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Would you replace low mileage 10 year old tires?

  • NOPE, just ride it

    Votes: 43 49.4%
  • Yes, 10 years is a long time

    Votes: 44 50.6%

  • Total voters
    87
  • Poll closed .
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I'm picking up my first TW this weekend from a fellow forum member and wanted the communities thoughts on the tires.

The bike has 1500 miles on it and was always garaged. The tires are still factory original. I've decided to replace the front tire with a Pirelli MT43 but haven't decided what to do with the rear tire yet.

What would you do? Is it worth the $200 for peace of mind?
 

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I would replace it. Even if it doesn't look terrible, that 10-year old rubber is hard and dry-rotted, making it a hazard on the road. My tires are only 4 years old and are already beginning to show signs of dry rot around the base of the knobbies. Just my opinion though, I'm sure others will pipe in soon
 

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You'll get mixed answers on this. If it were me I think I could judge the condition of the tire and rubber but I've been around this stuff a long time. If I looked close and the rubber was still pliant, lacked any cracking and any other things that would indicate a problem I would run it. I have jeep tires that old that are like new and some I wouldn't run on a wheelbarrow. It depends on the quality of the rubber or synthetic rubber used when they made that specific tire. If your not comfortable judging the tire replace it. It's not that much money for peace of mind.
 

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Absolutely...100 %...replace both tires. Put a new Bridgestone TW34 on the rear..and put a Shinko 241 Trials tire on the front.....NOT that Pirelli.
Small Hi-jack. Sorry. Twilight, can you expand on you opinion of the MT34 please. I run the 241 and love it but I'm intrigued with the Pirelli.
 

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That pole is to broad. You can't say just run it without addressing condition or just replace with an arbitrary number, why not 8 years, why not 12 years.
 

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Hmm, I'm gonna take a second look at my back tire and see how it looks. Mines an original 01 with 6k on it I think... Just passed inspection. Just ordered a 241 for the front on the specters suggestion. Still debating whether I should have gone Pirelli and if I should get a new read, choice is between the stocker and the more street able tw34...
 

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I have taken 10+ year old tires and used them. My experience is the "bad" rubber is on the surface and once that wears away they are good as new -- but then I am cheap too.
I agree with this, except in my opinion they are not exactly like "new"; but usable to a point.
I don't agree with your "I am cheap" part Tony. You are not "cheap", you are "frugal"! :D (just like me) :p

If I used a tire like this, I would have checked for cracking, weathering, checking and ANY other thing I could find wrong before even considering it. I also would only use a tire like that off road; not on the street or high speed of any kind. And remember; the tube is 10 years old too...
 

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A lot depends on how and where you'll be riding.

If you'll be pushing the envelope...hard trail-riding or fast riding on high-traffic streets...I'd change them. Good insurance.

If you're using it for easy dirt-road runs and/or grocery-getting at under 30 mph, no heavy traffic or panic stops...you can probably get by. They're relatively low-pressure; the TW is a light machine. But WATCH for dry-rot.

I had a car dolly with good tires I bought in 2010, used. Kept it under cover out of sunlight for five years. Moved a car from South Dakota to Texas and then back to Michigan. Nolo problemo.

Then I put it on CW and sold it. And as I'm spouting off the virtues of the thing, the buyer, a dirt-track amateur auto racer, looks at it and says..."It needs a new tire and probably two." And sure enough, the tread had split, all around the circumference of the tire - like a cut bagel. Sidewalls still looked great - the fender hid an easy view of the tread.

If I'd loaded that thing one more time, it might have gotten messy - WHEN that tire let go.

You want to make sure you get new tires before you get to that point.
 

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I will go with if your going to have to pick a line in the sand 10 Years is OK. One day over 10 and you may die, one day less you will be fine! J/K Sometimes an arbitrary number has to be picked. It may as well be 10 years. It's an easy round number to remember.

But how do you tell the age of the tire? There "should be" a DOT date code on most tires. It's a 4 digit number the first two are the week of the year. The second two are the year, i.e., 1001 should be the 10th week of 2001 if the DOT blurb I just read is correct. It's usually stamped on the tire somewhere.

I can't wait to look at the new 241's I just bought to see how many years I lost while the tire was sitting on the shelf at the dealer.

Ride while you got'm..!

TireDate.jpg
 

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I have taken 10+ year old tires and used them. My experience is the "bad" rubber is on the surface and once that wears away they are good as new -- but then I am cheap too.
Rubber doesn't exactly work this way as far as I know. There's a chemical reaction that goes on when the rubber is exposed to the elements as soon as it comes out of the mold and I imagine that tires have gone through 10 years of life have been put through a lot of heat/cold and other various factors. I'm not saying you can't use them after 10 years, but once you "rub away" the outer layer, the rubber below is still 10 years old and just as susceptible to failure.

If it was me, I'd replace them. My old GS500 came with tires that were 8 years old but in good visual condition. However, after riding on them for a good while, I threw up some new Pilot Activs and the difference was amazing. Not trying to be a dick here or anything, but the TW's tires from what I've seen are cheap as heck compared to some other bikes out there. I'd have no issue throwing down 150/200 on getting both tires changed.
 

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In the poll I clicked YES. I do have an almost new 2006 with only 250 miles on it and the tires look just fine and feel just fine. I will run them a while longer but will admit I don't feel very safe with them when I take short trips on pavement. In the trails I ride I have absolutely no worries at all but I don't often go all that deep into the woods to concern myself about getting back to civilization. If my bike was used more as a commuter mostly paved road bike I would change them right now. Since I only go a few miles from home before I hit the dirt trails I don't worry but I also don't go fast on the pavement.

Change the front for sure and just toss it in the garbage because it was junk to begin with. Change the rear if you ride the roads and keep or give it to a friend who rides only trails. The last rear I bought a couple years ago was around $100 delivered and another $25 to get it mounted, cheap insurance.

GaryL
 

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I don't agree with your "I am cheap" part Tony. You are not "cheap", you are "frugal"! :D (just like me) :p
I knew I was in good company!

Anyway, this has all been very interesting. Tires that have been sitting in the sun and weather for 10 years will be pretty much falling apart and I wouldn't use those. Tires that have been sitting inside for 10 years and still look new I would not hesitate to use.

Is this the date this tire was made?

PC070024.JPG

I bet this tire is >10 years old but when the time comes I will use it and I bet I have zero problems with it. Low pressure, lightly loaded, looks in great shape...............just dusty. I also have new, unused tubes sitting on the shelf that must be 4 or 5 years old -- I will use them too. The tire guy I bought my Heidenau tires from, the guy that makes a living selling tires and tubes, when I asked him if I should replace the tube when installing the new tires replied "is it leaking?" and I said no. Then he said "why replace it?"

PC070026.JPG
 
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