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I am really disappointed. I know what it takes on most bikes to keep the tires in good shape. I have owned this bike for 6 weeks. I have checked tire pressure 4 times and it's always been adjusted to what the manual says. It has never been off by more than a pound or two for very long, if at all. The tire is all wavy and uneven. I'm sure someone is going to say its an infation issue, and maybe it is, but thats just blows my mind. Any thoughts?
 

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dry_rider said:
I am really disappointed. I know what it takes on most bikes to keep the tires in good shape. I have owned this bike for 6 weeks. I have checked tire pressure 4 times and it's always been adjusted to what the manual says. It has never been off by more than a pound or two for very long, if at all. The tire is all wavy and uneven. I'm sure someone is going to say its an infation issue, and maybe it is, but thats just blows my mind. Any thoughts?
It's well known that the factory inflation numbers are way low. 95% of the folks here run 42/43F, 48R. Even then, depending on how you drive, front mileage typically is no better than 9-10K, rear 12K+/-2K. Massive bike, excellent brakes = tread block feathering -- just a fact of LT life :( My front/rear ME880s now have ~6K on them, and they howl like a banshee at *any* angle off vertical. Doesn't affect anything, so I'll just ride them until the tread is worn to normal replacement level.
 

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Wavy Tire

My last two front tires did that also. I was checking out this web site and found what I think is the problem. My current front tire is nice and round and I have 5000 miles on it. It seems that you need to change your braking habit. Use the front bake before the turns then get off the front brake and power through. It sure seems to help me. I found that in one of the forms. There is just a ton of good information here. I hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
My Bad! I just checked it...31 lbs I hope I can run it with 36 lbs and it might straighten out? My brakes are linked so I'm sure that braking will not effect it.
 

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I had my front tire replaced yesterday at the dealer. I'm riding the Metzeler Marathons which is probably the tire that you will get the most miles out of. If you've done like I have you've read all of the opinions on this site concerning tires and there seems to be plenty. I have yet to find anyone who disagrees with the idea that the Metzelers go the distance although you'll find those who dislike the tire itself for various reasons.

Concerning the pressures, most agree with 42F/48R. I spoke with the service manager at the dealership and he also agrees that tire pressures should be run a little higher that the manual indicates. Couldn't nail him down to commit to specific numbers.

If you're looking for distance I suggest the Metzelers. If you want feel and maybe a little less distance try the Bridgestones.

I don't believe you told us what tire you were using????
 

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dry_rider said:
My Bad! I just checked it...31 lbs I hope I can run it with 36 lbs and it might straighten out? My brakes are linked so I'm sure that braking will not effect it.
More pressure is more better :) That said, it won't "fix" the feathering, just slow it down.

The fact that you have the Integral/EVO brakes or the older ABS II system makes no difference. The issue is that both brake systems are excellent, and can generate high deceleration rates.

Given that ~70% of your braking power is at the front wheel, there are HUGE forces generated at the tire footprint from 1000+ lbs of bike/rider and high braking rates -- that much load simply wears the rubber away faster. You can verify this by looking at the feathered spots -- they are tapered in the direction of the braking force.
 

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Going on my 4th set of tires, my Humble Opionon is .... Brakeing techique is paramount to tire life on an LT.

Brake firmly before corners, Brake while entering or in the corner ... your tires will be toast in short order !!

After much improved riding techique from an ERC course last year, my overall tire wear & cupping is a LOT less.

Roll into corners & power out .... NEVER brake late if possable.

Regards.
Scott
 

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Yep, brake before the corner, roll through with slight throttle, and power out. That'll help your stability, confidence, and ultimate lean angle, as well as reducing front tire wear. Just don't ask what that will do to rear tire wear. :)
 

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<folks here run 42/43F, 48R>

36 is probably still too low

My last front wore the shoulders at 40.

The pronounced feathering, as the ware bars started to appear, was FUN at medium speeds, dragging the pegs, in corners.

With higher pressure, you will feel the bike riding more on the tire center, and easier to lean into corners. Gas mileage should probably improve?

Bob
 

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tire wear 2900 miles

after going through slow school with motorman 587 , and his lovely wife, I learned to start breaking rear first , then front ,it makes a big difference in how the bike sets up for the corner and greatly improves tire wear,12000 on front and according to readings good for 15000. BTW I run 42/48 .
 

