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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 01:13 AM Thread Starter
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Considering the Darkside

I can definitely see myself going to the darkside someday. Maybe as soon as my next rear tire change - which could be as soon as the end of this riding season.

I have to ask any and all of the darksiders here. After the recommended 500 mile "break in" period, does the bike feel any "different", particularly in the turns?

I mean, those that have gone to the darkside swear by them, but other than keeping your wallet a little heaver, do they feel different? Is there noticeable difference at the seat of your pants or at the ends of your arms - again, particularly in the turns?

I'm an engineer and at the end of the day, traction is about two things, coefficient of friction (the stickiness of the tire) and contact patch (surface area of the tire touching the road). I've seen other websites where empirical testing was done that shows CT are actually softer than MTs - allowing for better grip. As far as contact patch is concerned, even during cornering, you cannot argue that, as long as the tire pressures are low enough to allow the inner radius of the tire to flex rather than roll onto the sidewall, the contact patch of a CT is far greater than a MT.

Many naysayers say that CTs were not specifically designed to handle the loads and conditions that motorcycles would put on them - and they are absolutely correct on this point. CTs were designed to handle loads and conditions far worse than what a touring bike would put on them.

My concern is the handling in the turns. A flat-treaded CT (as opposed to a rounded tread MT), when leaned to one side will have a tendency to steer the rear end. Think of it like this: It's the difference between rolling a cardboard tube from an empty roll of toilet paper versus rolling an ice cream cone. Due to its rounded surface, the MT will always closely approximate the shape of the cardboard tube (a thin ring of it), regardless of the lean angle, allowing the rear to track neutrally through the turn. Whereas, when you lean the CT to one side, it takes on the shape of the cone (at the contact patch) causing the tire to track to the inside through the turn. This will cause what us NASCAR fans will recognize as a "tight" condition, requiring more steering input at the front wheel to compensate.

Basically, the rear wheel will be trying to steer into the turn requiring countersteer at the front wheel through the entire turn to balance the forces. Another way to look at it is that the rear wheel will be steering (as in the opposite of countersteering) in the direction that will cause the bike to right itself through the turn, so countersteer will be needed thoughout the turn to counteract what the rear wheel is doing. The two ends of the bike would be fighting each other.

When push comes to shove the front wheel will always lose that fight. My opinion on that is, a touring bike would probably already be down for other reasons before it every got to that point.

Furthermore, the differences may be negligible and this whole discussion may be moot.

So that's basically my concern. Does a CT require noticeably more input at the handlebars to track though a turn or does it feel any different in some other way?

I'm hoping to get the opinions and experiences of several darksiders.

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2016 FLTRXS - Velocity Red Sunglo
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 07:37 AM
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No CT on my RGU. Had several on Honda's. There is a little more input to get a CT into a curve and keep it there. Wasn't really noticeable until you ride a bike without at CT. Slow speed handling and uneven pavement at slow speeds are the only challenges. Think about a run flat CT.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-15-2017, 12:27 PM
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Having literally just put a CT on my bike I will say that I'm pleased with how it handles in general. I've only been able to put about 200 miles on it so far. As far as the contact patch between both MT and CT, I believe there's more contact with the CT while cornering as the tire does "give" more. There is a slight different feel to cornering but in my opinion it's nothing that you won't get used to quickly. I've been known to ride hard in general but especially in the twisties. In my maiden voyage with the CT, which was last sunday by the way, my buddies and I were rolling thru a state forest that has a few miles of quick corners and I was on their asses the entire time. They too were impressed by how I was able to keep up with them. Not one time did I ever feel that I was in danger of crashing because of the CT. The way I look at is, I've wanted to try the CT for quite some time now because the MTs are so expensive and I'm lucky to 15k miles out of them. The CT only cost me like $70. and I mounted it myself so If I don't like it then I will buy the MT and chalk up the $70. I spent to actual 1st hand knowledge. As of right now throughly pleased with my decision to put the CT on. And if it works out long-term then I saved myself a bunch of money and got twice the mileage out of it. Also most people that I've talked to and who have actually went to the darkside say that there's a lil adjustment that's needed with the air pressure. I started with 40psi and ivery kept it there because I'm satisfied with it. I may play with the pressure alil just to see what happen

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 12:08 PM
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Which Tire

Which tire and what size are you guys running?

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 12:38 PM
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darkside

I have a new pirelli 195-55-16 run flat if someone would like try one and not be out a lot of money would sell it for 80.00 plus shipping it's new tire never mounted sold the 2010 rg don't need it.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelgrudgings View Post
Which tire and what size are you guys running?
I'm using the General G-Max 195-55-16

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 07:47 PM
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You are obviously a civil engineer and not a mechanical engineer.

Once I make up my mind, I'm full of indecision.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 08:34 PM
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Oh this shits fixing to get good...


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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 05:00 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SharknoseScott View Post
You are obviously a civil engineer and not a mechanical engineer.
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddienelson View Post
Oh this shits fixing to get good...
LOL!!! Okay Scott. What makes you say that?

2012 FLTRU - Ember Red Sunglo
2016 FLTRXS - Velocity Red Sunglo
>>> Apparently, I have a "thing" for redheads.
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