Car Tire Handling? - BMW K1600 Forum : BMW K1600 GT and GTL Forums
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post #1 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 07:59 AM Thread Starter
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Car Tire Handling?

This was on the net yesterday, from the Devil's Whip website yesterday. He has it on the corner, I'm just wondering what it must feel like.

I think Ken had posted about car tires once, but I couldn't find it.
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post #2 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 09:11 AM
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Must be from here,,,,he has C4's bag bars installed.

Mike

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post #3 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 09:57 AM
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I ran a car tire on a Triumph R3. On the positive side there was great grip, especially in the rain. The only negative I can say about it is that it took much more effort to turn the bike. I had to intentionally counter steer. I was running a Goodyear Eagle F1 250/50. That's about 10 inches of tire width. I think a narrower tire like the 205 may be easier. If someone builds a 190 or 195 in a 17" I'd be willing to try it.

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post #4 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 11:07 AM
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I've corresponded with a few different riders about the details of my car tire conversion. It's not for everyone, but it can be done safely and it rides just fine if you're willing to accept a few minor compromises. For me, those compromises weren't any worse than, and in many ways were better than some of the rock-hard "high mileage" bike tires out there.

It starts out feeling like a tire that's been worn flat from too many highway miles. And it takes a bit more countersteer to get it to set and hold a line.

But you get used to that fairly quickly, and then the tire wears more on the edges than the flat, so it gets "rounder" over time. Note that "over time" can be anywhere from 20,000-40,000 miles . . .

I can ride the bike just as aggressively, and with just as much confidence as with the factory bike tire. In fact, I'd even say better than some of the harder-compund bike tires that tend to twitch on tar snakes and can really suck in the wet. I can still drag the pegs at will and with confidence (sparks or no sparks ). And as a few riders here can attest, it doesn't seem to slow me down much at all . . .

Like I said, it's definitely not for everyone. I would never tell anyone what to ride on their bike, but if they ask, I'll give an honest answer as to what works on my bike.

Remember that I'm running 11-day Endurance Rallies, where every minute spent messing around is time that I don't get to sleep. So losing an hour or more fiddling with tires is a huge hassle for me, and could easily cost me a win.

So, for me, the minor hassles are worth it, and honestly, I've seen no real downside to it.
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Last edited by Meese; 07-27-2014 at 11:39 AM.
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post #5 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 11:16 AM
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Remember that I'm running 11-day Endurance Rallies,
Finding a solution to problem, or a customization that makes your K16 experience even better, and sharing that with the forum, is what makes for a better site.

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post #6 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 11:35 AM
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I think a narrower tire like the 205 may be easier. If someone builds a 190 or 195 in a 17" I'd be willing to try it.
205/50-17 is a standard car tire size that's available everywhere. Every single tire shop will have tons of that size new and used just sitting there.

It also ends up within 1/2% of the diameter of the standard 190/55-17 rear tire on the K16, so ether is no issue with ABS, traction control, cruse control, etc.

Obviously it's wider, so a spacer is needed to maintain clearance to the swingarm, and thus longer wheel mounting bolts. Other than that, it just slips onto the rim and bolts onto the bike just fine.

Plus, a lot of the sport-touring darksiders have been running 205/50-17 tires over many hundreds of thousands of miles without any major issues, so there's a good collection of real world data comparing different tire brands and tread patterns.

I did research "skinnier" car tires, and the only otter choice was 195/50-17, which should just bolt right up. But those are extremely rare. One national chain I called said they had maybe three of them in their national warehouse for the whole country, so finding a replacement out on the road would be almost impossible. Also, the 195/50 tire runs over 2% smaller diameter, meaning your rpms would be higher, fuel mileage less, and you might have issues with the wheel speed sensors that throw off your ABS, cruise, and traction control.

So the 205/50-17 just makes the most sense here.
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post #7 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 11:35 AM
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Finding a solution to problem, or a customization that makes your K16 experience even better, and sharing that with the forum, is what makes for a better site.
Like I said, somebody's gotta be at the extreme end of the bell curve . . .

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post #8 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 12:47 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Ken, any changes to the wear of the front tire? That picture just tickled me.

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post #9 of 38 Old 07-27-2014, 12:58 PM
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Thanks Ken, any changes to the wear of the front tire? That picture just tickled me.
Nothing specific. I managed almost 15,000 out of one front, and close to 13,000 out of another.

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post #10 of 38 Old 07-29-2014, 11:27 AM
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That's me in the photo. Ken nailed the salient points - the bike can be ridden just as aggressively and quickly in the twisties with a CT. I only have about 1500 miles on the tire, but its doing great so far. I've seen no difference in front tire wear so far - its a PR4 GT also with 1500 miles. I put approx 30k darkside miles on a GL1800 before moving to the K1600, so I knew what to expect. The K1600, although it affords slightly more lean angle than the GL1800, still runs out of lean angle long before the CT runs out of tread at the edge
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Last edited by Qbird66; 07-30-2014 at 11:35 AM.
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