First DS experience
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  1. #1
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    First DS experience

    Officially joining the ranks of the Darkside today. CT mounted, everything looks good. Time to get ready for work and off on the inaugural run I be.

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    Senior Member willtill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3Chief View Post
    Officially joining the ranks of the Darkside today. CT mounted, everything looks good. Time to get ready for work and off on the inaugural run I be.
    21 years Army (retired)
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    Sometimes it's best to burn a bridge and use the glowing embers to light the path ahead.

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    How you liking it ????????? I haven't looked back.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smiley View Post
    How you liking it ????????? I haven't looked back.
    This is day two, not sold on it so far. I knew there would be an adjustment period however, this CT feels squishy. It is a Michelin X-ICE XI3 XL. Yesterday I tried it at 42 PSI, it didn't look quite right but this tire is extremely soft. Last night I dug thru the forum and found pictures of a similar tire that was a RF and I bumped up my pressure today to 46 to get a similar appearance. Still didn't look quite right so I took it to the 50 psi max. It looked better but still feels squishy. This particular tire may just be to soft to use on a bike. Anyone have some insight that may help me with this?

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    Senior Member willtill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3Chief View Post
    This is day two, not sold on it so far. I knew there would be an adjustment period however, this CT feels squishy. It is a Michelin X-ICE XI3 XL. Yesterday I tried it at 42 PSI, it didn't look quite right but this tire is extremely soft. Last night I dug thru the forum and found pictures of a similar tire that was a RF and I bumped up my pressure today to 46 to get a similar appearance. Still didn't look quite right so I took it to the 50 psi max. It looked better but still feels squishy. This particular tire may just be to soft to use on a bike. Anyone have some insight that may help me with this?
    What made you decide on the Michelin X-ICE XI3 XL? Are other Goldwingers/F6B'rs running that tire?

    Don't go by appearance of the tire while static (other than tread wear). The tire is going to slightly deform when going into a turn; but if you put too much air into it; it will not deform (meaning flex the sidewall to keep enough tread on the pavement) and you will end up riding on the edge/sidewall of the tire.

    Bob109 runs non-run flats, as do others. Hopefully he'll chime in shortly with his experiences with the non-run flats.

    My only experience so far has been with run flat C/T's which take much less air pressure; compared to what you are running.

    Do not give up yet... you need to find that sweet spot (psi) for your weight w/ the tire. As far as the felt sensation goes; yes it can be felt different in comparison to a motorcycle tire. When I was down in Woodstock; Ga a few months ago getting my Traxxion installed; the tech there took my bike out for a spin first and came back remarking "this is the first time I rode a dark side and almost didn't seem to know it was there..."

    But I have a run flat... the variable between mine and your tire is going to be the respective air pressure. Find it.
    21 years Army (retired)
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    Sometimes it's best to burn a bridge and use the glowing embers to light the path ahead.

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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by willtill View Post
    What made you decide on the Michelin X-ICE XI3 XL? Are other Goldwingers/F6B'rs running that tire?

    Don't go by appearance of the tire while static (other than tread wear). The tire is going to slightly deform when going into a turn; but if you put too much air into it; it will not deform (meaning flex the sidewall to keep enough tread on the pavement) and you will end up riding on the edge/sidewall of the tire.

    Bob109 runs non-run flats, as do others. Hopefully he'll chime in shortly with his experiences with the non-run flats.

    My only experience so far has been with run flat C/T's which take much less air pressure; compared to what you are running.

    Do not give up yet... you need to find that sweet spot (psi) for your weight w/ the tire. As far as the felt sensation goes; yes it can be felt different in comparison to a motorcycle tire. When I was down in Woodstock; Ga a few months ago getting my Traxxion installed; the tech there took my bike out for a spin first and came back remarking "this is the first time I rode a dark side and almost didn't seem to know it was there..."

    But I have a run flat... the variable between mine and your tire is going to be the respective air pressure. Find it.
    The Michelin X-ICE XI3 XL was one of the ones Phantom had suggested in another thread. Static on the side stand at 42 psi it looked low, I ran it in last night to check if it was just an optical thing. It was pretty squishy, a lot of flex. Even at 50 psi I can feel the tire molding to the road especially at low speeds on uneven surfaces.

    I'm not giving up yet, I know I'll have to play with the pressure more. My concern is more that this tire is to soft and I'll have to replace it. I hate wasting "good" tires.

    I should've bought a RF but it's a learning experience either way.

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    Admin - Chief poop scooper Phantom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3Chief View Post
    The Michelin X-ICE XI3 XL was one of the ones Phantom had suggested in another thread. Static on the side stand at 42 psi it looked low, I ran it in last night to check if it was just an optical thing. It was pretty squishy, a lot of flex. Even at 50 psi I can feel the tire molding to the road especially at low speeds on uneven surfaces.

    I'm not giving up yet, I know I'll have to play with the pressure more. My concern is more that this tire is to soft and I'll have to replace it. I hate wasting "good" tires.

    I should've bought a RF but it's a learning experience either way.

