MOTORCYCLE TIRE CONVERSION CHARTSAugust 30, 2016
Tire Care and Tyre TipsSeptember 28, 2016
Mount only “tubeless” tires on “tubeless” rims when the rim manufacturer recommends this fitment. Some rims require tubes. A “tubeless” tire must be installed on a “tube type” rim when the appropriate tube is inserted.
Do not install non-radial tubes in radial tires. Insure that the tube marking matches the radial tire marking before installation to rims that require tubes.
A new valve must be installed on the rim each time a worn out motorcycle tire is replaced.
Never put flammable substances in tire/rim assemblies at any time. Never put any flammable substance into a tire/ rim assembly and attempt to ignite to seat the beads.
It is extremely important that the proper size of rim is used for your tires. Be sure to match your tire size to the size allowed on the rim. Improper rim width may affect handling and stability. Consult the sizing information of the tires you want to install for rim width allowances. Be sure that there is proper clearance between the tire and swingarm and any fender areas.
Tire & Wheel Balance
To avoid vibration and accelerated tire wear, it is essential to balance the tire & wheel assembly before use and each time the tire is removed or replaced on the rim. Also, check the rim for any imperfections as they could affect the overall balance.
Tire Size Selection
All motorcycles should be equipped with the tire size specified by the motorcycle manufacturer as found in the owner’s manual or manufacturer’s website. Be sure to equip the bike with radial tires only when they are required by the bike manufacturer.
Front and Rear Tire Matching
For optimum performance, it is very important to correctly match your front and rear tires. Riding your motorcycle with an improper mix of radial construction tires with bias or bias-belted construction tires is dangerous. Your motorcycle’s handling characteristics can be seriously affected. You could have an accident resulting in serious personal injury or death. Consult your owner's manual or your local dealer, for the proper tire replacement.
- Mount tires marked " Front Wheel" on front positions only and tires marked "Rear Positions" on rear positions only.
- Never mix Radial construction tires with bias or bias-belted construction tires.
- Some motorcycles may be equipped with Radial tires. Consult the motorcycle manufacturer before equipping replacement Radial tires to insure the proper specification and combination for your motorcycle.
- A new front tire equipped on a motorcycle with a worn rear tire may cause instability.
When fitting a new tire on a rim requiring a tube, a new tube should be fitted at the same time. Old tubes may become stretched and cause a crease which could make the tube fail. Check the size markings on the tube to ensure the tire size appears on the tube. Do not fit tubes in radial motorcycle tires, nor fit radial tires on rims requiring tubes, unless it is specified by the tire manufacturer.
Riding at high speed is dangerous, and can cause a motorcycle accident, including serious personal injury or death.
Regardless of the speed and handling capabilities of your motorcycle and its tires, a loss of control can result from exceeding the maximum speed:
(a) allowed by law or
(b) warranted by traffic, weather, vehicle, or road conditions. High-speed riding should be left to trained professionals operating under controlled conditions.
No tire, regardless of its design or speed rating, has unlimited capacity for speed, and a sudden tire failure can occur if its limits are exceeded.
Never use race only tires on public roads. Race tires are constructed in such a way that they are very unstable under normal street riding conditions. These tires also require higher operating temperatures for proper performance. These temperatures cannot be obtained within legal speed limits.
Do not use a tire on the road that has been subjected to motorcycle dynamometer testing. The stress from this process may result in tread compound degradation and possible tire failure.
Tire Speed Ratings
Some tires bear a letter "speed rating" designation indicating the tire's design speed capability. This speed rating system is intended to allow you to compare the speed capabilities of tires.
When purchasing or replacing speed-rated tires, make sure to:
Use the rankings in the chart below to compare the speed ratings of all the tires, and follow the motorcycle manufacturer's recommendations, if any, concerning the use of speed-rated tires.
To avoid reducing the speed capability of the motorcycle, replace a speed-rated tire only with another tire having at least the same speed rating. Remember, it's the "top speed" of the "slowest" tire on the vehicle, which cannot be exceeded without risk of tire failure. The letter symbols and corresponding design speeds are: Speed-Rating Symbol Speed Category*
* In laboratory tests that relate directly to highway speeds.
Reminder: Actual tire speed and performance capability depends on factors such as inflation pressure, load, tire condition, wear and driving conditions.
** Although no upper limit speed is specified here, the indicated tires nonetheless have limited rated speed capability. Call 1-800-367-3872 for a referral for more technical information.
*** Any tire with a speed capability above 149 mph (240 kph) can, at the tire manufacturer's option, include a "Z" in the size designation (120/70ZR17). If a service description IS NOT included, the tire manufacturer must be consulted for the maximum speed capability. If a service description is included with the size description, the speed capability is limited by the speed symbol in the service description.
Spinning a tire to remove a motorcycle stuck in mud, ice, snow, or wet grass can be dangerous. A tire spinning at a speedometer reading above 35 miles per hour (55 km/h) can in a matter of seconds reach a speed capable of disintegrating a tire with explosive force. Under some conditions, a tire may be spinning at a speed twice that shown on the speedometer. This could cause serious personal injury or death to a bystander or passenger and extensive motorcycle damage. Never spin a tire above a speedometer reading of 35 mph (55 km/h).
Wheel Spokes / Wire Wheels
Regularly inspect the spokes of your motorcycle wheels. Broken or loose spokes may cause wheel wobble, which can lead to instability and premature tire wear. Check rim tape condition. A protruding spoke can damage a tube and cause a tire puncture.
Tire and/or Vehicle Storage
Tires and/or vehicles should be stored indoors in a cool dry place where water cannot collect inside the tires. The tires and or vehicles should be placed away from electric generators and motors and sources of heat such as hot pipes. Storage surfaces should be clean and free of grease, gasoline, or other substances, which can deteriorate the rubber. Improper storage can damage your tires in ways that may not be visible and can lead to serious personal injury or death.
Oil, Grease and Gasoline
These items can deteriorate rubber when exposed to a tire for any length of time. Use a clean, damp cloth to remove these chemicals from the tire.
Use a mild soap solution to clean sidewalls, white stripes or raised white lettering, and then rinse off with plain water. Never apply any other materials, cleaners or dressings to enhance sidewall appearance. These items may degrade the rubber and remove inherent ozone cracking and weather checking resistance.