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Tires, Tire Mounting & Demounting Do you have a favorite set of tires? Tell us about them here.

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Old April 22nd, 2014   #1
red dirt cowboy
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Default replace tires if cupping?

Hi, I went to my local Honda dealer and they said I needed new tires and showed me that both front and rear were cupping (and had some light cracking inside the deep part of treads). They said low inflation, but I try to keep up with my inflation. That said they did measure only 36 in rear, 40 front, so I wasn't doing as good as I thought. I check it generally once a month and put on about 3K a year on average.

I would have guessed the tires still had about 33%. I didn't argue about it, because I am planning a pretty long tour this summer and would rather have new tires on then deal with replacing them while on the road.

I got the bike used and have put 3000 on myself. The seller said the tires were fairly new (whatever that means, he didn't specify).

I am just curious if for the future this would be a condition you would replace the tires for? I am inclined to ride them until they are nearly bald. It won't be an issue with this set, as I plan to go about 5K miles this summer. But just wondering for the future.

I got Michelin pilot 4 Gt's front and back for $470 out the door (did I do ok?)

Thanks!
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Old April 22nd, 2014   #2
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Default Re: replace tires if cupping?

I do not enjoy the ride once my tires start cupping.

So, in that, I think you did well.

But, since you are not riding that many miles per year, it is easy to miss a low pressure situation and cause cupping. I would increase the intervals for checking tire pressure so that you're checking more often.

I try to maintain 42 psi front and rear. But, check the specific tire as it can vary. I haven't used the PR4's yet.

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Old April 22nd, 2014   #3
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Default Re: replace tires if cupping?

Since you have no way of knowing what pressure and how conscientious the previous owner was about it, you cannot know what wear pattern was established before you got the bike.

There is a date code on the sidewall of the tire which tells when the tire was made. The tech or salesman probably just read that to know how old the tires were.

I don't recommend going until the tires are "nearly bald". Traction is compromised at that stage. I use the wear bars for their intended purpose. I change the tires before I start to feel unsafe.

I am curious about the PR4s. I loved the PR2s. Then I loved the PR3s better. I have almost 8 thousand miles on the PR3s and they look very good still.
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Old April 23rd, 2014   #4
red dirt cowboy
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Default Re: replace tires if cupping?

So far I love the new tires. I gotta say though I wasn't really terribly bothered by the ride of the cupped ones (I can see the difference, but I could have ridden on the old ones for a while). When they showed me thu cupping I could see what they meant. And to correct myself I don't mean running them until nearly bald, just saying I would have probably ridden these as far as the wear marks would indicate is safe. The Honda guys made it sound like the cupping is a safety issue, is it that or a ride quality issue?
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Old April 23rd, 2014   #5
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Default

Not a safety issue, IMHO. Just a ride quality issue.

I'm going to have to hurry up and wear out my PR3's so, I can try out some PR4's.

;-)

Z
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Old April 23rd, 2014   #6
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Default Re: replace tires if cupping?

I think the problems with cupping are that once it begins, the tires tend to wear quickly, so you have to really watch. But beyond that MC tires do not have very thick rubber to begin with and the low spots in the cupping, which in my experience has tended to be of center, may easily get below the wear bars without that being noticed.

I read a statistic once that 90% of the motorcycle flat tires occur in the last 10% of the tread life. Don't know if it is true, but I stay away from riding them down to nearly bald. (Only flat I have had was from a nail in a very new (900 mile) tire, so I guess 9 others had to have flats in worn out tires to balance it out. Better them than me!)

Last edited by DanK; April 24th, 2014 at 08:25 AM.
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Old April 23rd, 2014   #7
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Default Re: replace tires if cupping?

The only tires I ever had cup were those dam Dunlop's that came on the bike, D220's?
The cupping was all the reason I needed to send them to the crusher.


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Old April 23rd, 2014   #8
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Default Re: replace tires if cupping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by red dirt cowboy View Post
Hi, I went to my local Honda dealer and they said I needed new tires and showed me that both front and rear were cupping (and had some light cracking inside the deep part of treads).
Cupping in an of itself is not a strong reason to replace your tires in my opinion (yeah, it makes your tires noisy) unless the cupping has caused your tires to wear too far prematurely.

What does sound worrisome here is the cracking. If true, this indicates that the tire may be old. I would not feel particularly safe on a tire that shows cracks, especially at sustained highway speeds.

To determine the age of your tires from the DOT code, read this:

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tirete....jsp?techid=11


Quote:
I check it generally once a month
As others have noted, increase the frequency of pressure checks. I check mine before every ride but then I do not commute and only ride it on the weekends (and not every weekend at that). It can be a PITA some days but when I remember that those rubber thingies down there are the only thing that separate me from an asphalt meat grider, I quickly change my attitude, kneel down, and get'r done.


Quote:
I am planning a pretty long tour this summer and would rather have new tires on then deal with replacing them while on the road.
Wise choice! Having to change tires while on a long distance trip is a huge waste of one's valuable vacation time and is WAY more expensive than doing it at home using tires ordered off the internet. Putting on a fresh set of rubber before you leave allows you to spend your time enjoying the trip rather than worrying about whether your tires are going to last long enough to get you to the nearest tire dealer that just happens to have your tire size in stock.
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Old April 26th, 2014   #9
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Default Re: replace tires if cupping?

I had the same problem as you did with my '07. The BT023's started cupping badly so a few days ago I got a set of Michelin's Pilot Road 4 GT's and I have noticed a HUGE improvement. The dealer told me to keep riding with the cupping as the tires had plenty of tread but not too exceed the speed limit. Maybe I am too cautious but I decided to replace them and have some peace of mind. I think tires and safety go hand in hand.
Let me know if you want to go for a ride sometime. I live 45 minutes from you. Take care.
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Old April 27th, 2014   #10
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Default Re: replace tires if cupping?

Cupped tyres are gone from my bikes. I reckon if there's 33% left you are only loosing 33% of their value anyway. If I think I'm unhappy with something about my bike as a general rule it niggles me and spoils the fun of riding too.

What tyres were on it, there's widespread issues about Avons cupping as standard all over the net this side of the pond. I had an avon on the front of a VFR that made it ride like the front wheel was buckled cornering at low speed.
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