The Tacoma Gets an upgrade – Cooper’s Discoverer STTs
A few weeks ago I got a call from a friend. Will Jenkins at Willtohunt.com had been contacted by Cooper Tire. They were looking for someone willing to put their Discoverer STT tire through its mud paces and report on how it handles to muck and mire. Will knew just the man and truck for the task, and gave me a call.
Life is no fun staying clean
Always looking for an excuse to play in the mud, ok, so I don’t always need an excuse, I happily accepted the challenge. Last Friday the tires were mounted on the Tacoma at Quality Tire Service (800-717-2909) in Emmitsburg, MD. Bob and Philip Mort mounted the 265/75R16 new Cooper Discoverer STTs on the Tacoma using a tire balancing product that I had read about and had always been interested in trying. Bob informed me that he had been using Equal Tire Performance for many years with great results.
Equal Tire Performance is a small bag of poly beads you drop into the tire before mounting which balances the tire without the need to install wheel weights. According to Bob, EQUAL Tire Performance adapts, responds to and dampens vibrations at the tire footprint. It compensates for irregularities found in the tire and wheel assembly and at the tire road surface contact. Because EQUAL Tire Performance is free to move inside the tire, it continuously responds to changes in speed, tread wear, the load, and road conditions. When I left the shop, I experienced no tire wobble with perfectly balanced tires and best of all no tire weights on the rims to get knocked off from hard trail driving. Seems like a good idea to me, only time will tell.
Nice deep lugs and I really like the look of those shoulders
Cooper Tires Discoverer STT
The new Cooper Tires Discoverer STTs mounted on the truck looked awesome. The Discoverer STT is Cooper’s premium high-void, off-road light truck traction tire designed for off-road traction, think mud. The heavy duty carcass of the Discoverer STT is constructed of two radial polyester body plies and one angled polyester body ply to provide 3 full plies of protection for superior resistance to impact breaks and bruising, known as Armor-Tek3. Looking over the newly mounted tires, I really liked the look of the deep buttress lugs, notched and scalloped shoulder lugs, and the center traction zone. How will they perform on the muddy, rocky trails of Virginia? Next weekend we’ll get to find out.
But before the trail running camping trip planned for next weekend at The Cove Campground a few miles west of Winchester, VA.; I had some work to do. The Tacoma was in need of a little TLC.
Stopping to get supplies, time for some TLC
Motivated by the new clean tires on the truck, I spent over 8 hours on Saturday, cleaning the truck inside and out, a job not done since early this past spring. Dirt and grime from a summer of camping trips, weekly fishing trips, September goose hunting and just generally exploring had led to a messy truck. She also got a fresh oil change. I totally emptied the bed of the truck, put away the fishing rods and goose decoys and repacked the camping gear. The recovery and extra parts box even got emptied and repacked.
The big clean out
One of the first things I did to the Tacoma on the build three years ago was to remove the carpet and install a vinyl floor. While the install is less than perfect, the cleanup is a dream, wipe clean and go. The neoprene seat covers have also work great since install 3 years ago, but are beginning to show wear and are showing the dirt and grime. But that is the cool thing about seat covers; they get yucky, take them off and get new ones, a lot cheaper than replacing the seats. Maybe this spring after hunting season?
The truck looks good all cleaned up. She may have a few dents from unseen rocks and logs from hunting trip mountain trails. She may have some deep scratches from the alder branches on the Alaskan trails. She may have over 200,000 miles on the odometer. But I call that living life, and each imperfection has a story behind it. I think Hunter S. Thompson was on to something when he said “Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”
The truck is clean, oil has been changed, and best of all I got a new set of mud tires to put through their paces. Boy, it is going to be a long week at work, waiting for Friday afternoon, when we get to leave the city and head to the woods for a fun filled (muddy) weekend.