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View Full Version : Mark's Cheapo Seat Mod & Tire Question


etcthorne
05-26-2008, 11:44 AM
Hijacked my own thread at first post! How 'bout that?


My cheapo seat mod: Removed the cover (for about the fourth time while playing with this stock seat), carved about 1.5" of seat foam out from where the cheeks sit, and all the way back to about 1" from the rear. Kind of hard to get a "bowl" action going to carve it out, but if you take your time, it's worth it. The stock seat was killing me and I'm on the fence about what kind of aftermarket seat to get - Corbin, Day Long, etc... I have the money, it's just that I'm worried about making a mistake (I read the seat thread too). This mod WORKED! I rode 110 miles without stopping yesterday, and although there is always a little discomfort with any seat, this was a MAJOR improvement. What the heck? I'm going to get another seat anyway at some point, so no danger in totally wrecking this one. The only real drawback is that it looks rather funky. It's like two hands cupping your cheeks though...:lol2:

http://img138.imageshack.us/img138/8061/bandittiresandseat001ob5.jpg

Tire question: I have about 4200 miles on the bike now, and although I have about 1/8" of tread left in the center of the tire, I'm noticing tire threads! They may have always been visible before and I just didn't notice. Is this tire safe, or is it time to replace it?

http://img141.imageshack.us/img141/3102/bandittiresandseat003su3.jpg

http://img127.imageshack.us/img127/3387/bandittiresandseat002nl1.jpg

Rcdd
05-26-2008, 09:27 PM
I don't know about the rest in here, but that tire would worry me.......I wouldn't be driving too far on that with the threads showing.....just my 2 cents...

RcTimmy
05-26-2008, 11:15 PM
Sounds like you've been running with low tire pressure. I'd replace the tire as soon as possible. Keep that bad boy at 40 psi and check it weekly...

I ruined my tire because I ran too low of pressure, it made the rubber super soft. After I put it back to 40 psi, it only took about 100 miles to eat the last 1/8" of tread clear down to the chords. I replaced the tire with a Michelin Pilot Road at 4500 miles. Now I have 6500 miles and the new tire doesn't even show any wear.

etcthorne
05-27-2008, 05:45 AM
Thanks guys. Actually, I'm probably the most anal tire pressure checker you've ever met! Before each ride - and even if I ride both days on a weekend, I check them cold each morning. They have been kept at 36 front/ 42 rear, just like the manufacturer recommends!


It's interesting that I have at least another 1/8" of tread left and this is happening! I might complain to Dunlop about this.

etcthorne
05-27-2008, 12:36 PM
Took it by the dealer this morning, and yep - he said they're gone! (of course he did). But you guys telling me the same thing helped calm my fears of being ripped off.


Shopped around (if you expect a good deal on anything - tires, motorcycles, etc... don't live in Virginia Beach, Va.) Don't have time to order on line - my bad, plus you take it up the butt around here if you bring tires to a dealer. Pilot Road 2's - a better tire from what I hear - $192.00 front, $247.00 rear, about $110.00 to install. $549.00 total - THESE SUCKERS BETTER LAST A LITTLE LONGER THAN THE DUNFLOPS!!!!! :giveup:

5150
05-27-2008, 09:11 PM
Good god if I had to pay $550 to replace my tires I think I would quit riding. I replaced both front and rear tires for $200 total, of course I do all the work myself, that really helps.

RcTimmy
05-27-2008, 10:19 PM
Took it by the dealer this morning, and yep - he said they're gone! (of course he did). But you guys telling me the same thing helped calm my fears of being ripped off.


Shopped around (if you expect a good deal on anything - tires, motorcycles, etc... don't live in Virginia Beach, Va.) Don't have time to order on line - my bad, plus you take it up the butt around here if you bring tires to a dealer. Pilot Road 2's - a better tire from what I hear - $192.00 front, $247.00 rear, about $110.00 to install. $549.00 total - THESE SUCKERS BETTER LAST A LITTLE LONGER THAN THE DUNFLOPS!!!!! :giveup:


Holly CRUD!!! I just put a Mich Pilot Road on the back for $150 installed!!! Haven't done the front yet. Prolly a little less. Better watch your backside if you know what I mean... :eek2:

Rcdd
05-28-2008, 09:54 AM
Man........Feeling much better about the 2 Pirelli Diablos that just came in yesterday...Under $200 for both delivered to the house.....Gonna make all the bloody knucles from my first tire change much easier to take.......

