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Discussion Starter #1
This is something I would not consider doing, however it appears many have. I get questions every week regarding this practice, but cannot share any concrete evidence .
There are lots of arguments/infor on the forums. The problem is that everything has a nebulous base. One set are people who have put car tires on their bikes and point to the fact that they haven't crashed, yet. This does not verify the safety of the practice. I know a lot of unskilled riders who haven't crashed, but that does not make them safe riders.
The other set are people like myself that have not done this so we cannot really offer opinion without evidence to back it up.

So , has anyone out there come across any studies, tests or research on the issue? Any information would be greatly appreciated.
 

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It's called the dark side...do a google search and you will find lots of posts.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
johnbaker15 said:
It's called the dark side...do a google search and you will find lots of posts.
John, Yes very familiar with the terminology and the thousands of posts. I'm looking for is something more tangible.
 

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I can't imagine you'll ever find any valid evidence either way. Under normal riding conditions a car tire isn't going to make you crash your motorcycle. Under emergency braking, competition racing, or just running the twisties hard it just might have that outcome. But how could that ever be measured? It would probably take some multi-million dollar machine to measure that potential looking at coefficient of friction, lateral load capacity, etc. etc. Then you take the lab results and try to verify them with real riders..... Good luck. The one thing I know for certain is that the dark-siders do so to get phenomenal mileage out of their rear tires. This only makes sense, as the load capacity on most car tires is at least twice that of an average motorcycle tire. Therefore less scrub and greater mileage. Does this affect handling in some way? Almost certainly. Would the average rider ever feel it? I don't know the answer to that one.
 

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I have seen what happens when you run a "B" rated Metz880 on the rear of an LT though and given the choice I would take a "C" rated car tire any day over any under-rated motorcycle tire for the application.
 

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If you truly believe that only motorcycle tires should be run on motorcycles, then you are absolutely correct and there's nothing else to discuss.

In the mean time, there are thousands of riders successfully running darkside, on a variety of bikes, in a variety of riding conditions and skill levels for millions of miles.

That's the best you're gonna get for any sort of long term studies or research on the subject. There simply isn't any real incentive, and lots of disincentive for any company to run any sort of official study.

And if you believe that it's dangerous and stupid and can only lead to mayhem and destruction, remember that most folks feel just that way about motorcycles in general . . .
 

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Discussion Starter #7
meese said:
If you truly believe that only motorcycle tires should be run on motorcycles, then you are absolutely correct and there's nothing else to discuss.

In the mean time, there are thousands of riders successfully running darkside, on a variety of bikes, in a variety of riding conditions and skill levels for millions of miles.

That's the best you're gonna get for any sort of long term studies or research on the subject. There simply isn't any real incentive, and lots of disincentive for any company to run any sort of official study.

And if you believe that it's dangerous and stupid and can only lead to mayhem and destruction, remember that most folks feel just that way about motorcycles in general . . .
Meese,

Thanks, my bias is against the practice although I've never actually tried it , so I disconnect myself from arguing the issue. My need for information on the subject is directly connected with my responsibility to the rider training community and the students we serve.
Monthly, I have exposure to 40 to 60 riders of all persuasions, ability levels and approaches to motorcycling. I want to be as educated as possible on the issue, especially if the student shows up for a track day with car tires on their bike.
You are spot on though in your assessment regarding incentive.
 

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MCN had a good article on this a couple months ago, had some input from insurance companies that wouldn't cover an accident in that case, and some scientific-type discussion of why it's not a wise idea. However, I know there are lots of people who do it and haven't crashed in a fireball...

Personally, I wouldn't consider it. I also only run motorcycle oil, check my tire pressure weekly, always wear a helmet and protective clothing.

pop me some popcorn, this will be an interesting thread
 

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Discussion Starter #9
petevandyke said:
MCN had a good article on this a couple months ago, had some input from insurance companies that wouldn't cover an accident in that case, and some scientific-type discussion of why it's not a wise idea. However, I know there are lots of people who do it and haven't crashed in a fireball...

Personally, I wouldn't consider it. I also only run motorcycle oil, check my tire pressure weekly, always wear a helmet and protective clothing.

pop me some popcorn, this will be an interesting thread
Pete,

Thanks for the input. I get MCN an have that resource. Here is a link to it if anyone eles is interested/\.

http://www.motorcyclejustice.com/law/Reader Questions/14may2011.html
 

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meese said:
If you truly believe that only motorcycle tires should be run on motorcycles, then you are absolutely correct and there's nothing else to discuss.

In the mean time, there are thousands of riders successfully running darkside, on a variety of bikes, in a variety of riding conditions and skill levels for millions of miles.

That's the best you're gonna get for any sort of long term studies or research on the subject. There simply isn't any real incentive, and lots of disincentive for any company to run any sort of official study.

And if you believe that it's dangerous and stupid and can only lead to mayhem and destruction, remember that most folks feel just that way about motorcycles in general . . .
I know of at least one long distance rider who put a car tire on his K1600. ;) It kind of makes sense, if most miles are on freeways, to take advantage of the harder compound; it sure beats replacing a rear every 10k miles or less. I am curious to hear about the handling on the twisties; I would think it must feel "different".
 

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Different motorcycle tires feel different. Different compounds, profiles, belts & sidewall construction, etc., all play a part in how a tire feels. As well as rider perception, experience, riding style, and expectations.

Hell, even worn, flat-spotted tires feel noticeably different than when new and round.

I hated ME880 Bias tires on my LT. They got good mileage, but they made the bike steer heavy and feel sluggish in corners. And they slipped badly on tar snakes, or wet roads. Other LT riders love those tires. Good for them, if they're happy with it.

So each rider has to make up their own mind as to what works best for them on their bike.
 

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I had a car tire on my VStrom 1000. The ride was very smooth but had very little input from the rear tire, only front tire input. On long cross country rides it was great with little tire worries. I have an aux 4 gallon tank on the back so stops can be minimal. I rode for a week in NC just playing with the curves and was pleased with the traction issues, not as good as a car tire, but OK, even two up. I just changed back to a bike tire as on some rides I end up on dirt roads and a car tire is too unstable. I kept the car tire for when I do anything long distance with time restrictions on just asphalt.
 
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