Author Topic: The Lure of the Darkside  (Read 2790 times)

Offline Scarlett Thunderbolt

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The Lure of the Darkside
« on: September 06, 2017, 01:13:09 PM »
  After our last long distance trip with Miss Scarlett, Rolling Thunder attached and the Navigator/QuarterMaster aboard, we were dismayed to see how much wear the rear tyre (Bridgestone Battlax) had taken... as a Sport Touring tyre, the hard compound centre hardly wore at all, while the softer compound shoulders seemed to melt away like butter... so as a result, we will dabble in the Darkside...

Miss Scarlett has gone over to the Darkside.... we present 'Darth Scarlett'


  We've done a couple of local rides... the first solo test ride felt unusual, but not as different as I had imagined... it felt a little stiffer rolling into corners, experiencing no loss of traction, even with some aggressive acceleration exiting the turn... our two-up rides have been perfectly pleasant and comfortable... with the addition of a pillion on board, it felt like any other tyre... seat height may be a tad lower - for which the Navigator is grateful.

Hankook... 205/50ZR17 - 93W... 32psi solo... 34psi 2-up... maybe +2psi with trailer... Ventus S1 noble2... $144 Jax Tyres... fitted & balanced for $30 cash.

  We'll have more info when we get to Wooli. Cheers, John, Kate & Darth Scarlett.
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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2017, 02:07:50 PM »
I had a mate go darkside on his cruiser, and he ran 24psi in the tyre.   I followed him through some twisties and there was a fair amount of sidewall distortion on cornering, and the low pressure minimized the resistance to the turn and kept most of the car tyre tread area on the road.  His experience was that the lower pressure was ave a significant improvement in handling over the higher pressures.  Based upon his experience, try running lower pressures and see just how it feels.
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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2017, 03:37:08 PM »
Looks good mate 8)
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Offline Scarlett Thunderbolt

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2017, 03:44:50 PM »
I had a mate go darkside on his cruiser, and he ran 24psi in the tyre.   I followed him through some twisties and there was a fair amount of sidewall distortion on cornering, and the low pressure minimized the resistance to the turn and kept most of the car tyre tread area on the road.  His experience was that the lower pressure was ave a significant improvement in handling over the higher pressures.  Based upon his experience, try running lower pressures and see just how it feels.

... the pressure is strong in this one, Obi-Wan.  ... but we'll give your suggestion a go.

... especially riding Han Solo... it's all Kate's fault - she's the pun addict.
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Offline Scarlett Thunderbolt

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2017, 04:27:37 PM »
Looks good mate 8)

  thanks Mate... the most difficult part about this process so far, was finding someone to fit and balance it... i bought the CT at Jax Tyres, but then had to use my mates-of-mates connections, to get it properly fitted on a tyre-fitting machine.

  the scariest part was not going for the first ride (one mate said i should remove all the tupperware first)... it was when i had the bike wheel and new CT side-by-side and was thinking "... no-way, that'll never fit..." - but it does!

  end note... you have to drop almost all the air pressure out of the CT, when fitting it to the STeed... reinflate it and away you go. Cheers, John. (Kate's busy - so pun-free  :grin)
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Offline Williamson

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2017, 07:53:31 PM »
After our last long distance trip with Miss Scarlett, Rolling Thunder attached and the Navigator/QuarterMaster aboard, we were dismayed to see how much wear the rear tyre (Bridgestone Battlax) had taken... as a Sport Touring tyre, the hard compound centre hardly wore at all, while the softer compound shoulders seemed to melt away like butter...

Quite the opposite experience for me when touring with Mrs W, full panniers and top box on the ST1300, and previously on the CB1300.  Even worse towing the Elite trailer, and previously the Classic trailer.

Perhaps I'm giving it too much throttle in a straight line, or not cornering hard enough.
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Offline Scarlett Thunderbolt

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2017, 05:50:05 PM »
  went for another ride today, to test dropping the air pressure down to 24psi... in a word - yuck! ... it felt flabby (technical term) and it wallowed... so into the servo and back up to 32psi... with Kate aboard and loaded trailer attached - good.

  don't get me wrong - it's different to using an MC tyre, but the differences are minor and we feel that it's nothing that we won't get used to.
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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2017, 06:18:28 PM »
  went for another ride today, to test dropping the air pressure down to 24psi... in a word - yuck! ... it felt flabby (technical term) and it wallowed... so into the servo and back up to 32psi... with Kate aboard and loaded trailer attached - good.

  don't get me wrong - it's different to using an MC tyre, but the differences are minor and we feel that it's nothing that we won't get used to.

Fair enough, and it's interesting to hear your feedback compared to running a darkside at 24psi on a Boulevard 109. 
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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2017, 06:40:53 PM »
I think centre of gravity could make a big difference in tyre pressures.

Also the rim width of the 109 is quite wide, so the aspect ratio is probably different, in order to get to the OEM tyre radius.

That would make a difference in sidewall height. Which would change sidewall stiffness.

