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Took my 400 in yesterday for a state inspection and 2 people there were really interested in the bike and checking it out closely. One of the guys was looking at my rear tire and pointed out it is wearing funny. It looks like the tread is lumpy looking. When I first bought the bike I assumed the stealer aired the tires properly. After riding for about 600 miles another dealer did my valves and informed me I had 13 lbs of pressure in my rear tire. So now it looks to be having problems at 1700 miles. I have had proper pressure in the tire since 600 miles but I do not think the tire will repair itself. Also is it ok to ride with the tire like that.

Does anyone have a link for tires. Probably want one like the original I guess.
Or any better suggestions? Thanks
 

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Since the rear tire is so hard to see, it doesn't surprise me that you've been riding yours low on pressure. I'm almost sure that's whay you've got tire problems.

My old Honda 250 Elite scooter had a bad rear rim and would not hold air back there very long. I got to where I was putting air in it before every ride. If your scooter is still under warranty, see what the dealer will do. You may have a rear rim that doesn't seal well.

Dave B.
 

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These scooters are shipped from the factory with only 20 lbs of pressure in both front and rear tires. It is not unusual for dealers to miss setting the tires to proper inflations. It happened to me, and several other folks that I know of. Fortunately, I caught mine within the first 300 miles.

It is very important to check your tire pressure at delivery. It is equally important to check them periodically (I check mine weekly). Improper inflation will lead to premature tire wear, and it has a negative effect on handling and braking as well.
 

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Mine have been kept pretty close to factory specs, ocassionally dropping dow a little before I check them, and both the front and rear are cupping out. A buddy's 400 is kept well over the specs and his has not. So, its clear that even a small amount below will cause it. The next set, which I have waiting out in the garage to put on, will be kept at the highter rate.
 

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Mine have 5000 miles on them now and have got quite pronounced "feathering" - an odd sort of wear pattern where one edge of the tread groove wears quicker than the other, forming strange ridges and an almost tractor tyre profile.
It's not caused by tyre pressure, if I saw it on a car tyre I would say it was caused by mis-alignment (toe in / toe out etc.), but with only one wheel per axle that shouldn't be the case.
I've not seen it for many years, I used to regularly see it on my older bikes with the more blocky tread designs of the 70's etc. I used to think it was caused by a slightly unbalanced wheel, there are certainly no wheel weights on my Burgie so perhaps I might get them dynamically balanced - I guess with the small diameter wheels spinning a lot faster, then the problem might be exaggerated if they were a little unbalanced.


dave
 

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Mupp,

That sounds like the "chopping" we get here in the states that have a lot of cement roads. I am used to tread "cupping", having lived in New England for many years. That is the result of crowned asphalt roads. But out here the flat cement slabs that often do not perfectly align are a totally different approach to ruining tire tread. What you are experiencing is more likely related to the design of the roadways that you ride on than anything wrong with your scooter. Usually running a bit higher inflation will retard (but not eliminate) the damage.
 

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Thanks Paul, it certainly is a strange phenomenon. Pushing it slowly around a smooth flat floor at work, you can actually feel the tiny bumps pattering away as the wheel turns.
I've only just noticed as well - there's a central rain groove on the front tyre but not on the rear. Seems the same on all the on-line photos I've found though.



dave
 

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Both front and rear of my tyres have got quite pronounced wear on the trailing edge (in direction of rotation) of the tread pattern, but much less on the leading edge, so I emailed Bridgestone asking if this type of wear could be minimised, and if I could reverse the direction of the tyres to even it out, they replied as below

Dear David,

Thank you for your mail,

The heel and toe wear is quite common on tyres with reasonably heavily
treaded tyres. 5,000 miles on these tyres is quite good to be honest
with you and is slightly above average. The reason they wear in so few miles is because they have a small diameter (13") so they tend to build up quite a lot of heat, especially as the scooter is fairly heavy and sits at the
countries speed limits somewhat easily.

You cannot turn these tyres as they are directional and doing so may
cause the tyres to suffer from tread separation, so please do not attempt
this under any circumstances.

The tyre pressures should be 2.0 bar in the front and 2.5 bar in the
rear (multiply by 14.6 for psi)

There is not a great deal you can do to minimise this effect I'm
afraid.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you require any further
assistance.

