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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, been watching my front tire (knobby) and it looks like the center tread is wearing away. If you're looking at the bike from head on, the center tread is wearing at a slope, from "north" to "south". I'm talking almost 3/8 of an inch all the way to almost nothing. I bought the bike used, 2 1/2 yrs ago and I would imagine the tires are the originals. Is that just old tires wearing really bad or what? I think I have 20 psi in the tire and I do 99% street riding. Back tire is fine, looks like I'm gonna have to get a new front (may go street style tire). Just wondering what is causing the front to wear so strangley. Thanks for any info fellas...
 

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Most road lanes in the US are slightly sloped toward the shoulders for water runoff. This does cause motorcycle tires to wear more on the right side when viewed from the riding position. Why then don't we see it on the back tire? Probably due to the fact that most rear tire wear comes from acceleration or wheel spin during take off. Just my two cents.
 

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It's from constant hard braking, or normal braking with overinflated tires over time. Disc brake bikes will generally do this sooner in a tire's life than drums.
 

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lizrdbrth,



Now that you mention it, I have had other bikes with single front disc brakes and noticed front tire wear to be uneven much like StevieP mentions. In either case if handling is not jeopardized, probably nothing to worry about.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thanks guys. I had a feeling it might've been from the braking but I didn't think i was braking overly hard. thanks for the info
 

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Most road lanes in the US are slightly sloped toward the shoulders for water runoff. This does cause motorcycle tires to wear more on the right side when viewed from the riding position. Why then don't we see it on the back tire? Probably due to the fact that most rear tire wear comes from acceleration or wheel spin during take off. Just my two cents.


Sorry, I should have said the tires wear more on the left side when seated on bike due to the crown in the road.
 

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I noticed this week that my front (factory original) tire is getting worn down. The lugs in the center are wearing so that the profile looks like a saw blade. When a lug is on the pavement the front is down to under a 1/4" and the back edge of the lug is at least 3/8". I can feel each lug hit the pavement when I'm walking the bike or riding real slow. It has also developed a louder tire whine at higher speeds.

 

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I'm not so sure that the wear you're talking about is so "odd". Every street going motorcycle that I've ever owned has worn in the pattern you're describing. Of course, I'm kind of an "odd" guy, so that may explain it.
 

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Check/change your fork oil. A bouncy front end with worn out oil or too little oil will exascerbate the wear.



If you truly have 3/8" tread fading to zero you're either grossly overinflated, need fork oil, or both. Most street tires wear this way, as Rodney said. But ramping to that extent indicates a problem. Look into it.
 

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I believe the wear on my tire is from pavement riding at near max pressure. I've been riding mostly street this year. Looking closer,the slope is less than half way on the top of the knob.
 

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For what it may or may not be worth, the heavier wear on the left side of the front tire (and rear, for that matter) when seated on the bike is probably not from "road crown", but more your riding style. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that you're probably right handed: subconsciously, your body tries to protect your dominant (right) side, and therefor you'll turn harder to the left.. BUT, more importantly:



In the USA (and most other places), your bike travels on the left side of the tire much farther than the right. Consider a left turn at a stop sign vs. a right: you've gotta go way out in the lane and cross the road, vs. a right where you maintain your lane position and make a short turn.



The above isn't an original theory of mine, I read it somewhere and it made good sense to me.. can't quote the source, though.



The original tire on my bike was worn similarly to the above: the leading edge ("South" in your description) was much less worn than the "north". I attributed it to the previous owner riding the bike with under/overinflation of the tire: most likely in his case underinflation, as he wasn't the maintain-the-bike kinda dude..
I guessed more at underinflation, since the tire will balloon and deform out differently at road speed like that?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
and all this time i thought I was the only odd ball with sloped tires. Maybe I was over exaggerating a little bit with the 3/8 to nothing slope (I once caught a fish "this big" too), I didn't measure it, just went with a ball park "eyeball" figure from memory, but it most definitely is sloping north and south. Thanks again for all the info guys... much appreciated....
 

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I have noticed some wear on my Kenda 761 front tire. It could be from the 49 500 km that I have on it from the last 3 years.

There is nothing like a picture from the side to understand what I am talking about



To solve this I will get a new tire, same Kenda, then ride another 50 000 km and see how it holds up.
 
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