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Discussion Starter #1
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I just took the afternoon off to read another thread discussing the use of a car tire (ct) on a motorcycle, commonly called Darksiding. Wow! One has to be really interested in that subject to slog through it all. So I’m going to see if I can summarize here and make it easy to understand.

First is to remember there are three camps. One is the denier who can tell you why it is bad to use a ct on a bike and all the things that may happen. Next is the avid Darksider that uses a ct on his large cruiser or touring bike on the rear wheel. Lastly comes the undecided rider who wants to be safe, confident, economical, and have a good ride but not sure of what to do. I’m going to gear my points more towards helping the undecided bloke.

To understand the denier, you have your scientifically oriented person who goes by the book and bases his thoughts on what “smart people” have figured out. You would be foolish to go against these professionals who know what they are doing. This is that the ct does not fit right on a mc wheel, will not seat well when installing, doesn’t handle correctly, and will be a nuisance if the law or insurance companies get you by the handlebars. An important key to their language are the hedge words they use such as: theory, can, should, may, likely, if, and possibly. But the real question to them is, do any of those things really happen?

On the opposite bank, are the wiggly Darksiders—heathens all. They don’t believe the “theorists” and their belief in “experts”. They are mostly Amazon shoppers and hence have realized that the “experts”, (i.e.: the manufacturers and sales companies) have one point of view while many of the actual users (the customers) may have a different take on the product. This different take is called anecdotal evidence. That is, what do the actual users of the product think. Or another way to say it is “field testing”. When really used, does this product perform like it’s supposed to? Meaning how do the Darksiders’ experience compare with what the “experts” say should happen.

Then we have the undecided rider, or as I like to call them, the Undies. So who to believe. Both sides consider the Undies' wellbeing important. I would suggest that they look at the difference between two arguments and realize it’s a simple matter of deciding, one, do you want to believe the theory of the deniers without any proof and only supposition? Or two, do you believe the multitudes of Darksiders who have field tested CTs for millions of miles and regularly report their results on websites.

I would ask anyone responding to this thread that you refrain from giving any info that you don’t have proof of. Just using the theory from some researcher sitting at a computer is not proof. Theory, man, theory. Or saying someone had some type of accident or problem when there is no proof of the cause. (An example would be to say a motorcycle had an accident and the tire came off just because it was a ct when it could have hit a curb or a piece of rebar, been deflated, had a blowout, etc.)

Again, please respond with facts only. Thanks.

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Proof is almost impossible to come by. This is why almost everything in science and math is a theory, and it can take decades or longer before a theory is proved. By this time, the tires in question will have been replaced with different models and can no longer be had, and the results will be different.

Something I have been thinking about this week is hydroplaning. With a motorcycle tire it is basically impossible, due to the curve of the tire. But if you where to darkside it, you would greatly increase the chances of hydroplaning.
 

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^ you have never seen the videos of motorcross riders hydroplaning across standing water on their bikes?

the biggest problem with trying to find negative evidence against car tires on motorcycles, it like the old statment "we didnt wear bicycle helmets or wear seatbelts when we were kids, and we are just fine..."

yes, because the kids who died are not here to talk about it.

One way to minimize the risk is to get a motorcycle wheel that is designed with the bead lip for a car tire. If you google it people are making them.

Trikes use car tires. Sidecars use car tires.
 

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--

I just took the afternoon off to read another thread discussing the use of a car tire (ct) on a motorcycle, commonly called Darksiding. Wow! One has to be really interested in that subject to slog through it all. So I’m going to see if I can summarize here and make it easy to understand.

First is to remember there are three camps. One is the denier who can tell you why it is bad to use a ct on a bike and all the things that may happen. Next is the avid Darksider that uses a ct on his large cruiser or touring bike on the rear wheel. Lastly comes the undecided rider who wants to be safe, confident, economical, and have a good ride but not sure of what to do. I’m going to gear my points more towards helping the undecided bloke.

