Sand Tire Product Review
Since current UTVs all suffer from lack of power in the dunes, we have decided to take a hard look at what performance gains can be had with different tire scenarios.
There are a few principles that we will look at:
Fullerton Sand Sports has 12 x 10 Douglas Wheels specially made for this application to increase the contact patch of the tire to the sand.
For all the tires we tested, two wheel drive will get you most everywhere except the steepest hills. For hill climbing, All-Wheel-Drive (AWD) is much more effective and necessary for the steep stuff.
For normal dune rides, I prefer two wheel drive over AWD. In two wheel drive, the rear end will break free and power slides are tons of fun.
1. Front – Stock, Rear – Stock
Stock wheels and tires do pretty well in the dunes. Our Polaris RZR could go pretty much everywhere except some of the steep hills. The benefit to a knobby tire is durability and the ability to handle dual purpose terrain (dune & dirt).
If you are in the dunes for any period of time, and want better performance in the sand, paddle tires can help.
Hill Climb – I was unable to climb Test Hill with stock tires. I made it almost to the top, but just couldn’t pull the last 20 feet. Air pressure was set to 4psi front and rear and the RZR was in AWD.
2. Rear 8 Paddle
We quickly determined that our “Test Mule” didn’t have the power to properly spin the 8 paddle rear tires. This tire is most likely a good choice once you have added exhaust, intake and fuel controller or done more significant engine work.
RPM was lowered in comparison to OEM tires and 7 paddle tires. The 8 paddle tire definitely adds some climbing ability over stock, but we felt the 7 paddle was better for a stock RZR.
Hill Climb – I was able to climb Test Hill with 8 paddle rear tires in AWD.
2. Front – Stock, Rear 7 Paddle
Hill Climb – I was able to climb Test Hill with 7 paddle rear tires and stock front tires in AWD.
3. Front – mohawk with paddles, Rear – 7 Paddle
Hill Climb – I was able to climb Test Hill with 7 paddle rear tires and mohawk/paddle front tires in AWD. This combo felt like it had the most “climbing” power.
For normal dune rides, I did not like the feel of the paddles up front.
4. Front – mohawk, Rear – 7 Paddle
Hill Climb – I was able to climb Test Hill with 7 paddle rear tires and mohawk front tires in AWD. Speed at the top of Test Hill was just under 10mph on the GPS (slightly lower than the mohawk/paddle combo).
mohawk and 7 Paddle
This combination looks great and performs well. Hill climbing is much improved over stock. Two wheel drive is a lot of fun. The rear end breaks free pretty easy and the front mohawks help keep the front end tracking. The extra track width definitely increases stability, even with a long travel kit.
More Sand Tire Reviews:
Fullerton Sand Sports
UTV Product Reviews