Calling all dark siders!

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by lifer, May 4, 2011.

  1. lifer

    lifer Been here awhile

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    I have questions that need to be answered . I have a honda Reflex that I want to turn to the darkside. Here is my list.
    Back tire only or both?
    Snow, all season, or highway tread?
    Do you still use a tube?
    Is there any problem with a radial on the back with a bias scooter tire up front?
    Do I need to go as narrow as possible?
    Is there anything else I should know?

    I do not want this to be a darkside or not discussion. I am wanting input from those that have done it on proses and cons and specifice install info only. I do not need the I would not do it people with no first hand experience. I am a big boy and have looked at the idea and want to try it. Its not like its the end of the world, its just a tire or 2 that I can remove if I do not like it.

    Right now I am thinking a back tire and wear out my scoot front then try a dark side front tire.
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  2. bbishoppcm

    bbishoppcm It ain't a moped.

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    What is this "dark side" you speak of? Are you planning on becoming a StarWars?
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  3. Wolfgang55

    Wolfgang55 Long timer

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    :lurk
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  4. lifer

    lifer Been here awhile

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    The Dark Side I speak of is using car tires on a scooter. Amazing how words can draw you in.
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  5. bbishoppcm

    bbishoppcm It ain't a moped.

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    Do they even make a car tire small enough? I suppose the tire from an original Austin Mini might fit... What's the benefit of doing this? I'm not debating the safety of doing such a thing (as the sidewalls are not intended to bear the weight or corner like a motorcycle/scooter tire does), but I am curious as to what the "pros" of doing this are? Like you said, you're aware of the risks and want to try something new, I'm just curious as to what the benefits would be.
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  6. Tacoma

    Tacoma Been here awhile

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    I trust the people that engineered my bike that the factory size and type of tires on it were the best possible and that bike was tested with those tires.
    The dynamics of motorcycles and cars are vastly different.
    The smaller size scooter tires will wear out faster ( a 12" tire will wear faster than a 15" tire) less rubber is making contact with the road with a smaller tire.
    ( thats one of the advantages of the Tmax, larger tires)

    my suggestion: don't do it!

    have you ever thought of if you wrecked your scooter and your insurance co found out you had car tires on it and made that a reason to reject paying the claim?
    I thought of that! I know insurance co's, they search and find every reason they can to reject paying a claim, they will say "unauthorized modifacation"
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  7. lifer

    lifer Been here awhile

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    Well I do not want to get into this . ALL modifications are unautharized. Did you get authorization to insall that seat or mirror or sisy bar or luggage rack or wave rotor or anything else. Stop living in fear and just live. Now on to those with first hand experience.
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  8. bbishoppcm

    bbishoppcm It ain't a moped.

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  9. JerseyBiker

    JerseyBiker Living the life!

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    Lifer - I suggest you try the Yahoo Reflex site. I just saw something a day or so ago about someone there who darksided the back and put a back tire on the front. (Not sure about the latter part but that's what he said.)

    Most of the time I've only heard of darksiding the back. I've got a tire in the garage waiting for the next time I have to swap my Silverwing tires. A couple of years ago I would have said "no way" but there are a lot of folks with a lot of miles on darkside tires with good results.

    Wish I could help more but that's all I've got. Let us know what you find out and good luck!
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  10. JerseyBiker

    JerseyBiker Living the life!

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    LOTS of people have done it.
    Last time I was in the local Honda dealer I asked if he would put a car tire on my Silverwing expecting him to say I was nuts. The tech said "sure, we do that a lot". So, just waiting to either sell the scoot or need new tires.
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  11. fullmetalscooter

    fullmetalscooter Let me take this duck off

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    I spent some time looking at this. You can do it if your scooter tires are 12 inch and above. The only issue is if the car tire can safely seat in your rim. 12 inch Austen mini tires are 12 inch and 40 bucks.
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  12. MODNROD

    MODNROD Decisions, decisions

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    Is your Reflex rear tyre 10"?
    You can still get Mini tyres to go on OK. One of the guys on Modern Vespa used one on the back of his 250GTS.
    No personal experience on scoots, sorry. Have had a back tyre (120/90R17) on the front rim of my KTM SM, the sidewalls are a bit stiffer, so had 5psi less pressure in it, was however MUCH taller, even with the forks through the trees an inch, so didn't flick as well. Bonus was over 4000km with no discernable wear and much improved directional stability, standard front only lasts 2500km.
    Standard 150/90x15 rear on the Vmax (IRC or Metzeler) only lasts me 3000km, but after 1000km the highway causes "flat middle" syndrome, causing it to be nervous mid-corner (uhmmm, as if you can really tell on a Vmax....). Strangely the 165R15 Kumho I have on there now has done 2500km, no discernable wear, and even though it's a "square" tyre from new, has no nervousness at all, tracks on rails. It's ended up feeling a lot like the old Guzzi Le Mans 3........for those old farts like me who can remember such a thing! :lol3
    For the curious, it also makes rolling-in 1.70 60ft'ers really easy off the line.:clap It seems to me predictable (not necessarily better per se) handling for the life of the tyre, better stability in loose/wet/bumpy surfaces, and huge tyre life are the main benefits I've noticed.
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  13. Bronco638

    Bronco638 Nobody Home

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    I believe Austin Mini wheels are 10" and the rear wheel of the Reflex is 12".

    My concern would be un-sprung weight. The entire drive train is un-sprung and now you're going to add more weight to that (auto tires weigh more than scooter tires do, I think). I dunno about your 'Flex but my wife's rear shocks always felt a undersized. I'd also worry about using enough tire pressure to get a proper 'crown'. That and the sidewall interaction when leaning/cornering.
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  14. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    Yes its actually a pretty common mod. I think the tires on my Elite 150 are 10" so no car tires will fit. But with tires going at 5,000=8,000 miles I'd do it if I could!

    Apparently handling is far better than expected. Theres videos on youtube of a guy riding his Silverwing with car tires in the twisties, and really leaning it.

    I don't think they'd have quite the tread of a motorcycle tire, but if proper riding skill they'll be fine.

    Car tires last A LOT longer though. From what I've read, this is because motorcycle tires are a much softer compound than car tires for better traction.
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  15. vortexau

    vortexau Outside the Pod-bay

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    Many of the classic bubble cars of the fifties had smaller tyres.

    bubble cars

    The Peel P50 would have to have just about the smallest of any.
    Here's a link- Classic Tyres . . . although its for the size 440x10.

    Once again, it is noted that CTs and MTs measure their diameter at a different bead location . . .( Rubber Manufacturers- Tire Service Professionals ) . . . although at 8" & 10" sizes the difference will be very, very, small.

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  16. Black Sheep Radical

    Black Sheep Radical Fusionista

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    Later Minis (not those BMW things) have 12" wheels.
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  17. Bronco638

    Bronco638 Nobody Home

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    Would the bigger wheels indicate a Cooper or Cooper S model? All of the (real) Minis I've raced against (SCCA) had 10" wheels.
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  18. Black Sheep Radical

    Black Sheep Radical Fusionista

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    All Minis had them from some time in the 1990s (?? - experts please step in now!) to the end of production. I think it was only sold in the US until the late 60s, so all the ones you have over there will be on 10" wheels. This is a 1996 model:

    [​IMG]
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  19. MODNROD

    MODNROD Decisions, decisions

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  20. NachoRoto

    NachoRoto Meet you there. OK?

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