To understand the denier, you have your scientifically oriented person who goes by the book and bases his thoughts on what “smart people” have figured out. You would be foolish to go against these professionals who know what they are doing. This is that the ct does not fit right on a mc wheel, will not seat well when installing, doesn’t handle correctly, and will be a nuisance if the law or insurance companies get you by the handlebars. An important key to their language are the hedge words they use such as: theory, can, should, may, likely, if, and possibly. But the real question to them is, do any of those things really happen?

On the opposite bank, are the wiggly Darksiders—heathens all. They don’t believe the “theorists” and their belief in “experts”. They are mostly Amazon shoppers and hence have realized that the “experts”, (i.e.: the manufacturers and sales companies) have one point of view while many of the actual users (the customers) may have a different take on the product. This different take is called anecdotal evidence. That is, what do the actual users of the product think. Or another way to say it is “field testing”. When really used, does this product perform like it’s supposed to? Meaning how do the Darksiders’ experience compare with what the “experts” say should happen.

Then we have the undecided rider, or as I like to call them, the Undies. So who to believe. Both sides consider the Undies' wellbeing important. I would suggest that they look at the difference between two arguments and realize it’s a simple matter of deciding, one, do you want to believe the theory of the deniers without any proof and only supposition? Or two, do you believe the multitudes of Darksiders who have field tested CTs for millions of miles and regularly report their results on websites.

I would ask anyone responding to this thread that you refrain from giving any info that you don’t have proof of. Just using the theory from some researcher sitting at a computer is not proof. Theory, man, theory. Or saying someone had some type of accident or problem when there is no proof of the cause. (An example would be to say a motorcycle had an accident and the tire came off just because it was a ct when it could have hit a curb or a piece of rebar, been deflated, had a blowout, etc.)

Again, please respond with facts only. Thanks.

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Why are you attempting to re-start a conversation that was already discussed “ad infinitum” in the thread right below this?
There is more than enough info contained in it to clearly explain both perspectives to anyone who is “undecided” as you put it.
Try showing up to a MC rider course on your “darksided” bike. You won’t be allowed on the course. If it was “safe”, they wouldn’t have a problem.
 

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RonK, You are not here to do anything other than tell the undecided it is ok to go darkside. You are obviously a darksider yourself, your thread is heavily skewed in that direction. Reminds me of guys that are into firearms and they reload ammunition to a non-standard higher pressure level and it works in their firearm so they go and tell others they can do the same thing cause they have the same firearm. Then some poor fellow does and ends up losing an eye, hand or life. The firearms manufactures tell you not to do it, ammunition manufacturers tell you not to do it but a whole bunch of guys are doing it so it must be safe. What are you going to do if someone takes your counsel and goes darkside and gets killed because of it? Never mind I know "They hit a curb or a piece of metal or something."
 

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^ you have never seen the videos of motorcross riders hydroplaning across standing water on their bikes?
Yes, but they are running low tire pressures to do this, you want the tire to cup in dirt riding normally to get more traction. With normal street tire pressures, the tire shouldn't cup and hydroplane.
 

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Dirt tires are normally 15psi max, and you really attempt to run down to 5psi. But normally you have to keep it at 8-10psi to keep from getting a pinch on the tube causing a flat.
I have never seen anyone go higher than 15psi, normally 15psi is considered your being cheap and attempting to get every last drop of out a tire that is worn out.

Now if your talking about adv riders, sure, they will run street pressures, but they are also not riding their bikes over a lake.

I have never seen a street tire ask for <32psi

Sorry, the video you posted he has a huge hydrofoil on that bike, that kept it afloat.
A paddle sand tire to scoop the water. The tires where only there to propel the bike, they did nothing to keep it ontop of the water.
 

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I didnt catch that, here is a guy just on his dirt bike:


Going back on topic, there are people on this forum that have car tires on the back wheel of their motorcycle

there are also people who are avid lane splitters, and filtering up at red lights

there are people who carry guns while riding

there are people who tow trailers, inspite of the fact that no motorcycle manufacturer recommends towing a trailer with their motorcycle, and the MSF does not recommend it

there are people here who ride without a helmet

as with everything else, we are all adults (we all ride on the street). If you feel comfortable riding the way you do, who am I, or anyone else, to tell you that you cant, or you shouldnt?!

