easily have get rid of the studs by spinning wheels heavily (losing contact) in conditions where there is no snow or ice on the road... In Finland we have a rule (MOT) that difference in amount of studs is max. 50%. Otherwise the friction difference is too large and may cause problems during the braking. Refitting of studs is quite hard, like said. Not done in decades in Finland for a regular road tires I believe. (Rally tires are different, studs are larger etc.) You have choosen good tires (Nokian) by the way...:thumbsup:
BTW, what is the DOT of the wheel (date)? If the wheel is old, may rubber 'harden' and after that the friction i snot so good any more even you have plenty of 'grooves' on wheel. And probability of loosing studs is more easily.
 

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I am hardly a snow tire expert but if the tires are in fact usable I'd remove the studs. That eliminates the question of on which wheel are you going to mount the tire with the missing studs? Surely you'd want it on one of the rears so your steering would not be compromised?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I just got back from a local tire shop. They said I got a steal of a deal, as new Nokian Hakkapeliitta tires run about $180 each (Mine are #2). I paid $100 for all four on rims. The date says the tires were manufactured 5 yrs ago.

The tire that is missing most of the studs on the inner edge got that way from being on the front end of a misaligned vehicle. It didn't destroy the tire, but it did pull some of the studs and cause a bit of uneven wear. Still more than 50% of tread life left. The other three have worn evenly & have more than 50% as well.

The guys said I could pull the studs, but recommended against it. They suggested I run them the way they are for the next three or four winters, then pull the remaining studs and run them through the summer before buying new ones. I appreciate his frugal perspective.

My area doesn't get a ton of snow, but we are plagued with ice regularly throughout the winter. Many people here still prefer studs, in spite of the drawbacks. A noisy ride is always better than one with an abrupt & unexpected ending.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Check the back for the offset, those look a bit off.
They supposedly came off of a '95 C Class. Two separate shops said they will work just fine. We won't know for sure, I suppose, until I have them put on this Winter. I planned on swapping them myself, but my local guy says he'll do it for free, even if I didn't buy them there, and that way they can confirm that they fit properly.

The tires are 10mm narrower than standard for our cars, so perhaps this helps some with the offset?
 

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I have hakka Qs (studless) on my wagon and have for 5 years. great treadwear. Those Finns know 2 things. snow tires and tango.
 
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