Sheet Metal Screws
Price Paid: $5
This has been my preferred solution for winter running for 20 years. There is nothing special about the "kits" of screws being sold for $20 in stores. They are selling you 50 cents worth of screws for $20.
- Go to a hardware store.
- Ask for 3/8" or 1/2" galvanized (or stainless if you want to splurge) sheet metal screws
- Get a box of 100 (that lasts me about 3 years)
- Take your running shoes (or any rubber soled boot for that matter)
- Drill very small (< 1/16") pilot holes in 15 to 20 raised studs on the sole of each shoe
- Use a 1/4" socket or screw driver to drive the screws into the holes
Putting a dab of glue on the screws will help keep them in longer and seal the holes
They will fall out through the season so replace as needed (hence buying in bulk)
- absolute best fit as they are mated to your shoes
- easy to repair and replace
- they don't all fall off at once leaving you without any traction while running
- permanent modification so you will need to have a designated winter running shoe
- Ice: superb, stable ascending and descending
- packed snow: better than running shoe alone, not as good as chains
- powder: no improvement
- dirt / sand: better than shoe alone
- rocks: can slip especially as the screw edges wear down and loose "bite"