I'm curious is it possible to make a tyre that will fit perfectly on snowy/icy road. So I found studded tyres. Now, my question is - Is it possible to make studded tyre that will have good grip on snowy/icy road/sidewalk and use same tyre for dry road/sidewalk? Reason I want tyre with those specs is because I ride a bike in winter from house to work. Because it's too cold outside, I can't hold with traffic so I ride on sidewalk. Some sidewalks are clear, but there is ice or "compressed" snow on certain parts. Without a studded tyre it's not possible to brake or change direction. Where I should put screws in tyre? In middle or at sides of tyre?

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    "Because it's too cold outside, I can't hold with traffic so I ride on sidewalk." This sentence does not make any sense to me: What is the connection between temperature and your ability to "hold with traffic"? I see none. And riding on the sidewalks depends on laws only. Either you are forced, or allowed, or forbidden. Since you are speaking of sidewalk, the "allowed" option is largely gone - you are generally either forced or forbidden. Ride where you are supposed to ride, and train your local car drivers to accept that fact. It works. Been there, done that. Dec 18, 2018 at 8:35
  • If your bike has disk brakes, you can fashion some tyre chains for your wheels. These don't work with rim brakes though.
    – Criggie
    Dec 18, 2018 at 9:09
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    @cmaster the cold does slow you down. Tires and lubricants become stiff, thick clothing increases air resistance, it is more difficult to breathe and you have to be careful to not sweat because wet clothes will freeze you. And on top of this all, there may be loose snow on the part of road you can actually ride on.
    – ojs
    Dec 18, 2018 at 10:29
  • @ojs If you are fearing clothes becoming too wet from sweating, you are wearing too much clothes. I always dress in such a way that I'm just about comfortable at full power output after a few kilometers. The first kilometers are fresh, but the rest is just perfect. With that, my slow-down in winter is just about one kilometer per hour, which is completely irrelevant when dealing with cars. Dec 18, 2018 at 10:37
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    Problem is that at "high" speeds I must breath thru my mouth. Air is cold so in most cases I get Laryngitis and then get sick. That is reason why I ride on sidewalks at winter. And yes, I should ride on the road but police don't care about that too much here in my town.
    – Pararera
    Dec 18, 2018 at 11:18

2 Answers 2


You can use good quality ice tires with carbide studs on bare concrete or tarmac, without undue wear on the studs.

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    Wait, there is studdes tyres to buy?
    – Pararera
    Dec 17, 2018 at 21:27
  • Yep, see schwalbetires.com/bike_tires/studded for example. Note their FAQ says you can ride on non ice or snow covered roads. Dec 17, 2018 at 21:45
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    @SilvioCro well my point is they are a commercially available product, several manufacturers offer them. Dec 17, 2018 at 21:53
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    I tend to fit these to my commuter hybrid every winter. We don't get much snow, but black ice is a concern. They're really good - riding on an icy road becomes like riding on a wet road. The only penalty is that they're noisy on the road surface. Search for advice on pressure in various conditions (including here, we've discussed it before).
    – Chris H
    Dec 17, 2018 at 22:35
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    @Rider_X that may be true, but the studs themselves are edges too, and seem to bite the tarmac a little. In a few years of running them I've never had that sort of unexpected floaty feeling where you've got no control only momentum, but I have on normal tyres below freezing (luckily briefly enough to get to the other side then recover grip, but long enough to find that the back brake did essentially nothing). Whether studs or compound they're better in our (variable, generally mild and damp) winter than my usual marathon plus, for wet roads, roads covered in wet leaves, that kind of thing.
    – Chris H
    Dec 19, 2018 at 6:51

Studded tires are perfectly usable on dry tarmac. They are noisy, have more resistance for rolling, can be damaged during hard braking and may be slippery on metal surfaces like rails. Hence using them all the year round is not attractive. But it is not so that with them you are bound to snow and ice only.

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