    Follow this link to post #19 for my post ... http://hondaf6b.com/showthread.php?1...rand-for-looks

    I just went by size and cross referenced the new replacement of the old Michelin ALPIN tire that is no longer available plus posted a Pirelli tire also.
    Unfortunately the positive reviews are most likely from car owners and we don't know how different the new replacements are in comparison to the old until someone tries one. I personally do not have experience with car tires, however several of my friends do and not one complaint, all of them have never returned back to a motorcycle tire.

    I know that not everyone likes the same car tires, they each have their preferences also. Some like them softer, some like them stiffer



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    Looks Can Be Deceiving

    Quote Originally Posted by 3Chief View Post
    This is day two, not sold on it so far. I knew there would be an adjustment period however, this CT feels squishy. It is a Michelin X-ICE XI3 XL. Yesterday I tried it at 42 PSI, it didn't look quite right but this tire is extremely soft. Last night I dug thru the forum and found pictures of a similar tire that was a RF and I bumped up my pressure today to 46 to get a similar appearance. Still didn't look quite right so I took it to the 50 psi max. It looked better but still feels squishy. This particular tire may just be to soft to use on a bike. Anyone have some insight that may help me with this?
    The reality of Dark Siding is that each rider can experience totally different outcomes with the identical tire. That said, you make no mention of your weight in your post! Paramount to achieving the "correct sweet spot" in regards to "tire pressure" several factors come into play! Tire Brand, Thread/Tread Design, Side Wall Construction and, of course, Air Pressure.

    I speak only of my "non run-flat" experience with a 195/55R16 General G-Max! Comparing the Thread/Tread patterns of your Michelin to the Max indicates a "marked difference" in overall "grove/sipeing" hence a true comparison of performance would be hard for me to articulate.

    IMHO I would suggest you lower/drop your tire pressure to 36/38 PSI and start increasing pressure in 1 to 2 pound increments to aid you in finding your "sweet spot"! Even when you find that "magic number" you will experience the "slightest of squirm"! It's simply the nature of "Dark Siding" with a non-run flat car tire! That is the main reason there has been a "shift" to "Run Flats" and their "stiffer" side walls".

    As has been mentioned, not every Car Tire is a candidate for "Dark Siding"! The Michelin you have used appears to have a "low rating" in "rain performance" when used on a automobile! That would concern me and may be a culprit to DS performance.

    Keep us posted as to your experience with you Michelin! You may ultimately find this tire unacceptable and have to replace it!! Nothing ventured, nothing gained!

    Ride Safe

    bob109

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phantom View Post
    Follow this link to post #19 for my post ... http://hondaf6b.com/showthread.php?1...rand-for-looks

    I just went by size and cross referenced the new replacement of the old Michelin ALPIN tire that is no longer available plus posted a Pirelli tire also.
    Unfortunately the positive reviews are most likely from car owners and we don't know how different the new replacements are in comparison to the old until someone tries one. I personally do not have experience with car tires, however several of my friends do and not one complaint, all of them have never returned back to a motorcycle tire.

    I know that not everyone likes the same car tires, they each have their preferences also. Some like them softer, some like them stiffer
    That's where I got it from when I was finally ready to take a turn on the DS. No worries tho, my money my choice. I should've done a bit more research on this tire and dug around some of the other sites that have been reference.

    Quote Originally Posted by bob109 View Post
    The reality of Dark Siding is that each rider can experience totally different outcomes with the identical tire. That said, you make no mention of your weight in your post! Paramount to achieving the "correct sweet spot" in regards to "tire pressure" several factors come into play! Tire Brand, Thread/Tread Design, Side Wall Construction and, of course, Air Pressure.

    I speak only of my "non run-flat" experience with a 195/55R16 General G-Max! Comparing the Thread/Tread patterns of your Michelin to the Max indicates a "marked difference" in overall "grove/sipeing" hence a true comparison of performance would be hard for me to articulate.

    IMHO I would suggest you lower/drop your tire pressure to 36/38 PSI and start increasing pressure in 1 to 2 pound increments to aid you in finding your "sweet spot"! Even when you find that "magic number" you will experience the "slightest of squirm"! It's simply the nature of "Dark Siding" with a non-run flat car tire! That is the main reason there has been a "shift" to "Run Flats" and their "stiffer" side walls".

    As has been mentioned, not every Car Tire is a candidate for "Dark Siding"! The Michelin you have used appears to have a "low rating" in "rain performance" when used on a automobile! That would concern me and may be a culprit to DS performance.

    Keep us posted as to your experience with you Michelin! You may ultimately find this tire unacceptable and have to replace it!! Nothing ventured, nothing gained!

    Ride Safe

    bob109
    I weigh in about 315 right now. I understood I'd have to play with the pressure to find my "sweet spot" and there would be some slight differences in handling particularly at lower speeds. I'll adjust the pressure a few more times before I call no joy on this tire, however even if this tire isn't the one for me I'm not done with the DS, I will try a RF next tho .

