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Old 12-24-2012, 02:33 PM   #1
KEN PHENIX OP
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Shinko's New 180/55 Dual Sport . . . .









Groovy, ain't it.
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Old 12-24-2012, 05:58 PM   #2
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Alright, alright. I had grown weary of waiting for somebody to produce a 180/55/17 with a bit more aggressive tread. I wasn't ready to go full bore with the TKC80, especially at well over $200 a copy. I settled for the Dunlop D616 which was ok but I couldn't make it to 4,000 miles. The Shinko 009 Raven reviews well, has a harder compound and is way cheap. I got the idea about a year ago when I put a set of Ravens on my son's bike and noticed the relatively deep grooves and angular tread pattern. Months pass and rather than feed more D616 rubber to the beast, I decided to go for it. I clicked on the Ravens and a tire groover.

Granted, this is an experiment, hell the tire could fly apart tomorrow. There's a learning curve too. I filleted my finger loading the blade, in spite of the explicit instructions to wear gloves and use caution. I practiced on the old Dunlop.




I realized this would take lots of practice. The cuts are not picture perfect but the tire should function - as well as it will. I'll order my next one early and take my time. I'll get better at it.

So, If you're crazy enough to try this, I suggest making a few identical cuts at a time allowing rest in between. I can see getting fatigued and getting in a hurry and making mistakes. I was prepared to risk ruining a cheap tire but nonetheless, didn't want to. I'll tackle the front in a day or two. It will be more delicate.
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Old 12-24-2012, 10:06 PM   #3
oldbeatupguy
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Good job Ken!

Should work well. Are those V Strom wheels?
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Old 12-24-2012, 11:08 PM   #4
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Good job Ken!

Should work well. Are those V Strom wheels?
Thanks. No, it's the 919's original 6" wheel. I had to make a choice of either fitting the bike with a 4.5" wheel and any of the 150/70 dual sport tires off the rack or come up with a suitable 180/55 and keep my wheel. I chose the latter.
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Old 12-26-2012, 01:36 PM   #5
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I had to proceed more gingerly as the front Raven isn't nearly as robust as the rear. I elected not to cut as many grooves as originally planned leaving the center for upright highway wear. I learned the blades should be changed often, with each tire I guess.



The new front tread pattern isn't exactly what I had in mind but I'm pleased. I consider the rear a success because there is no adventure touring tire on the market in that size. For the front though, I'll have the option to do this again or simply buy a 120/70 Distanzia or something. We'll see.
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Old 12-26-2012, 06:35 PM   #6
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Tried them out on the road yet?
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Old 12-27-2012, 07:13 PM   #7
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Tried them out on the road yet?
I did about 50 highway miles right after I did the rear and it was no different than before. I'll take 'er out again in a day or two and report.
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Old 01-13-2013, 04:20 PM   #8
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Update? How well did these work out, especially off pavement?
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Old 01-14-2013, 05:59 AM   #9
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Update? How well did these work out, especially off pavement?
Yeah, take her up to buck twenty, and let us know if they hold together.
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Old 01-14-2013, 05:24 PM   #10
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Very curious to hear a review as well too!

For me my choices are pirelli scorpion trails, or continental trail's, and always looking for more options!
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Old 01-14-2013, 07:37 PM   #11
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Interesting that grooved rear looks really similar to a scorpion trail.
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Old 01-15-2013, 03:24 PM   #12
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Hmm, no update in a while. Maybe the tires didn't work very well.
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Old 01-15-2013, 07:46 PM   #13
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GREAT idea! Reminds me of when I was a kid and my dad and his buddies ran a sprint car, they were always going at the tires with one of those tire siping knifes.

Where did you order that tire groover?
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:50 PM   #14
bwringer
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Hmm, no update in a while. Maybe the tires didn't work very well.
Did... did he died?
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Old 01-16-2013, 08:35 PM   #15
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Still Kickin'

Oops, no replies to this thread for a couple of weeks. I figured everybody thought I was crazy - and they'd be right.
Anyhow, I have about 600 combined miles on the groove job. I didn't expect to but I felt no difference in wet pavement handling. It rained quite a bit here lately and I managed to do a few familiar back road miles on wet washed out asphalt and slick hard pack. I must say the bike felt more planted than with any street tire I've used. So while I focused primarily on rear traction, the front tire showed the most improvement - more than I expected.

Most importantly, another inmate quoted an earlier post of mine where I described the bike as a bit twitchy over 80mph. I dealt with it by playing with the tire pressure but now I know the problem was caused by the Dunlop D616. Any hint of twitch is gone now thanks to the Shinko. The ride is much more solid at high speed - the bike feels good.



More to come . . . . .
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