Darkside Rider Tire History and Findings

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  • Darkside Rider Tire History and Findings

    Starting a thread for this new forum where folks might post about their Darkside tire history and findings.

    What CT's have you used in the past and what riding/handling characteristics did the tires have? Why did you stop using that tire and what do you think of your present CT? Run-Flat and Non-Run-Flat tire reports will be greatly appreciated. The only reason I know what I know about the Darkside is from you guys. Please share your knowledge and findings so others might make an informed decision. I'm thinking, that most folks that tried the Darkside and didn't like it, was probably because of the tire they chose to try. Lot's of tires don't handle worth a darn.......lol. Thanks for your post.

    '12 GL1800 Level 4 & '08 FLHX Darksider #1378

  • #2
    I have 8000 miles on my 2013 Wing. At 3000 miles the back tire was about 50% gone. After reviewing many many posts on many sites I bought a Yokohoma Envigor non-run-flat. I tried it for about 500 miles and didn't really like the wiggle during turn accel. Also, I read Speckfisher's review of non-run-flats with 0 pressure and Rail's views on non-run-flat tires without rim guards. Based on that info, I changed to the same tire, ZPS version. I've found I really like the tire running about 33 psi. Handles well, no wiggle under hardest turn accel and after 4000 miles still looks brand new. Yes, some pavement spots, I can tell it's a big not so round tire, but no worse than that last 1500 miles on a MT, when its wore flat across and you're just stretching those last miles out. I don't see me ever running a rear MT on this bike again. I run the OEM and Pressure Pro TPMS. Also, my local tire store gets the tire and mounts them for free.
    Darkside #1527, Double Dark

    Comment: (For off-topic replies)


    • #3
      Originally posted by Riverdawg View Post
      I have 8000 miles on my 2013 Wing. At 3000 miles the back tire was about 50% gone. After reviewing many many posts on many sites I bought a Yokohoma Envigor non-run-flat. I tried it for about 500 miles and didn't really like the wiggle during turn accel. Also, I read Speckfisher's review of non-run-flats with 0 pressure and Rail's views on non-run-flat tires without rim guards. Based on that info, I changed to the same tire, ZPS version. I've found I really like the tire running about 33 psi. Handles well, no wiggle under hardest turn accel and after 4000 miles still looks brand new. Yes, some pavement spots, I can tell it's a big not so round tire, but no worse than that last 1500 miles on a MT, when its wore flat across and you're just stretching those last miles out. I don't see me ever running a rear MT on this bike again. I run the OEM and Pressure Pro TPMS. Also, my local tire store gets the tire and mounts them for free.
      Riverdawg, what psi were you running that NRF Envigor at? TIA.
      Richard
      Darksider #390
      Murgie's FAQ

      Comment: (For off-topic replies)


      • #4
        34psi, but the ride was not the main reason for going to the ZPS tire, it was Speckfisher's review of the non-run-flat ride in case of a road hazard that resulted in 0 psi. That review was on another forum.
        Darkside #1527, Double Dark

        Comment: (For off-topic replies)


        • #5
          Thanks Riverdawg. I was just curious.
          Richard
          Darksider #390
          Murgie's FAQ

          Comment: (For off-topic replies)


          • #6
            Let me first state that my experiences are not likely similar to others, as my Dark Side beginnings were greatly influenced by a few "unique" things. First, I was introduced to it by that great wise man, Trialsman. Great teacher of smooth riding, yet he was incredibly quick in the twisties. Second, the direct value of the CT in the twisties was so effectively demonstrated by Murgie and TravelinLite. That first weekend I spent with these guys was an eye-opener. Third, where I live and ride is about as ideal as it gets, as I can be going up Caesar's Head (US276) in 20 minutes from my house. One thing about the twistie roads in this region is that they are pretty abrasive, so tire mileage is going to be lower here, no matter how you ride. So here goes:

            CT #1 - Michelin Alpin PA3 ZP. 15.5k miles, with a good mix of slab and twisties. Started at 28psi, increased to 30psi around 10k. The tire was at the wear bars and the edges were pretty worn.

            CT #2 - Michelin Alpin PA3 ZP. 15.5k miles, with ~5k slab miles. Started at 30psi, increased to 32psi around 10K. The tire was not quite to the wear bars, but the edges were GONE. Probably rode it too far and should have picked up the pressure sooner.

            CT #3 - Pirelli Cinturato P1 - 4.7k miles, with virtually all of them in the twisties. Don't be too misled by the mileage, as I was testing this tire to the extent of my skill set. It performed very admirably for me. Started at 33psi and increased to 34psi after ~3k miles. The tire was not to the wear bars, but quite worn on the edges.

