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Discussion Starter #1
I finally got my Kenda K784 tire and heavy duty tube mounted up as a front tire on the TW200.



I had a stock TW31 front tire thats was worn and cracking. I weighed the stock tire, tube, and front wheel (after I removed it from the bike) on my digital bathroom scale. The weight of the tire, tube, wheel, & hub was 20.8 pounds. The measured height using a straight edge with 12 psi of air was 26.25".



The new tire, a Kenda K784 140/80-18 weighed 17.2 pounds. The Michelin super heavyweight tube weighed over 5 pounds. After the tire & tube was installed on the wheel, it weighed out at 33.0 pounds, 13 pounds over the stock tire & tube! The tire, with 14 psi measured at 27", 3/4" taller.



The K784 seens to be a much heavier built tire, which is important for the rocky trails and cactus we find in Arizona. After all, the TW200 isn't really a 'wheelie monster' anyway so the extra weight of the front tire shouldn't be a problem. I also went with a heavy duty tube for the same rocky trails & cactus issues.



When I put the wheel back on the bike (hopefully tomorrow) I will take some photos.



This coming Saturday, the TWs on Az Trails group will be riding again so I can compare the K784 the front tires on the other TWs, a Shinko stock copy tire, a Kenda K270, and a Dunlop 606. I hope to take photos and give a ride report for the K784. We should be riding on a mixture of pavement, forest roads with decomposed granite gravel surface, and various rocky trails.



I can tell you that riding on rocky trails stinks (last weeks ride), especialy with a worn stock front tire.
 

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You're going to love that Kenda.




It will take a little more muscle to manuever the bike. Everyone complains about the "slow" handling of fat tires, but a little more muscle easily makes a big tire handle quicker than a narrow tire because the bigger tires don't wash out as easily.



Expect the tracking to feel a little vague in a straight line. The handling will go rail-like in turns. Try not to embarrass the KTMs and Huskys by passing them on the inside on any corner with a loose surface and no berm.
 

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You may also find the additional height makes your speedo less optimistic. My SR244 brought mine to +-1 mph of indicated speed by GPS. D606's are typically taller than most and I wouldn't be too surprised if they actually made the speedo read slightly slow.



I routinely run my Shinko at 5 PSI off road, which would invite a bent rim with the stock tire.



I suspect almost any of these would be an improvement offroad.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I went riding last weekend on the new front tire after replacing the stock 1994 tire that had 4700 miles on it.



I could tell a BIG difference in front grip. I felt the new front tire grab on loose soil and rocks while the stock tire would have washed out.



We rode 60 miles on rough trails and pavement (see photos on the Northern Az Ride in this forum). The tire handled the pavement sections very well and felt smooth. When I leaned into the corner, the front grip seemed constant & firm. I had no fear of a front tire wash out on pavement. I had an almost new TW32 rear tire and both tires had 12psi for trail & pavement riding.



The K784 tire is heavy, but should be very durable for the rough & rocky AZ trails. I also put in a super heavy Michelin front tube. I had the front tire balanced and it did take 4oz to balance, creating an ugly array of weights on the rim.



Here are some photos of the front tire:





















For comparison,



Here is a Dunlop 606:









Here is a K270:









Here is a Shinko stock tire copy:









If you are more offroad, the Dunlop 606 may be good for you. If you are more on road, the K270 may be for you. If you want good on road performance AND offroad performance, the K784 may be for you....The stock front tire probably isn't the best for either pavement or offroad.



 

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Thanks Azsandrider! Great post and pictures. I had a T63 on my old TW and I loved that. Now that I just picked up another TW, the first thing to go is the front tire for sure.
 

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This is another good thread on some rider experience feedback.



I'm leaning towards the K270, but am still open minded on it.



**azsandrider** Your riding group seems to have the assortment of tires. Here's a question; the K784 and M606 patterns look very similar, but the M606 tread depth looks deeper, is it? Tread depth is not a determining factor on my next tire, just curious.



Thanks again for the feedback, good stuff!

 

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Discussion Starter #11
Yes, the Dunlop 606 is more aggressive with bigger, deeper lugs spaced further apart. The differences are not that much in depth, but the 606 would be better for more offroad then on road.



