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Thread: Car Tire as Rear Bike Tire - WHATDOYOUTHINK?

  1. #1

    Car Tire as Rear Bike Tire - WHATDOYOUTHINK?

    Even with my new 2011 1200 RT, I still ride with my old Gold Wing buddies. The number of guy putting car tires on the rear of their Wings is increasing quite a bit, actually a lot. The main reason is the lure of getting 30,000+ miles on a tire that costs around $100 with virtually no loss of handling ability or any safety issues. And we ride a LOT of twisties together.

    No value judgement here...Just putting out the idea for general discussion. I can certainly understand the economic incentives of both the riders wanting double the miles at nearly half the price, and tire manufacturers wanting to maintain current price points.

    If this phenomenon gains a lot of traction, maybe a motorcycle tire manufacturer might consider designing a high-milage hybrid car/cycle tire to capture a market trend.

    Personally, I'm sticking with traditional rear cycle tires for now, but it is an interesting thought. What do you guys think?

  2. #2
    I think it is the stupidest thing I've heard of in a long time.

    Don't you think that if it worked as well as people claim, the manufacturers would be all over it?

    Oh, maybe these are the Darwin brand of tires....
    2016 R1200RS (current)
    2003 R1150RS (prior) / 1978 R80/7 (prior) / 1966 R69S (prior) / 1972 R75/5 (prior)
    Windsor, California

  3. #3
    Registered User PeoriaMac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Washington, Illinois
    I think it's scary--but I know an Ironbutter who did that very thing to his Gold who am I to judge...
    1986 R80RT, 2005 R1200GS
    Livin' Large On The Lake

  4. #4
    rabid reader dbrick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Santa Cruz CA
    Quote Originally Posted by MICHAEL B View Post
    ...virtually no loss of handling ability or any safety issues....
    Nonsense. Car tires have flexy sidewalls, bike tires have much more rigid ones. Car tires have flat contact surfaces, bike tires have rounded contact surfaces because bikes, you know, lean. If it were a good idea, there'd be more Iron Butters doing it than just Mac's friend.

    Given the different work they do, it stretches credulity that one could substitute a car tire for a bike tire without encountering handling or safety issues, particularly in bad conditions or with marginal traction.

    Feel free to go right ahead. I'll pass.
    David Brick
    Santa Cruz CA
    2007 R1200R

  5. #5
    Mars needs women! 35634's Avatar
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    Apr 2008
    SW Ohio
    Maybe they know something we don't. Nobody's doing it on the front tire, just the back. Might work well on a wing with training wheels
    Attached Images Attached Images
    1987 K75S
    Original litter
    Original owner
    2012 Ural Gear Up

  6. #6
    John. jstrube's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Atwater, CA
    No way. The tires do different things.

  7. #7

    What I know

    My acquaintance did it with his Suzuki Burgman and was pleased with the change. I always considered tires the biggest ripoff in the biking world and how the crotch rocket guys can stomach shelling out all that money every few thousand miles is beyond me.

    There was a big article about this in one of the cycling magazines recently, but I don't recall which one.

  8. #8
    Curmudgeon At Large Bobmws's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Astatula, FL
    You won't find a suitable sized car tire to fit your RT rim. Sidecar guys do it all the time but usually use an adapter to mount a 15x4 atuo rim to the bike, then use a VW size tire that is not so far off profile wise as some here are claiming. Quite a few folks are using this setup on solo bikes as well. YMMV.
    Look on ADVRider for more info and search for Darksiders on Google.
    Bob Weis
    Bikeless! 2004-bmw-k12rs-hannigan-Sold!

  9. #9
    Rally Rat
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Tampa, FL
    Let me get this straight...You spent $20k+ on an RT, and now you're going to skimp on tires?

    Car tires are meant to corner flat and support a lot of weight. That's why they have squared-off edges and vertical sidewalls. Guys who put car tires on two-wheel bikes (hacks are a different issue, given a particular setup) are idiots who don't understand motorcycle dynamics. The RT is a great handling bike for its size and weight. Why handicap the bike (not to mention the potential danger) for the sake of a few bucks?

    On the other hand, you're certainly free to follow the lemmings off the cliff...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Craftsbury, Vermont
    I for one would like to see some real data on this topic. The comparo article in a major publication a few months back had none; it was just a summary of suppositions and legalese that filled a couple of pages.

    It doesn't seem like it would make sense to darkside on a bike, yet there's an accumulating base of anecdotal evidence to the contrary...and I've been behind a couple of wings running darksiders who handled twisty roads pretty well.

    With my style of two wheeled riding it's not something I'd try, but I'd like to see some hard data on why they work, and under which conditions they fail.

    '18 R1200GSA and '12 R1200GSA for solo rides
    '10 R1200GSA with Hannigan sidecar for rides with Glenlivet
    '15 Honda CRF250L for exploring places I'm afraid to take the big GSA!

  11. #11
    Small road corner junkie pffog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    WNY, Further fron NYC, than 6 entire states!
    Quote Originally Posted by MICHAEL B View Post
    ............. with virtually no loss of handling ability or any safety issues. ..................

    That statement is very wrong, You and your buddies may ride the twisty's at parade speeds, and see no difference, but throw in an unexpected reducing radius where you NEED that additional 15% lean angle to make the corner and then let me know the difference, if you are still here to relate the outcome.

    I look at tires as insurance, give me the best ones that will be there with the best traction when I need them. Cheap and car tires are like trying to shield yourself with an umbrella in a lightning storm, you will probably not get struck for years, and swear it works, but one day................................

  12. #12
    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Sheboygan, WI


    Cheap vs. Safe.

    Darwin will sort it all out eventually.
    Kevin Greenwald - MSF Lead RiderCoach # 121656 (BRC,SBRC,IS,IME,SMARTrainer)
    Nationally Certified Law Enforcement Motor Officer (Ret.) / IBA Member #34281
    Motorcycle/High Performance/Teen/Winter/ATV Driving Instructor - ROAD AMERICA Track

  13. #13
    Rally Rat
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Southeast Arizona....where we ride year round.
    Quote Originally Posted by Greenwald View Post
    Cheap vs. Safe.

    Darwin will sort it all out eventually.

  14. #14
    On the Road
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    Apr 2012
    NH, USA

  15. #15
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Eastern KY
    See the recent Rider magazine discussion.

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