Tire Size with Python and Pandas

Tire Size with Python and Pandas

Trying to sort out the what tires are available, and will work with a vehicle is ridiculously frustrating. We ordered a new base model F-150 in February. It its supposed to arrive this month in a week or so. Ever since the 90's I have run BFGoodrich All-Terrain K/O's on my trucks, and absolutely love the grip they have on gravel roads. A while back I started trying to figure out what the options are for our new truck, and it quickly became annoyingly frustrating trying to sort out what the options are. Since I manipulate data for a living, it did not take long before I got annoyed, and just applied Python and Pandas (think Excel on steroids) to figure out what our options are.

First, we need to start with our constraints. The truck comes with 17x7.5 inch rims, and I do not want to buy new rims, so the tires have to fit on these rims. Reading online forums, 33 inches appears to be when gas mileage starts going down, so we want to be less than 33 inches.

Next, I found a website listing all the available sizes for the BFG K/O's in a table. The only problem is, there is no way to filter or sort the table. Trying to discern available options taking into account rim size, and comparing between the metric ratio sizes and the imperial (inches) was next to impossible.

Most of my time at work is spent plowing through mountains of data to extract relevant data and discern something resembling information from this data. This problem, selecting a tire size, seemed eerily similar to what I spend most days tackling. About an hour later, with the help of Python and Pandas, I was able to have a good idea of what tire size I should look for.

Using this method, it was pretty easy to discern the best option are the LT285/70R17 load range C tires. They are just under 33 inches and I do not have a need for heavier higher load range E tires. This truck is going to be doing duty hauling a lot of skis, kayaks and rafts, but I do not have a need for the higher E load rating. These tires, compared to the same size tires carrying an E rating, weigh nearly eight pounds less per tire. Although we are putting some heavier tires on the truck, it still does not hurt to opt for less unsprung weight. This will help the ride a bit on the rough forest roads we regularly find ourselves on, and also help somewhat with mileage.