|07-30-2007, 05:14 PM||#1|
Joined: Jun 2006
Location: Albuquerque, Neue Messico
DL650 & Kenda 657
I've purchased a set if Kenda's 657, a cruiser type tire, for my DL650.
It was a bit of a gamble, but for the price (around 120 dollars per SET, tax included) in addition to my high yearly mileage and speed riding, I felt that I had to give them a try.
Do not get me wrong when I say that this are hard tires; they are suppossed to be for high mileage application on a much heavier bike. At high speeds on dry pavement, the bike feels just as every little bit as well planted and more than with the Trailwings (OEM tires), even fully loaded and with a wee bit of crosswinds. After the first 1,000 miles or so, I had the opportunity to test them on wet pavement. Truly, I cannot complain. Traction feels, as far as I percieve, more grippy than the Trailwings. Furthermore, cornering did not feel squirrely at all on the fabulous and rainy mountain roads on NM 64.
Another interesting aspect is that with care and prudence, these tires have performed reasonably well in dry dirt, gravel, and rutted roads. I found myself playing a little bit going from rut to rut on a dirt road off HWY 17 in Colorado. Even at street pressures, I got lazy and the dirt was dry, the tires had decent traction for my mild dirt riding. Muddy sections got sketchy as these tires are not designed nor advertised for such application, but that I was aware of and I rode accordingly.
Back on pavement, after scrubbing the tires a bit against the pavement while riding on a wavey pattern, they felt as grippy as possible. I cannot disclose what kinds of speed I tested the Kenda 657 on the sweeps since I do not want to incriminate myself. I tested for traction even downshifting while leaning at legal speeds; even dumping to gears in the middle of the turn did not make the rear get squirrelly at all. This test was performed with the panniers off, so I cannot yet give the reader my impression on this kind of maneuver with loaded panniers yet.
After 1,700 miles in 4 days I conclude that to me this tires seem to be a decent investement for the money. It seems that the center part of the thread, the section of the tire that endures the most high speed abuse, has worn down 1/5 down. If we multiply the mileage ridden times five, the rear tire seems to be very likely to last 9,000 miles. That being said, this first miles where at a high rate of speed and most of my miles are done around contry roads on a much slower pace. I would not be surprised if the rear tire (conjecturing here) would last me 10k miles; wich would translate 153 miles per dollar. As far as I experienced with the Trailwings at 7k miles @ 120 dollars it equates to 58 miles per dollar.
Worst case scenario, if the tire lasts only 7k miles, the mile/dollar ratio will be 107 miles per dollar.
I will update this report later with updated mileage and wear.
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