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Old 04-24-2014, 09:19 PM   #1
n9viw OP
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Puke Impossible to find the right tire!

I did a search here, but either my browser doesn't play nice, or the search function blows. Regardless, even googling this site, I couldn't find a thread quite like what I'm dealing with here, so here goes.

Long story short: daily rider needs a new rear tire, but I live down a gravel road in the MOzarks, where all the rocks are sharp and nasty. Nearest pavement is 3 miles in one direction, and 5 in the other, so dealing with sharp, nasty gravel is unavoidable. What's worse is that the short gravel road has a moderately-steep (30* or better) stretch as it climbs up from the creek. Proposed riding will be 90/10, commuting to work and running errands.

So, here's my dilemma, in a nutshell:
1) Bike is an '82 KZ750M1, rear is a 130/90-16. Nigh unto impossible to find a decent DS tire in that size.
2) I really adore curvy roads; darn good thing, as we have a LOT of them around here! As such, I really need a tire with good road-handling traits, especially in the wet.
3) I need a tire that won't get gashed to crap on the gravel around here.
4) I can't afford a DS bike; it was all I could do to sneak this one in under SWAMBO's radar, and it only cost me $300!

I've done a lot of looking, and came up with three:
1) Duro HF904. Good-looking tire, mixed to bad reviews, especially as regards road manners, wet handling, and 'chunking out' in corners.
2) Firestone ANS. Also good-looking tire, very few reviews to be found, some suggest it's a little squirrelly in the corners, whether due to compound or carcass I couldn't divine.
3) Avon Safety Mileage Mk II. Don't confuse this with the Speedmaster, they're different animals I guess. Decent-looking tread, bias ply reputed to 'wander' with varying road surfaces. Tread may or may not be able to get traction on gravel, but looks to be heavy enough to handle the stones without cutting too badly.

Anyone have any other suggestions? I really want to get this thing going, but Mt. Baldy out back there has got to go!

TIA,
Nick
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Old 04-24-2014, 09:29 PM   #2
eakins
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16" is very odd size for DS.
i'd try out the duro or get a dirtbike tire.
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Old 04-24-2014, 09:37 PM   #3
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this will work. slightly smaller but no worries.
people go up and down a size all the time.
i'd say Duro is a copy of this tire.
this is probably your best bet on the market
http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com...port-rear-tire
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Old 04-25-2014, 05:23 AM   #4
bobw
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Eakins found the only option I located too. There are several reinforced carcass cruiser tires and some of those have more aggressive tread patterns than others. Your desire for a do everything tire on an old street bike being used off road is obviously a challenge, but I have ridden many miles on gravel and improved dirt roads on sport touring bikes and it is doable even on tires like pilot roads, etc. Your gravel and paved road use will require a conservative tire pressure leeway so it will be more on you to be smooth and carry proper speed be it on the elevation or cornering challenges. Folks have done amazing stuff on early bikes on what passed for roads back in the day as well as modern trips to AK or South America on Harleys, Gold Wings, etc., etc., so Good Luck and Safe Travels!
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Old 04-25-2014, 06:03 AM   #5
MightyChosen1
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I had the same problem a couple years ago trying to find a dual-sport tire for my XS-650. Ended up with a Bridgestone TW-40 in 120-90/16. Its now got around 5K miles on it and still has enough tread left to get me thru this season.


Best thing was the price , Got it for $52 shipped on clearance from MC Superstore.
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Old 04-25-2014, 06:03 AM   #6
n9viw OP
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Wow! Certainly a good-looking tire, modern design so there's no worries about pressing an old design into new requirements. I wonder at the wet pavement traction, and if it could be improved by siping... and also wonder at the corner-handling characteristics of those side lugs. A darn sight cheaper than the Avon, too. Not too concerned about the very slight size difference; that'll make room in the fender for the rocks to get past!

Looks like I'm going to be contacting the Bridgestone company to enquire of them, and go from there. Thanks for the suggestion!
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Old 04-25-2014, 06:26 AM   #7
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Maybe a car tire?

