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Old 28 Feb 2006
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Tyre Reviews

Just a selection of tyre reviews I have found on various web sites. Hope this helps anyone struggling for choice...

Begin of 1st tire review


This is an extract from ENDURO-WELT 94, a Special edition of MO mc- magazine. The tests were made in cooperation with the mc-magazine "motorrad, reisen & sport" and the ADAC, that's the german automobile club (like AAA in the US), which also has a mc-division. They used lots of equipment for the test, and the report features nice pictures, such as a GS loaded with tons of measuring stuff and fastened to a rail that helps the tester in not dropping the bike while emergency braking on wet roads. Another cool pic is that of Four Black and Yellow GS's running through a curve two-by-two at high speed.

To avoid cheating, they bought seven sets of each tire anonymous at official dealers for the tests. The driving behaviour was tested on a special tire test track and in a moto-cross area. The straightline running at high speed was tested with full luggage (Bags etc.) on the Autobahn. For measuring tear and wear they drove overall 45.000 km through Europe.

The ratings are given in the "german way", that means 1 is the best and 5 the worst. I will quote these ratings first, and the stated conclusions after that:

Dry Wet Dirt Noise Wear Overall
Avon Gripster AM24 2.5 3.3 2.0 3.7 2.5 3.0
Bridgestone TW47/48 4.0 3.2 3.0 2.0 2.4 3.2
Continental TK60/70 2.6 3.0 3.5 3.3 1.5 2.7
Dunlop Trailmax 2.5 2.9 3.5 3.0 2.7 2.9
Metzeler Enduro 3 2.7 2.4 3.0 4.0 2.9 2.8
Metzeler Enduro 4 2.3 2.5 3.0 3.2 2.2 2.5
Metzeler ME33/55A 2.2 3.1 4.0 3.0 2.5 3.0
Michelin T65 2.5 2.8 2.0 2.2 2.9 2.6
Michelin T66 2.5 2.6 2.5 3.0 2.5 2.6
Pirelli MT50 2.6 2.9 3.0 3.5 3.2 2.9
Pirelli MT60 2.5 2.4 3.0 3.0 3.6 2.9
Yokohama E705 2.7 3.3 3.5 3.3 2.2 3.0

Avon Gripster AM24:
Best ratings off-road, worst on wet roads. At two tires parts of the profile blocks flew away.

Bridgestone TW47/48:
Quietest tire in this test, Very bad straightline running at higher speeds on dry roads, even without luggage

Conti TKC60/70:
Lowest wear and tear, else average. Good braking abilities on wet roads, quite cheap.

Dunlop Trailmax:
Allround-tire with average ratings in all points.

Metzeler Enduro 3:
Best and fastest on wet roads of all, noisiest tire in test, can get spongy in curves at high temperatures (but not dangerous)

Metzeler Enduro 4:
Best allround-tire in test, highest speed on road track test. Quiet low wear and tear.

Metzeler ME33/55A:
Best ratings on dry road, nearly unusable off-roads, 2nd highest speed on road track test.

Michelin T65:
Best ratings off-roads. Good braking abilities on wet roads.

Michelin T66:
Allround-tire with average ratings in all points. Expensive.

Pirelli MT50:
Allround-tire with average ratings in all points, but two of the tires formed cracks during the test.

Pirelli MT60:
Best rating on wet roads, most Wear and Tear of all tires, two of the tires formed cracks during the test, can get spongy in curves at high temperatures (but not dangerous). Good braking abilities on wet roads.
Yokohama E705:
Worst rating on wet roads, rear tires did not pass the high-speed-test two times. Low wear and tear.

Overall they recommend the Continental for people who want to save money (Low price, lasts long), the Michelin T65 for Off-Road use and for mostly street use the Metzeler ME33/ME55A. The best allround tires are Dunlop Trailmax, Metzeler Enduro 3 and 4 and Michelin T66. These seem to fit the best for the universal use Enduros are made for.


