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Let me start off to say this is NOT limited to the Bridgestone tires in this post. I have had the same thing happen with bias ply Avon Venom-X tires on my GL-1500 although the wear was not this severe. I will also admit freely that I am stupid and should never have let this happen, especially twice!

I saw that I needed a new rear tire, put one on order, but it took longer than normal to get in due to the reduced availability of tires recently. The tire came in on Wednesday but I had a doctor appointment 221 miles away on Friday and I didn't want to take time off work to get the tire changed before I left. My rear tire had maybe 1/32" of tread left in the center of the tire and probably 4/32" out toward the edges. I did not take a photo of the tire before starting out on my trip because I did not think there would be any issue of accelerated wear over a mere 442 miles.

This is what the best part of the Bridgestone tread looked like with about 7,500 total miles on the tire:


This is the worst part of the tread:


And again a little closer:


Yowser

It appears that tire manufacturers use a fairly hard compound for the part of the tire that goes from the new part of the tread down to the 3/32" wear bars (and maybe down to about 1/32"), and then switches to a really soft compound below that point. Makes perfect sense so you get good wear out of their tires to the point they should be replaced but the softer compound below that allows the tire to flex properly.

My trip was from Ridgecrest, CA, west via 178 to Bakersfield, and north via 99 to Fresno. My speed through the canyon (178) was very spirited with little traffic (weekday), maybe at a 8/10th level for me. Up the 99 highway, traffic was going 75 and I was doing 75-80mph. On the way home I turned off to Porterville and took 190 and 521 over the Pacific Crest Highway with curves up the kazoo. I knew that I would get to use up some of that tread on the side of the tires but I never dreamed that I would use it all! :oops: Notice that only the feathered edges are left of the tread up to the lean limit that the Gold Wing will allow.

I am posting this to warn everyone how quickly the tread goes away once you pass below the 3/32" wear bar limits on your tires. Max speed on my GPS for this trip was 92mph and that was probably on the freeway North to Fresno. The only weird handling that I noticed was when I did a left turn from a stop light at the east end of 178 just about home. It acted like the steering head bearing had come way loose and sort of wallowed until I got back up to highway speed. It seemed a little loose coming through town, but nothing alarming.

Let the flames begin to describe just how stupid I was and how no one in their right mind would ever to let this happen to their tires!

:a13:

:crew:

P.S. Sorry about the photos being so small. I haven't figured out why they started out being 2400x1800 pixels on WebShots and ended up being 100x75 pixels once they got on this page. If someone can clue me in, I would appreciate it. Thanks.
 

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tires

I had a freind that had a similar experience with Stones. I really feel for you guys that only get 6 to 7 K on a set of tires. The worst mielage I have experienced is 12K on a set of Avons. They had tread left but BOTH separated. My best mileage is 17500 on Dunlop E'3. My original Dunlop D250's went 16200, everything (except the Avons) has gone over 17 since then. I run E'3's exclusively. I check my air pressure at least once a week, more often if there is a drastic change in the weather. I maintain the front tire at 36 and the rear at 41. 80 percent of my riding is 2 up. THIS IS JUST MY EXPERIENCE!! Please don't respond about how this ain't so or start a tire bashing war. Frank
 

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Hey Mark,

Don't beat yourself up. On our ride to Yellowstone we were heading north to Waterton National Plark when my rear went flat. I had checked the oil and tires the night before in Helena MT,

Both front and rear showed lots of wear and I had planned to change both when we got home. It never made it - the rear gave out in northern Montana.

I have to admit that I only checked the part of the tires that I coud see and did not put the center stand and rotate them both all the way around.

The day this went flat we had put about 300 miles of sometime 'hard' riding. I doubted that I could wear a tire from thin thread to cords in 6 hours, but I guess I did. Also, some of the road felt like it was paved by hand rollers using gritty heavy-duty non-slip grit gravel. That probably did the trick.

I should also mention that much damage was probably done as we slowly rode the almost-flat tire about 1000 feet to a turn-off. Take a look:

[/img]
 

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Mark,

No flames but your tire was in dire need of replacing and was unsafe to ride. While 2/32nds is the minimum legal tread depth in most (all?) states, at 4/32nds you've greatly reduced traction... something sorely needed on a two wheeled vehicle.

