How-To & Tech

How to pick your stud

Bigger isn't always better, but pattern matters
By Olav Aaen
Published: January 1, 2005
Safety is the No. 1 reason to put studs in your track. With the steady advance in track design, we're seeing good bite in normal snow conditions, like hardpack and looser deep snow. It's when you hit an ice patch in front of a road crossing, or in a well used fast corner on the trail that studs become life savers. You don't want to overshoot the crossing and find yourself in the middle of a busy road. Studs also can give you the ability to stay on your side of the trail and not drift into the path of oncoming drivers. High-speed stability on icy lakes and rivers is also important. Let's face it, the rubber ribs and paddles may be great on snow but rubber doesn't penetrate hard ice very well. Studs are as old as the snowmobile itself, and were used for traction on ice long before snowmobiles where invented.
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