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Old 24th May 2010, 15:58   #1
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Default Why do cars with low profile tyres tramline more?

It just be just me. I noticed this immediately after getting the 16 inch wheels on my Vtec, last night in an RS and earlier in a Swift. The tramlining on each of these cars was experienced on Marine Drive...a road I use daily and thus know very well.

Thus, the question : Why do cars with low profile tyres tramline more? And sometimes, annoyingly so?
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:06   #2
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Must be due to the stiffer sidewall of the low profile tyres and wide tyres have a tendency to tramline more. So wide + stiff you have annoying tramlining.
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:09   #3
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can anyone tell me what is tramlining ?
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:11   #4
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Its got to do with the tyre width and the flat tread shoulders, I reckon.
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:14   #5
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I think it's more to do with the larger width of the tire than the low profile. My 1.6S running 195/55/R15 tramlines a lot more than my 800 on the same stretch of road. Plus the steering feedback is a lot more intense in a Fiesta so you know exactly what's happening. It would be easy to miss the tramlining in a car with poor feedback even if it's running wide low profile tires.

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can anyone tell me what is tramlining ?
Tendency of the tires to follow the contours of the road.

Last edited by Gilead : 24th May 2010 at 16:17.
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:18   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Why do cars with low profile tyres tramline more? And sometimes, annoyingly so?
Tramlining effect is pronounced when the road irregularities are readily transmitted to the wheel rim, and there-by, to the car.

With low profile tyres, there is very little flex and everything is transmitted to the wheel rim!
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Originally Posted by Mr. Nobody View Post
can anyone tell me what is tramlining ?
Its when the car follows the road! You need to give steering corrections to compensate for road irregularities.
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Originally Posted by Gilead View Post
I think it's more to do with the larger width of the tire than the low profile.
Its affected by tyre width + design + side-wall profile AFAIK.

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 24th May 2010 at 16:25.
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:22   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Nobody View Post
can anyone tell me what is tramlining ?
Tramlining is the tendency of a vehicle's wheels to follow the contours in the surface upon which it runs. The term comes from the tendency of a car's wheels to follow the normally recessed rails of street trams, without driver input in the same way that the train does.

Tramlining can usually be blamed on tires, and its incidence depends greatly on the model of tire and its state of wear. Although not normally dangerous, at very high speeds it can become a source of instability.

Vehicles with large and wide low profile tyres are more prone to the effects as well as vehicles which have wheels fitted that are larger than the manufacturers recommendation or have reinforced sidewalls. People who are relatively inexperienced with driving with this tendency will feel that they have to make continual course corrections and it is very easy to overcompensate the steering, which could potentially lead to veering off the road especially if the road is a narrow track/country road.
The effects of tramlining can be eased by subjecting the vehicle to an inspection and calibration of the wheels (ie. a full geometry check) or replacing the tyres with non-reinforced (soft sidewall) tyres.

Source:Wikipedia

But, from the experience i have, it has also got to do with the car. My Fusion tramlines more than the Corolla even though both run on identical tyres.
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:34   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MAS View Post
But, from the experience i have, it has also got to do with the car. My Fusion tramlines more than the Corolla even though both run on identical tyres.
Both may be tramlining the same amount, but I bet the Fusion's steering feedback is far more precise than the Corolla's. Advantage of good feedback is that one can make the required corrections earlier. Else some untidy corrections will have to be made seconds later.
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:45   #9
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I don't it has anything to do with the profile. It's more to do with the width and tyre,IMO.

My 525d has 245/45R17 tyres and Superb 205/55R16(Primacy LC). The Superb tramlines ALOT ! And it does get very annoying at times, especially on concrete roads that have a separate center joint strip. The BMW does not suffer from this problem at all .
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Old 24th May 2010, 16:50   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilead View Post
Both may be tramlining the same amount, but I bet the Fusion's steering feedback is far more precise than the Corolla's. Advantage of good feedback is that one can make the required corrections earlier. Else some untidy corrections will have to be made seconds later.
You are probably right. On the same bumpy road, without the hands on the steering, the Fusion's steering wheel turns so much as if an invisible person is guiding the car, while the Corolla's steering remains quite stable.
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Old 24th May 2010, 20:37   #11
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I think not many of us have read the Tire Bible/ not read it fully.

It is clearly documented that Low profile and/or wider tires will give on-the-rails feeling. A low profile tire may also increase the actual contact patch in terms of width and even if we do consider contact patch to be the same, the rim is actually nearer to the road surface and the nearer it is, the feeling gets more prominent & yes I have driven a car on rims.

This is what I've gathered from some experience + documentation. I may be wrong & if so, then please correct me.
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Old 25th May 2010, 09:32   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sankar View Post
Must be due to the stiffer sidewall of the low profile tyres and wide tyres have a tendency to tramline more.
Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous View Post
Its got to do with the tyre width and the flat tread shoulders, I reckon.
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
With low profile tyres, there is very little flex and everything is transmitted to the wheel rim!
Quote:
Originally Posted by MAS View Post
or have reinforced sidewalls.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JustCause View Post
the rim is actually nearer to the road surface and the nearer it is, the feeling gets more prominent & yes I have driven a car on rims.
Thanks guys. Could have to do with stiffer + shorter sidewalls (less flex).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilead View Post
I think it's more to do with the larger width of the tire than the low profile.
As Sahil posted, I doubt the width of the tyre has anything to do with it. My Benz has the widest tyres of the garage, yet zero tramlining. However, it could probably start tramlining if I opt for low profile tyres with stiff sidewalls?

Even my Jeep has zero tramlining, even at 80 kph on the same road.
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Old 25th May 2010, 12:20   #13
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I also suffer annoying tramlining on my Aveo's 195/60 Yokohama ES100s. However, am used to it by now and am happy with the excellent grip offered.

Noise & tramlining I can live with but not without GRIP!!! :-)
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Old 25th May 2010, 13:24   #14
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1. Try reducing tyre pressure. Im running 195/60 R14s and i feel this happening when i run with higher pressure.

2. Is the offset of the 16" wheel the same as the manufacturer specification.

3. Are you running the original tie rod ends? I saw a lot of improvement after i got it replaced.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...b-my-vtec.html (Steering prob on my vtec!!!)

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Old 25th May 2010, 17:31   #15
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GTO


1. Tire sidewall flexibility and sidewall height - Less absorption and the tire tread will transmit it to the rim thus steering the car.
2. Caster - It should be in the +ve , i.e suspension tilt should be towards the rear. Neutral (Vertical) or -ve caster ( forward tilt ) can also cause tramlining.
3. Steering play - the tramling wheel would steer without any movement of steering wheel. The drive will react to the side motion of the car and will tend over do causing a drifting movement.
4. Air pressure can also be an issue in some cases.
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