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One set of snow chains...which axle??


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Normally it should be the driving wheels of a 2wd car. LR do officially say Rear wheels.Of course 2 sets are best, and thats the only legal configuration for 4wd where chains are required (France etc), I've tried them on the front and it does give reasonable results, but remember the back can start to overtake you downhill.

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A regular discussion every year that it snows! It would seem to me after reading this discussion for many years is ..... the jury is still out!

The points raised above are vey good and equally valid! Put the chains on the back and perhaps lose steering ability, put them on the front and the back end might come around to join you at the front. All I can suggest is read the answer, think about it and make your own choice!

Cheers,

Bob.

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Of course 2 sets are best, and thats the only legal configuration for 4wd where chains are required (France etc)

What if your vehicle manufacturer says you shouldn't fit them to both axles (Like LR do for the D3)?

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The principle in driving is snow is first to get traction (so fit to rear), not to drive faster than you can ensure to stop or steer (so you shouldnt need on the front). But of course 2 sets are best.<br />Chains dont actually help steering much on the front anyway.

My other car is a TT quattro, and i live in Geneva. I have only once fitted chains in almost 10 years when i have a steep down slope to negotiate. Winter tyres and common sense make much more of an effect than chains.

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I would say rear!

Generally things start to go pear shaped when you brake and generally because the rear, having less weight on it, wants to overtake the front.

With chains on the back it behaves as a rudder and gives you less uncontrolled oversteer. It will understeer but you can control that by being gentle & driving slowly.

Braking & cornering at the same time is likely better with them on the rear as you have more weight on the front which will help reduce the understeer potential and the chains will help control oversteer.

It's the same as the recommendation to fit the tyres with more tread on the back, not the front as people generally do.

Si

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The back makes more sense to me too.

I would only be trickling along having a look around. Nothing speedy.

Last time the snow plough slid into me so nothing is going to stop that sort of accident!

Thanks for all the input :-)

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Ok. Did an experiment this morning. I live on a slight hill and drive a 300tdi auto disco with 235/85 KL71s. Moderate amount of tread left.

No chains - cornering out onto uphill slope with no difflock = lots of slipping of 1 rear wheel and resultant zero drive. With difflock = no problem, but braking caused mega slide. Slowing down by forcing 1st gear - slide.

Rear chains - useless without difflock as front wheel spun. With difflock - drive ok in a straight line, totally unpredictable when trying to corner.

Front chains - Fine for forward motion and braking in a straight line with difflock on. Cornering - fine as long as you go slowly enough, ie slow down before cornering. Applying a little throttle going through the corner is fun, but not recommended whilst passing children or parked cars!

So: My choice is front with difflock in on any surface that will allow the rear tyres to slip appropriately for turning corners.

Chris

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Rear chains - useless without difflock as front wheel spun. With difflock - drive ok in a straight line, totally unpredictable when trying to corner.

Chris

You had no cornering because you have summer tyres and/or were going too fast.

Of course not many in the UK want to buy winter tyres for the few days each other year. But having got used to that and seeing how much safer it is, i would do that even if living back there.

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They MUST go on the rear. The vehicle is dangerously unstable with front only chains under braking and descending steep hills. Rear chains make the vehicle very safe descending and provide best traction climbing. Not sure where everyone is coming from, but I always run chains offroad in the winter.

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You had no cornering because you have summer tyres and/or were going too fast.

Of course not many in the UK want to buy winter tyres for the few days each other year. But having got used to that and seeing how much safer it is, i would do that even if living back there.

They're KL71s, so neither winter or summer really, much more suited to mud. The cornering test was a standing start with just enough throttle to overcome the hill I was turning onto, so speed wasn't the issue, lack of grip on front tyres was. If I did more than 5 miles each way to work, I'd definately put winter tyres on, but it's really not worth it when we have the C4 for daily driving (except getting me to work).

The other car, a Citroen C4 GP, has winter tyres and is better than my Disco, the problem with that is the EGS gearbox does not allow fine enough control of power delivery, so wheelspinning is very diffcult to avoid if trying a standing start uphill, or any sort of bump in the road surface/snow. I took it to Val Thorens in December with 2m of snow, brilliant on the ice/hard snow, but useless where others had churned it up a bit.

I'm not arguing with anyone, or taking any offence, merely explaining my experience this morning and in previous years.

BW

Chris

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Well... experience this evening has been "suboptimal". Chain failure! The bracket holding the adjuster chain to the end of the stiff plastic-covered steel bit has bust. They were Ex-MOD RUD-matic chains too, brand new when I got them about 2 years and 200 miles ago.

I won't ask which wheel to fit the remaining chain to - it's currently hanging over the spare on the back door......

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