And for the record, 2700 miles from the crappy OEM Dunlop, and the back is toasted.....

etcthorne
05-28-2008, 11:06 AM
RCDD, I think I'm going to write a letter to Dunlop about the stock tires we had on the Bandit. I don't care what kind of bike you ride, 2700 miles out of a stock tire, or in my case, 4200 miles before you start seeing threads breaking is simply unacceptable. I've been riding motorcycles for about 30 years, and this smells like crap to me. Here's another thing - most folks on this board don't seem to be of the "beat the **** out of their bike" ilk, yet almost all are reporting the same thing about the stock tire. We chalk it up to the weight of the Bandit, the fact that it's a powerful standard and acceleration eats up the tires....etc....

And, I have threads showing even when there is over an 1/8" of tread left in the center!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Maybe Suzuki's pressure recommendation of 42psi on the rear is too high - I don't know. Something is wrong when a tire wears out this quickly on a bike that is not raced, ridden like a scalded dog, or otherwise abused.


I check cold pressure before the bike leaves the garage - every time. I keep a close watch on alignment, chain adjustment, etc....


This is simply uncool.

Rcdd
05-28-2008, 11:31 AM
I know one thing...Dunlop won't see the inside of my wallet.....

I'm not hard on the tires (even though I've only put 200 miles on it since I bought the bike last week), but I can see the "wear" daily on the rear....I drive 85 miles daily to work and back, and seeing the rear tire disolve is not infusing any confidence in these tires.....And yours, with the cords showing, makes me nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs...

Good luck with the Dunlop letter, and keep us up to date on your responses...

5150
05-28-2008, 12:25 PM
I think the stock Dunlops are a little soft making them wear faster but the main culprit is all that torque the motor puts to the rear wheel and lets face it we may not ride all that hard but every time we twist the throttle we put a lots of strain on the rear tire trying to move a 500 lb machine plus the ride down the road in a hurry. As much as we hate to admit it we do tend to show off all that torque we have on hand every time we twist the right grip.

suzukijo
05-28-2008, 08:33 PM
i cant tell if the yellow between the tread blocks is threads, or paint.
stock tires have some paint at the bottom of the tread grooves.

andy way you can put your camera on a milk crate, and put it on macro, and take a clear closeup?

the square shape of it might be a problem, creating speed wobbles, but the sides have plenty of tread left.

Brass
05-29-2008, 08:29 AM
The rear was worn out on mine at 3500 Km (2100 miles). 85-90% of my riding is 2-up but I don't abuse tires, if I did the backseater would start knocking on the back of my helmet. I don't like that the tire was worn out that fast but I guess it could be a factor that adds to the overall low cost of the Bandit.

They did have a good firm grip on the road while they lasted at least.

Trailduster
05-31-2008, 08:15 PM
I went 3.4k on the stock rear and another 1k on the front, New pilot road 2,s rear 139.00 and 127.00 front. 17.00 each to mount , all from the dealer.

dmerc
05-31-2008, 10:38 PM
http://www.swmototires.com/

SW Moto is usually the best price, when figured with shipping. If you buy both tires at once, shipping is free.

I've bought there for years, NEVER a problem. Good folks!

Note for the link, when you go to the online store, it's closed right now.....while at the Baja 500.

I think I paid $210 for both Pilot Roads on my FZ a couple years ago.

I only tried them 'cuz I work at BF Goodrich,(Michelin owned) and get a 30% rebate.

But, they were great tires!! I'll definitely stick with 'em.

dmerc
05-31-2008, 10:50 PM
i cant tell if the yellow between the tread blocks is threads, or paint.
stock tires have some paint at the bottom of the tread grooves.

andy way you can put your camera on a milk crate, and put it on macro, and take a clear closeup?

the square shape of it might be a problem, creating speed wobbles, but the sides have plenty of tread left.

