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New Tire Break-in?


MarkAZ

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Not to be too anal, but...

 

I just put a new set of PR4GTs on my bike. Anything I should do to break in the new tires? I read somewhere that it's a good idea to scrub the mold release off them with soap & water & a scrub brush before your first ride. Anyone else heard that? It's my first set of new tires on this bike & the damn things are expensive so I want to be sure not to do something stupid. They sure seem to have a lot of those little bitty rubber spike things on them (I don't know what the correct term is...I've heard them called 'mold tits'). I think I should at least take it easy for a while until they scuff in a little. I suppose I could take a belt sander or wire brush to them and scuff them in a lot. :)

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szurszewski

No need to worry about how expensive the tires were - you certainly aren't going to hurt them :)

 

As with any new tires on any bike, having the mold release removed is good, but I've yet to get a tire that seemed to still have release compound on it. Mainly, since they might be a little slick, take it easy on turns to begin with - especially when they are both shiny new and cold/hard. I like to go to a open parking lot or a quiet cul de sac and ride gradually tighter circles in each direction to kind of scrub up the sides. After that, just increase your riding gradually from super-duper-safe back to whatever your normal style is.

 

After you get them scrubbed in a bit, it would be a good time to practice hard stops etc. Some chance your new tires will react a bit different than the old ones, but also just a good thing to practice now and again.

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I just put the first 200 miles on my new PR4GTs. I don't think they use mold release anymore, but I'd still use caution for a while just to get accustomed the the new handling. I felt no slipping, but need to adjust to smaller steering inputs. I feel like a kid with new tennis shoes on the first day of summer vacation - watch me run!

 

The tits wear off, you will not even notice them.

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Morning MarkAZ

 

New tries do usually handle differently than your old squared off tires so do be careful riding until you get used to the handling difference.

 

The new tire slickness can be an issue for some riders until they have a few miles on them. That is usually more due to the tire mounting lubrication used when mounting the tires than manufacturing release agents.

 

The tire tec gets mounting lube on the tire beads & sidewalls then on his hands, then transfers that to the tread surface when handling. (no big deal as it usually scrubs off in a few miles of riding but can still remain on the outer tread areas until those are scrubbed in or heat cycled a couple of times)

 

 

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This almost happened to me on a VFR1200 with a new tires. So in addition to being careful in turns initially, watch out for hard starts. Pretend you're on a wet road for a while.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q9zNUPDmnz4&feature=youtube_gdata_player

 

 

I've never understood how that particular mishap occurred. I think there had to be Armorall on the tires or something.

 

Happened to me with new tyres. Used full throttle pulling out of the dealers car-park and BANG! I was sliding down the road on my arse. Broke off a footrest and injured my pride. One of the salesmen picked up my bike, another customer helped me to the side. The dealer knew I was off on a tour that day, so replaced the footrest with one off a bike on the showroom floor.

The tyres were clean, no armorall, no lube, just slick new tyres.

 

Take it easy on the throttle and brakes for a day or two.

 

Andy

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Joe Frickin' Friday
I like to go to a open parking lot or a quiet cul de sac and ride gradually tighter circles in each direction to kind of scrub up the sides.

 

Same here, but I also lean my body to the outside of the turn so that the bike leans in even further without having to give more traction.

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Guest Kakugo

Yes, there's one thing you should do: find a set of twisties and scrap yer hero blobs. :thumbsup:

 

Modern tyres need no particular caution to be broken in: I always go to the twisties I have near my home to scrub them in.

It used to take four or five runs (it's a "course" about 8km long) but with the latest Michelin's and Bridgestone's I am already at full lean at second run.

Either I am getting faster with age or they changed something in the tyres... ;)

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+ 1 to SnakePlisskin's comment

 

I put a new set of Road Pilot 2's on my 12RT near the end of the season 1.5 years ago, I was astonished at how just slippery they were. First thing I noticed was the ease with which the handlebars pivoted while stationary...noticeable just standing up the bike from the side stand. I took it very gently the first few kms, felt the rear slip a couple of times just rolling away from a stop. I had never experienced new tire as 'greasy' as those, they didn't have any residue or mounting lube on them that would transfer to a rag, temps were around 7 deg C (low 40's F). They were great after a 100 kms.

Rick

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I read somewhere that it's a good idea to scrub the mold release off them with soap & water & a scrub brush before your first ride. Anyone else heard that?

 

I wash my tires before I change the tires. This gets the road grime off the tires. Road grime can cause slow leaks. And, it helps keep me clean while I change them.

 

After they are mounted, I wash the tires again. This removes the mold release, and the mounting lube. Mounting lube has 20% soap and antifreeze. This makes the tires very slippery. After washing the tires well, the new tires will stick to the road quite well. After about 100-200 miles the tires are scuffed up enough to handle aggressive riding.

 

I would not sand them or wire brush them. A nylon brush with soap will remove the antifreeze, soap, and release. When you run your hand over a cleaned tire, your hand still stick to the rubber.

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I'm a heat cycle advocate.

Was told by tire manufacturer that the tires needed to go through a couple cycles of heat up and cool down for molecular bonding.

So I go carefully, ride a while and stop, let them cool down.

Then go out, warm 'em up and get a bit more aggressive.

After that, just ride them.

50-100 miles for me.

YMMV

 

heat cycling

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After they are mounted, I wash the tires again. This removes the mold release, and the mounting lube. Mounting lube has 20% soap and antifreeze. This makes the tires very slippery. After washing the tires well, the new tires will stick to the road quite well. After about 100-200 miles the tires are scuffed up enough to handle aggressive riding.

 

 

correct process.

 

just gotta get the mold release and mounting residue off them and they are good to go. there is no "heat cycling" of street tires. street tires never reach a temp high enough to affect the rubber.

