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Equipping the Bike - what's the best gear? Anything to do with the bikes equipment, saddlebags, etc. Questions on repairs and maintenance of the bike itself belong in the Brand Specific Tech Forums.
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  #46  
Old 1 Jul 2005
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Michelin Anakee 90/90-21 & 130/80-17 on Suzi DR650SE, road use only, mixed use, some with luggage, some commuting.

Rear about 15500 km. bald on 1/3 of circumference, about 2mm left on the remainder, not sure why, didn't lock up the wheel that much. One puncture.

Front 17000km, 1-2mm left. One puncture (small wood splinter).

Both replaced with Mitas E07, 110 Euro for both.
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  #47  
Old 17 Jul 2005
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bmw r100gs. london to capetown: 30,000miles. tkc80,s. 2 front, 3 rear. bloody marvelous.
trail riding: metzler mce karoo. great, but dont like white lines (even in the dry). dont know milage yet.

light weight trailie, mt21s, good dual perpose jobbies. no idea in milage, depends how, where you ride.
if it aint got knobles its for girls........
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  #48  
Old 28 Aug 2005
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G'day
2x 3aj tenere's from Dave Lambeth who came with TW301 / 302.
Dublin to Oz; unfortunately ending in UB/ Mongolia.

These are our first bikes and first sets of tyres but absolutely loved them.
One front is still going after 22000 k's having suffered 5000 k's of Kazakhstan's finest (we came from Azerbaijan for the people who did that route) and Mongolian Altai's best rocky tracks as well as the Mongolian dirt tracks on the southern route to UB.

Got about 18000 out of the rears.

Not sure if I should try something else or stick to TW's. Pretty torn actually.
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  #49  
Old 29 Aug 2005
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T63 around France and UK...much street
10 000 Kms rear and 15 000 front.
Id like to try TKC but they don't exist in 18 for my rear, anyone know a good alternative?

Matt
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  #50  
Old 20 Sep 2005
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Hi Chris
In the States Canda and Alaska we ran kings dual sport tyres,they were about $60.00 a pair fitted, they were fitted to my 86 Tenere and my girlfreinds 98 DR650. We averedged 17000 miles on the front and about 9000 on the back, this was on both dirt and tarmac, both bikes are fully loaded,they seem to suit a heavy loaded bike, they gave good grip in dry and wet conditions. I just wish i get them in south america
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  #51  
Old 27 Sep 2005
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London - Cape Town (In Dar es Salaam now)
'99 Dominator

Front & Rear: 2 sets of Mich Deserts from Morocco to Nairobi then Front Metz Sahara
Verdict - Metz Sahara and Rear Desert great on tarmac. F&R Deserts weird on tarmac but you get used to it... best thing about them is no punctures! (Also Bridgestone HD tubes and Ultraseal)

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  #52  
Old 13 Jun 2006
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Unhappy Continental TKC80 Twinduro (not so good!)

Hi Folks,
Just come back from my trip using Twinduros. They handled well on Tarmac and OK off road as other people have said. However, while the front tyre lasted extremely well I had two rear tyres that failed on me.
Long before either tyre seemed worn out, (with what seemed like at least a couple of thousand miles left on them) the square treads would start to crack and eventually one would break through the weave of the tyre and puncture the inner tube. The collapse was so bad it meant that there was no point of repairing the tube and setting off again as the split tyre wall would have shredded the tube again in no time.
Luckily both disintegrations happened in Europe where my breakdown cover meant the bike could be picked up and taken to a tyre supplier.
The first time I put it down to maybe running the tyre at too low a pressure and not keeping an eye on it. But the next time I regularly made sure the tyre was properly inflated and yet it happened again. This rather catestrophic failure of the tyre means I would never use them again for a long trip, indeed I won't be buying any more.
Maybe someone can suggest a reason for this occurance as I am puzzled to say the least as the Twinduros had a good reputation I thought.
Matt
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  #53  
Old 16 Jun 2006
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Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by beddhist
Michelin Anakee 90/90-21 & 130/80-17 on Suzi DR650SE, road use only, mixed use, some with luggage, some commuting.