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I have been 55k miles on my 01 and nearing my 5th set of tires and have determined the Metz SUCK! the Dunlops are great but are very short lived, the Bridgestones are ok but you will go thru 2 fronts on one rear. Highly recommend the higher pressure settings the others are saying and Nitrogen fill is a must.
 

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James, try the Avon radial front with the BT020 radial rear. That should help even out your tire wear without compromising traction or handling. BTW I easily get more mileage from front tires than rear, regardless of brand, but then again I'm much heavier with the throttle than the brakes.
 

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We have different riding styles, guess I was much harder on the front brakes than you. I was also heavy on the throttle, but with most tires I wore the front out first. When I had the one set of 880s, the rear was gone at 11,500 miles, still had some life left in the front. That was the last time I saw that. I rode mostly on BT020s, got about 9,000 from the front, and avg. 13,000 from the rear.

Tried two front Avons with the rear 020s, that gave me about even wear front/back, had to replace both tires at the same time, which I liked. Finally found I did not like the way the front Avon handled wet, so went back to 020s both ends.

Another thing I did not like about the front Avon was the way it wore out the sides long before the center was done. Great for long distance riding, but poor in twisties. Once the sides wore down, I had to hold the bike down in turns when riding twisties, where the 020s wore faster, but more even, and handled nearly as good in turns when worn as they did when new. Still tracked pretty well, and did not require much bar pressure to keep them down in the turns.
 

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Tire pressure 42F & 48R

I run Metzelers 880s, for the first 2,000 miles I was running the recommended inflation and started to get some scalping. I got 13,500 miles out of them about 6,000 miles were 2 up fully loaded.

Upped the pressure to 42F & 48R & cranked up the suspension and the scalping never got any worse and I never had any handling problems. I ride the twisties very aggressively (x-racer) and I apply the breaks in the corners just like I do on my Buell so I feel the 13,500 was pretty good.

Dave
 

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Gee, I was disappointed when I only got 19,000 miles on my second 880 front. That was after a trip to Alaska where I wasn't diligent in checking tire pressures, and the road surfaces were, in places, hell on tires. Current tire has 16,000 and looks good for at least another 5,000.

Put me with the brake first, then accelerate through turns. Pressures 43f, 50r.
 

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jkersh1 said:
Gee, I was disappointed when I only got 19,000 miles on my second 880 front.

Put me with the brake first, then accelerate through turns. Pressures 43f, 50r.
You are one of the lucky ones. I ride two-up quite a bit and on the LT I'm getting between 6 and 8,000 regardless of Bridgestone or Metzeler. My rear tire goes will before the front (I'm not really sure why, since everybody else indicates that the fronts go first :confused: )

The K1200R is even worse :eek: 3,000 and the rear is bald. I'm creeping up on 5,000 for the front and might make it before the rainy season.

When I first joined this group I read a tag line that said, "will work for tires" and I didn't understand. Now, I do.:( But it is way worth it :D :D


.
 

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42/42 f/r

Yup.. I "religiously" ran those pressures. Guess what? My BT020 front was into the wear patterns by 6k. I found it was out of balance from the factory/dealer. Replacing and correctly balancing, yup, it is working great... no "cupping" or "humming" from the tires... I'm still running the original rear at nearly 8k, and about 2k on the new front.
 

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Run the Metz's on the 03 LT. Got 22K on the front and was replaced before CCR 05. Replaced the rear last year at 13K+ due to a nail. Bike is in shop now for services and a rear tire (which has almost 15K).
Tire noise does't bother me in the curves as I worry about the noise that the centerstand makes as I scrape it off!
Run the same as most at 42/48. Do a lot of 2-up riding and am very happy with the Metzlers.
 

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Perhaps it is my over inflation (45 F / 50 R) but I didn't have to replace the rear until around 15K and the front will last another 2K or the end of the year. I don't notice any of the the feathering or noise mentioned by others. Maybe it goes back to my higher inflation numbers to which I would guess means I am sacrificing some ride comfort. Original tires were Metzlers, replaced, and will continue replacing, with same.
 

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Air pressure correction!

CORRECTION... oops.. I just realized I posted an error..

I erroneously posted 42/42 for front/rear air pressure. The correct pressue is 42/48 f/r, sorry for the error.
 
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