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Discussion Starter #1
I wanted to purchase a set of snow chain, "just in case".
We live in western Washington and cross the Cascade mountains at least once a month in the winter. The weather can quickly turn nasty. Last weekend I checked the DOT cameras before I left home; by the time I hit Stevens Pass elevation 4ooo ft (1 hour later) it was covered in snow & ice. Cars & trucks spun out and stuck. My RTL weaved it's way through traffic beautifully.

I called Les Schwabb Tires to see if they had chains, they recommended placing them on the front tires. My wife stopped by the local Les Schwabb store and they sold her rear wheel chains. BTW, the RTL was a big hit.

So, do they go on the FRONT or the REAR???:confused:
 

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I have always put my chains on my front wheels. The traction on the drive/steering wheels is most important to me.

I got mine at Schawbb as well of course since I'm a guy they don't try to tell me where they are best used. My wife called once and they told her that she should really have 2 sets but at least 1 set for the front should get you by. I guess they figure you will be in 4wd if you need chains so your front tires will be pulling as much as well as steering.

This has worked well on Durango and my CRV. I'm confident it will work on my RL as well.
 

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My recollection is that the owner's manual says put them on the front, which is consistent with any AWD I have had, and seems obvious given what Zemog said.

I got the Les Schwab 'easy-on' chains as well, but only to have them in the trunk to be legal. If you travel Stevens often, I'm sure you know that a 4WD/AWD vehicle can pass the Chains Required sign if you have M+S rated tires. I have driven only AWD cars for about the last 20 yrs, and I can't remember the last time I put chains on.

Where on the east-side do you travel to? I grew up over there, but have been a wet-sider since the 70s.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the tips. The chains are only for last resort…but $80 is cheep insurance for those slick situations. I’m confident in the RTL’s ability, last weekend it preformed beautifully in the snow as well as the mud. We crossed over the back end of Badger Mountain. Some of the “roads” we traveled down were really just tire ruts in a field. We were up to our rims several times in mud; it slipped a couple of times, but I never had to leave the regular Drive setting.

We have a small place in Sun Cove near Lake Chelan; winter can be almost as much fun as summer. Our new RTL will insure that we don’t miss anything…..
 

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NW Geocacher said:
Thanks for the tips. The chains are only for last resort…but $80 is cheep insurance for those slick situations. I’m confident in the RTL’s ability, last weekend it preformed beautifully in the snow as well as the mud. We crossed over the back end of Badger Mountain. Some of the “roads” we traveled down were really just tire ruts in a field. We were up to our rims several times in mud; it slipped a couple of times, but I never had to leave the regular Drive setting.

We have a small place in Sun Cove near Lake Chelan; winter can be almost as much fun as summer. Our new RTL will insure that we don’t miss anything…..
Small world! I grew up on a wheat farm in Waterville, our ski hill was on Badger Mt. We used to sled on the long grade on the North end.... I forget what we used to call that grade. You must have gone down the back way to Palisades? Spent weekends on Lake Chelan... but where is Sun Cove? If you went up Pine Canyon from the river, I bet the RL gave you a nice ride!:)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Sun Cove is a community on US 97, 20 miles north of Wenatchee. We across the Columbia at the tunnel on 97a
Last weekend we headed south from downtown Douglas. At Alstown (a ghost town) we headed south again, the road turned to just ruts at the intersection of 4th & J.....We then backtracked and went up Titchenal Canyon, South on Sheehan RD and down Rock Island Grade....
 

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'Downtown' Douglas is 2 miles south of the farm I grew up on. We used to haul some of our wheat to Douglas. Sounds like a fun drive!
I figured Sun Cove might be the community we see going up the grade across the river before the tunnel. Sometimes we go up the Douglas Co. side of the river when going to Chelan, crossing on the new BeeBe bridge. As a kid, we crossed the river on the ferry at Entiat (before Rocky Reach dam was built) or the old one lane suspension bridge at BeeBe. You can still see the towers for that bridge alongside the new one.

Great area over there. I always think about moving back.
 

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I was wondering..what do you all prefer? Snow Chains or Cables? X cross or zig zag patterns. I've use snow cables with zigzag pattern with no problems..what do you guys prefer using?
 

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I have and love the Les Schwab Quick Fit Diamond pattern chains. They take 5 minutes to install and cut through everything.

I have used other chains / cables and none compare to these.
 

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My experience over Donner Summit (I-80 north of Lake Tahoe) has been the diamond/criss-cross pattern chain. The cables will work for a while but are not meant for long life. If you only plan on having to use them a few times in your life, the cables are fine. If you think the potential is there to use the chains/cables often, definitely spend the extra money and get chains. The diamond/criss-cross pattern is much, much quieter and smoother.

The quick fit criss-cross chains are, in my opinion, the only way to go.

I once lost both sets of cables on one trip. I had already passed the summit and was on the way down to Reno (the steep side of the range). What was normally a hour long trip, took 7 hours!! I will never go back to cables again.
 

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So, what do you guys/ladies prefer? Chains or Cables? I was thinking of buying some Cables in Z or X pattern type....what do you all prefer and used?:confused:
 

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I'm listening to the guy in Reno. :D
I want to go up there just to see what my Ridge is made of. I've never driven in the snow, but I'm well prepared with info. There's even some in your Owner's Manual, folks.
I'm up for the experience. Trouble is, there's all those danged skiers! ;)
Well, I'm off to breakfast, then the tire chain store. Thanks for all the good advice.
 

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kanji said:
So, what do you guys/ladies prefer? Chains or Cables? I was thinking of buying some Cables in Z or X pattern type....what do you all prefer and used?:confused:
While cables have gotten better thru the years chains generally last longer and are easier to repair if you throw a link. Go with a diamond pattern.

As Nevada said he has thrown both sets of cables on 1 trip. In my 20 years of traveling up to mountains to go skiing I don't think I have ever seen a set of chains but I've seen a land-fill's worth of cables.

Another reason to buy chains is how many big rigs do you see with cables, ZERO (no not the ROC moderator), they all use chains.
 

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I checked the manual, and it says not to use steel chains. They say if you have to use something, use cables. Chains may damage brake lines, etc. :eek: I'm going to talk to Les Schwartz and a couple other dealers tomorrow and get their opinions.
Thing is, probably the only thing I'll ever use them for is to get me by the checkpoints. As long as I don't go seriously off-road I think the Ridge will do fine.
We'll see. eh?
Hey Garth, you gonna come pull me out? :p What's your mobile #? (Kidding)
Have fun, all. This ain't no work truck.
 
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