Rear about 15500 km. bald on 1/3 of circumference, about 2mm left on the remainder, not sure why, didn't lock up the wheel that much. One puncture.

Front 17000km, 1-2mm left. One puncture (small wood splinter).

Both replaced with Mitas E07, 110 Euro for both.
Have now done the loop GB-Scandinavia-Baltics to Germany, plus some other trips, mostly loaded heavily. I'm very happy with the Mitas, good grip on the road, wet or dry. Haven't really done any mudplugging, only dry gravel. My skills are probably more limiting than the tyres there...

Rear has been replaced after 22000km, front is still fitted after 20000km, will probably last another 2-5000.

Tried fitting them to my R100GS, but couldn't get a tubeless version, despite Mitas web site listing one. Go figure...
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  #54  
Old 30 Jun 2006
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Bike - CCM 600, Tyres - Pirelli MT21

Quick 2000 mile trip to Alps and back including riding 10 or so of the mountain passes in the Grenoble area. Tyres just about new when I left. Front still ok (about half worn) but rear totally shot. Upside - great wet grip for a knobbly - I did just about 600 wet miles in one day with no "moments".
Interestingly the front knobbles have worn evenly whereas all my Michelin Desert front knobbles have worn into a kind of wedge shape.

Some of the other MT21 reports quote much higher milages but I'm not hard on tyres and I'm not sure how I could extend what I got by much.
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  #55  
Old 16 Jul 2006
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Trailmax

The Dunlop Trailmax tyres on my KLE500 lasted 1,500 miles! Felt appalling when they got hot something akin to getting a flat (which I did). I spent about half an hour off-road on them and they seemed OK, but couldn't really test them as they obviously didn't last long enough. Would not recommend them, except for weekend off-road enthusiasts. 1/10

Currently trying Avon Distanzias which certainly look up to the job. Haven't taken them on a long run yet, so nothing to report yet.

Update: Just put 2,500 miles on my Avon Distanzias and they look fine. Felt pretty good too and handled alpine mountain passes and German hail storms with great ease. They are a little vibby though, but that can be ignored. 7/10
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Last edited by muthaf9cka; 14 Sep 2006 at 10:52.
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  #56  
Old 11 Sep 2006
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I've used MT21/22 on my XR4 for the last year (~4000kms and still plenty on them even after a baja and trailriding to work 2 days a week for 8 months. The rear is cracking a bit now around some blocks but the front looks fine. Didn't like the front on soft sand and loose rocks out in Qatar so would go back to a......

Mich AC10 for the front, very hard wearing but crap grip on wet tarmac or polished roads.

On the rear I'd go back to a desert (I was to tight with my cash last time!) for any serious dirt/off road distance in the sun.

Ultimately it comes down to what you want to do with it?? and trying to balance all the compromises, grip, wear, cost, strength...
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  #57  
Old 17 Sep 2006
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Pirelli MT 90 A/T 90/90 21 front, 24000 km so far Newfoundland to Panama via Alaska. Rear 140/80 18, 13000 km so far, both still have plenty of life, have stood up to Canada, Mexico and Costa Ricas worst! Bikes are 2x yamaha tt600re´s pretty loaded.
Tyres are the best all round I´ve tried, excellent in the wet, not bad off road and seem pretty strong.
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  #58  
Old 8 Oct 2006
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Kings is king