If you wanna be you, be you
and if you wanna be me, be me.

Sorry to see people jumping on RonK's throat like this - darksiding threads always escalate quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Why are you attempting to re-start a conversation that was already discussed “ad infinitum” in the thread right below this?
There is more than enough info contained in it to clearly explain both perspectives to anyone who is “undecided” as you put it.
Try showing up to a MC rider course on your “darksided” bike. You won’t be allowed on the course. If it was “safe”, they wouldn’t have a problem.
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I started it because few readers are going to go through the full 12 pages of constant back and forth hassling with no one changing anyone else's mind. Real tiresome. I made this thread with two goals. One was to try to summarize what went on in the other one. Second was to try to get responses to be with some fact instead of hypotheticals. Hypotheticals don't show anything except someone's opinion.

At the last advanced rider's course, I not only used my Road Star with a car tire, but I was showing some of the students how to make tight u-turns. No problem.

--
 

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KCW, I don't think anyone is "jumping on Ron's throat". He started a thread that at first sounded like he had something new to impart to the darkside discussion to help the "undecided" when in fact all it ended up being is a darksider trying to convince the "undecided" that darksiding is ok and all others are wrong. I really don't care what tire a guy decides to put on his motorcycle, I just wish people would be more careful about what they tell others is ok or safe to do. I am actually one of the guys I wrote about in my previous post, I reload ammunition for some of my firearms to a non-standard higher pressure level, but I would never tell others it is ok for them to do as well cause I might get them killed.
 

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Why are you attempting to re-start a conversation that was already discussed “ad infinitum” in the thread right below this?
There is more than enough info contained in it to clearly explain both perspectives to anyone who is “undecided” as you put it.
Try showing up to a MC rider course on your “darksided” bike. You won’t be allowed on the course. If it was “safe”, they wouldn’t have a problem.
--

I started it because few readers are going to go through the full 12 pages of constant back and forth hassling with no one changing anyone else's mind. Real tiresome. I made this thread with two goals. One was to try to summarize what went on in the other one. Second was to try to get responses to be with some fact instead of hypotheticals. Hypotheticals don't show anything except someone's opinion.

At the last advanced rider's course, I not only used my Road Star with a car tire, but I was showing some of the students how to make tight u-turns. No problem.

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Ok, fair enough answer. I’m actually going to be an MSF Instructor and I was told up front that in the intermedite & above classes where the riders use their own bikes, Major safety violations (Darksiding was included) were not allowed on the course. Apparently you found someone willing to bend or break that.

Going back on topic, there are people on this forum that have car tires on the back wheel of their motorcycle

there are also people who are avid lane splitters, and filtering up at red lights

there are people who carry guns while riding

there are people who tow trailers, inspite of the fact that no motorcycle manufacturer recommends towing a trailer with their motorcycle, and the MSF does not recommend it

there are people here who ride without a helmet

as with everything else, we are all adults (we all ride on the street). If you feel comfortable riding the way you do, who am I, or anyone else, to tell you that you cant, or you shouldnt?!

If you wanna be you, be you
and if you wanna be me, be me.

Sorry to see people jumping on RonK's throat like this - darksiding threads always escalate quickly.
Not jumping on him KCW, just an honest question.
As far as “towing trailers go”. Do they make trailers SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED for being towed by motorcycles - YES. Do they make trailer hitches SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED for a bike - YES. Do they make car tires SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED to be mounted on motorcycle rims - NO.
 

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people make trailers designed for motorcycles
but where do you find a motorcycle designed to tow a trailer?!