    Even at 50 psi it seems really squirmy, as I've said this tire is extremely soft. It's given me a few pauses in the 2 days it's been on my B. The first night at 42 psi it looked "low" and I could feel the rear of the bike squirming around. I have to go over some pretty uneven surfaces to get to the parking lot at work and I could really feel the tire molding to the surfaces. On the way home that night slowing to take the turn onto my street, on wet pavement, my rear locked and slid for a moment. Hadn't had that happen before on the B, but there are a lot of maple leaves in that area. Even when I made the turn it seemed to wallow a little. The next day I bumped the pressure to 46 psi. The tire still looked "low" so I went to 50 psi. Looked better and was much firmer with by far less squirm then the night before. I could still feel it conforming to the road surface however not nearly as much as the night before. On the way home tho I got up to more of my normal cruising speeds and found that it really didn't like the crown in the road when switching lanes. Definitely tracks the ruts more than a MC tire. I didn't ride in today as it was pouring when I went by work, lots of standing water and 2 accidents on my way home from the store. I'll try again tomorrow at a lower pressure.

  10. #10
    Senior Member willtill's Avatar
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    This is a given and is well known to Darksiders: a car tire will track imperfections in the road much more perceptibly than a motorcycle tire.

    You've got to get used to that. And if you do.. you will develop the skills required for that while you are riding. If you can do this... you will be eligible for the cookie that the Darkside offers.

    You will occasionally see uneven road in front of you... you should (and will) expect non-linear movement of the bike and you should (and will) adjust your counter steering accordingly to compensate. You will find that you'll develop enhanced counter steering reaction while running a car tire, and it eventually will become second nature; a non-event for you.

    Been there (many of us) Done that (many of us).
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    Sometimes it's best to burn a bridge and use the glowing embers to light the path ahead.

    Hope = Wishful thinking without action

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    Dropped the pressure to 48 psi today. That seemed to help a lot, we'll see on my swim home.

  12. #12
    Senior Member willtill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3Chief View Post
    Dropped the pressure to 48 psi today. That seemed to help a lot, we'll see on my swim home.
    IMHO.... follow Bob's recommendation. Work your way up in psi... not down.
    21 years Army (retired)
    ...been everywhere, seen everything, done almost everything.

    Sometimes it's best to burn a bridge and use the glowing embers to light the path ahead.

    Hope = Wishful thinking without action

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    I do not run a snow/ice tire but a summer tire as I believe that is where the best traction is found. I do not use a run flat and my weight is over 300 lbs. My summer tire does not squirm even a little at 42 lbs. In fact you have to really pay attention to realize it might be a little different feeling than a MT. It is perfect and looks great also, much closer to a MT in looks than many I've seen. This is my second CT on a bike and I have tens of thousands miles, mostly on one tire on a VTX. Go back and read some post of people with many miles under their belts and you will see that they do not use a run flat or a snow/ice tire. You have now tried an untried tire with poor results, if you give up on that one try something that people have already found good results from.

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    Senior Member 2wheelsforme's Avatar
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    Chief, I'm sure you read thru this thread. http://hondaf6b.com/showthread.php?1...sing-snow-tire

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2wheelsforme View Post
    I do not run a snow/ice tire but a summer tire as I believe that is where the best traction is found. I do not use a run flat and my weight is over 300 lbs. My summer tire does not squirm even a little at 42 lbs. In fact you have to really pay attention to realize it might be a little different feeling than a MT. It is perfect and looks great also, much closer to a MT in looks than many I've seen. This is my second CT on a bike and I have tens of thousands miles, mostly on one tire on a VTX. Go back and read some post of people with many miles under their belts and you will see that they do not use a run flat or a snow/ice tire. You have now tried an untried tire with poor results, if you give up on that one try something that people have already found good results from.
    I misread/misunderstood somethings when I made my selection. No worries however as it's been a good learning experience. At 42 psi this tire squirms around a lot, I know generally you want to start low and raise the pressure 1 to 2 psi as been suggested. The reason I jumped to 50 was at 42 and 46 it looked like a low tire, so far at 48 it seems alright. 50 psi may have caused it to bounce/buck more or enhanced the different flexing points between the inner tire and outer tread. As I've said before this tire is really soft and tacky. I believe there are many DS disciples in both camps when it comes to RF or NonRF and winter/summer.


    Quote Originally Posted by 2wheelsforme View Post
    Chief, I'm sure you read thru this thread. http://hondaf6b.com/showthread.php?1...sing-snow-tire
    I had scanned it before but I've reread it now. It'll still end up being what feels best to the individual rider. I know there are many here who like the OEM Stones and I can't stand them, however the flip is I've had good experiences with Mezzlers on my VTX and many here do not like them at all. The CT equivalent of the OEM Stones to me is Toyo's. I hate Toyo's yet I know many people who swear by them. It's our individual experiences and personal taste that determine our tire selections more so than scientific facts.

    I'll play with this tire for a bit. If I get it to feel right to me I'll keep it. If I don't I'll either throw the OEM back on or replace it with a Mezzler while I figure out what CT to try next. The benefits of having a spare rim

    Thank you all for your insights. I'll keep you updated with my DS experience.

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