Opinions on Tires for 800XC Tiger

Discussion in 'British Beasts: Triumph Tigers' started by h2000fb, Aug 2, 2013.

  1. h2000fb

    h2000fb Adventurer

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    Now Looking for Opinions on Tires
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    Ok, it looks like I will be replacing my KLR with Tiger 800XC. However, they will be changing the tires for me after I send them up for the swap out. I would like to hear suggestions - Please!
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    Don’t like the tires that come on them as they are street tires. They may call them something else, but they are street.
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    The Pirelli MT90 does not come in the correct size for the rear, but I like that type of tire as it should give me better street grip than a full knobby on the road and a little better grip in the dirt than most so called adventure tires. I like the Continental TKC 80s, but would like something a little less aggressive because it would see street use, maybe more 50/50 or 60/40 if possible? However, I may be over thinking it here as I did have the Kenda 270's on the KLR and they were ok. Slid a little sometimes but not too bad.
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    The tires on the 800XC Tiger are: 90/90ZR21 and 150/70ZR17
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    This is not too bad.
    Bridgestone TW152
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    This is Ok. Finding these for $197R & $94F
    Heidenau K60 Scout
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    This seems Ok. Finding these for $202R, $95F
    Metzeler Karoo 3
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    I know this is a cheaper tire, but they supposedly a good tire.
    Shinko (Yokahoma) 705
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    How about throwing some options up here and maybe your experience with them? Have any other ideas, options or suggestions? Had any experience with any of these? What are your opinions for what I am looking at compared to the TKC's maybe?
    #1
  2. snakebitten

    snakebitten Small Town Hick

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    Doesn't it have a 21" front?

    That's its most redeeming OffRoad trait.

    Begs for 50/50 or MORE dirt bias.
    #2
  3. h2000fb

    h2000fb Adventurer

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    Yes, it has a 21" front and yes, I really would like a 50/50 tire. Just not finding many choices in that range.

    The TKC-80, I like, but am concerned it will not handle well on road. With the Kenda 270 in more aggressive cornering on the street sometimes experiencing a little slippage in the rear, I am hesitant to go to the TKC-80.

    I know many run these on the big 1200GS. How about? Any feedback?
    #3
  4. TigerMarker

    TigerMarker Ducati/Triumph

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    I've heard nothing but good things on the TKC80 on how it handles on the road. I wouldn't worry.

    But I know for a fact, the Heidenau handles the road just as good as the stock Pirellis.
    #4
  5. barnyard

    barnyard Verbal tactician Super Moderator

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    Drop a PM to propforward. He has put 35000ish on his XC. He has used up several brands and is looking to put another set on soon.
    #5
  6. PBee

    PBee ?

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    Works for me.

    [​IMG]
    #6
  7. The Breeze

    The Breeze Been here awhile

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    TKC 80's handle great on the road......and do pretty well off-road. The only problem is that you'll chew up a rear after 3-4k miles.

    I also ran a TKC on the front and a Heidenau Scout on the rear. That set-up worked great. I got 9K miles on the Heidenau.
    #7
  8. Pecha72

    Pecha72 Long timer

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    "This is not too bad.
    Bridgestone TW152"


    That is a tyre from the Stone Age, and for some weird reason it is still used OEM on the Suzuki DL650/1000. Dunno exactly, how it would work on another bike, but I have my doubts. (Bridgestone also has a newer design called Battlewing).
    #8
  9. Midpack

    Midpack Been here awhile

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    Having 14,700 miles on the XC I'm only on my 2nd set of tires. The stock Battle Wings were great on the road where I was able to keep up with sport bikes, but lacking off pavement. At 7300 miles the front Wing was toast and the rear about 70 percent gone (never had that happen before). I have 7400 miles on the Heidenau K60's and still have 3-4 thousand left on them. They are as good as the Wings on the curves and quite a bit better on gravel and dirt. The front still lacks in sandy conditions. I'd like something with more side bite. I've read a TKC80 paired on front with a Heidenau rear works well. That or a T-63 Mich which I'm familiar with on my DR650 might do. I'm keeping the K60 on the back since it wears and bites so well, its just the front that could improve.
    #9
  10. Dubl-A

    Dubl-A SuckerDucker

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    No details/ mileage/ wear patterns/ etc/ etc? :deal
    #10
  11. itsatdm

    itsatdm Long timer

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    It did not work for me. At least on gravel, especially over hard pack. That wide center bar just would not hook up laterally. If you like kicking the tail out, it is perfect for that. I siped every other center lug and it made it much better.

