DIY Tire Chains

Making your own bicycle tire chains was not as hard as I thought it would be. I went to a local hardware store and picked up a few things I needed for this project. It turned out to be fairly inexpensive.

Things I picked up were:
15″ of braided chain $7.20
15″ of 1/16 uncoated cable (picture frame wire) $3.15
3 packs of 1/16 cable ferrule (used to bind wire together) $.78 a pack
A whopping grand total of $13.66 tax included.

Tools needed: needle nose pliers, wire stripper, wire cutter, and zip ties.

First let some air out of your tires.

Then split the chain links into 6 links a strand.

6 link strands

Place the first strand of links on the tire and secure with a zip tie. Subsequent strands are spaced evenly with a 6 link strand.


Once the chain links are in place, route the cable through the end links and secure with cable ferrule.


Ensure the cable is taut. I wrapped the cable around the wire cutter and pulled to get leverage.


Finished product. I left the zip ties in place to ensure the chains would not move.

tire chain

Lastly, inflate tires for normal use.