Tire pressure vs. riding style - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 11:38 PM Thread Starter
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Tire pressure vs. riding style

Trying to figure out what a good tire pressure is for different types of riding. The Vulcan book says it's supposed to be 28 front/30 rear (32 rear if rider+load is greater than 215). But should I adjust those for different types of riding? Like for slab riding, should I up the pressures a bit to get improved gas mileage, like 32/34? And for twisties, should I drop it a bit for better grip and feel, like maybe 26/28? Or should I just stick with one pressure for everything?

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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 01:12 AM
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Really shouldn't need to adjust the air pressure at all. If you lower to gain traction, you lose tire life. If you add pressure, you lose traction and gain tire life. If you were drag racing, then by all means, drop that rear tire pressure. I'd stick to what the book says.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 07:55 AM
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^what he said. There is one optimum pressure for your tires and that is where it should be set all th time. You don't get better grip with lower pressure unless you only travel in a perfectly straight line....

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 09:37 PM
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Actually, tha manual says 28 for both front and rear...32 rear if with a load (eg. : the ol lady)...a lower pressure front than rear is reverse what Ive been taught and have been doing for years...I normally keep the front 2 lbs higher than the rear. Varries with the tires you use too though...and Ive been known to lower slightly when I know Im gonna be on some rough roads (not more than 2 lbs less though).
Best/proper thing with tire pressure, REGARDLESS of what the manual states, is to inflate to a proper profile. Manual also only states for Dunlops or Metz's, btw.



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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 11:12 PM
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Way up pressure for me!!

What Wolfie says, I personally have the Michelin continental II's on mine and they are at 41 psi front and rear, that is what is on the tires. They grip great and ride better. I at first thought that was too much but the ride is a lot better now. and It feels safer.

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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 11:13 PM
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^sorry... But stock tires on the Vulcan were either Dunlop or Bridgestones. Metzler tires (Marathons)require a higher pressure (36 front 42 rear I think)

As most of the bikes out there likely have something other than stock tires now.....(if you have original tires on your bike you need to get rid of them)....So...
.... to answer this question properly you need to tell us what tires are on your bike. You really can't go by the manual unless you have stock tires.....

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Last edited by Knifemaker; 04-26-2013 at 11:15 PM.
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-27-2013, 12:11 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfie View Post
Actually, tha manual says 28 for both front and rear...32 rear if with a load (eg. : the ol lady)...a lower pressure front than rear is reverse what Ive been taught and have been doing for years...I normally keep the front 2 lbs higher than the rear. Varries with the tires you use too though
The manual I have (the service manual) says 28/30, and 28/32 if rider+passenger/load is greater than 215. And lower front is how EVERYONE I've known that rides says they have their tires. It's just a matter of how much lower depending on the bike and/or tires.

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Originally Posted by acisroc View Post
I personally have the Michelin continental II's on mine and they are at 41 psi front and rear, that is what is on the tires.
I'm pretty sure what is printed on the tires is the "maximum load" pressure, not the recommended pressure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Knifemaker View Post
Metzler tires (Marathons)require a higher pressure (36 front 42 rear I think)

So... to answer this question properly you need to tell us what tires are on your bike. You really can't go by the manual unless you have stock tires.....
Where would I find out the manufacturer's recommended pressure then? 36/42 is WAY different from what the Vulcan service manual says with 28/30, so how would one know that or find that out.

On mine I have a Bridgestone Spitfire 11F front and Bridgestone Exedra G526 rear (the tires that came off the crashed bike; they seemed fine and had very good tread so didn't want them to go to waste).

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-27-2013, 02:01 PM
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The pressures I listed for the marathon tires were taken off the Metzler tire website.

Again I'll stress that the manuals recommendations are only for the stock tires. I ran 29 front 32 rear in my bike, as after a week or two of experimenting these showed to work the best for me.

There's been many threads on this subject through the years and I know for a fact the Metz 880 takes more air.

You can run the MAX pressure listed on the tire, but it may make the ride harsher and might not be the best for overall handling.

Your best bet is to find what the TIRE manufacturer recommends... If they have one...

I did a search for the Spitfire tire and only turned up this edited email from Bridgestone to a Honda owner:

"You should use the pressures reccomended by Honda as a minimum and the pressure listed on the tire as a maximum (which it is for all tires. Try 32 psi as a starting point... "
(The bike in question was a CX500)
Searching online can give you many answers here. But the response above seems a fair one. The Exceddera was a stock tire, so the 30-32 psi suggested for it seems good.
The spitfire seems to take a bit more air, but I've not seen any reccomendations for the VN750 from Bridgestone.

An email to them might help, but do keep in mind there is NO specfic answer here, just a
"Reccomendation" on what to start with as the type of riding you do, the load on the bike, and even the roads themselves are all factors. Not to mention what you want out of the tire... The best handling or the best gas mileage.
I always pick handling...

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Last edited by Knifemaker; 04-27-2013 at 02:26 PM.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-27-2013, 04:15 PM
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RE Mine are the highest psi because...

I ran the stock crappy dunlops at 28 and 32, when I got the continentals I run at 40-41, Max pressure is 42 on the tire rating, but I have a lot of extra weight in accessories and saddlebags ect. and crash bar, homemade rear rack brackets extra drivelights I carry about 90 extra lbs, thus my optimum setting for pressure is 40 psi. I also weigh 180 lbs...So they are all different for everyone with other than stock tires and weights.

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-26-2013, 11:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acisroc View Post
What Wolfie says, I personally have the Michelin continental II's on mine and they are at 41 psi front and rear, that is what is on the tires. They grip great and ride better. I at first thought that was too much but the ride is a lot better now. and It feels safer.
Tire pressure on the tire is only the maximum tire pressure allowed and definitely not the operating pressure.
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