 

r-compound race tires are a whole different animal. the rubber is real soft, is affected by heat, and track tire temps get very high.

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Thanks for all the inputs, guys. I finished mounting the rear this afternoon but didn't have time to take it out. Hopefully in the morning...carefully. ;)

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Thought I'd weigh in with an observation or two.

Just finished mounting my PR4s on my rt and almost fell over in my first turn. Forgot how much more responsive new round tires were. A great problem ! Secondly, I never do anything unusual to break in a tire. My normal routine is to gradually increase lean and pressure on the tires till I get a feel for what they will do. This is something I do with any change in conditions regardless of tire age. Ex. Wet roads, cold roads, dusty roads.

The only thing specific to the PR4GTs that I have noticed is that because of the stiffer sidewalls, a fairly aggressive turning start from an intersection will induce a little rear wheel slip. Just enough to get my attention. Enjoy your ride !

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Just to wind this up...I took about a 75 mi ride this morning with some city streets/freeway and then moderate twisties. Quite a difference from the old tires. The turn-in is much smoother and it seems to take less steering effort for the same lean. No howl from the front end at 65+ any more either...I guess I was right in my suspicion that it was tire noise...the old front tire (a PR2) was pretty badly cupped. So far so good. Thanks to all for the inputs. Now to start wearing these out...

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Those PR2's (front and rear) were ALWAYS noisy on my bikes after they had done about 2500 miles. But, they gripped and lasted well. Also they vibrated a tiny bit when you rolled the bike just off upright, then, they smoothed and quieted down as you lay into the bend.

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I had a brand new set of Metzlers put on and a local shop, turned out the drive at 5 mph and the whole back end just slipped out and I went down doing a doughnut on its side. Now,I always wash the tire down after mounting and mount them myself. No sense in paying others to do me in.

 

Don't know if it was the silicone mold release or the grease they use to lube up the tire. I just use a soap solution which washes off easily. With 3 x 10 inch C-clamps on the tire to force the tire into the deepest part of the wheel while getting the bead over the rim it isn't so difficult to change them myself.

 

Just to be sure though, now I hit the rear tire with brake cleaner before remounting the rear wheel. No more riding on banana snot for me. :)

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I use a heavy duty (non-metal) paint stripper wheel in a cordless drill to buff the tire surfaces prior to re-installing the wheels.

 

Usually will do two full passes with the drill @ different angles.

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After they are mounted, I wash the tires again. This removes the mold release, and the mounting lube. Mounting lube has 20% soap and antifreeze. This makes the tires very slippery. After washing the tires well, the new tires will stick to the road quite well. After about 100-200 miles the tires are scuffed up enough to handle aggressive riding.

 

 

correct process.

 

just gotta get the mold release and mounting residue off them and they are good to go. there is no "heat cycling" of street tires. street tires never reach a temp high enough to affect the rubber.

 

r-compound race tires are a whole different animal. the rubber is real soft, is affected by heat, and track tire temps get very high.

 

I've had multiple manufactureres tell me this.

You can do what works.

Now race slicks on street use, well, they won't get to proper temps to function properly, according to the same sources.

Again, do what you want.

But unless things have changed in the [ast 3-4 years,please provide data to corroborate the "there is no heat cycling" of street tires.

Please approach from the POV that the heat cycling is a process that completes the bonding in the tire.

Thanks.

Best wishes.

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After they are mounted, I wash the tires again. This removes the mold release, and the mounting lube. Mounting lube has 20% soap and antifreeze. This makes the tires very slippery. After washing the tires well, the new tires will stick to the road quite well. After about 100-200 miles the tires are scuffed up enough to handle aggressive riding.

 

 

correct process.

 

just gotta get the mold release and mounting residue off them and they are good to go. there is no "heat cycling" of street tires. street tires never reach a temp high enough to affect the rubber.

 

r-compound race tires are a whole different animal. the rubber is real soft, is affected by heat, and track tire temps get very high.

 

I've had multiple manufactureres tell me this.

You can do what works.

Now race slicks on street use, well, they won't get to proper temps to function properly, according to the same sources.

Again, do what you want.

But unless things have changed in the [ast 3-4 years,please provide data to corroborate the "there is no heat cycling" of street tires.

Please approach from the POV that the heat cycling is a process that completes the bonding in the tire.

Thanks.

Best wishes.

 

race slicks on the street is a really bad idea for many reasons.

 

please provide manufacturers data to support the need to heat cycle street tires....

 

i have been building, setting up and racing cars for a long time. gone through more tires than i care to admit to at the rate of a set a weekend and make extensive use of tire pyrometers to optimize performance. I am pretty familiar through many, many years of personal experience with street and track tires and what they do.

 

but, they are your tires...break them in however makes you feel good! none of the procedures described so far will cause damage to tires. just make sure to be careful until the goo and mold release is worn off the entire tread surface. :)

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We sold thousands of motorcycle tires.

When asked about break in we passed on conventional folklore.

I got curious.

Asked regional reps for Dunlop and Michelin.

I e-mailed up the COC.

In all cases the heat cycle manner was espoused.

You can do what you want, as I said earlier.

I'm merely relating waht I was told by maufacturer and their reps a few years back.

You can also read some of the links available out there and make your own informed decision.

Many people have been heat cycling w/out being told to by the manner they leave with the new tire.

Ride carefully, slower, get home. Next ride be careful and "scrub" them in and gradually increase the demand on the tire.

So, do what you want.

But, unless you can provide data that refutes this (not anecdotes) I'll stick by what the manufacturer told me in verbal and written responses.

Perhaps they were just CYA and there is no molecular bonding etc.

I have an open mind.

But I am mindful of the source.

Best wishes.

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