Begin of 2nd tire review

The following is a translation of a posting from (thomas@atlas.physchem.chemie.uni-tuebingen.de) that he sent to a german mc-newsgroup (Don't remember which one).
This information was collected from the magazine "Enduro" in 6/93, where they tested these tires on a BMW R 100 GS (Tire sizes 90/90-21 T and 130/80-17 T)

Test results (shortened):

very cheap, good street-tire, but a little spongy in curves, runs straightline even at higher speeds, good "Grip", but it smears/fills up with dirt and mud easily at off-road use, quite high wear and tear, easy installation

difficult installation, average behaviour in curves, average on wet streets, not stable at high speeds, long life expectancy, relatively cheap, average wear and tear

easy installation, good street-tire, runs straightline even at higher speeds, good on wet streets, rear tire good for off-road use, average wear and tear

for universal use, easy installation, good street-tire, good handling, runs straightline even at higher speeds, good on wet streets, not as good on dirt tracks, average wear and tear

very good for higher speeds, runs very straightline, good/safe on wet and dry streets, extremely good on dirt tracks, outstanding braking capabilities, difficult installation, best compromise between street and off-road tire, average wear and tear

unusable on dirt tracks, extremely good street-tire, runs very straightline even at top speed, in curves as good as street tires, average wear and tear, quite expensive

bad street handling at speeds over 80 mph., not too good on dirt tracks, Doesn't like grooves in the street, lowest wear and tear

very soft, best street handling, fantastic handling in curves, good grip, runs straightline even at higher speeds, not as good on dirt tracks, highest wear and tear, quite expensive

good dry street-tire, more difficult on wet streets, runs straightline, bad on dirt tracks, very low wear and tear (nearly as good as the Michelin, and lasts longer due to higher profile)


Begin of 3rd tire review

This tire review is not really a test, but a part of a R 100 GS long distance test (Well, sort of LDT, because they only drove 30.000 km and this is not a long distance for a GS :-)). It is from the MO Motorrad-Magazin in November 93. They used different tires during that distance and reported about their experiences. Since they had a model '88, which didn't have the improved frame of the later versions, some of the tire-wobble they had can be caused or at least been supported by the frame (especially at the higher Autobahn-speeds we are used to go at ).
Very loud when running on the street, with worn rear-tire the GS becomes slightly unstable especially at higher speeds. Very good on dirt tracks, best combination between street and off-road tire, quite high wear and tear.

BRIDGESTONE Trial Wing 41(front)/42(rear) Not as noisy as Metzeler Enduro 3, better handling, good on dry streets, average behaviour in curves and on wet streets. Neither good nor bad, just average, but relatively cheap

Better handling than Metzeler Enduro 3, no negative change in behaviour with worn rear-tire. On wet streets as good as Metzeler, but not as good on dirt tracks, average wear and tear. Good for street use.

Expensive. Very quiet, very good street handling, very good grip on dry and wet roads, low wear and tear

Very soft rubber, best street handling, fantastic handling in curves, excellent grip on wet and dry roads, good on dirt tracks if tire pressure is reduced, highest wear and tear

METZELER ME33 Laser(front) / ME 55A Metronic(rear)
Street-tire only, not for off-road use. Quiet, best comfort of all tested tires. Very good street handling, very good grip on dry and wet roads, lowest wear and tear. The steering head bearings have to be exactly adjusted, otherwise these Metzelers become slightly unstable at higher speeds. But this is not critical and may only appear at the older GS's.

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Old 7 Jul 2006
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Thumbs down

I've just worn out a set of Dunlop Trailmax on my KLE500 in 1500 miles and had one puncture so I'd have to disagree with "average wear and tear". They were nothing special on-road, but were fine off-road, especially on gravel. As they wore out so quickly, I never really got the chance to try them on proper mud. They felt horrible when they got hot (and it's been hot here recently) to the extent that I was frequently checking to see whether the rear was flat. In fairness, at least 99% of the 1500 was on road...

Gone for Avon Distanzias at the moment, so I'll add my two cents worth in another 1500 miles. Hopefully, I'll still have the same tyres.
"On that? You're nuts!" - My cousin's boyfriend

Current Bikes - Kawasaki KLE500 '05 (May 06)
Previous Bikes - Hyosung GF125 (Oct 05 to May 06)
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Old 21 Oct 2007
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Dunlop Trailmax on KLE500

Dunlop Trailmax do not seem to be suited to my KLE500 as have done just over 1100 miles and rear looks close to limit I do hope this is not average wear and tear. hopefully the next tyre will last and handle better.

well that my 10 pence worth.

