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Tyre Thickness and Handeling

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by bike_noob, Feb 3, 2010.

  1. Hi guys.

    I want to know much influence does the width of the tyres have on a bike in terms of grip, cornering, genral handelling etc.

    If wider tyres are better then why do most 250 have really small slim tyres?

  2. Wider tyres actually slow down the steering - imagine for example the sensation of throwing a mountain bike into a corner, they steer lightning fast. Thinner tyres steer quicker, there's less rotating mass to resist a steering input, and when the bike's on its side, the front and rear wheel contact patches are much closer to being in line with each other.

    Wider tyres are handy when your bike puts out a lot of power - they widen the contact patch, putting more rubber on the road and letting you accelerate harder out of corners. That's why the real powerful bikes have them. When you don't need that extra grip to handle big power, thinner tyres are better for handling - hence why the 250 and 125GP bikes run narrower tyres than the MotoGP guys, and why small-capacity streetbikes have thinner tyres.

    The main advantage to wider tyres on a streetbike in everyday riding is that they make it easier to cross tram tracks.
  3. thanks for the info.

    I have sort of become obsessed with finding a LAMS bike with wide rear tyres as i keep thinking the normal ones are too thin and wont be able to balance.

    i guess what you said puts my mind at ease a bit.
  4. can you balance a pushbike? its much easier balancing a motor due to low centre of gravity. Any affect from tyre width would be negligible compared to that
  5. If you want a LAMS bike with a fat back tyre, the Hornet 250 has a 180-section rear. I wouldn't worry too much about it.
  6. yeh it just one of those irrational things that occured to me while bike hunting. but you guys have managed to put my mind at ease a little bit.

    @ the CB250F hornet, would this bike be suitable for me (6' 110kg) on the highway? I gotta make 100k round trip each day.

    there is a couple of good ones on bikesales.com for under 4k, so im thinking they will make an ideal learner bike.
  7. Don't fuss about the width of the tyre as far as balance is concerned. Trials motorcycles, which participate in a sport which requires extreme balance, have a tiny 100mm wide rear tyre.

    While rolling forward at a crawling pace (3kph?), there's no noticable difference in balancing difficulty between my mountainbike (53mm tyres), VTR250 (140mm rear tyre), and Tiger 1050 (180mm rear tyre).

    It really isn't a factor. :)
  8. For your size and stature similar to me (6' 95kg) a CB400 would be more suitable. Has a nice wide rear tyre too and carries me around with ease wherever I want to go.
  9. Go for the narrowest tyres you can. As a beginner you will detect zero difference in handling and your wallet will love you for it.
  10. Yep forget fat tyres, expensive and no real advantage on the road with speed limits etc.