From MSF:
-----------------------------
Towing a Trailer Behind a Motorcycle

Not Recommended

From time to time, we get questions about towing a trailer behind a motorcycle. You should never tow a trailer behind a motorcycle unless your motorcycle has been designed to do so. However, we're not aware of any motorcycle manufacturer that has designed a two-wheeled motorcycle to tow a trailer. In fact, motorcycle manufacturers warn against the towing of a trailer.

For example, this warning appears in a late model Harley-Davidson touring bike owner's manual:
Do not pull a trailer with a motorcycle. Pulling a trailer can cause tire overload, damage and failure, reduced braking performance, and adversely affect stability and handling, which could result in death or serious injury.

Additionally, tire manufacturers typically warn against this activity.

The following appears in the Dunlop motorcycle tire tips guide:
Trailers may contribute to motorcycle instability, grossly exaggerated tire stresses and overload. Such stresses and overload can cause irreversible damage resulting in sudden tire failure, accident, injury or death. Dunlop does not warrant tires used on motorcycles fitted with trailers.

These types of warnings are based on real issues. First, not only are you pulling the weight of the trailer, but a portion of the load is bearing downward at the point where the trailer attaches to the motorcycle. This is called trailer tongue weight (generally ten percent of the weight of a properly loaded trailer), and when added to the weight of the motorcycle, rider, passenger, other accessories and cargo, the total may exceed the allowable load for the motorcycle and its tires. This can lead to tire blowout or suspension failure.

Second, the weight, momentum, and aerodynamics of a trailer may impair the bike’s maneuverability, traction, acceleration, and braking response. Third, a manufacturer cannot test every aftermarket accessory with every model they make, and they warn consumers in their owner's manuals that modifications may put riders at risk.

Given these concerns, MSF cannot recommend the use of a trailer on a motorcycle that wasn’t designed or approved by the manufacturer for towing one. We also urge riders to study the owner’s manual and warning labels, and the tire manufacturer's warnings, when they first take possession of a motorcycle, when they perform maintenance or repairs, and when they plan on making any changes to the bike’s configuration.
------------------------------------

are you going to be a MSF instructor and not follow their own recommendations?!

This is the problem that frequently comes up. Motorcycles represent freedom and individuality and independence in the extreme. Riding itself is inherently dangerous, so.... where does anyone draw the line?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Ok, fair enough answer. I’m actually going to be an MSF Instructor and I was told up front that in the intermedite & above classes where the riders use their own bikes, Major safety violations (Darksiding was included) were not allowed on the course. Apparently you found someone willing to bend or break that.
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The formulation of nationwide classes is such that it is usually a small group with preconceived ideas that design them. They don't adapt to changes and improvements very quickly. My belief is that equipment needs and regional differences can be important. When I was an ATV safety instructor, one action I was trained to teach was how to ride in swamps. Well, in western Colorado we have few swamps. We do have mining roads that are steep and very narrow, so I developed a procedure I taught to enable one to safely turn around on them.

Along another line, tire companies have not developed a tire safely designed for a tour bike with two adult riders plus their gear. I often think of my experience of having a blowout on my Gold Wing at 70 mph using a mc tire. I could have saved the insurance companies several hundred thousand dollars and myself a lot of pain if I had been using a run flat tire. So of course I looked into an alternative and found a tire type that fits the bike, is a safer run flat, less expensive, has more traction, lasts longer, costs less and has been road tested for millions of miles by thousands of riders and has few negatives (nothing's perfect). So what is a logical action?

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RonK, You are not here to do anything other than tell the undecided it is ok to go darkside. You are obviously a darksider yourself, your thread is heavily skewed in that direction.
...