Wonder which Kings skip refers to.
I used Kings Claw Action KT 966 for the last few years on all my 650 KLR and DR as well as a trial & evaluation on a F650 Dakar.
They are cheap (in South Africa) and give reasonable mileage. Dry tamac is very good for a knobbly, wet tarmac as shitty as we all know it (although never dangerous like Kendas). They work like a charm on hard gravel and are still fine in soft gravel and sandy stuff unless it gets bottomless (but then you need another bike, not another tire)
Mileage on average 7000 - 8000 km rear, 12000 - 15000 km front. (Bike hire)
Although not directional by order they have an assymetrical pattern and you better fit them the right way round:
Front arrow pattern pointing against rotation , rear the other way around.
If you don't stick to this rule the front feels like a worn steering head bearing when worn (esp. on the brakes) and the rear gets problems with blocks tearing out of the carcass.
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  #59  
Old 13 Oct 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lecap
Wonder which Kings skip refers to.
I used Kings Claw Action KT 966 for the last few years on all my 650 KLR and DR as well as a trial & evaluation on a F650 Dakar.
They are cheap (in South Africa)
They are cheap everywhere. The only thing cheaper here is Cheng Shins (which we usually refer to as "Cheng <excrements>"), which are nice dirt tires but dangerous on wet pavement.

Quote:
Dry tamac is very good for a knobbly,
Good qualifier there. They feel like they're falling into turns, but do not squirm like some. They do NOT have the traction of a more street-oriented tire though. I could easily lock up my wheels with even the aweful KLR brakes, whereas I can make my Kenda 761 (more street oriented) howl but not lock on dry tarmac.

Quote:
wet tarmac as shitty as we all know it (although never dangerous like Kendas). They work like a charm on hard gravel and are still fine in soft gravel and sandy stuff unless it gets bottomless (but then you need another bike, not another tire)
That matches my experience with them also while using them on the KLR. I will note that I did *not* enjoy riding in the rain with them. Their normal tendency to fall into turns was joined by a slippery squirmy feeling that was not at all reassuring.

One thing I will note: They tend to make the KLR have a head wag or weave at high speeds (above 65mph GPS-indicated, 70mph speedometer-indicated). This is not unusual for a knobby on the KLR, I met someone who installed a TKC-80 and it did the same thing. But it is something to keep in mind. What helps in this case is a) turning up the rear preload (and getting a stiffer spring if the stock spring has sagged too much for even max preload to properly hoist the rear), b) reduce the pressure in the front to around 24psi so that it will not so easily follow imperfections in the road but above 21psi because it becomes somewhat wobbly-handling at 21psi, c) pump the rear to maximum tire pressure (otherwise it becomes *very* hot), d) use "normal" tubes rather than heavy duty tubes (no, I do not know why that is so). That said, it will never be as stable on the street as a Michelin Anakee or even my Kenda 761.

Quote:
Front arrow pattern pointing against rotation , rear the other way around.
If you don't stick to this rule the front feels like a worn steering head bearing when worn (esp. on the brakes) and the rear gets problems with blocks tearing out of the carcass.
Good to bear in mind...
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  #60  
Old 13 Oct 2006
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Merritt and I are adamant that:
- Michelin Desert is the best tire for really tough off-road,
- TKC80 is the best all-around tire for RTW travelers who don't stick to asphalt all the time.
We praise both equally for their purpose.

When the going gets tough and the stuff gets loose (like sand or loose rocks), nothing beats the Michelin Desert. The front tire cuts its way through while the rear tire plows like a caterpillar: really impressive. Besides, it's almost indestructible. In some places like the Atlas, the Sahara and Ethiopia, everyday we were so grateful to have these things mounted.

However the Michelin Desert is tricky for long-distance or RTW travelers because....
1) Sooner or later, you are going to hit some rain and the thing is *extremely* dangerous on wet asphalt, especially in third-world countries where you have very slick asphalt and slippery stuff like oil, residues, mud, cow pies, horse dung...
2) You should not drive it at more than 90 km/h over long distances, first because it's dangerous (beyond 100, it vibrates like crazy and the front wheel looses grip; and above that, it doesn't take much to loose control), second because you kill the tire *much quicker* at higher speeds.

The TKC80 doesn't have these problems and it behaves almost as well as the Desert on normal off-road conditions. When it comes to longevity, both tires are excellent as long as you keep the speed in check.

Result:
- Michelin Desert for Africa (except during the rain season)
- TKC80 for the rest of the world (unless you stick to asphalt all the time, in which case, the Michelin Sirac or Metzeler Tourance are just fine).

Pierre (& Merritt too)
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