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Old 04-25-2014, 06:50 AM   #8
n9viw OP
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I've considered the dark side, but it's almost as hard to find a car tire in such a narrow width as it is finding a DS tire in such a small rim diameter! I really don't want to change rims, because I like the look of the mags on the '82 CSR750.

I'll scout about and see what I can see, but unless someone has a solid suggestion in that vein, I'm thinking the TW40 may be my new tire.
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Old 04-25-2014, 09:13 AM   #9
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I found the TW40 at MC Superstore for $87.99, nothing in a 16 on closeout.

PowersportSuperstore.com has it for $74.96, but they want $15 shipping, making it $90. Not that a $2 difference is going to throw me, but the fact that their site shows a different tread than what I've seen everywhere else makes me think they're selling off older stock.

Going to go with MCS, just gotta find something that costs A DOLLAR so I can get their 'free shipping on all orders over $89' deal.
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Old 04-25-2014, 10:09 AM   #10
MightyChosen1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n9viw View Post
I found the TW40 at MC Superstore for $87.99, nothing in a 16 on closeout.

PowersportSuperstore.com has it for $74.96, but they want $15 shipping, making it $90. Not that a $2 difference is going to throw me, but the fact that their site shows a different tread than what I've seen everywhere else makes me think they're selling off older stock.

Going to go with MCS, just gotta find something that costs A DOLLAR so I can get their 'free shipping on all orders over $89' deal.

Wish I had bought 2 of them when they were cheap. My sidecar also uses a 16" and it could use a tire. MC superstore is always my go to place for tires. Last tire I ordered arrived in 2 days.

Heres what it looks like on the XS. It ended up a little wider than the stock tire so I had to modify the chain guard for clearance.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:14 AM   #11
Davidc83
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tires

shinkotiresdirect.com has numerous tires in that size.
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Old 04-25-2014, 03:25 PM   #12
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Wow, Chosen, looks nice! Is that the TW39 mate up front there? Looks great! I'm really looking forward to receiving it. Have you had it long, at least long enough to know how it behaves on pavement and in the rain?

David, thanks for the link. According to the site, they've got some nice street tires, and some nice MX tires, but nothing really in the middle. (looking only at 16" rears, not defining width or aspect ratio)
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Old 04-25-2014, 05:06 PM   #13
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Don't know about it would work on gravel, but the Bridgestone BT45V fits that size and is probably the best 16" street tire you can find. Tons of grip, very good in the wet. I'm sure it can handle gravel roads just fine. It is a quality tire.
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Old 04-25-2014, 08:07 PM   #14
n9viw OP
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Tim Tom, thanks for the suggestion, but that tire would not likely do well on these roads. One route (the path I usually take to work) goes up a 30* grade from a seasonal creek bed- and this is not DSing, this is the actual road to my house! CR115 in Macomb, MO. Anyway, it's a pretty steep climb, and I am sure the Battlax would give its all, but it would likely leave most of its all in a tiny shredded pile behind me as I clawed my way up the hill. I need more lug than that tire offers. Yes, I have another, flatter (sort of) route available to me, but it takes me more miles on gravel and a few miles out of my way to get there, so I only go that way if I have to (i.e., snow on the ground).

Also, if anyone has been following the "How to title an untitled bike" thread, I found it's a LOT easier than I thought to title a title-less bike in MO than I had feared- and much easier than getting a VT registration, not to mention cheaper! Working on that this week; with any luck, I'll have new rubber on hoof and temp plate on fender by this weekend, just in time for (checks weather channel) ugh, more rain.
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Old 04-25-2014, 08:54 PM   #15
MightyChosen1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n9viw View Post
Wow, Chosen, looks nice! Is that the TW39 mate up front there? Looks great! I'm really looking forward to receiving it. Have you had it long, at least long enough to know how it behaves on pavement and in the rain?

David, thanks for the link. According to the site, they've got some nice street tires, and some nice MX tires, but nothing really in the middle. (looking only at 16" rears, not defining width or aspect ratio)

I mounted it on the bike a couple years ago. Most of its life its pulled around a sidecar . Great in the gravel and dirt, decent in mud and rain. Even seen its share of snow and did OK.

Front Is a Shinko 705 with around 1000 miles on it . Its been a good tire but I doubt it will last as long as the Trailwing.
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