I feel the K784 has a lot of the aggressiveness of the 606 but some of the pavement manners oft he K270....



I ride pavement AND rocky trails in Az.



Only you can decide what type of riding you do and what tire you need. Any tire would be better than stock...



Eventually (hopefully) I will be able to switch bikes with the other owners of each tire and we can compare comments on the tires...If this happens, it will be in several weeks.
 

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I received my Kenda 270 today. I am excited to try it out.

I also bought new sprockets (15/50), I was happy to get a black rear to go with my gold chain.

The more stuff I buy for my T DUB DISPLAYED in my living room, the more of a snob I feel like, but I am okay with it.

I just like looking at a pretty toy frozen in time.



*** Just as a side note, I was reminded how fun it was taking off the oil plug screw was. I went to Harbor Freight and picked up a 25" 1/2" breaker bar to make it a less painful. They are on sale for $11.99 this week.



Pro and Con comments are welcome and more photos are to follow.









 

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Another option. Shinko SR244 "Golden Boy" with about 2,500 miles on it. I've had good results, even trying a set on my KLR since the new D606's seem to shed lugs at an alarming rate. It's dirt cheap.



Another budget option might be the Shinko E700.



 

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Discussion Starter #16
I was warned away from Shinko tires by a local shop, the owner is someone who I trust.



I hope the Shinko tires hold up, but cheapest is not always best. I want a quality rubber compound for my tires.
 

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Hey, ya gotta go with what/whom you trust. I've no issue with that.



I would only offer up the fact that a mere 10-15 years ago the K270 (or anything made by Kenda, for that matter) would have been regarded as a third or fourth string tire choice, one notch above the lowly King Tire offerings. and no one who cared about their keister would be caught dead with one on their bike. K270's haven't changed one bit since the day they were born. Perception has.



I've owned $200 tires that proved to be worth ten cents, $50 tires that were total surprises, and once-consistent name brands that are no longer what they useta be. These days I prefer to look at a tire based on its own merit rather than its price tag or country of origin.



I'm repeating myself from past threads here, but the other thing to consider is the difference in our fairly weird application, which invites experimentation. I never much cared for the K270 for example, as they tended to wear out quickly when installed on heavier dualsports, weren't very puncture resistent, and hated being aired down. Move them to the FRONT of the much lighter TW and they behave quite differently. They're actually quite sticky, can now take airing down wihout sqirming or bent rims, conform to rocks well and will likely outlive the bike. My Shinko is K270-ish, but a bit stiffer and of a harder compound.



Some of us will learn expensive lessons. I found the D606 rear too stiff for the TW and it didn't take well to sudden changes in direction. The next guy may fall madly in love with one.
 

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lizrdbrth has a good point--you can no longer trust brand names, reputations, or nation of origin. In this over-legislated country, which just happens to be the world's largest market for everything except chopsticks and bidets, most every product is subject to rigorous government regulation and testing, because Americans tend to be too lazy/stupid/dependent to make choices for themselves. There are virtually no "unsafe" tires on the market, just tires used for inappropriate purposes.



A prime example is the TW203/204, Kenda K761, and similar "dualsport" tires. To me, they look like racing rain tires with a hard compound--dynamite on the street, but not worth a hoot in mud or sand. Think I'm kidding? Take a ride on forest service roads on a rainy day with someone with such tires. I've seen the same guys dump the same bikes 5-6 times in one day, and we actually rode through nothing that couldn't be traversed with a '70 Maverick with mudgrips and a limited slip differential. On the other extreme, the Kenda K760 is also a "dualsport" tire, but it really is a knobby offroad tire with a DOT stamp. It also handles really funny on the front of a TW, though it works great when you need it to work in the dirt. I don't think it would last very long on pavement. The TW34, K270, and Shinko 244 fall somewhere in between, and are closer to the true meaning of what a "dualsport" tire should be.
 

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I like the Shinkos so far. Just a tad over 300 miles on them is not much of a test though.


That is one MEAN looking machine...Your color combo looks very intimidating.
 
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