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Thread: Snowchains!

  1. #1
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Wink Snowchains!

    Can anyone suggest any resonably priced snowchains for 16" alloys?
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

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  3. #2
    icenutter's Avatar
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    It says in the manual for my A4 (B5) that you can't fit snowchains to 16" wheels. Dunno about A6s though...

    Eitherway I'm going for winter tyres and hoping the snow isn't really deep

  4. #3
    meatychi's Avatar
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    hmmm i know they can be fitted but only on the front and I dont want to pay for the well overpriced OEM's
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

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    icenutter's Avatar
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    If you are going to the continent, you can pick them up much cheaper in the supermarkets there. There's a Champion (i think) supermarket on the way out of Alberville that sells them for instance.

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    I bought a set a few years ago from www.skidrive.co.uk in Cambridge. They were around £60 for chains to fit 205/55R16 tyres. Typically I never needed to use them and sold them on ebay after we changed our car.

    Our A4 has 235/45R17 wheels so can't take chains. I bought Autosocks size 645 instead from www.roofbox.co.uk for a shade under £70. Haven't had a chance to use them yet. Might be worth a look.

  7. #6
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Thanks Macduff - i'll check out Skidrive!

    If anyone has a set that they want to part with then PM me!
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

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    DPM
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  9. #8
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Im driving over to the aLps at the end of Jan! Snow permitting!
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

  10. #9
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    I drove to Austria in Feb this year in my A6.

    Wait until you get close and you'll find them in all the hypermarkets and petrol stations.

    They are a ***** to put on if you've never done it before. I broke mine twice during use. No one told me that you're not supposed to go over 30mph in them.

    Saying that you'll find the roads virtually clear until you need to park. thats when you need them most.

    Quick tip. Fit them, drive about 100 yards and tighten them again.


    Cheers

    Simon

  11. #10
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Cheers Si! can yu tell me how much they were?

    What size rims do you have?
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

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    Quote Originally Posted by simonwjones
    They are a ***** to put on if you've never done it before. I broke mine twice during use. No one told me that you're not supposed to go over 30mph in them.
    The ones I bought from SkiDrive were a piece of pi$$ to put on. However I would recommend doing it a couple of times when it's nice weather as my wife couldn't put them on when she was stopped at the side of the road in the dark with snow falling. I'd been meaning to show her how to put them on - guess who wasn't popular that night :-D

    Ours came with a clear warning not to exceed 30mph/50kph

  13. #12
    simonwjones's Avatar
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    I think I paid about 125 euros for them. They were good though and came with 2 spare repair links ( Luckily)

    When its snowing outside, freezing and dark you tend not to read the small print with the German Instructions.

    My wheels are the standard A6 205/55/16"

    The only drawback with snowchains is the other idiots who dont have them on so you end up stuck anyway as you cant get past as they've blocked the autobaun.

    Ending up sleeping the night in the car, going nowhere.

    My mate drives to Austria on a regular basis during the winter ( as you can guess we both Ski) he doesnt bother with snowchains but has a set of proper winter tyres and never as a problem.

    Be aware that in some parts its ILLEGAL to drive up the mountains without carrying snowchains


    Cheers

    Simon

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    Have you checked your local Halfords?

    They do a limited range of snowchains which will do the job, and they come with some repair links too. I got some for my 17" wheels, and they were about 50 IIRC. I think the size you need is '80', but all the tyres each size will fit are listed on the side of the box.

    As others have suggested, the hypermarkets and garages do sell chains, but I chose to buy them at home so I could practice putting them on and off! It's good advice!

    A mate said putting snow chains on was like hooking/unhooking your girlfriends bra, but I was never any good at that either...
    Audi S3 - 2002MY - Denim Blue - Gone
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    Quote Originally Posted by simonwjones
    I think I paid about 125 euros for them
    That seems a bit pricey as mine were 60 which is less than 90.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tooks
    I got some for my 17" wheels, and they were about 50 IIRC. I think the size you need is '80', but all the tyres each size will fit are listed on the side of the box.
    Have you used them yet? I ask because my A4 manual says not to use chains on wheels which are 17" and above. I think there's a clearance issue with the suspension. May not be an issue on an A3 but I'd check your manual if you haven't already used them successfully.

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    Yes, used them twice, but ironically both times in this country! The roads in Austria and France where I've driven too were kept pretty clear even in snowstorms.

    I got stuck just outside Grantham on the A607 a couple of years ago, and also in Yorkshire last January.

    Even on my quattro, they were needed to get somewhere with any degree of control!