The yellow is paint. I don't understand why the cords would be showing with 1/8" tread left. Unless maybe he travels a lot of gravel roads? That area would never make contact with asphalt.....???

If I remember, I'll ask the Quality guy at BFG. We don't make cycle tires at our plant, but it's surely pretty much the same processes and materials.

etcthorne
06-01-2008, 06:54 AM
Dmerc - I never ride on gravel. It's a little shocking to me as well. As I said, I ensure the pressure is 42 psi on cold tires - cold garage floor before every ride I take. Some of my friends laugh at how anal I am about maintaining correct tire pressure.

I think the Dunlops I had stock on the Bandit were just low-grade, crap tires. I hope these Michelin Pilot Road 2's do better.

dmerc
06-01-2008, 09:14 AM
Dmerc - I never ride on gravel. It's a little shocking to me as well. As I said, I ensure the pressure is 42 psi on cold tires - cold garage floor before every ride I take. Some of my friends laugh at how anal I am about maintaining correct tire pressure.

I think the Dunlops I had stock on the Bandit were just low-grade, crap tires. I hope these Michelin Pilot Road 2's do better.

But as far as the cord showing down in the tread, do you actually think it's from wear? Even with tire pressure hi or low, how could that area ever make contact with asphalt? I'd send that pic to Dunlop, and ask 'em what the deal is.

terrebandit
06-01-2008, 10:57 AM
I've been through many sport-touring tires and have never seen that. I would have complained directly to the company and got a free replacement tire. What you're seeing there seems to be a defect and not a wear issue.

BTW... it was wise to change it out.

5150
06-01-2008, 04:25 PM
I pulled my front Dunlop with 5300 miles on the tire just because I had a new tire waiting to be put on, the original Dunlop had maybe 1500 miles left on it. I still have the old tire and just looked at it with a magnefying glass and have the same thing showing between the tread blocks, it looks like cords but I don't think it is, as some others have noted I can't see how the rubber can come in contac with the road surface in between the tread blocks.

dmerc
06-01-2008, 05:37 PM
I pulled my front Dunlop with 5300 miles on the tire just because I had a new tire waiting to be put on, the original Dunlop had maybe 1500 miles left on it. I still have the old tire and just looked at it with a magnefying glass and have the same thing showing between the tread blocks, it looks like cords but I don't think it is, as some others have noted I can't see how the rubber can come in contac with the road surface in between the tread blocks.

The tread (no grooves, just the thick rubber slab) is the last thing put on before it goes to be pressed into the tread pattern die with hot steam pressure.

No point in taking chances, but I'm betting the tire was still safe(safe as a Dunlop can be). I Had an 03 Voyager that wandered badly, couldn't hold a straight line. It had 3,000 miles on it, but you could get 20k out of the front, believe it or not.

I replaced the frt. Dunlop with a Metzler 880, and it transformed into a perfect ride. I left the Dunlop on the back for a while, didn't seem to hurt anything being mismatched.

Edit: To be fair, the Voyager had an OEM Dunlop. I had great service from the Dunlop Elites that I used on my previous Voyager. I s'pose everyone's OEM tires are less than "the best".

dmerc
06-03-2008, 06:24 PM
I asked at work about the tire problem. The Quality guys said it's a process problem, usually because the tread that was applied wasn't quite thick enough, which left cord exposed after the tread pattern was molded into the raw tread.

He said it was seen on car/truck tires occasionally, back when tires were bias belted, and can STILL happen on the sidewall, since there's no steel belts covering the actual rubber fabric. When it does, they get scrapped! They can't sell them like that......but, they did say that other than the obvious enhanced chance of puncture by something sharp on the road, the tire would be safe. Actually, one said it was safe, the other said replace it. But, both agreed that it's a manufacturer DEFECT.

They also pointed out that you should be running Michelins, NOT Dunlops!:mrgreen:

I'd take it to a Dunlop dealer and demand replacement....or contact Dunlop, send a pic, then demand at least a pro rated settlement.