What are you going to do if someone takes your counsel and goes darkside and gets killed because of it? Never mind I know "They hit a curb or a piece of metal or something."
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I don't believe anywhere in my statements do I suggest that anyone SHOULD take my information and use a ct on their bike. Yes, I am a Darksider and just as with all Darksiders we are happy to share our experience with others (as you might with ammo loading--by the way, I was a Cowboy Action Shooter for some time and reloaded too). As with all us Darksiders, we don't care if anyone goes our way or not. In fact, it's most important for a rider to be convinced his decision is the right one so he can ride happy. What we don't like is for some to preach what they have gleaned from people who rely on calculations and don't consider real life results. We/I get frustrated especially when we see articles or posts from those who have never tried a ct and have never tested their opinions on the road. We're just trying give enough info so riders can decide what will work best for them in a sport with plenty of potential risks anyway. 0:)

--
 

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people make trailers designed for motorcycles
but where do you find a motorcycle designed to tow a trailer?!

From MSF:
-----------------------------
Towing a Trailer Behind a Motorcycle

Not Recommended

From time to time, we get questions about towing a trailer behind a motorcycle. You should never tow a trailer behind a motorcycle unless your motorcycle has been designed to do so. However, we're not aware of any motorcycle manufacturer that has designed a two-wheeled motorcycle to tow a trailer. In fact, motorcycle manufacturers warn against the towing of a trailer.

For example, this warning appears in a late model Harley-Davidson touring bike owner's manual:
Do not pull a trailer with a motorcycle. Pulling a trailer can cause tire overload, damage and failure, reduced braking performance, and adversely affect stability and handling, which could result in death or serious injury.

Additionally, tire manufacturers typically warn against this activity.

The following appears in the Dunlop motorcycle tire tips guide:
Trailers may contribute to motorcycle instability, grossly exaggerated tire stresses and overload. Such stresses and overload can cause irreversible damage resulting in sudden tire failure, accident, injury or death. Dunlop does not warrant tires used on motorcycles fitted with trailers.

These types of warnings are based on real issues. First, not only are you pulling the weight of the trailer, but a portion of the load is bearing downward at the point where the trailer attaches to the motorcycle. This is called trailer tongue weight (generally ten percent of the weight of a properly loaded trailer), and when added to the weight of the motorcycle, rider, passenger, other accessories and cargo, the total may exceed the allowable load for the motorcycle and its tires. This can lead to tire blowout or suspension failure.

Second, the weight, momentum, and aerodynamics of a trailer may impair the bike’s maneuverability, traction, acceleration, and braking response. Third, a manufacturer cannot test every aftermarket accessory with every model they make, and they warn consumers in their owner's manuals that modifications may put riders at risk.

Given these concerns, MSF cannot recommend the use of a trailer on a motorcycle that wasn’t designed or approved by the manufacturer for towing one. We also urge riders to study the owner’s manual and warning labels, and the tire manufacturer's warnings, when they first take possession of a motorcycle, when they perform maintenance or repairs, and when they plan on making any changes to the bike’s configuration.
------------------------------------

are you going to be a MSF instructor and not follow their own recommendations?!

This is the problem that frequently comes up. Motorcycles represent freedom and individuality and independence in the extreme. Riding itself is inherently dangerous, so.... where does anyone draw the line?
Let me ask KCW, do you or have you towed before? I’m just curious.
Regarding tongue weight etc... the problem is that you can’t fix stupid. The proper load of the tongue is up to 10% but not to exceed 20lbs (most Hitch and trailer manufacturers specify this). Because you have idiots who don’t know how to balance a load, do not bother to actually check the tongue weight and think that you just load it up and go... this is why it’s not “recommended”. They protect themselves from any liability because the stupidity of a few and just make it a “blanket” statement. The same idiots also without a trailer load a bike beyond its weight limit as well as improperly load the bike.
I will concede that just like not wearing a helmet in states that don’t require it, that’s a risk I’m not willing to engage in. I’ve had too many spills that have taught me the value of head protection.
Those same owners manuals also to “obey all speed laws”. We all have been doing 55mph and a corner coming up has a speed warning of 35mph but we all (experienced riders) take it easily at 50 or even 55.
That last statement validated that it’s all about the risk YOU are willing to assume.

The whole issue about “darksiders” IMHO is that they talk about it as if NO risk is associated with it. A point none of them seem willing to concede. They talk about it like it’s the safest thing since baby formula.
 

