Ordered tires about two weeks ago. It’s my next step partially because I want to accurately measure ride height, suspension clearance, rake and trail, etc. as I finish the chassis. But I am equally anxious to get this thing able to stand on it’s own. That way it will not have to sit on the lift (which is a hassle) and also start to look and feel a bit more like a motorcycle, which is important motivation fuel at this point after so many years of basically having a pile of parts.

Tire Choices:
The rear rim is from a GS450T and is a 17xMT2.15 rim size, which requires a goofy, narrow 4.60-17, 110/90-17, or 110/80-17 tire. There are not many choices available nowadays:

  • Pirelli MT75
  • IRC Durotour RS-310
  • IRC NR48, NR53, NR64 (all cheap-o, intended for mopeds)
  • IRC GP-110 (Dual Sport)
  • Shinko 700 Series (Dual Sport)

On the front, the rim is a 19xMT1.85, which takes a 3.50-19 90/90-19. There are more choices here, and I narrowed it down to the following:

  • Pirelli MT66
  • Bridgestone S11 Spitfire
  • Metzeler Lasertec
  • Heidenau K65

After reading the reviews, I went with the Durotour on the back. Then, considering prices and similarity to the Durotour at the rear, I went with the Heidenau for the front. People seem to be very enthusiastic about all of Heidenau’s tires for the money. I ordered them together from Motorcycle Maniac, because they were the only vendor I found that stocked both. With free shipping, the total bill for both is $183.98. They took 12 days to arrive.

Now that they’re here, I’m not sure if I want to spoon them onto the rims myself or hit the easy button and have them mounted at a dealer. On the one hand, this is one step I’ve done plenty of times already, so I know what is involved…and I know it sucks without a proper changer setup. On the other hand, it’s cheaper to get out the tire irons and dish soap, so I will probably give it a shot tomorrow evening. At least the lack of tubes makes it easier.

OH CRAP! Valve stems! [Grabs coat and keys…]

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