    Like most of these open ended questions, the answer is it depends. I found it OK in softer dirt terrain and good in sand or silt deep enough that the bike weight permits a good grip on the stuff and you lower tire pressure. I usually don't ride a 500 lb bike in mud, so I don't know.

    It works fine on pavement, though wear is about average, 3-4,000 miles if you do a lot it.

    Reasonably cheap compared to a TKC.
    #11
  12. backwoodsKLR

    backwoodsKLR Ride more, Post Less.

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    I liked my MCE Karoos on my T800 but the rear was worn after 1500mi and I took it off after 2500mi. My favorite combo so far has been a knobby front and a Shinko 705 rear. The knobby keeps the front planted and the Shinko gives good traction on the rear but allows some fun drifts on gravel/dirt. I only have 7300+ on the bike and recently put a full knobby set on for a trip to Colorado. But for my everyday normal riding, I'm sticking to the knobby/705 combo.
    #12
  13. strider.deano

    strider.deano Been here awhile

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    I've have yet to get more than 6000 miles out of any rear tire I've tried. (Can't seem to temper the right wrist :wink: )

    The
    Heidenau K60 with the tkc 80 front is a good combo for off road, I ran two sets. The K60 rear tends to flatten out as the miles go up and I never felt confident in the fast twisties with the TKC80.
    Now I'm on my second set of Full Bore's. The rear gets a solid 5000 mile and performs well on all surfaces except deep sand and mud. (a true knobby is really need here) The front holds the corners better than the TKC80's on the pavement and wore well to 10k miles.
    The best thing about Full Bore is the price...$150 for a set!
    [​IMG]
    #13
  14. h2000fb

    h2000fb Adventurer

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    The Full Bores look like Shinko 705's or at least from the same mold I think.
    #14
  15. browneye

    browneye PIN IT & BANG GEARS

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    ^^ +1 for these.

    A fellow tiger owner turned me on to these and I picked up a set early on with mine and put about 3K miles on them. They look to be about 60% worn. I take them back off when doing all road work/trips and commuting. The stock 'trails work great for that, will probly try the new anakee 3 for mostly road.

    The FB's are V-rated (rear) and are just fine on pavement, amazing off unless you're planning to make yours a dirtbike which I don't recommend simply because it's too heavy and when/if you drop it the parts are REALLY expensive. They are my go-to tire when the bike is going to see dirt two-track.

    The K60's good and not so good reports, although I have not run them. The big turn off for me was the stiff sidewall making them either impossible or extremely difficult to dismount the rear in the field for flat repair. They are also a very hard compound to provide long life, but this can make them slippery on road, especially if it's wet. So I've heard. The solid center strip adds longevity but detracts from dirt traction. A lot of riders use them for long distance touring so they don't have to deal with tire replacement mid-trip. They are also quite expensive.

    For more serious dirt a real front knobby is in order, but almost anything will work in the rear. So a FB or K60 rear with a Scorpion Rally, TKC, or T63 for the front, or change it out to a road tire for a road trip. The dual purpose rear works on and off. This is my plan for future tires - like the FB or 705 and then an appropriate front for the type of terrain/trip planned.

    The bridgestones are a non-starter. The Tourance is old tech - not much better than the scrop trails that came with it. BTW, the trails are a really good road tire that grips amazing offroad with about 22-25lbs of air in them. For 90/10 or 95/5 they are hard to beat.

