When do I need a new tire?

Discussion in 'Trials' started by broncobowsher, Apr 16, 2014.

  1. broncobowsher

    broncobowsher Long timer

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    OK, how long does a rear tire last? I was cleaning the bike up and looking at the tread blocks. The leading edge is now worn to ~3/8" radius and the trailing edge ~1/4" radius. Not sharp square lugs anymore. Still soft rubber from poking it with a fingernail.

    I am sure upper class riders would have replaced it long ago. But what about a lowly Novice rider? At what point should I consider replacing it?
    #1
  2. DerViking

    DerViking Shred

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    I run mine until the knobs are completely round, and pretty short.

    I'll put on a new tire for Ute Cup, where it makes more of a difference, then take it off and save it for later. Most of our CAT sites have so much traction that it doesn't matter much. Jones Crossing when wet is worth the trouble. Kingman Mtn Site as well.

    I have found that putting on a new tire after riding awhile on a really tired tire makes for a little boost in my learning curve.
    #2
  3. broncobowsher

    broncobowsher Long timer

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    It was Alto Pit where I felt like I was just getting a ton of spin and not hooking up. Thought it bit better in the past. Lets seen next two events are Kingman and Jones crossing. When has it not rained for Jones crossing?

    I'm really trying to figure if I need the tire or not. Was it the tire, the really dry Alto pit, or was it just me?

    How is that new Gasgas anyway?
    #3
  4. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    In the dry southwest I`ve seen them run until almost no nobs are left by the top riders. Some how they still seem to get more traction than the lower class riders.:rofl
    #4
  5. Gordy

    Gordy Team Listo

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    We run em till they are shot around here. I just ordered one to have when we move into the forest areas later this summer. I'm sure that it makes a difference up there.......maybe.

    I've see some top riders have no problems whatsoever on cooked tires
    Also seen Smage come through a few different times and his tires were toast. He was pulling out of deep sand like a demon with nothing but little chevron nubs where the knobs used to be.

    Btw, the Michelin I just ordered was $170. :huh WTF? A truck tire is about the same!!!
    #5
  6. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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  7. DerViking

    DerViking Shred

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    Alto can be a little ravely. Large diameter grains make for low traction even by the standards of sand. I often lower my pressure a bit there, maybe 3.5psi? just enough to keep it from acting too weird on the rock. Like Gordy says, its all technique. A really fresh tire is nice though, if you can afford it. I too have found the Dunlops to be great tires, and the price is much better than the Michelins. Only flats I have ever had on the back have been the Michelins sidewall cutting, though my triple stack plug is still holding from Oak Flat.

    Haven't ridden Johns new GasGas yet. We'll see if he lets me. I am going to mate his Eco with my Pro. I'll have a 2009, 2007, 2000 GasGas, as many of the parts on my Pro are taken from my 2000 parts bike.... Gonna try the jug swap that Motobene has done, and see if I don't have a bike that will last another year or two.
    #7
  8. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    I have long used only the Michelin X-11. I've tried the other tires but nothing seems to work as well a Michelin for me.

    The new X-Lite rear is a bit vulnerable in the sidewall for my tastes, so I don't buy it. I do use the X-Lite in front, however. It's very close to the same weight as the previous, but it feels really good as it tracks.

    As for how worn? In my area we have a lot of dry dirt and gravel, and some rocks but with very small grains. While a sharper leading edge on knobs isn't absolutely critical, it does help me hook up. Before the Comanche Cup, my Raga's X-11 had rounded leading edges, roughly a 1/4" edge round on each knob. So I flipped the tire around just before the event, and I believe that gave me a 'bit of an edge' over my fellow competitors. I was running my usual 4-1/2 psi. With the retardation mods and a steady throttle hand, I was sticking like glue in places that were hard to walk across without sliding down.

    If I rode mostly sticky rocks like out west or at Ravia/Tishomingo, OK (come to our amazing Sooner Cup 26&27 April) I'd probably just let the tire shred to little nubs.
    #8
  9. Monty348

    Monty348 Adventurer

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    For those of us who pinch pennies, an electric kitchen knife will easily cut the knobs shorter. You loose the small kerfs from the knobs but gain square edges. Less depth of tread may be an issue for the upper class. Just sayin'.
    #9
  10. broncobowsher

    broncobowsher Long timer

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    I was thinking of replacing next year simply due to age. I guess I will stay with that plan.
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  11. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    Cutting tires is fine for areas with mud. But cutting or flipping the tire, just wears it out faster and wasting time. As stated previously, Smage shows up with a tire with inverted knobs and does not spin at all!
    :huh
    #11
  12. motorcyclemark

    motorcyclemark Been here awhile

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    Have only tried turning the rear tire over once and have to admit felt no difference (tire was two thirds gone at the time) might have even felt worse on the braking side. Their is something to be said for the mental aspect of having a new tire in bad conditions even at my level.
    #12
  13. broncobowsher

    broncobowsher Long timer

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    That probably has more to do with the skill of the rider.
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  14. 2feetdown

    2feetdown Been here awhile

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    I have always rotated when one side worn. Currently riding michelin that came with bike after rotating vrubber. but if i tire of too many flats on the vrubber and Michelin i may go to dunlop.
    #14
  15. slicktop

    slicktop Been here awhile

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    I jumped on a new Mich comp for the front but may go for the Dunlop on the rear after the flipped Mich rounds off.
    #15
  16. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    I have always felt new tires some how inspire confidence or maybe some false pride. The funny thing I would like to know, new tires actually take time to hook up as good as my worn out tires! So how does that work for the worlds top 5 best riders. Do they always ride with new tires, so they do not notice? Or more likely they have a compound similar to the days of old when only factory riders had the Michelin X11`s.:ear
    #16
  17. Brewtus

    Brewtus Buffoonery, Inc.

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    Sheeeet. I ran this tire for 6 years, then changed it only after the inner tube started sun-rotting -

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Can I tell the difference between this front tire and the new one?

    No.

    Just sayin' :lol3
    #17
  18. Gordy

    Gordy Team Listo

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    These tires are such an ordeal to seat, and a scary ordeal at that, I ain't flipping a tire for nothing. :huh

    Just put the worn one in the truck and give it away........if you can.
    #18
  19. jonnyc21

    jonnyc21 Trials Ninja

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    My guess, a little bit of that spin the tire on purpose to heat it up and sand off the smooth stuff and find the traction in about 60 seconds...

    Just a guess... It would work like track day tire warming...
    #19
  20. Longboardr

    Longboardr Been here awhile

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    My favorite Ryan story (hope I'm remembering correctly) is when he was going to hold a trials school for vintage riders. The date he had to do it happened to be on the weekend of a vintage event, and he didn't get nearly enough students to make holding the class worthwhile. So he rode the event on a vintage bike, and changed to a set of vintage (old) tires "to make things fair". He won the event :lol3 A good rider can make crap equipment look fantastic.
    #20