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Old 25 Nov 2007
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Mefo tyres??

Anyone any info/results from mefo tyres?

The Mefo Enduro Master looks ideal as for the Mefo Mfe99, very promising for long distance on bad tarmac roads.

I read somewhere that TKC 80's only have 2 ply side walls, and that this mefo's have 4ply, harder to fit, but resistant to those sneeky side wall rock and stick punctures.

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Old 25 Nov 2007
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Heddenau Catspaw trail?? any reviews

fitted Heddenau Catspaw trail tyres to my XT600 ( they are German) they are ok in the dry, havent tried em in the wet, as it is Spain and where I am it hasnt rained much since I got em. ok off road, although havent done any serious mud work with them. will let you know on wear rates.
Bought them from Wemoto Home (they shipped em to Spain too with loads of other stuff for only 15 quid!)

Anyone else used these?
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Old 25 Nov 2007
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I did a lot of reading about tires before I purchased new ones for my bike. I decided it's all very relative. For example, of the 3 reviews of the Michelin T66 posted, one gave an average rating, one a bad rating, and one a fairly positive rating. The positive one gave good marks for traction on-road. I had T66 on my bike when purchased (lots of tread left), and I found it to be a HORRIBLE street tire. It wanted to slid, even in mildly spirited riding. I replaced the T66 (Which I'm not sure you can even get anymore) with the Michelin Anakee. MUCH better grip no the road. I haven't tested them off-road beyond some dirt/gravel, and a bit of dirt/sand mix... but they seem to live up to what they are designed for; mostly street. I was surprised to see the "Long Way Down" guys are running Anakee's (according to their website). I wouldn't choose these for being on dirt all the time in Africa. I'd probably look for something more knobby.
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Old 26 Nov 2007
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Distanzias are excellent gravel/road tyres and have very good wear. They are absolutely rubbish off-road and give no grip in the mud. If you mostly ride on road, these are best, but steer clear of any mud or you will end up on you backside. Average wear life is around 5,000 miles.
"On that? You're nuts!" - My cousin's boyfriend

Current Bikes - Kawasaki KLE500 '05 (May 06)
Previous Bikes - Hyosung GF125 (Oct 05 to May 06)
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Old 19 Dec 2007
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Its the Distaza route for my KLE500 I think, Ive no probs with the stock dunlops apart from the wear rate.
"Whats in that thing??", An R1 owner said.
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Old 20 Dec 2007
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Hi All, Just my two penneth...I have just changed my rear trailmax (oem) after 4700ml and it still had (acording to my tyre wola) at lest another 800mls left of legel tread, the front still has about 5k left and 98% of my riding is on hard surfaces with the odd venture down a green lane, so it could be down to how you ride (my TDM900 rear oem still has a 1000 mls left with 6.5k done!!)
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Old 21 Dec 2007
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My current Pirellis are soft, and excellent on road at any speed. Plenty of tread left but they are starting to crack. For mine this test was exactly spot-on.
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Old 5 Aug 2008
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The standard tyres my KLE came with new were the dunlops. I found the rear only lasted about 2000 mile and by that time the front had started to wear really badly on the edges. Changed to the the bridgestone battlax bt 45's and have never looked back. they are purely road tyres though so can be a little bit hairy on the slippy stuff.
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Old 10 Aug 2008
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Irc Tr8

I have been using IRC TR8s on my 604 for a mixture of road and off road. They are a very similar tread pattern to the twinduros and, if you do a fair amount of off-road, are a good compromise do-it-all tyre. Tyre life over 3000 miles (and I am usually hard on the throttle) is pretty good for a knobbly and they are only £70 a pair from gazbikes. I have found they are very sensitive to pressures though. If you put them anywhere near normal road pressures they are scary, particularly on wet tarmac. Leave them at around 18 psi and they grip well on and off road.
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