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  #1  
Old 29 Dec 2010
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ideas for off road/enduro tires for a honda hornet

Hi all
Ok I'm having a look a trip from the UK to Australia on my honda hornet, looking for some off road tires and can't find any with the same size (I dont think its suprising with the tire sizes the hornet has). Just wondering if anyone has any advice of what I should change them to, i.e. profile/width changes in relation to handling preformance. The sizes I have on the hornet are :-

front - 120 / 70 R17 ZR

rear - 180 / 55 R17 ZR

I know I can get 130/80 R17 for the front tire, which is only a little bigger but its designed to be a rear tire (Continental TKC 80 Twinduro Dual Sport). I know it will be a different tred, but can it be done? is it safe and reliable, or am I mad? as most front tires are 21 or 19, there are few 17s designed for the front.

At the moment the best tyers I've found are pirelli MT60-R Dual Sport's. the front tires are ther right size but the biggest they have the rears on 17 inch rims are 160/60 R 17 which seem a bit narrow, or is it??

Any sugestions, ideas, recomendations are needed as depending on what tires i can get, will depend on what route I can do on my trip.
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  #2  
Old 29 Dec 2010
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mmm, interesting choice of machine...
Whilst any bike (almost) can be used for dual sport adventure travel, you have your work cut out... the fuel tank will certainly need augmenting, crash protection etc. personally, I wouldnt go for proper offroad tyres, watch your sump, and Nic sanders coped all right on road tyres. If necc you can convert to spoked rims, they will be more travel proof, there are lots of supermoto wheels to play with. DRZ etc

Am in Harrogate if that helps
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  #3  
Old 29 Dec 2010
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I posted a similar question a couple of years back in relation to my Kawasaki ZR-7S, which is also a street bike with 17 inch wheels. I was looking for suggestions to improve handling on gravel and dirt roads.

Someone pointed me to Avon Distanzas which were available (then at least) in the correct sizes for my bike. Have you checked Avons out?

As to using a narrower than spec rear tire, I don't know how, in particular, that would affect your bike's handling or its safety (something you obviously need to be absolutely sure about) but as I understand it, as a general proposition, narrower tires do better on unstable surfaces than wider ones. Dirt bikes exemplify this.

My personal experience on the ZR-7S is that street bikes with equal sized, small diameter wheels and fat tires do not mix well at all with gravel and dirt roads. Handling and safety are compromised. And I've learned from others on this forum that the smooth, relatively continuous power delivery of a four cylinder engine is a negative on dirt or gravel, especially when compared to a thumper.
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  #4  
Old 29 Dec 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricsy3 View Post
Hi all
130/80 R17 for the front tire, which is only a little bigger but its designed to be a rear tire (Continental TKC 80 Twinduro Dual Sport). I know it will be a different tred, but can it be done? is it safe and reliable, or am I mad? as most front tires are 21 or 19, there are few 17s designed for the front.

Are those wheels spoked or cast? I put a MX rear on the front wheel on my Elefant which I thought would be a great idea, good in sand but VERY hard to control on anything else. If you've got funny size wheels you might be better off changing the wheels for a 'standard' size. On my old elefant I used the hubs to build a 21" front - this worked out really well.
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  #5  
Old 29 Dec 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe C90 View Post
mmm, interesting choice of machine...
Whilst any bike (almost) can be used for dual sport adventure travel, you have your work cut out... the fuel tank will certainly need augmenting, crash protection etc. personally, I wouldnt go for proper offroad tyres, watch your sump, and Nic sanders coped all right on road tyres. If necc you can convert to spoked rims, they will be more travel proof, there are lots of supermoto wheels to play with. DRZ etc

Am in Harrogate if that helps
Well I know the option to change bike is there (even a quad), I do like my hornets, probaly not the best of bikes to do anythink off road, but im planing on staying in Auz for 12-24 months hense the choice to stick with more of a road bike.

Now I dont know anythink about spoked rims, would it be easy to convert them? I'll look into super moto wheels, somethink I've not thought about.

Well I'm Nr Malton so not far from Harrogate.


Quote:
Originally Posted by normw View Post
I posted a similar question a couple of years back in relation to my Kawasaki ZR-7S, which is also a street bike with 17 inch wheels. I was looking for suggestions to improve handling on gravel and dirt roads.

Someone pointed me to Avon Distanzas which were available (then at least) in the correct sizes for my bike. Have you checked Avons out?

As to using a narrower than spec rear tire, I don't know how, in particular, that would affect your bike's handling or its safety (something you obviously need to be absolutely sure about) but as I understand it, as a general proposition, narrower tires do better on unstable surfaces than wider ones. Dirt bikes exemplify this.