    I know the guidebook talks about 16" being the max, but I think they're just covering their backsides really. As long as you test fit them, check that everything clears, and don't drive too quickly, then they're fine.
    Audi S3 - 2002MY - Denim Blue - Gone
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  17. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tooks
    I know the guidebook talks about 16" being the max, but I think they're just covering their backsides really. As long as you test fit them, check that everything clears, and don't drive too quickly, then they're fine.
    You're probably right but I went for the Autosocks instead just to be safe as they look like they won't stick out as far as chains

  18. #17
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Hmmm I managed to find these two options:

    KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220
    Code: KBTS1220
    Our price: from 49.85
    Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001) :also known as - Audi S6 Avant
    KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220
    Images loading
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    KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220
    KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220
    Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001) :KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220
    KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220:also known as - Audi S6 Avant
    KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220:Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001)
    Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001) :KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220

    KWB (Kettenwerk Brckl) was established over 275 years ago at Brckl in Austria, and by the turn of the 20th century was a specialist in lifting chains, including anchor chain. KWB is now part of Austria's pewag group, and continues to design and manufacture a very wide range of chain products for sale worldwide. They're a very well known brand in the Alps, famous for their car and truck chains.

    KWB's 'Tempomatic Special' is a top quality car chain, made from a nickel-manganese alloy steel. It's been designed for use with low profile tyres, with a shape which reduces the potential for touching and marking the alloy rims during use.

    Other features:

    * The chain is held on a cable hoop, out of sight behind the tyre in these pictures; the basic fitting system is the same as you'll find on almost all modern chains except for e.g. RUD's automatic chains.
    * "Stationary fitting", i.e. no need to move the car during the fitting process.
    * The links have a hammered flat "square section" which provides better traction and slightly quieter running.
    * The chains are reversible for longer life, but when not more than 40% of any link section has been worn out on both sides, the chains should be recycled. It stands to reason that chain wear happens relatively quickly when used on tarmac.
    * Manufacturer's site = www.kwb-ketten.at

    AND

    RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784
    Code: RD027-84
    Our price: from 44.85
    Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001) Fit chains to 6" wheel-rims only. Quattro models - fit chains to front wheels only.:also known as - Audi S6 Avant
    RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784
    Images loading
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    RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784
    RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784
    Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001) Fit chains to 6" wheel-rims only. Quattro models - fit chains to front wheels only.:RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784
    RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784:also known as - Audi S6 Avant
    RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784:Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001) Fit chains to 6" wheel-rims only. Quattro models - fit chains to front wheels only.
    Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001) Fit chains to 6" wheel-rims only. Quattro models - fit chains to front wheels only.:RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784
    Audi A6 Avant (1998 to 2001) Fit chains to 6" wheel-rims only. Quattro models - fit chains to front wheels only.:also known as - Audi S6 Avant

    Power chains are perfect for occasional UK use or to take on the family skiing holiday.

    They are identical to the Grip chains except they incorporate the superior "cross grip" links found in RUD's more expensive chains, e.g. the easy2go chain. RUD stopped making Power chains earlier this year because they're too expensive to manufacture, so if you want a Bargain, buy a set of these ASAP. When they're gone, they're gone!

    * Cross grip links the chains are slower to make, but much stronger
    * 4mm wedge shaped chrome-manganese fine-grained alloy steel chain for better grip
    * No need to move the car when fitting
    * Quick and easy to fit
    * Reversible chain mesh for a long lifetime (but don't grind them down on the tarmac!)
    * Supplied in a strong zipped ballistic nylon bag
    * Click here to see a demonstration of how to fit these chains.

    Remarkable value!

    These are far and away our best selling chains. The 'automatic' Classic chains are better chains - you won't get your hands dirty, and the chain links are even stronger - but they are almost twice the price. Automatic chains are particularly suitable where there is only limited clearance between the top of the wheel and the wheel arch.

    Almost all competitor chains are similar to the Power, although many of them don't use the stronger cross grip link method of joining the chain sections, and some use chain which is only 3mm thick.

    A new alternative for this season is the easy2go chain. This has the same features as the Power with the additional benefits of

    * continuous re-tensioning thanks to a "Permanent Tensioning Device"
    * integrated wheel rim protection

    Click Back a page to choose the easy2go.

    Why choose RUD? Simple - they're reckoned to be the best. But don't just take our word for it; RUD are official suppliers to Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Landrover, Mercedes, Saab, Volvo, and VW, amongst others, and also supply the British Army - ample evidence that their snow chains are as good as they come.

