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Sportster Motorcycle Tires, Wheels, and Brakes Discuss issues with Sportster motorcycle tires, wheels and brakes.

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View Poll Results: How do you adjust your tire pressures?
Use Manufacturers recommendations 28 58.33%
Go by the Max. air pressure on the tire 5 10.42%
Adjust pressure to my style of riding 15 31.25%
Only add air when tires look or feel low 0 0%
Voters: 48. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 24th July 2019
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Toejam503 Toejam503 is offline
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Question Tire Pressure?

Do you air your tires up, according to the Vehicle Manufacturers Recommendations...or... according to the Max. Pressure listed on the Tires?

When I had taken my tires in, to be installed, the Indy insisted on setting tire pressures at the Tire's Max pressure. I've known this guy since 1979 and was surprised because all my years in the automotive industry, I was taught that the Vehicle manufacturers set a specific tire pressure based on the Vehicle's weight, suspension and other extensive testing they've done to those vehicles. From what I've learned about tire Max. Pressure settings is that the Tire manufacturers won't guarantee the tires reliability over the Max. pressure.
Always willing to test another's opinion, I rode my bike with the "suggested" 40psi and had a wobble on deceleration at 40-35mph. I lowered the pressures to factory recommendations and the wobble was gone.
The Indy's reasoning for Max. pressure was that it prevented cupping.

Last edited by Toejam503; 24th July 2019 at 16:20.. Reason: reason for the poll
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  #2  
Old 24th July 2019
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Well, I've officially been here too long. There's a couple hundred page thread about this. It might have even had a poll I forget.

The biggest mistake people make is blindly airing to the sidewall MAX pressure which is designed for MAX load. It MIGHT be correct in some cases, but is not likely on most vehicles.

When using OEM recommended tires the best starting point is their recommendations.

When using non-OEM tires, the best starting point is the tire manufacturer recommendations, or if not available, the vehicle manufacturer assuming the tires are similar in size/design/compound/capability.

The rule of thumb is that tires should be checked/adjusted cold, and if they are set properly pressure will increase about 5-10% at operating temp.

In addition to all this lower pressures may improve stick, and higher may improve mileage, but the law of diminishing returns sets in quickly and you can have problems like cupping or uneven wear from improper pressures.

Pressures that are too low can allow severe overheating and increase the possibility of catastrophic failure.

Ok, did I miss anything?

Now cue the next 10 year thread on the subject.
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  #3  
Old 24th July 2019
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I'm happy at 38psi.
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  #4  
Old 24th July 2019
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When I first put my commanders on my bike i filled them up to the max psi the sidewall said and a few times when I had to brake hard on my bike the front tire would break loose and start skipping across the ground on me. Luckily I never high sided it because of that. I lowered it down to what Harley has stamped on the label on the down tube and have had no issues like that since.
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  #5  
Old 24th July 2019
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I use the tire manufacturers spec for the tire on my bike.. haven't had any issue since switching.. i've NEVER used the max pressure..
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Old 24th July 2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bone View Post
The biggest mistake people make is blindly airing to the sidewall MAX pressure which is designed for MAX load. It MIGHT be correct in some cases, but is not likely on most vehicles.

When using OEM recommended tires the best starting point is their recommendations.

When using non-OEM tires, the best starting point is the tire manufacturer recommendations, or if not available, the vehicle manufacturer assuming the tires are similar in size/design/compound/capability.
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Old 24th July 2019
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The max figure is just that. It's the max you should ever put into the tyre and that would include initial mounting onto the rim to seat it. Any more and you could damage the cords/belts/weave that make up the carcass. As has been said, use manufacturers pressures.
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Old 24th July 2019
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Manufacturers specs also here.

Usually 38 psi for me.
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Old 25th July 2019
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I start with the tire manufacturers recommendation for my bike and myself and will adjust if needed till it feels right, normally no adjustment needed. The pressures from the MOCO are actually not of any practical value, particularly if you change tires to something different than what it came with and/or you are much heavier or much lighter than the average Joe.

I have found that most never check or fill their tires when COLD, either. I have seen where some places will advise an adjustment if checking and airing up or down while hot, I am sure there is a chart somewhere. Even then, the recommended pressures are set for a specific ambient air temperature. I thought I once read where some of the fancier digital gauges had temperature and could be adjusted, but maybe I just dreamt that.

I generally go around and check/adjust pressure for all of the vehicles at the house early on the weekends before it gets real hot and before any driving around.
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Old 25th July 2019
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"I start with the tire manufacturers recommendation for my bike and myself"

Oh, go on then,what did they recommend for you?
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