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how do you know if your tires are warm?

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' at netrider.net.au started by trd2000, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. ok so i understand the fundamentals about what heats your tires and how the heat dissipates... and how if your tires are too big then they might not get to temp etc.

    but short of getting an IR thermometer, how do we tell if we're heating up our tires enough?

    I've read a couple of tire reviews recently and the guys reckon they can tell the difference the tire temp makes and even the difference that tread patterns make to tire stability under brakes on the road... are they full of it? or are there some general signs that us mere mortals can use to determine if we're getting our tires up to temp or not....

    other than the bike wanting to lowside or long the back brake.
  2. You can feel the front end biting the road. It deosnt want to push wide anymore.
  3. The tread pattern can make a huge difference to the handling of a bike and not just under brakes.

    When I first bought the Bandit it had Macadams on it. For months I took the bike back to the shop complaining that the front end wasn't right, under de-acceleration the front end would start to wobble and if I took my hands of the 'bars it would end up in a tank slapper. Finally one of the blokes there looked at the tyre and said "It's the tyre, replace it and you'll be fine. See the twin center tread line, that's the issue". Sure enough when I replaced it with a Metzler not only did the 'wobble' disappear but I had far better feel for what the front end was doing.

    As for how to know if you're heating up your tyres enough, the way the tread wears is a good indicator. Someone here should have some pics to show you.
  4. Lick them.
    • Like Like x 5
  5. tYres
    • Like Like x 4
  6. I always let it go because the software package we use at work is from the US and there are no language settings.
  7. lol I'll try that.

    i know, but my spellcheck and most searches don't go so well with a Y anymore :-(
    • Like Like x 1
  8. does that mean till it's warm you're sliding the front tyre? how controlable is that?
  9. Because they stop sliding all over the place... and they groan when sliding hot
  10. You know because they feel planted & are predictable.

    You also know because you don't have cold tearing on your tyres :)

    Are you talking just street riding? If so, push the limits gradually & feel for slipping.

    Track stuff I have no idea about, but pros can tell by the way your tyre wears, same with suspension settings.
  11. if you are really really ($350 worth of really) worried


    doesn't fit all bikes though. but they have a list
  12. yeah street riding.... ive come to the conclusion that i'm not using my tires NEARLY to their potential and i want to work out how to find that potential without dropping my toys. I'm not using the very outsides of my tyres so i know i can lean more, but that means trusting my tyres more... and that means understanding where their limit is.

    I'm pretty confident i found the limit of my old crappy tyres on the VTR... it got to the point the tires went from gripping to NOT, with the same inputs and angles etc.... then it cooled and the grip came back.

    my other extreme, the Aprilia i'm nowhere near pushing to its limits... so much so that i may not (or may) be getting the tyres hot enough to work their best (a waste when you'r wearing good rubber)... and particularly on cool wet roads i'm probably riding on cold rubber (with bugger all tread to clear water).

    I've ridden about 70,000km on my 600 in a really broad range of weather conditions and temperatures, and although i've definately pushed my tires a bit along the way, i still couldn't say definatively that im close to telling when they warmed up or how far i can push them.... i will say that after being spontaneously dumped by a tram line i have a major griplossphobia at the moment so im probably overthinking it all.

    If i can get some confidence back about my grip levels, i'm going to have a lot more fun.
  13. 70,000 kays riding and you cant tell if your tires are warm?

    EDIT: normally there is significantly more grip and significantly less sliding in all circumstances, its not so much needing to know how to check, but just knowing how long on average it takes for your tires to warm up under various conditions.
  14. No its a very subtle feeling that the bike doesnt quite turn as well as you want it to. You just don't push it it much harder until you can feel it is starting to really biting. Just build up your speed and you'll be fine.
  15. yup... and i must've been doing something right cause aside from getting hit by a car (on gravel) and that bloody tram line i've managed to keep it upright... thing is, unless you go PAST the limit how do you know you've reached it?

    lol and before anyone says im just riding like a pussy, I'm not gonna get a ride with a SBK team any time soon but up until recently I didn't hold too many people up either.
  16. In this 70,000km how many sets of tyres have you gone through.

    Without a frame of reference, that statement actually means nothing.
  17. Do you really want to be using all the available potential of your tyres on the road? I go hard but never more than 90%.
    100% is for the track, your riding is probably fine but there are so many idiots out there, I've lost count of the times I've seen cars stopped or doing u-turns on a blind corner.
  18. lost track as i've gone through a few due to punctures in the last 18 months... i generally change tires at service intervals and get around 12000 from a rear... or 18000 from a front PR2. though PP's dont last that long... and it's not necessarily a good guide cause a lot of KM's are cruisy touring k's which dont chew tires...

    it means what i said - i dont want the thread to turn into a pissing contest.

    exactly i don't ride them to 100% but i see all these guys saying that one tire heats up faster than another etc. i wouldn't know, i probably ride to about 80-90% but without hitting 100 the tires grip and thats all ive worried about.... BUT knowing i'm working them enough to get them warm and sticky would be nice.
  19. 70,000k's with no major offs, not riding to 100% on the road, and not interested in a pissing competition. Sounds like you're doing it right.
    FWIW, I get a couple of nice smooth Ks in at the start of the ride, then a bit of medium left/right lean to get the heat to the edges and then it's up to normal speed. As others have said you get a feel for it.
  20. This thread must be killing poor old blab.

    what 109er said , Also pick a good corner and do it a bit faster each time 3-5kph. practice repeat do it faster.repeat.

    You will either find your limit or the bikes.one of them takes skill and practice, you cant go buy skill,but you can practice