            CT #4 - Yokohama AVID ENVigor ZPS - 6.8k miles, with ~2k slab miles. Like the Pirelli, rode this tire pretty hard in the twisties to learn just how good it was going to be. It performed very similar to the Pirelli in single curves, but its weight made it less 'flickable' in compound curves. A bit firmer in the twisties relative to the Alpin, which is a good thing for feeling control. Started at 34psi, increased to 35psi after 3k miles. The tire was about to the wear bars, but quite worn on the edges.

            CT #5 - Pirelli Cinturato P1 - 5.5k miles, with ~2k slab miles. Very similar results to the first Pirelli. Started at 35psi and left it there. The tire was about to the wear bars, but quite worn on the edges.

            CT #6 - Wanli Runflat - 3k miles, with most all in the twisties. Decided to try this one because of the cost ($63 for a runflat). Knew I wouldn't get good mileage, as the wear rating was 280. But at that price, if it performed well it could be a keeper. Mileage was about what I expected. Given the relatively soft compound, I expected it to grip well, and it did - on dry pavement. It gripped extremely well until it rained. The primary rain channels are not very deep to begin with and the secondary grooves wear completely away very quickly (not deep at all). It kind of turns into a cheater slick pretty quick. If I lived somewhere where it rarely rained or on less abrasive roads, this tire would be a keeper; but it just does not work for me here. It also generated much more tire heat than any other tire I have ever had. It reached 174F at one point, whereas the previous high tire temp I had experienced was 162F. Started at 36psi and left it there. The tire was to the wear bars and the edges were very worn. I have a second one I use just for riding with my wife on short local runs, but very low mileage to date.

            CT #7 - Falken 912 NRF - Only have a few hundred miles on this one. Just trying to get used to it.
            The downfall of every great society has always been immediately preceded by a significant increase in the number of lawyers.

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            • OhioWinger
              OhioWinger commented
              Editing a comment
              The Wanli....isn't that the one you changed in the parking lot at Aunt Sue's?

          • #7
            First Darkside experience was riding a friends bike with a Kumho Ecsta. Only rode it a few times, it seemed okay but needed extra input to respond. Of course I was only accustomed to MT's at the time.

            I read lot's of folks advice and reasoning for going with a CT, especially the Run-Flat crowd. I had a long discussion on the phone with a few Darksiders and then began riding an Alpin - the run-flat version. I had some minor traction issues with it, whereas most folks have never had any. It would slip while I was in a hard lean and simultaneously hitting the throttle. The reason it slips, I believe is because of it's sipping on it's outer lugs. After a few thousand miles of wear it seems to slip less. This would only occur if I was really hitting the throttle hard - Yes I know, just don't do that......... The wet/dry traction is amazing and it will outbreak a motorcycle tire - my opinion. The tire rides very smooth. Expect high mileage out of this tire it's a proven winner. I liked 28-32 psi for interstate riding and 38 - 40 psi for twistys. Still running this tire when the Yoko is not on the rear. I have three rear rims with tires mounted.........

            I was still looking for a better performing Run-Flat CT and after a great discussion with OhioWinger, I began riding a Yokohama Avid ENVigor ZPS. I will advise you that I am very partial to this Yoko. It is a bit better in wet/dry traction than the Alpin. No slip regardless of what and when you try it. It's a quicker transitioning tire (rounder shoulders and is V-Rated) and wears very good considering my mixed riding styles. I am running 28 - 30 psi for interstate and 32 - 36 in the twistys. It feels more like a MT than the other two CT's I have tried.

            I am a newbie Darkside rider and have toured for only 32K with a Run-Flat CT. I have in that time ridden the ENVigor with a hole in it and 0 psi for ten miles at 60 mph with no issues. I think it's mandatory to purchase an aftermarket TPMS that is handlebar mounted. The reason being, you can immediately see the display in case of a problem. These run-flats with zero psi handle remarkably well at interstate speeds, without the extra warning you may never realize you have no air in the rear tire.
            '12 GL1800 Level 4 & '08 FLHX Darksider #1378

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            • #8
              What is V-Rated?
              2012 Honda Goldwing | 2009 Timeout Camper



              Patriot Guard Rider since 2007 | IBA member #59823

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              • #9
                Originally posted by hparsons View Post
                What is V-Rated?
                It is the speed rating of the tire. The Alpin has an H rating compared to the ENVigor's V rating. My cut and paste explanation.