Kind Regards

Gary

Gary Hartshorne
Motorcycle Race Manager
Bridgestone UK Ltd
Tel: 07989 359075

[email protected]
There is still quite a lot of deep lawful tread depth right across the tyre profile, so when the say 5000 miles is good I'm quite surprised, alas however the way the tyre is wearing down just the trailing edge of the pattern is annoying as the depth will be reduced unevenly, I think without this wear pattern the tyre would last much longer.
It's still good for a while yet though, I'll monitor it closely, and although I was fairly happy with Bridgestone's prompt reply and the adhesion / durability of the Bridgestone Hoops up till now, I'll certainly consider alternatives when the time comes to change them.

dave
 

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Mark,

The tire is "cupping", it's fairly common. My rear is cupped quite a bit and even though there is tread depth left it looks like it is about time to replace it. How much is too much cupping? I'm not sure but an 1/8 inch step is about all I like to see.

Thanx,
Russ
 

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Russ Schaeffer said:
How much is too much cupping?
There is a point where I can feel it start to affect handling. Hard to describe, but there is some weirdness going into a turn (like the tire squirms sideways a bit). This will vary a little between brands of tires due to the different tread pattern designs. When the tire doesn't feel right, it is history. I don't care if it is all the way down to the wear bars or not. Most cupping, chopping or feathering of tread issues are with the front tire. The rear tends to wear flat in the middle (which will also alter handling, but it is usually pretty close to the wear bars at that point). Russ states that his rear tire is cupping - and if he says so, I'm sure it is. But in 40 years of riding, my cupping issues have always been with the front tire - never the rear.
 

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It could be a problem with the shocks. I had bad cupping wear of that type when I had one oil seal leaking badly. It could be as simple as one shock set on a different setting than the other.
 

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Pauljo,

I agree 100%. I look at the shape of the tire and when it doesn't have the stock profile anymore I just pitch it out. I can't recall having any cupping on a rear tire ever (I've got 35 years of street riding experience). I don't know why I'm seeing a lot of cupping but it's there. I do ride at a very good pace, enough to wind the chassis into a serious high speed weave (some might call it wobble).
My understanding is that cupping is mostly caused by the tire compliance and is exacerbated by the suspension (or lack thereof).

Thanx,
Russ
 

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13 pounds! The rear tire on a 650 is supposed to be 36 -41, and I'm sure the 400 must be similar.

That could certainly account for some unusual wear (and really high heat in the rubber), but it's hard to imagine that you wouldn't notice it. It must have been mushy as all get out going around curves.
 

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tires and pressure

pauljo said:
These scooters are shipped from the factory with only 20 lbs of pressure in both front and rear tires. It is not unusual for dealers to miss setting the tires to proper inflations. It happened to me, and several other folks that I know of. Fortunately, I caught mine within the first 300 miles.

It is very important to check your tire pressure at delivery. It is equally important to check them periodically (I check mine weekly). Improper inflation will lead to premature tire wear, and it has a negative effect on handling and braking as well.
I caught mine at about 30 miles, I cked it after my ride home.
I now have almost 4000 miles on the scooter and the rear tire seems to have quite a bit of life left and seems (to me) to be wearing normally.
The manual says for solo 25 for front 29 for rear. For duel riding it says 25 front, 41 rear. I have been running 25 front and between 29 and 41 for the rear. since I weigh 270 I wonder if I should run 41 in the rear irreguardless. Pauljo ( and others ) what do you think?

Thanks Steve
 

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For maximum tire life I'd run 41 psi in the rear. How that affects the ride is another issue - I have never ridden a 400 so I can't say. If you weigh 270, I would think ride would be acceptable with 41 psi.

This brings another thought. The folks that have been experiencing low tire life with rear Pirellis on the 400 - are they running 29 psi? If so, that could have a lot to do with that issue.
 

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Thanks Pauljo

pauljo said:
For maximum tire life I'd run 41 psi in the rear. How that affects the ride is another issue - I have never ridden a 400 so I can't say. If you weigh 270, I would think ride would be acceptable with 41 psi.

This brings another thought. The folks that have been experiencing low tire life with rear Pirellis on the 400 - are they running 29 psi? If so, that could have a lot to do with that issue.
Thank you for your comment Pauljo. What you say makes good since so that's what I'll do.

Steve
 
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