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Bikers - when do you change your tyres?

Discussion in 'Biker's Cafe' started by eidolon, May 4, 2010.

  1. eidolon

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 31, 2002

    Posts: 13,861

    Location: Newcastle upon Tyne

    My little CBR125 now has 2mm left on the front and rear and feels a bit wobbly and not very confidence inspiring when riding, especially if the road is bumpy/cambered/uneven. As it's my first bike I don't know if that's just cos the bike is crap and lightweight.

    I thought that new tyres wouldn't harm so when do people change their tyres? Do you wait until you're down to the last 1mm or change well before?

    Also, do I just find a bike tyre place and ride in, ride out or am I best off taking the wheels off myself and taking them?
     
  2. Lakeland

    Soldato

    Joined: Nov 1, 2005

    Posts: 5,443

    Depends on the weather and what I'm doing really. If the weather is as it is now, I'd take them right down to the marker or just before. If it is rotten weather and I'm using my bike regularly, I'll get them replaced with 1.5mm+ left on, and if I'm going on a tour where I'll use up all the tread before I get back, I'll just replace before I set off and fore fit what was left on the tyre, as long as it isn't more than 2mm waste.. Bike is a cb500s and I get around 3k per rear 6k front

    Reasons for the dodgy rear could be three things, the tyre going off, tyre pressures (check regularly, I do it at least once a month) and the tyre being squared off i.e. there is a flat spot on the section of the tyre you use when going in a straight line, when you have this it makes the bike "tip" into a corner when you reach the part of the tyre where the flat section stops and the curve starts. Have you got and pictures of your tyres?

    If you're confident taking the wheels off do it that way, cheaper and more convenient. Make sure you get a quote for dropping the bike off and dropping wheels off though, usually save a few quid this way
     
  3. Snaggle

    Mobster

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 3,280

    Location: Northants

    When they feel wrong ...or go square .. i have taken a tyre down to 1mm but normally replace them at 2mm ish or when they dont feel right .

    i take my wheels in but im tight . expect to pay £25 for them to fit on the bike .

    Persil
     
  4. Fireskull

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Oct 31, 2006

    Posts: 9,657

    Location: Eastleigh / Winchester

    Are your pressures ok? usually get that feeling from either square off tyre or low pressures.

    But for me I usually change when:
    When they square off from too much motorway work.
    And on track either when I can feel them loosing grip or when there is barely any tread left in the middle.

    I also take my wheels off but so far I have been lucky and got my tyres changed free, but as above expect to pay £25-30 for them to fit your new tyres, its even £20 for both wheels on track.

    But usually if your doing a ride in ride out service the price for fitting can range from free to £10 fitting if you are buying the tyres from them.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2010
  5. eidolon

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 31, 2002

    Posts: 13,861

    Location: Newcastle upon Tyne

    Pressures are spot on (according to my local garage and their posh digital meter). I check them every fortnight just to be sure. The tread doesn't seem too bad but it's not great either, it might be just that the tyres themselves are crap (or more likely I'm crap and just notice every twitch that the bike does). The only thing I've noticed is that the tread on the sides is a bit of a shinier than the centre bit, feels slippier too - more plasic than rubber feeling if you know what I mean.

    Might as well get some new ones fitted anyway for piece of mind.
     
  6. Wyvern971

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Oct 6, 2004

    Posts: 1,921

    Location: London

    The shiny / plastic look is that of a new tyre (i.e. you haven't been using that part of the tyre), usually gets taken off after a few miles use.

    The jolting around with potholes and bad camber is notmal, I get this on my bikes, I've just got used to it happening, and with the state of the roads in a lot of places at the moment there will be a lot of potholes around.

    As for wear I tend to change them around 1.5mm, but seeing how expensive tyres are sometimes let it wear down a bit further, rarely to the minimum of 1mm though.

    Be weary when you fit new tyres they don't grip anywhere near as well until the top layer of crap is gone.
     
  7. D-Ranged

    Hitman

    Joined: Jan 18, 2010

    Posts: 551

    Location: London

    Just out of interest how much is a rear bike tyre on a superbike, i.e. a biggish tyre?
     
  8. Fireskull

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Oct 31, 2006

    Posts: 9,657

    Location: Eastleigh / Winchester

    Depends what type of tyre you want, anything upto £160 for a super sticky track tyre.
     
  9. PardonTheWait

    Capodecina

    Joined: Aug 26, 2003

    Posts: 24,010

    Most of my miles are/were commuting up and down A-roads rather than hooning, so my tyres would always get replaced when they went square. You can definitely feel it when they've gone square, turning in becomes more difficult - there's a resistance at a point, then it suddenly 'falls' over when it gets past the edge. You can see it as well. Easier on the rear. My front tyres didn't used to square too much obviously.
     
