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Discussion Starter #1
I seem to remember that years ago, when tires were made in this Country, or England they lasted for 17 to 20 thousand miles. Now, I'm getting up there in years (68) and my mind may be a bit foggy, but that's what I remember.

My friend and old riding partner bought a GL a couple of years ago, and went thru a set of Metzlers in 12,000 miles. Needless to say we were both surprised.

He wanted to know what I recommended. Without any hesitation I said Avon Speed master on the front, and Bridgstone on the rear. Solid, quality tires, that will last longer than a weekend. However, that recommendation is based on my experience from 40 years ago.

So the question I have, (without opening up a can of worms) is there a quality tire out there these days that will last for 17 to 20 thousand miles?
 

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Before answering, one would need to know what bike and how it was ridden. Sport bikes ridden aggressively will need something completely different than a touring bike.

As to the GoldWing, as you mentioned, it might be better to go to a site like GL1800riders.com where they have many threads on what works best on those bikes. For Yamaha Road Star cruisers, like I have, there is a bike specific site where the merits of many tires for cruisers are discussed. And so on.

Many riders choose to vary the normal OEM recommendations as we realize the reasons for them are often based on relationships through the manufacturing liabilities and has to be a conservative 'one size fits all'.

Don't mean to be short by giving you this non-answer, but it's like asking what bike is the best.

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Discussion Starter #3
Trust me Ron, I know it's like opening a can of worms, but I'm just looking for some hi mileage tires for him.

The bike is a 82? Honda GL 1000. Regardless, I do know it's a 1000. I also know the 1800 is a different breed in that their tires are too fat. I believe he's running 19 on the front and 17 on the rear.
 

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Six years ago when I bought my first street only bike it came with sport type tires and the two bikes since then the same thing. I've been lucky to get over five thousand miles on an XR1200 per set of tires, around five thousand on a Husqvarna supermoto and have only replaced the rear on a KTM 990 at six thousand because of a recall on the front tire. I guess touring or cruiser tires will last a lot longer because of harder compounds compared to sport tires that traction for corners at speed are much more important. So consider yourself lucky with anything over ten thousand.
 

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We average anywhere from about 16k to 20k for Dunlop D402 series tires on Harley's ridden as touring bikes. As with any brand, Dunlop also makes less expensive tires that likely won't last as long. I also have a bike on the lift right now that had a Dunlop OEM D407/8 set of tires that lasted 17,300 miles. (The back looks good for a few more thousand miles, but I'm doing other things so will change it too.)

If you want any tire to last as long as it possible can you'll want to make sure it's ridden at the proper air pressure and that it's properly balanced. Most people don't do that. Another consideration that's often over looked is tire loading. If you over-load the bike your tires' lifespan will be significantly shortened. Many riders have no clue what their bike and tires are safely rated to carry.

And obviously, if you chill out with the burn-outs your tires will last longer too. :)
 

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I've owned a few older Goldwings, and 10-12K is all I managed to get out of a set of tires. If it is a GL1000, it's from 75-79, so it might be helpful to make sure the wheel bearings and forks are all in good shape, which will save a bit of wear on the tires (keep them from cupping, etc.). 30+ years old they probably need a bit of service.

The best tire mileage I got from a GL1000 was from a set of Bridgestone S11's. I hear good things about Avons though.
 

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On my last Electra Glides original Dunlop tires, I replaced them at 15,000 miles. Both were still okay and the front could have easily went another 5,000 or so.:)

I then decided to try something new, just for the fun of it and in order, respectively bought Continentals (10,000 miles) and the Michellins (11,000 miles) and the Bridgestones ( 10,000 miles) and then, being a very smart camper, I returned to Dunlop:biggrin:

My 1997 Goldwing had the exact Dunlop as my Electra Glide and it was at 17,000 miles and the tires looked good but I replaced them anyway.:p

The latest "touring" tires offer a harder rubber in the center for less wear and a softer compound on the sidewalls to give better traction in corners. These tires are very expensive.

I think that motorcycle tires have a planned obsolescence built in. I see no reason why some Sportbike tires for instance should last 4,000+- miles and cost upwards of $250 for one tire.

The mid-range bikes in the 5 to $8,000+- range end up with the cheapest tires that the Manufacturers can buy, when they buy 100,000 at a time and that's why they wear out so quickly. My two, 2010 Honda NT700's tires were bad at the 7,000 mile mark.

This of course is controversial but many folks are replacing their rear tires with automotive ones, like I have and magically they (WE) are able to get 35-45,000 miles, with a much better ride and at a cost of around 50 to $75, for a premium radial.

Sam:coffeescreen:
 

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Radial tires are for bikes designed for radial tires, only, due to the sidewall flexure. I'll ignore the C/T issue, as it is another can of worms. Bias ply tires are for bikes designed for bias ply tires. That's the official mantra from professional mechanics, bike makers, and the tire companies.

With regards to getting the longest mileage from tires, remember that will be a trade-off: harder rubber yields longer mileage, but less traction. Shorter lifespan usually translates into better traction, because of softer, stickier rubber compounds. The dual-rubber tires have harder, less tacky, rubber in the center (longer mileage), and softer, stickier, rubber on the sides (better grip in turns).

I ride on one tire type (Pirelli MT66 Route), only, due to wet grip experienced on three different bikes: a 1200 heavy touring bike, a 750 APJB, and a 440 town bike. We've ridden them two up, in rain, leaning in corners, as if we were on rails. That is more valuable to us, than mileage, and long life of the tire... We prefer longer life for us, by avoiding a slide-out in the rain! On our touring bike, I've gotten 12,000 out of the rear tire, and the front is still running, currently at 14,000 miles, with life left in it.

Whatever brand you choose, I agree with Eye: make sure the tire meets proper specs for your bike, and your load; make sure they're at the proper pressure, and balanced; make sure to take good care of them, as you only have two of them keeping you safe. Cheers!
:coffee:
 
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