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Discussion Starter #1
My most recent TW came to me with a nearly new OEM rear tire, and also a nearly new TW-302 front tire in 4.60-18 size. Right off the bat I noticed there seemed to be an unusually large gap between the tire and fender. That's a DOT legal dual sport tire, I believe it's OE fitment on the WR250. Off road it did fine, but on road I noticed a HUGE speedometer error (like 10-12% or so) due to the lower profile, and it had a tendency to speed wobble at highway speeds, something I'd seen noted about that tire several times when applied to TW front wheel use. On a wet road, it was pretty spooky also, skidding easily under braking or cornering.

I swapped it with the popular Shinko 241 in 4.00-18 size. Found out there was a Bridgestone Ultra heavy tube in there, holy crap those are thick. It's like a tire in a tire. It's only like $60 shipped most places, it's slightly taller than stock so it reduces the speedo error, is actually about 4.5" wide when mounted and inflated, and is very easy to spoon on. It looks great on the bike and "fill out" the wheel nicely- it doesn't look wimpy or too slim as the "4.00" designation might suggest.

Stock tire
Indicated- 55
Actual(per GPS)- 51

TW-302
Indicated- 55
Actual- 48

Shinko 241
Indicated 55
Actual 53.5

D606 (130/90)
Indicated 55
Actual 57

There's probably a magic combo somewhere that will put the speedo bang on accurate, but within a couple MPH is fine for me, I'm used to most motorcycles being a little bit optimistic. Otherwise, I can see why this is a popular tire for this bike. The handling is noticeably easier due to the 241's rounder profile. I mean I still wouldn't call it "nimble" or "flickable", but with that TW302 on the front the handling was like a dump truck, so in comparison it's a big improvement. Road grip is excellent, no complaints there. Very solid feel under braking or cornering. Off road grip was great also. We don't have a lot of sand or mud here in Austin, it's mostly hard/rocky terrain, and trials tires are very popular here. It works great, sticky and predictable. On the highway, I still did notice a couple wiggles here and there. Not as bad as the TW302, but still a bit concerning.

Similar to a lot of Shinko's I've mounted, it took quite a lot of weight to balance, and these don't seem to have a balance dot/ "light spot" marked so anyone's guess there. Ended up using something like 60g of weights to get it reasonably balanced. Ehh, I guess that's the trade off for a cheap tire.

My old TW never had any sort of shimmy on the highway even with the monster 130-90 D606 on the front, but then again I always just used regular tubes. That UHD tube is friggen heavy- easily 3-4 lbs, and I think the wobbles are more from too heavy a wheel. Generally a bump is what sets off the wobble. That's a LOT of extra spinning mass for those forks to hold steady. (I checked the stem bearings when the wheel was off, tight and smooth so no issue there). I can see the appeal of UHD tubes for aggressive fast trail riders to help reduce pinch flats when running lower pressures, but the TW is not really an "aggressive, fast" sort of bike, it's not an ADV that weights a ton, and this one is used predominantly on the road so I'm thinking I'll swap out the tube for a standard and maybe just throw a little slime in there.

Poking around, a standard 18" tube is 1.8-2mm thick, and weighs about 1.5 lbs. A HD tube is generally 3mm thick, and the weight goes up to about 2.5 lbs. Going to the UHD, they're 4mm thick and the weight is now about 4.5lbs. An extra 3lbs of spinning, unsprung weight for a 15hp bike is pretty substantial.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
So yep, it was that heavy ass tube. Swapped it with a standard tube, took it for a ride, and no issues at all. It also seems a touch perkier as far as acceleration and it holds highway speeds a bit easier. Dropping several pounds of rotating mass will do that.

Also checked the balance again with the normal tube (didn't rotate the tire relative to the rim, only undid one bead to swap tubes), and now I only needed about 20 grams (in a totally different spot) to get good balance, so the tube was mostly to blame there as well.

So, big thumbs up for the 241. Cheap, easy peasy to spoon on, works great both on and off road, and brings your speedo a bit closer to reality. I threw a couple oz. of Slime in each tire for insurance against punctures. From prior experience Slime won't 100% "fix" a puncture, but it will slow the leak sufficiently to give you enough time to get home.
 

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You should have gone with the Ride-On instead of the Slime. It not only seals like slime, but self balances the tire too.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Any fluid in a tire will balance it. Slime, Ride-On, Budweiser, it doesn't matter. That's how washing machines don't dance across the floor, there's a ring that partially fills with water to balance the spinning tub. I'm surprised Slime's marketing department hasn't "invented" this new use for it yet. I balance the tires on a stand anyway, which even that is probably overkill for a bike that maxes out at 75. The tire would have to be MASSIVELY out of balance (by probably 100g or so) to be detectable at that relatively low speed.