    TKC's are the defacto 50/50 tire for the GS crowd. They work very well on road and good traction off, but the sidewalls are soft so if you air down you risk a bent front or pinch flats. The KTM 950-990 guys are forever pinch flatting them. They last less than the FB's but provide for a little more traction off.

    Learn to mount, dismount, and balance your own tires so you can repair a flat in the field. With the bike on the center, the side stand will break the bead. The rear can be a real bitch.

    Personally, I think the FB's fit the bike's character very well if it's gonna see some dirt roads. For a new owner it's a small investement to get you out there and get started, decide from there where you want to go. It's definitely not a KLR. You better have deep pockets if you're gonna trash it offroad. :evil

    EDIT: FB's look like 705's, similar mold - slightly larger block spacing, but are V-rated and supposedly have a slightly different (better) carcass and or rubber compound. And yes, made in the Shinko factory. Someone said an importer said they were the same tire as the 705 marketed under the new name. I looked at them side by side at a tire store they did look slightly different, so I dunno. For me the FB is the better choice. For $150 they get a LOT of raves, haven't heard anyone really pan them.
    #15
  16. browneye

    browneye PIN IT & BANG GEARS

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    Here's my Tiger XC on FB's:


    [​IMG]


    It does like to get dirty too...

    [​IMG]
    #16
  17. h2000fb

    h2000fb Adventurer

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    Thanks, that's some really good information.
    #17
  18. propforward

    propforward PIE!romaniac

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    He did, and here I am.

    I have tried the OEM Bridgestones (Battlewings), Michelin Anakee 2s, Michelin Anakee 3s and I am now trying Metzeler Karoo 3s.

    The OEM Bridgestones are relatively inexpenisve compared to Anakees. They are a good all round tyre, but certainly not your 50/50 dual sport tyre. however, I was pretty happy with how they handled in simple dirt and gravel. Not at all a good mud or sand tyre. I would typically get 6000 miles out of a set.

    The Anakee 2s blew them away. They lasted 10,000 miles, and really were confidence inspiring in the dirt. I did run them in sand a little bit as well, and they were very good. If michelin hadn't ditched the Anakee 2s, I would be using these still. you can still find Anakee 2s, but since they are going away, I figured I'd look for something else.

    The Anakee 3s get rave reviews, but not from me. They lasted 6000 miles, and the rear squared off fast. They are a great street tyre, but not nearly as well planted in the dirt as the anakee 2s in my view. The 3's do get very good reviews, and people hail them as a "90/10" tyre, which means they are street tyre. Damn near any tyre can go on gravel a bit, and I honestly didn't think the anakee 3s were any better than the OEM Bridgestones - I won't be buying them again.

    The Karoos I have only had on for 1200 miles, but I am really liking them. They have a very "aggressive" tread pattern, and it feels a lot better in dirt and gravel than the anakee3s - similar to the 2's in fact. the Karoos absolutely howl on the pavement :D. They do very well on pavement, feel and handle great. I don't know about lifetime yet, but we shall see. They run about 300 bucks a set. The rear is spendy, the front very reasonable. For a pair, similar to most other tyre sets. I think these will be a very good dual sport tyre.
    #18
  19. propforward

    propforward PIE!romaniac

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    I am liking the sound of those Full Bores though - and the price! Might try those next.

    You should bear in mind on my review that I am not a skilled off road rider. It is highly likely that a skilled rider can get a lot more out of tyres like the anakee 3, but even so, I can tell a difference between tyre types, and that says something, I think. But something to bear in mind anyway.
    #19
  20. h2000fb

    h2000fb Adventurer

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    I was afraid of this. When looking at the tread, it look like they would afford a nice bit of traction. However, it also looked like the pattern would provide for a lot of tread slap - noise, on the road.

    Saw a new set of Shinko 705's yesterday and they look exactly like the Full Bores. Wonder if Shinko is making them for FB. Shinko only rate theirs for 113mph however, I think. The fellow that had the Shinkos were running them on his 1150 GS and he swears by them. Getting 6-7,000 per rear tire, but changes them together.

    And, thanks for feedback.
    #20