                The Origin of Speed Ratings

                We can thank Germany's famous Autobahn for tire speed ratings. Tire speed ratings range from A (the lowest) to Y (the highest). But the chart is not completely in alphabetical order. For example, H is between U and V, with the common perception that H stood for "high performance" at one time. As manufacturers continue to add speed to their vehicles, tire speed ratings evolve to match the speeds. For example, Z was the highest rated speed at 149+ until W & Y were used to match the higher speeds of exotic sports cars.
                Speed Ratings Refer to More Than Just Speed

                Speed ratings make a difference not only in regards to speed, but in regards to ride comfort, wear and cornering ability. Typically, the higher the speed rating, the better the grip and stopping power, but the lower the tread life. You can always increase the speed rating of the tires on your vehicle for improved performance, but can never decrease it without reducing the vehicle top speed to that of the lower speed rating selected.
                Mixing Speed Ratings

                If tires of different speed ratings are mounted on a vehicle, the lower speed-rated tires should be placed on the front axle regardless of which axle is driven. This is to prevent a potential oversteer condition. Vehicle handling may be affected, and the vehicle’s speed capacity is now limited to the lowest speed-rated tire. For best performance, it is recommended that the same size and type of tire be used on all four wheel positions.
                Load Index

                235/55R17 99H- The load index (99) is the tire size's assigned numerical value used to compare relative load carrying capabilities. The higher the tire's load index number, the greater its load carrying capacity.

                97 = 1,609 pounds
                98 = 1,653 pounds
                99 = 1,709 pounds


                A tire with a higher load index than that of the Original Equipment tire indicates an increase in load capacity. A tire with a load index equal to that of the Original Equipment tire indicates an equivalent load capacity. A tire with a lower load index than the Original Equipment tire indicates the tire does not equal the load capacity of the original and should not be considered for installation on the vehicle.

                Typically, the load indexes of the tires used on passenger cars and light trucks range from 70 to 130.

                '12 GL1800 Level 4 & '08 FLHX Darksider #1378

                Comment: (For off-topic replies)


                • OhioWinger
                  OhioWinger commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Good post!

              • #10
                Wow!!! Thanks for the info (believe or not, I read it all and and really did find it interesting).

                So, in theory, the ENVigor will not last as long as the Alpin?

                Also, how does towing a trailer affect the life of the tire?
                2012 Honda Goldwing | 2009 Timeout Camper



                Patriot Guard Rider since 2007 | IBA member #59823

                Comment: (For off-topic replies)


                • #11
                  Originally posted by hparsons View Post
                  Wow!!! Thanks for the info (believe or not, I read it all and and really did find it interesting). So, in theory, the ENVigor will not last as long as the Alpin? Also, how does towing a trailer affect the life of the tire?
                  My experience was the edges always wore faster on the Yoko than the Alpin, YMMV I can't really comment on how towing a trailer affects tire life, I haven't towed much since going to the Darkside.

                  Comment: (For off-topic replies)


                  • Elrod
                    Elrod commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Did that have anything to do with your right wrist? Or did the Alpin really last longer, all other things being equal?

                  • OhioWinger
                    OhioWinger commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Maybe the wrist was a factor. I think the V rated softer compound was the culprit. I usually got around 6k from the Alpin and 3k from the Yoko.

                • #12
                  First CT is Alpin Michelin tire. About 4600 miles on it. Looks new still. I run cold air psi at 32. After a few miles the heat builds the psi up slightly, turns off the flashing Tire pressure sensing system lite. I have the wheel sensors "flipped" front to back via the hand held programer

                  No complaints. It rides different, than a MT. Not much. I am not an agreessive rider to a large degree. Alpin does all I need. Wil see how the mileage wears.

                  My vacation plans fell apart in July. That would have been near 4k mile on the tire fairly quick. oh well, maybe next year
                  2013 Red Airbag 1800

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                  • #13
                    Got on the MAP ZP bandwagon 12 months ago. Cross country couple times, 50% two up loaded with hitch rack, 50% by myself. Don't consider myself to be a tight twister but I do lean it over and scrape some. Got 20K on the tire and could still ride it more but going cross country again and put new one on for the trip. Staying with same tire, got small local auto repair shop to mount. Have 2nd rear wheel and do my own tire swap using the lay down method. Don't need balance weights as I also run Centramatics . MAP ZP. Michilin Alpine Run Flat.

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                    • #14
                      I am going to try the Yoko Envigor this time around just read a lot riders say the Alpine slips around and just don't need to deal with that.
                      2018 DCT non tour, Pearl Stallion Brown, Double Darksider #856, Live To Ride, Love my Wing, IBA Member# 63744 Yellowbird Alias Coppertone

                      Comment: (For off-topic replies)


                      • Elrod
                        Elrod commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Only if it is pushed really hard. If you don't ride like that, you will never experience a problem. It just seems that the outermost tread blocks may squirm some early in the tire's life. Once the edge is worn down some, even that tendency goes away. The only folks that seem to have this issue are the ones that accelerate really hard out of corners while leaning.

                    • #15
                      Been a Darksider since 2010. Only on my second car tire, but dont think I would ever go back to a MC tire on the rear. Frst tire was a Hankook Ventus V4 , nonrunflat. Lasted 24000 plus miles. Good tire, but wanted the safety of a runflat when I switched to an Alpin .Great tire,but a little bit softer feeling in the turns. 8000 miles on it and it looks like new yet. Wingwinder.

                      Comment: (For off-topic replies)

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