I've toyed around with fluid balancing a fair bit back when I was on supersports riding way too fast. I found fluid balancing could "fine tune" and compensate for minor imbalances, and was best coupled with a standard static balance. But NOT balancing the tire and using just fluid, I never found to work and would generally get a pronounced hop much past 100 or so, regardless of how much/little fluid I had in the tire. I really couldn't quite explain why, since physics says this should work, but experience shows it doesn't, or only does to a limited degree. My though/theory was that at very high speeds the centrifugal force wanting to flatten the fluid along the inside of the tread overpowers any vibration from imbalance, so the fluid no longer shifts to where it's needed so the balancing effect stops. It works fine at lower speeds, but you're going too slow to feel or need it. I was using just water with a splash of coolant in it so it wouldn't freeze in cold weather. Maybe more viscous fluids work differently or better, could be why Ride On is ultra thick. That's getting into physics beyond my pay grade.

I've heard Ride On works fine, but it's like 4x the price of Slime, and I'm cheap.
 

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Ride-On is more viscous than Slime so creates less mess when changing a tire.

From a Physics point of view there is no such thing as a centrifugal force; there is a centripetal force. The so called centrifugal force is actually a result of Newton's 1st law (inertia) and the centripetal force. - Former Physics teacher in me could not let this go:) The liquid want to continue in the direction it is moving, but the inside of the tire changes the direction of the liquids motion resulting in a force on the tire that is countered by the centripetal force.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Slime's messiness is really overblown. For a tubed tire, it's totally moot. Can change the tire and never touch the stuff. On tubeless tires, if you stick to the recommended amount, it's really not bad. It'll stay in the sidewall and more or less "in" the tire even when dismounted. A quick wipe-down of the rim and you're all set. It also makes great mounting lube.

Where Slime makes a mess (I used to be a dealer tech, so I certainly know it can), is usually on ATV tires where people put WAAAAAAY too much slime in. ATV tires are notoriously difficult to break the beads on(I think they're designed with tighter beads for the often massive lug treads and low PSI they run at), and after Jim-Bob squirts a whole gallon of Slime in there and the tire machine finally shoves the bead off and the tire instantly flattens in a spot, that gallon of slime proceeds to blast out all over the shop like a green alien bukkake, now I have to waste an hour cleaning everything within about a 30ft arc of the side of the tire machine.

Still, semantics aside, I'd be interested to understand why fluid balancing doesn't seem to work (or effect tapers off) at speed increases. Similarly, I tried Dyna Beads once on my Z1000, and did not manually check balance or use any weights, just added the recommended amount of beads. Predictably, once I got to about 110 or so, the typical up/down vibration started that'd get worse with more speed. Pulled the wheel and found statically it was about 25 grams out- there were 3oz (about 80g) of beads in the tire, so there was more than enough to "compensate", yet it didn't. Added the stick on weights and problem vanished, it'd be smooth to that bike's top end of about 160.
 

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My most recent TW came to me with a nearly new OEM rear tire, and also a nearly new TW-302 front tire in 4.60-18 size. Right off the bat I noticed there seemed to be an unusually large gap between the tire and fender. That's a DOT legal dual sport tire, I believe it's OE fitment on the WR250. Off road it did fine, but on road I noticed a HUGE speedometer error (like 10-12% or so) due to the lower profile, and it had a tendency to speed wobble at highway speeds, something I'd seen noted about that tire several times when applied to TW front wheel use. On a wet road, it was pretty spooky also, skidding easily under braking or cornering.

I swapped it with the popular Shinko 241 in 4.00-18 size. Found out there was a Bridgestone Ultra heavy tube in there, holy crap those are thick. It's like a tire in a tire. It's only like $60 shipped most places, it's slightly taller than stock so it reduces the speedo error, is actually about 4.5" wide when mounted and inflated, and is very easy to spoon on. It looks great on the bike and "fill out" the wheel nicely- it doesn't look wimpy or too slim as the "4.00" designation might suggest.

Stock tire
Indicated- 55
Actual(per GPS)- 51

TW-302
Indicated- 55
Actual- 48

Shinko 241
Indicated 55
Actual 53.5

D606 (130/90)
Indicated 55
Actual 57

There's probably a magic combo somewhere that will put the speedo bang on accurate, but within a couple MPH is fine for me, I'm used to most motorcycles being a little bit optimistic. Otherwise, I can see why this is a popular tire for this bike. The handling is noticeably easier due to the 241's rounder profile. I mean I still wouldn't call it "nimble" or "flickable", but with that TW302 on the front the handling was like a dump truck, so in comparison it's a big improvement. Road grip is excellent, no complaints there. Very solid feel under braking or cornering. Off road grip was great also. We don't have a lot of sand or mud here in Austin, it's mostly hard/rocky terrain, and trials tires are very popular here. It works great, sticky and predictable. On the highway, I still did notice a couple wiggles here and there. Not as bad as the TW302, but still a bit concerning.

