At one point I considered doing some FE testing with different size tires but decided against it due to the cost of tire mounting.
Well that's part of the issue for me - I'm a tinkerer, and without the ability to change my own tires I feel somewhat impotent.
Most shops don't like to install tires from Tire Rack (or wherever), mostly because they don't make any money doing it. The shop where I used to work was a "preferred installer" but we would always take the opportunity to check the car to see what else it needs (brakes etc.) and do an upsell.
And I like the option to mount my own snowtires without paying $80 to put them on, then $80 to change back to non-snow tires in the springtime.
And if all of my friends & relatives bought tires on their own (BJs, tire rack, tiremonkey, whatever) instead of through retail, I could save a lot of money for a lot of people.
Anyhow, I've been watching craigslist and ebay and whatnot, but the machines on there tend to either be relics or expensive. But maybe those are my only options....
There are DIYs out there for people who want to install their own tires at home .. it's not for the faint of heart, though. And your machine that you posted ... at 1900$ ... you would want to be doing a fair bit of tire mounting to justify that .... unless you want to start a little home business?
And your machine that you posted ... at 1900$ ... you would want to be doing a fair bit of tire mounting to justify that .... unless you want to start a little home business?
Actually we plan on doing a fair amount of tires. I would probably do 4 or 8 per week (i.e. 1 or 2 cars), more during snow tire changeover season.
Between my 4 cars, my brothers 4 cars, my wife, parents, all of my friends, coworkers, churchmembers, and neighbors in my condo, I know a lot of people that are constantly paying too much for tire service. And my brother knows a lot of people too! We could easily keep the machines busy.
It won't take much to recover the investment - if you figure $600 for a set of tires (installed) at a tire store, and compare that to DIY + tire rack, the savings is probably easily $200 per set of 4 tires compared to straight retail. Not to mention snow tire changeovers. And when we're doing tires for friends & colleagues, etc., I'm sure they wouldn't mind chipping in $25 per car for the work.
Not to mention then we don't have to go through the arduous process of dealing with a tire store who will tell you that you need your strut fluid changed, waiting in a noisy waiting room with screaming kids, etc.
And the most important reason - if you want something done *right*, do it yourself! (I'm very anal about my tire balancing!)