I love you guys that only get 7,000-8,000 miles out of a set of Bridgestones. You're either riding on very bad roads, not keeping up with the inflation, "Lighting them up" or something similar. My OEMs lasted 12,000 miles and I didn't stay on top of the inflation. I replaced them because the front was getting near the wear bars. The rear still had a lot to go before getting to that point.

I hope you have better life/luck with your next set of tires.
 

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Only thing I can point out... you said you went 92 MPH on a really worn tire ?? WOW.. and some say they won't plug a good tire because its unsafe ?? duuh !

cosmic
 

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Mark Rowell said:
Let the flames begin to describe just how stupid I was and how no one in their right mind would ever to let this happen to their tires!
No flames here... you're just a normal winger following normal winger protocol.

Winger rule #16 states: When a gold wing tire gets down below the wear bars, DO NOT CHANGE THEM you automatically have another 3000 miles left on said tires. :roll:
 

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Happens to me a lot !!!! I actually measured 1/32 prior to leaving for Albuquerque to buy a tire. I was also pulling a trailer. Ran into a group of guys that I knew that were also going the same direction, The Race began LOL ......... They turned left at Albuquerque and I decided to go on to Southern NM to get a tire. Didn't even look at the tires. Drove about 60 miles south of Albuquerque when BAM !!!! Blew out the rear tire. Chords showing every where !!!!!

Lesson learned !!

JMHO 8)
 

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No flaming here. Just remember new tires are very cheap compared to blowing a tire and going down.
 

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Isn't that the way it is supposed to be done? Never change tires until the cords show, never put fuel in until you have 50 miles on the reserve light, never change the brake pads until you hear them squeel.

These are Goldwings, not Hogs.
 

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Blue Wing

Blowing a tire does NOT mean you are going down. Especially now days where we have pretty good tires !!!! You can just wobble to the side of the road and fix it.

JMHO 8)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
cosmic_chariot said:
Only thing I can point out... you said you went 92 MPH on a really worn tire ?? WOW.. and some say they won't plug a good tire because its unsafe ?? duuh !

cosmic
I freely admitted that what I did was dumb...and I stand by that position! :D I remember something about "fool me once, shame on you but fool me twice, shame on me" but both times it was me and no one else was involved!

I put down that speed because that is what my GPS recorded as max speed during that trip. I would guess that I did that speed with most of the tread left on the tire (before the tread was showing) and I did not sustain that rate of speed.

What really amazed me is how much of the side tread I scrubbed off going fast through mountainous roads from Porterville to home over the Pacific Crest highway. I have never peeled a tire that way in the past. Now I have yanked and banked to the point of forming little balls of rubber on my tread, specifically on bias ply Metzlers on my GL-1500. On this set of tires, I doubt there was enough rubber left on them to form the little balls! :shock:

The industry standard for the placement of wear bars is 3/32" and for dry road conditions, I consider that fully adequate amount of tread. If you look at some of the sport bike tires, especially those designed for use on a track, they are almost slicks to begin with. Now in wet weather riding, I too agree that 3/32" is marginal and you should be looking for a new set right away.

If I have a flat with the hole up on the sidewall, I will probably call a tow truck to haul it to a shop that can replace the tire before I will get back on it to ride again. On the other hand, I have little concern with a plug being installed in the part of the tread that is in contact with the road while moving in a straight line (not turning). If I was on a trip and had a plug installed, most likely I would continue on until I got back home as long as it was holding air. Yes, I would be checking it on every gas stop until I established that it was not leaking, but even another 1,000 miles would not get me really concerned.

Most modern motorcycle tires do not fail catestrophically on their own IMHO. Yes, I have heard of some delamination that have burst without hitting anything in the road but I am talking about modern tires in general. With that given, slowly deflating tires should give you plenty of warning so you can get to the side of the road before making the bike unmanagable. Again, just my opinion as I am fairly confident in my abilities and stay calm when stuff happens on the bike that might panic other riders.
 

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I recall my OE Bridgestone rear going from almost to the wear bars to cords galore in one 300 mile ride. My son proved that true genious does not sprout far from the tree when he had the same expereince on his VTX riding one trip of about 150 miles -- from not quite into the wear bars to cording all the way around. They really go quick once they get close!

prs
 
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