Similar to a lot of Shinko's I've mounted, it took quite a lot of weight to balance, and these don't seem to have a balance dot/ "light spot" marked so anyone's guess there. Ended up using something like 60g of weights to get it reasonably balanced. Ehh, I guess that's the trade off for a cheap tire.

My old TW never had any sort of shimmy on the highway even with the monster 130-90 D606 on the front, but then again I always just used regular tubes. That UHD tube is friggen heavy- easily 3-4 lbs, and I think the wobbles are more from too heavy a wheel. Generally a bump is what sets off the wobble. That's a LOT of extra spinning mass for those forks to hold steady. (I checked the stem bearings when the wheel was off, tight and smooth so no issue there). I can see the appeal of UHD tubes for aggressive fast trail riders to help reduce pinch flats when running lower pressures, but the TW is not really an "aggressive, fast" sort of bike, it's not an ADV that weights a ton, and this one is used predominantly on the road so I'm thinking I'll swap out the tube for a standard and maybe just throw a little slime in there.

Poking around, a standard 18" tube is 1.8-2mm thick, and weighs about 1.5 lbs. A HD tube is generally 3mm thick, and the weight goes up to about 2.5 lbs. Going to the UHD, they're 4mm thick and the weight is now about 4.5lbs. An extra 3lbs of spinning, unsprung weight for a 15hp bike is pretty substantial.
I see that you said the tube was the main culprit for the imbalance. I was just going to comment on Shinko tire balance. My Shinko tires always are marked for the light spot. I put the rim only on a balancer and find the heavy spot. I put the Shinko light spot to the heavy spot on the rim and I have been coming up with perfect balance when the assembly is put back on the balancer.
 

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I believe the concerns about Slime stems not from a simple tire change but from aftermath of a flat where the escaped slime coats interior of rim as well as tube and tire. An owner can clean this out himself but tire shops tend not to do the clean up, especially when slime has had a chance to set up and dry a bit.. The uncleaned residual film when it dries on the reassembled tire makes a fairly effective latex adhesive gluing bead to rim. This makes any subsequent bead breaking difficult.
I have not tried to clean off RideOn since the one leak it fixed still holds air after several years with the offending 6d nail still in the tire. The ml or so that did seep out around the nail did leave a lasting dirt adhering stain.
 

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I believe the concerns about Slime stems not from a simple tire change but from aftermath of a flat where the escaped slime coats interior of rim as well as tube and tire.
Bingo

I removed the rear tire (tubeless) 3 days ago from the VStrom and the Ride-On is still clinging to the inside - no drips.
I changed a tire for a friend that had the inner tube split / valve stem tear and the slime was everywhere.
 

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I have been using slime and never had a big problem. Now I do, my valve stem is clogged and I can't get air in or out of the tire. I even took the valve stem core out and tried to clear it out by using a waterpik. I'm nearly ready for a new tire so I think I am going to stab the tire to let the air out in order to change the tire. I never needed to add air though.
 

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Wow Ken, you seem to have a mighty tough Slime booger in your valve stem if the WaterPic didn't work. Perhaps after removing valve core grab the slime plug with forceps and pull or auger it out with flights on a screw or drill bit. Maybe screw a screw into slime plug then use it to pull slime booger out?
Valve core certrainly could be replaced but maybe a solvent cleaning would make valve core good as new.
Good luck
 

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Wow Ken, you seem to have a mighty tough Slime booger in your valve stem if the WaterPic didn't work. Perhaps after removing valve core grab the slime plug with forceps and pull or auger it out with flights on a screw or drill bit. Maybe screw a screw into slime plug then use it to pull slime booger out?
Valve core certrainly could be replaced but maybe a solvent cleaning would make valve core good as new.
Good luck
Good idea about the screw. I'll give that a shot first.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I see that you said the tube was the main culprit for the imbalance. I was just going to comment on Shinko tire balance. My Shinko tires always are marked for the light spot. I put the rim only on a balancer and find the heavy spot. I put the Shinko light spot to the heavy spot on the rim and I have been coming up with perfect balance when the assembly is put back on the balancer.
Ehh, if this one was marked I certainly couldn't find it. Could be a fluke, but I could not find the slightest indicator of a painted-on stamp, or any other marking that wasn't molded into the tire. Generally yes, if you align the light dot on the tire with the valve stem, the balance is usually pretty darn close, good enough for the relatively low speeds the TW can attain.

When I used to work at the dealer we kept a lot of Shinko's on hand (for cruisers, dirt bikes, and sportbikes) since it was pretty routine someone would come in and just ask for "cheap tires", or have sticker shock at seeing what the dealer wanted for a set of Michelins (often $600+ for a ride in, ride out tire change). Compared to more name brands like Metzeler, Pirelli, Dunlop, ect, the Shinko's seemed to be more inconsistent as far as balance. Some would be fine, some would need piles of weight, while the name brands were generally pretty consistently needing an ounce or less. I just chalked it up to a little more lax quality control from Shinko, but hey, they're half the price so they have to be shaving costs somewhere.
 
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