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Old 08-16-2007, 04:54 AM   #1
Bigbird OP
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Question KLR: Tire recommendations?

Well it's time for a new set of tires for my '03 KLR650. Tho I'm able to get out in the dirt occassionaly - mostly on gravel/woods roads - 90% of my riding is on pavement. I want a tire that's going to last on pavement but still not leave me when I get to the gravel. With the 17" rear being a bit of an odd ball size, what's a good tire - front & rear - for me? Read awhile back in Motorcycle Consumer News about Dr Greg Frasier's KLR project, and he used - I think -Avon Distancia's for his ride to Alaska, but I don't think they're making this model any more. So, recommendations?

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Old 08-16-2007, 05:16 AM   #2
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I like the MEFO's although they can be hard to find at times. Wet or dry pavement never has given me any problem. Gravel, dirt, mud or creek crossing they seem just fine to me. Sand can be another matter, not quite as good as the Kenda TrakMasters I pulled off.
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Old 08-16-2007, 06:43 AM   #3
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The Arkansas faction seems to be in agreement.
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Old 08-16-2007, 06:58 AM   #4
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Do the maxxis detour fit the klr?
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Old 08-16-2007, 07:04 AM   #5
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there are two tires I will buy again:

MEFO Explorers
Pirelli Scorpion ST's

The pirelli's are AWESOME street tires, sticky in the rain--my favorite commuter tire. Good on dry hardpack, not good on wet clay or deep gravel. They last FOREVER, which offsets their price.

The MEFO's are awesome all-around tires. Not quite as good on cold wet pavement (still very good), but much better on gravel. They are my tire of choice for dualsport rides. But hard to find, they seem to get one shipment a year to the US and when they are gone they are gone for the season.

Other tires I have tried:

Dunlop 606: Great dirt and gravel tire, I completely shred them on-road (center lugs literally exploded ). I have a set in the basement, will use them for pure dirt adventures, but won't be putting them on the freeway unless it is an emergency.

Pirelli Scorpion AT--a little better on gravel, but they burned up twice as fast as the ST's and not as good on wet pavement. just not worth it in $/mile in my book, but supposedly they changed the tire compound so maybe they last better now.
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Old 08-16-2007, 07:09 AM   #6
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I used Pirelli MT90 S/Ts on my KLR650 on its trip to Alaska and up to Deadhorse . . . well almost. The rear tire was toast after about 10,000 miles and I put on a Distanza in Prince George on the way back. I ran that tire about 10,000 miles. Couldn't really tell much difference between it an the MT90. They are very similar.

I usually get around 15,000 miles out of rears and 30,000 miles when I am riding mostly street.
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Old 08-16-2007, 07:27 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JV
I like the MEFO's although they can be hard to find at times. Wet or dry pavement never has given me any problem. Gravel, dirt, mud or creek crossing they seem just fine to me. Sand can be another matter, not quite as good as the Kenda TrakMasters I pulled off.
I put MEFO's on my DR and loved the rear in all conditions...but the front tire never seemed happy turning in loose stuff (gravel, sand, etc...) and liked to push w/o much warning. In a straight line, however, it was never scary on the brakes and dead nuts stable.

Great on road, though.
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Old 08-16-2007, 09:17 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DLdeano
I put MEFO's on my DR and loved the rear in all conditions...but the front tire never seemed happy turning in loose stuff (gravel, sand, etc...) and liked to push w/o much warning. In a straight line, however, it was never scary on the brakes and dead nuts stable.

Great on road, though.
For the second set of MEFO's, I mounted the front tire backwards. MUCH better about (not) pushing that way. YMMV.
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Old 08-16-2007, 09:44 AM   #9
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A good place to start

http://www.bigcee.com/klr650faq.html#wheelstires

you can look up a lot of stuff on this page, so far I have only used the stock tires that are good for me and my ridding but I will try the Dunlop 607 next time around for only street ridding

My 2 cents

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Old 08-17-2007, 09:35 AM   #10
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Dunlop D606 does it all. I've even Ironbutted on them and they cruise nicely on pavement all day at 80mph.
If you're on a budget, try the Kenda K270
Get 'em both at swmototires.com
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Old 08-17-2007, 10:07 AM   #11
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90/10 tire I would go with Avon Gripster
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Old 08-17-2007, 11:48 AM   #12
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For 90/10 riding I had real good performance out of the IRC GP110 rear. It lasted 2600 hard miles (Mefo rear only lasted 100 more) and, for the price, it did surprisingly well. Still running a Mefo front.
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Old 08-17-2007, 12:12 PM   #13
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Tires I have tried (I have 2 sets of wheels), in order from street to dirt bias:

I'm in love with the Pirelli ST - for me was much better than the Gripster on the dirt & nearly as good on pave. I have over 3500 miles on mine & it's got more to go (my stock Dunlop was shot by that). Starting to flatten off a little, but I expect another 1500 easy. My Gripster made 5000 & had more left but it was blocky as hell. Sucks bad off the pave, if wet.

GP110 is a great tire too. A little better on dirt, gives up a little on pave (to the above tires), but not much. More buzzy too. Got 4000 out of the rear.

TKC80 is a great tire, but $$$$. Have 2000 miles on that one & it will be gone in another 1000 or so.

The 606 is a great 50/50 tire. Holds suprisingly well in the corners (pave) and best in the dirt of this list. Buzzy by comparison.
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Old 08-17-2007, 12:26 PM   #14
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IRC GP-110 and don't look back.

fantastic on the road
respectable off road
inexpensive
easy to change
4000 miles (or so)
look great on the klr
sing to you only when leaned over
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Old 08-17-2007, 01:17 PM   #15
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Dldeano

I have mefo on my DR also and had the same problem with the front washing out. The problem if compared to a trailwing front is the Mefo is narrower. About a 1/2inch contact patch if I remember right. Pre-loading the rear about 1 turn more seemed to fix it. I run around 16 lbs air pressure off-road and 20+ on pavement. Wear is good. About 4000miles now and will go 2or 3 more on the rear. Maybe more on the front. If your suspension and tire pressures are right you'll get close to equal wear. You have to work at it but its worth the time because the bike works so good in all conditions. I had no problems with the trailwing either but did not get as good of mileage. Had to drop pressures down to 12-14lbs off-road but had no pinch flats. DR. rocks!!
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