    I think I would prefer chains to them socks - Surely they must last longer by far?
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

  19. #18
    meatychi's Avatar
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    I found three quite cheap options in the end:

    RUD Power chains (pair) no. 02784
    Code: RD027-84
    Our price: from 44.85

    KWB 'Tempomatic Special' snow chains (pair) no. 1220
    Code: KBTS1220
    Our price: from 49.85

    and

    AutoSock, size 62, one pair, no. AS62
    Code: AS62
    Our price: from 59.85

    I think of the three I would probably go for the RUD's - the socks dont look as robust and I cant imagine them lasting as long as the chains would.
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

  20. #19
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    The only problem with the socks as far as I can see, and they look a good product otherwise, is the grey area around the legality of them in some Alpine regions.

    As others have said, when the weather is bad, the police will often stop those motorists who aren't using chains, and if you haven't got any, not only are you looking at a possible fine, but they won't be letting you go any further either.

    At the moment, the socks aren't accepted as snowchain alternatives in all countries, but that might change of course.
    Audi S3 - 2002MY - Denim Blue - Gone
    VW Polo GTI - 2011MY - Candy White - Here

  21. #20
    meatychi's Avatar
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    I have just ordered these!

    RD340-84 - RUD traditional snowchains: RUD 'Easy 2 Go' chains (pair) no. 34084
    1 x £58.85 = £58.85
    GD051-2 - Free gift: "Snow glider" sledge no. GD051
    1 x £0.10 = £0.10
    DEL001 - Standard 2 to 3 day delivery (UK mainland)
    1 x £5.50 = £5.50
    Total including VAT at 17.5% : £64.45

    I will let you all know how I get on with these and it looks like I am finally going to need them. The snow has just begun to arrive in the les 3 vallees.
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

  22. #21
    icenutter's Avatar
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    Where are you ordering them from? And where are you going skiing? I'm going to Brides Les Bains (ie Meribel on the cheap) in the February half term.

  23. #22
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Morning Icenutter!

    I have ordered them from ROOFBOX.CO.UK - Never used them before but the price seems reasonable.

    I will be heading out to the 3 Vallees - Les Menuires at the end of the month for a week. 10 hour drive from Calais! Should be an experience!

    Hopefully the snow will keep coming down until then. I didn't think it was coming.

    Do you ski or board?

    Cant quite make out your motor from your pic - What you driving?
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

  24. #23
    icenutter's Avatar
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    We were a little worried about the snow as well - we had some friends out in Alpe d'uez over xmas and there was hardly any at all.

    Me? I ski, but am going to try a morning boarding this time. My car is a B5 A4 1.9 tdi...with winter tyres

    Have you driven to the alps before? Some tips; don't even consider going via Paris its slower and you will probably die on the Peripherique. After Dijon take the A39 rather than the A6 - its much quieter and you avoid Lyon. If the cost of tolls are an issue you can take two changes of routes that don't add on much time; from near Challons-en-Champagne you can go via St-Dizer and rejoin the autoroute at Chaumont - if you look carefully on the map quite a lot of this road is dual carriageway. And rather than going via Chambery you can go through Annecy and Alberville - Annecy can get very busy though at peak times.

    You might find http://www.mappy.fr handy. It does routeplans that include speed camera alerts and miniature pictures of the road signs.

    Finally the road signing system on the continent is different to the UK's - they go on destination rather than road number...

    Sorry if you have been loads of times and this is all old news.

    Here's to first tracks

  25. #24
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Cheers for the advice.

    I was a passenger last year but this will be the first time I will be in the cockpit.

    I'll look into the route planner you talked about.

    My chains arrived today - super service roofbox!

    I'll try fitting them tomorrow!
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

  26. #25
    mas
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    could I just ask how you got on ?

    did you need the chains and were they easy to use ?

  27. #26
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    The Chains did arrive but one of them had been manufactured incorrectly, so I sent them back and the replacements that were returned to me were the wrong ones. When I sent the second ones back the chaps at RUD claimed that there was nothing wrong but there clearly was!

    ROOFBOX sent yet another set to me which were the right size and manufactured correctly. A big thumbs up to them as they delivered the goods. It must have cost them more in courier charges than the chains were actually worth!

    Fitting these chains is a breeze and I would recommend these to everyone. Even with my lower sports suspension the chains went on in minutes.

    After all that I didnt get to use them in the end as the roads were well maintained and clear all the way to the resort. I found that my quattro handled the compact snow that was apparent on some of the roads, really well and suffered from no slippage.

    Snowchains, I think are a legal requirement over in France. So make sure you have some!
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

 

 

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