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Let me ask KCW, do you or have you towed before? I’m just curious.
...
LOL.

<= the naked Royal Star 1300 or the VS650 with the lunch box trunk behind the seat?

When I take a road trip I bring along $200 in cash, and a one liter water bottle.

every car I have owned has a section in the owners manual that calls out the specs for towing a trailer.

Conspicuously absent from the owners manuals for my Vstar motorcycles...

Yamaha says its not recommended, funny how you rationalize that away.

The point (again) is that everyone does things that are not recommended, but somehow each person thinks their personal sins against the MSF and the manufacturer are forgivable, but other's sins are not.
 

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Let me ask KCW, do you or have you towed before? I’m just curious.
...
LOL.

<= the naked Royal Star 1300 or the VS650 with the lunch box trunk behind the seat?

When I take a road trip I bring along $200 in cash, and a one liter water bottle.

every car I have owned has a section in the owners manual that calls out the specs for towing a trailer.

Conspicuously absent from the owners manuals for my Vstar motorcycles...

Yamaha says its not recommended, funny how you rationalize that away.
So your simple non obfuscational answer is “NO”.
Understood
 

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Well there are two parts to this trailer justification too.

I doubt any motorcycle company wants to be liable if they state you can haul a trailer.

Second is you have to get it certified. My 2011 juke is not rated to haul a trailer in the usa, cause they didn't want to spend the money to get it checked and certified. In europe it is rated to haul a trailer, the same exact car.
 

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Understood
and again you intentionally missed the point

(and left it out of your quote)
KCW The only one deleting an entire statement or quote here is you. I included you’re WHOLE statement and did not engage in “CNN editing” as you did.
You also failed to answer my question directly regarding towing.
I’ll say this for posterity’s sake. If someone wants to Darkside, that’s their choice and a level of risk they are comfortable with. I am not.
There ARE additional risks with towing and it’s NOT something for a novice rider to attempt. I warn new riders... especially those new to touring bikes, to wait and get some experience with it first before towing.
I just wish that Darksiders would have the same temerity to admit there IS increased risk in that choice.
As you said “Motorcycle riding is about freedom”. Whether Darksiding or Hot Loading a weapon... do what you want, yet be honest with the unlearned and newbies about the downside.

Well there are two parts to this trailer justification too.

I doubt any motorcycle company wants to be liable if they state you can haul a trailer.

Second is you have to get it certified. My 2011 juke is not rated to haul a trailer in the usa, cause they didn't want to spend the money to get it checked and certified. In europe it is rated to haul a trailer, the same exact car.
Good point Patrick!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
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I know this is an old thread, but in re-reading it, I notice a couple of points that stand out. One is how some folks do not seem to be able to see the difference between the words "theory" and "anecdotal". If one is to use theory as the basis for an opinion, which is common when not doing one's own research, then it's important to realize that when the theory has no actual site or field testing done to back it up, then it is no more than a guess. Yes, a guess. That's like enjoying a kiss without ever touching anyone.

The whole purpose for anecdotal results, which are the reports back from the field testers, is to decide what method actually works as proposed. So then if you have a hundred engineers, designers, and financially involved companies making a decision on some item so it benefits them in some way, you will get a predicted answer. On the other hand, if you have a thousand riders on many different bikes, in many situations, without any desire for financial reward, or personal recognition, freely actually TEST A PRODUCT type in the field and with a 99% approval rating. So who are you going to believe, what you've been told is best for you, or your own eyes?

I'll state this again. Yes, I am a darksider. But my hope is someday to be able to get those hypocrites who bend the rules on riding (like speeding, or towing, or gear) when it suits them, to be able to back up what they say with SOME FACTS. Just parroting some numbers or suppositions you've read without any testing is being closed minded.

I'll also repeat, I don't care if anyone uses a car tire or motorcycle tire. I can only give my recall of my experience and the experience of others that I've read. Everyone can decide for themselves what they want. :unsure:

--
 
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