My personal experience on the ZR-7S is that street bikes with equal sized, small diameter wheels and fat tires do not mix well at all with gravel and dirt roads. Handling and safety are compromised. And I've learned from others on this forum that the smooth, relatively continuous power delivery of a four cylinder engine is a negative on dirt or gravel, especially when compared to a thumper.
I hadent looked into avons until you mentioned them, they do the same size at the rears at 160/60 r17, but the fronts are the right size. did you try them out, if so how did you find them?

I did think with the high BHP and low torque would be a disadvantage for serious off roading, so thought try and stick with roads only (not nesseserily tarmac) do you recon (if its possible) I would be better for 160/60's, could always see if I can find a supermoto rear wheel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by henryuk View Post
Are those wheels spoked or cast? I put a MX rear on the front wheel on my Elefant which I thought would be a great idea, good in sand but VERY hard to control on anything else. If you've got funny size wheels you might be better off changing the wheels for a 'standard' size. On my old elefant I used the hubs to build a 21" front - this worked out really well.
Well they are cast wheels, now I dont know alot about spoked wheels, but would they be easy to build form cast hubs/ is it possible?
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  #6  
Old 29 Dec 2010
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Originally Posted by Ricsy3 View Post
...even a quad
NOOOO!
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Originally Posted by Ricsy3 View Post
...Well they are cast wheels, now I dont know alot about spoked wheels, but would they be easy to build form cast hubs/ is it possible?
In theory yes, in reality no. You would probably need to mill down the area surround the hub and drill it out for spokes, this wouldn't be possible to do correctly IMHO
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  #7  
Old 30 Dec 2010
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Originally Posted by Ricsy3 View Post
Hi all
Ok I'm having a look a trip from the UK to Australia on my honda hornet, looking for some off road tires,,,,,,,,,,,,

Please DO post some pics...
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  #8  
Old 31 Dec 2010
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Originally Posted by henryuk View Post
NOOOO!


In theory yes, in reality no. You would probably need to mill down the area surround the hub and drill it out for spokes, this wouldn't be possible to do correctly IMHO
lol calm down, the only reason I will be taking a quad is because i cant find any one else whos done it... but maybe thers a reason why.

ok well ive been looking at spoked wheels and found that i can probaly can get a set, but its a qustion about different hubs on bikes .. i can find a KTM 660 rear wheel would be my best bet for already made rear wheels me thinks, and the front wheel is the same but only has 1 brake disk at the front and i have 2... could always blank one off ... but there is always the 990 which has 2 ... but I cant find any spoked wheels for them ... any one got any ideas of mixing KTM wheels on a Honda???

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Originally Posted by G600 View Post
Please DO post some pics...
will do my friend will do
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  #9  
Old 1 Jan 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricsy3 View Post
Hi all
Ok I'm having a look a trip from the UK to Australia on my honda hornet, looking for some off road tires and can't find any with the same size (I dont think its suprising with the tire sizes the hornet has). Just wondering if anyone has any advice of what I should change them to, i.e. profile/width changes in relation to handling preformance. The sizes I have on the hornet are :-

front - 120 / 70 R17 ZR

rear - 180 / 55 R17 ZR

I know I can get 130/80 R17 for the front tire, which is only a little bigger but its designed to be a rear tire (Continental TKC 80 Twinduro Dual Sport). I know it will be a different tred, but can it be done? is it safe and reliable, or am I mad? as most front tires are 21 or 19, there are few 17s designed for the front.

At the moment the best tyers I've found are pirelli MT60-R Dual Sport's. the front tires are ther right size but the biggest they have the rears on 17 inch rims are 160/60 R 17 which seem a bit narrow, or is it??

Any sugestions, ideas, recomendations are needed as depending on what tires i can get, will depend on what route I can do on my trip.
The problem you'll have is with the rear tyre size; if you can swop the rear wheel with an earlier Hornet it will accept a 160 tyre which will offer some choice.
I have a ktm 640 Duke with Avon wet on the front 120/60/17 and an Avon Distancia 160/60/ 17 on the rear.
Although if it were me I'd stick with touring road tyres
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  #10  
Old 28 Jan 2011
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I am not an expert but on my GS500 I learned that no matter what, street bikes won't go to certain places. I went off road quite a bit, my Bridgestone BT45's held up well on sharp rocky tracks, deep sand, gravel but the weight of the bike and the build is not for offroading at all. I could still disappear into the desert or in the forest, and walked the bike when got stuck in sand. Most of my travel was on tarmac so I don't regret having road tyres. I was offered some Chinese or whatever knobbly tyres for the 17" wheels in Nioro, Mali. The GS has a 130/70 rear and it's easy to find a tyre for it but 180/55 will be a problem. If I were you, I would take spare tyres and a tyre plug kit with me and stick to the paved roads where possible.
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