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Old AJ's silicone tires

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  • Old AJ's silicone tires

    I won a pair of old AJ's silicone tires. They have some spots I’m considering trying to repair. One tire has a very small chunk missing, the other has tear that looks like it could break-off at any time.
    I have a clear self-leveling Dow Corning silicone and black Permatex silicone adhesive, both of which I’ve used to coat sponge tires. I’m not sure which would work better in this case, or if there is another option.
    Just wanted to get your thoughts about this and learn from anything you may have tried.

    Thanks,
    Ron

  • #2
    It looks like those are the AJ's that have the silicone molded on to an aluminum wheel. I tried those back in the day and was not impressed with their grip. In addition the formulation used for those makes for a tire than is much more fragile than what is often used for modern silicone tires. I presume that the wheels are made to go on a threaded axle. If it was me I would replace the threaded axle with a plain one and buy CNC machined wheels with more durable silicone tires to fit. I can't think of any way of repairing the tires that you have beyond using silicone from a tube. Filling in a missing chunk would take several applications and you would need to smooth out the patch somehow. The compound that AJ's used is easy to sand, but the patch might get torn off if you try to true up the tire. I guess that you will have to try it and see what happens. I did a search to see if anyone was still selling those tires/wheels and stumbled on this: http://slotblog.net/topic/45843-way-...-back-to-life/

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    • #3
      It looks like those are the AJ's that have the silicone molded on to an aluminum wheel. I tried those back in the day and was not impressed with their grip. In addition the formulation used for those makes for a tire than is much more fragile than what is often used for modern silicone tires. I presume that the wheels are made to go on a threaded axle. If it was me I would replace the threaded axle with a plain one and buy CNC machined wheels with more durable silicone tires to fit. I can't think of any way of repairing the tires that you have beyond using silicone from a tube. Filling in a missing chunk would take several applications and you would need to smooth out the patch somehow. The compound that AJ's used is easy to sand, but the patch might get torn off if you try to true up the tire. I guess that you will have to try it and see what happens. I did a search to see if anyone was still selling those tires/wheels and stumbled on this: http://slotblog.net/topic/45843-way-...-back-to-life/ It looks like you found that too.

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      • #4
        I've never really been able to patch any 60's silicones. The rubber formulas of Aj's, Cox and Candies have not aged well and once they start chunking they just keep doing it. I have repired some Cox sisliks with the Permatex silicone, but they only set on the shelf after that. I don't think they would last long with hard running.

        Matt B
        So. In
        Crashers

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        • #5
          I have some of the old Aj's tires that I run on my Vintage cars, both 1/32 and 1/24 cars. I have used them without any chunking problems. Some of the tires have had flat spots that I have been able to sand out of the tires. On my 1/32 Atlas F-1 Ferrari, with correct inserts in the wheels of course, it has placed well in our racing. I will put a block under the car when it is being stored to prevent any damage to the tires. With the clubs schedule, it may be 3 years before the car is put back on the track for racing again. We will be racing the 1/32 Vintage F-1 cars this year, so I just ran some laps with the Aj's wheel and tire on the Atlas car and I hope to win the series again. ( It is the only series I can win) It is the car and not the driver that will win. I just keep the tires clean so the traction is very good with these tires.

          Jim W

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          • mattb
            mattb commented
            Editing a comment
            Jim the block under the car is a good idea. I have lots of vintage shelf cars and I go to Home Depot and get the 1 inch by 1/4 inch storm door trim.. I cut it in pieces about 3-4 inches long.

        • #6
          Thanks guys. I won't use these for any serious racing, but will run them when I'm just goofing around on my home track. I used the self-leveling stuff I have and the repairs turned-out OK. They are good enough, I will not true them.

          Jim, I'm encouraged to hear you've been able to sand-out flat spots. I've got a few pair that have spots mild enough to use the tires, but you can hear them "thump". And I like the way you think, when I put my cars on the shelf they are either upside down or on a block!

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