  10. VFR_KID

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 3, 2008

    Posts: 3,250

    Location: Fife way up in Scotland

    Yup commonly known as Chicken strips. the part you dont use.

    For your tyres to you would be between £45.00 and £80.00 (Front)

    well according to this site. You may find cheaper elsewhere
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2010
  11. eidolon

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 31, 2002

    Posts: 13,861

    Location: Newcastle upon Tyne

    I'm in catch 22 now. Those chicken strips are all shiny and don't inspire me to use them cos they aren't very grippy, thus they continue to be shiny cos they remain unused.

    Better get some new tyres and make sure I don't develop more chicken strips :)
     
  12. VFR_KID

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 3, 2008

    Posts: 3,250

    Location: Fife way up in Scotland

    Take a bit sand paper to them.

    No im not crazy. I know guys that do it.

    I wouldnt be worried about going over onto them just dont hoon it, I have 130 back tyre on a 750cc it used to have them but doesnt now as I was getting it round a bit further each time I went out. and I have 0 confidence in the 130 Lazertech things I have.
     
  13. kidloco

    Mobster

    Joined: Nov 3, 2003

    Posts: 4,639

    Location: Up-Holland

    You will always have 'chicken strips' until you wear them down, even if you got new tyres they would be totally shiny at first. Dont throw away a perfectly good set of tyres just because they have chicken strips. Mine had huge shiny strips either side when I bought, the guy mustnt of seen a corner on them!, slowly getting them down to nothing.

    What tyres are they just out of interest?
     
  14. VFR_KID

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 3, 2008

    Posts: 3,250

    Location: Fife way up in Scotland

    Just been thinking about chicken strips there. Guy I used to talk to in a club had a daytona (wasnt the quickest guy) and had realy bad chicken strips. after a few miles of someone being on the bike they were gone. so not hard to lose.

    As Kidloco advises don't get shot of them for that.

    Tyres IMHO are a bit o a mind **** once you think somethings up you cant get it out of your head.

    I was out a few weeks ago and was blazing sunshine and no matter what I couldnt feel i could trust them, went out a few days later and was warm but overcast. had one of the best rides ever, to the point I had sparks from my pegs hitting the ground.

    Its a mind game as well.
     
  15. eidolon

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 31, 2002

    Posts: 13,861

    Location: Newcastle upon Tyne

    The tyres are down to 2mm so they're not that far off needing replacing anyway so it wouldn't be a hardship to change a bit earlier.

    They're Eagle tyres (or something like that - never heard of them personally). Also they're a funny size 80/90-17 Front, 100/80-17 Rear but apparently you can fit a Michelin Pilot Sporty in 90/80-17 Front and 110/80-17 Rear which are supposed to be loads better than the standard ones (and only a tiny bit different size)
     
  16. kidloco

    Mobster

    Joined: Nov 3, 2003

    Posts: 4,639

    Location: Up-Holland

    hmm, never heard of em mate. With bike tyres its not worth get cheap rubbish or taking any chances. if there down to 2mm and you dont like em then get rid.

    Just did a quick look for tyres in the size you stated and it seems you are still pretty limited. As you said, the Michelin Pilot Sporty look your best or maybe the Pirelli MT
     
  17. eidolon

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 31, 2002

    Posts: 13,861

    Location: Newcastle upon Tyne

    Yeah, I'm not really that confident in the brand, the remaining tread or the chicken strips so maybe time to get rid. Phoned ProTyre and they're getting me a price for the tyres but they want £70 to fit them on the bike (drive in, drive out) Seems a bit excessive to me.
     
  18. VFR_KID

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 3, 2008

    Posts: 3,250

    Location: Fife way up in Scotland

    What about
    [SIZE=-1]100/80 -17 M/C 52H Bridgestone BT45
    Arent the BT range supposed to be good>?

    You get one for front to. [/SIZE]
     
  19. kidloco

    Mobster

    Joined: Nov 3, 2003

    Posts: 4,639

    Location: Up-Holland

    that does seem expensive. I remove my wheels when I get mine done as I dont trust them after a couple of incendents with loose caliper bolts :eek:!

    Last time I got em done ride in/ride out it cost me around £30 for the privalige.

    I would phone around and check other places.
     
  20. kidloco

    Mobster

    Joined: Nov 3, 2003

    Posts: 4,639

    Location: Up-Holland

    Sure thats a touring tyre, thing the OP needs asporty one to inspire a bit of confidance in the bike.