Author Topic: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?  (Read 476 times)

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Offline Charliedog

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When I got my 2013 C14 a few months ago, the previous owner had put Michelin PR4GT's on it.  The front had almost 5000 miles on it, and the rear had about 500 miles on it.  I have since put about 4000 miles on the bike, and the front is at the wear bars and cupped, and the rear still looks great. 

I had planned to replace the tires after coming back from Austin, TX, in April after the Moto-GP (I go every year), but obviously the front tire is not going to make it another 2500 miles for the round trip.  I do not plan on putting Michelins back on the bike-the steering, handling hasn't felt right to me for the last couple thousand miles, so I've been checking the front tire after every ride.

I was planning to go to Dunlop Roadsmart 3's, since I have been happy with Qualifiers, Q2's, Q3's, and RS2's on other bikes.  The one common thing is they have stiffer than average sidewalls compared to other manufacturers, and Dunlop is proud of it.  The downside is they are hard to mount-I do my own tires using a No-Mar setup.  So I am considering other tires.

This is just a thought-and I've got my flame suit on-I do have a Dunlop D214 front tire that I took of my FZ09 when I replaced both tires after the rear picked up a large nail and wasn't repairable.  The D214 is oem on the FZ09 in the US and some Kawasaki street bikes in Europe, but is more of a sport bike tire.  It is exactly the same spec on the sidewall as the PR4GT including the load and speed rating.  I'm tempted to install it just for the trip to Austin.  That tire has 1800 miles on it, I would think it would have another 2500 mostly interstate miles left in it.  As I said, tempting.

I realize April is some months away, but once the weather warms up here I'll be riding one of my other bikes with less wind protection.

Thanks for any ideas, suggestions.   

 

Offline ghostrider990

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Re: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2019, 12:08:44 pm »
Personally, I'm not a big fan of mix-matching tires.  But I don't really see the harm, since you're on a tweener set to get you through - and have a used DUnlop sitting around.

I'd probably want to consider what kind of riding you'll do in the meantime.  Front tires are designed to plow water for the rears, and utilize matched tread patterns to work in unison.  Moreover, a stiffer sidewall on the dunlop can cause some unexpected handling and suspension responses.

If you're just gonna cruise around at normal touring pace, and simply bide your time until you buy and mount a new set for the summer -- I'd say go for it!
But just understand (and I'm sure you do) that you should expect some non-linear handling responses from a mix-matched set.
I doubt it will be a hindrance to your normal riding habits, but be cautious if you decide to wick it up and ride a bit more aggressively.

Good luck.

gr
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Offline ZXtasy

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Re: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2019, 01:15:56 pm »
I do my own tires too and am a cheap bastid sometimes, so right now I am using up a track day Dunlop Q3 on the front and am surprised how well it handles and feels on my 2013. I have been super impressed with the Michelin Road 5 (on Bandit 1250) and looove the Power RS combo in my ZX-10 so much I think I will try them on the Connie and be happy if they only get 3500!

SOme run the Q3 Dunlops on the Connie for the same reason, great grip if you run on the sporty side. You should be fine using up your used tire. As far as the stiff sidewalls I hear ya! Noting is worse than a cold Michelin Commander or ME 888 trying to go on a 15 or 16 inch cruiser rim...aaaargh, I will not do them anymore for under 60 bucks each ff the bike. (my machine is a Wicko manual though)
2013 ZG-1400, 2005 ZX-10R (Nekkid), 2012 TW-200, 1999 TW-200....and more to come.

Offline Charliedog

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Re: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2019, 03:43:19 pm »
Thanks for the replies, guys.  I don't push the C14, I didn't push the C10.  I tend to ride my Connie either when it's cold or I'm going some states away.


Offline connie_rider

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Re: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2019, 02:13:59 pm »
Charliedog, I had a set of the Shinko Verge 2's on my bike.
They cost about 1/2 of what the premium tires cost and I hoped they would work out for me.
They handled well, but I didn't like the longevity when playing in the twisties.

With the riding style you noted, one on the front would be a good/inexpensive way to install a tire that would last until your ready to do both tires.

Ride safe, Ted
14 Connie (Traveler II) / 03 Connie (Buddy)
Gone but not forgotten; 87 and 00 Connies..

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Offline Charliedog

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Re: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2019, 03:26:01 pm »
Thanks for the suggest on the Verge 2.  I lean toward using the D214 I have rather than buying a new tire just for the trip.  I will be replacing the rear tire-even if it's technically not worn out-before going to Salt Lake City in June for the Moto-America event, that will be a 4000 mile ride for me.

Offline Red Fox

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Re: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2019, 07:44:24 pm »
So use up the tire you have on hand and then go to replacing front/rear as a set afterwards.  A new tire complete set handles so well for me - and everyone, I'm thinking; riding is a love, a recreation so much that the savings of $17 here or there is less important.

My tires are the Avon sport touring tires; in my riding the front and rear wear close enough at the same rate that I'm not tempted to fine tune the cost accounting sheet.

Best.
TryCities, WA.    2011  C-14, silver; 53,000 miles.

Offline ghostrider990

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Re: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?
« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2019, 12:25:25 pm »
So use up the tire you have on hand and then go to replacing front/rear as a set afterwards.  A new tire complete set handles so well for me - and everyone, I'm thinking; riding is a love, a recreation so much that the savings of $17 here or there is less important.

I agree with this premise:  I can really notice a difference in handling, tip-in and stability when I mount a new set of tires.  I've had issues with uneven tire wear since I bought my '12 new, and rarely get to the cords because of this.
I do tend to replace my tires at least once a year, given I ride about 5-7k miles/yr, on THIS bike.
With the Traxxion/Penske upgrade on it's way -- that will change things, and I'm looking forward to getting my tires completely worn off before replacing.

gr
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Offline gpd323

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Re: Looking to replace just the front tire, at least temporarily. Ideas?
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2019, 03:53:09 pm »
I have done this all the time because I wear out the front tire way before the rear. Running the GT's I get 2 fronts to one rear in 6K miles and then the tires are gone. Friend of mine runs the AVON Spirit on the rear of his Blackbird and ZX14R and runs the Pirelli Diablos in front. They wear out the same ft/r the way he rides. I have never had this happen but others I know have had to buy a new tire on trips because they thought their tires would make it, nope!

I am currently running the Dunlops RS3's.
Greg Downing
Beautiful Downtown Spanaway
Washington State

Ride while you can.