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Offline Scarlett Thunderbolt

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2017, 08:19:59 PM »
I think centre of gravity could make a big difference in tyre pressures.

Also the rim width of the 109 is quite wide, so the aspect ratio is probably different, in order to get to the OEM tyre radius.

That would make a difference in sidewall height. Which would change sidewall stiffness.

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  yep... you may have something there... the STeed's rim width (as embossed on the rim) is 5inches... some may be 5.5... the 109RT looks to have 8inch rims and takes a 225/60-16 tyre... so, yep, different horses for courses... and of course - our STeeds are prettier!

  ... and as an added bonus - previously, 4000rpm = 110-ish kph (and the FI light comes on if you hold there too long or go over).... seems to be a ST13003 quirk... and now 3999rpm = 118-ish kph (not an exact scientific trial), no FI indicator light ... good darts!
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Offline Biggles

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2017, 09:41:31 AM »
Very interesting side effects!
Just ONE RPM changes the FI behaviour...    :crazy
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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2017, 08:58:18 PM »
Have a read of this, explains different bead profiles and how the tyres are attached to the rim,   http://goldwingdocs.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=15560
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Offline Gavo

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2020, 09:45:14 PM »



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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #13 on: July 26, 2020, 09:47:15 PM »
I’ve got 100 kms on the 195/60/16 original was 185/60/16 I bearly notice a difference if any


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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #14 on: December 13, 2021, 08:10:20 PM »
I am thinking about going to the darkside when I need a new rear tyre (so not for a little while yet) and would appreciate an update on this.

Did you get a better life out of it?

Is the handling still up to scratch?

Are you still in the dark or have you gone back to the light?
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Offline Scarlett Thunderbolt

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #15 on: December 14, 2021, 07:43:06 AM »
Hey Dave... We're still happily riding on the Darkside... We  thoroughly recommend it... I use our STeed and an attached trailer as my daily work commute (about 30ks/day)... The Darkside tyre wear has been negligible... We even run a Darkside rear on our Piaggio scooter.
  ... better life out of it? You betcha! ... Better wear, better ride, better grip, and Kate says better comfort for the pillion... The only guide to tyre wear is that I've worn out and replaced my front tyre and we're nowhere close to needing to do the rear, even though we tow and go two-up regularly.

  ... handling still up to scratch? ... Can't tell the difference... I still scrape my pegs... Still love riding the twisties.

  Miss Scarlett, our STeed, has the dreaded FI sensor malfunction, meaning that our top speed is 120kph - I've never attempted warp speed on our Darkside... And finally, when I changed my front tyre, I also removed the rear and lubed the splines at the same time...Hope this is informative, John&Kate.

« Last Edit: December 14, 2021, 07:53:59 AM by Scarlett Thunderbolt »
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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #16 on: December 14, 2021, 09:32:30 AM »
I am thinking about going to the darkside when I need a new rear tyre (so not for a little while yet) and would appreciate an update on this.


Hi Dave, you might find this thread of interest...

http://ozstoc.com/index.php?topic=14347.msg1283921#msg1283921

Having a car tyre fitted to a motorcycle would also likely bring up roadworthy & insurance issues so I guess you need to weigh up whether you want to run that risk.  :popcorn


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Offline West Aussie Glen

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #17 on: December 14, 2021, 11:30:44 PM »
In Oct I finished a ride from Perth to Barkly Homestead, Victor Harbor and back to Perth. A little before leaving I fitted a car tyre to the rear of my GL1800 and a rear motorcycle tyre to the front. Called going double darkside. The rear has now done about 14,300 kms and the front 13,500 kms. It does handle a little different with the rear wanting to tramline when crossing a significant longitudinal surface difference. But I am more then happy with the way it performs and you just get used to it. The front is showing little wear and I am hoping for maybe 30,000 kms from it. Unfortunately the rear has worn faster on the lefthand side and I think I will be lucky to get about 20,000 kms from it which is what i was getting with a motorbike tyre but at two thirds the cost. I intend to stay with a car tyre the next time but look at a different make to see if the talked about double kms is a possibility. I am also sure that I will get better traction when braking hard from the rear tyre. I have only heard of one person going back to a bike tyre from a car tyre and that was for an unusual reason. There is a lot about the darkside on facebook for Australia and the America. Some where there is also a great video of a CT on an ST1300 taken from almost ground level.
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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #18 on: December 15, 2021, 09:56:49 AM »
https://youtu.be/KnWnEBbGVKE

https://youtu.be/Bw4wxlUQYSg

https://youtu.be/5dbKoavfmqU?t=3560
The whole video is worth watching but the "darkside" discussion starts at 59 minutes & 20 seconds and then continues in the following video...

https://youtu.be/4EZYtAEuG04


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Online ruSTynutz

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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #19 on: December 15, 2021, 10:00:45 AM »
Some where there is also a great video of a CT on an ST1300 taken from almost ground level.

Is this it???  8)

https://youtu.be/wXjfSMtgQa0


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Re: The Lure of the Darkside
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2021, 12:05:39 PM »
The following article is worth a read...

Examining the “Dark Side” - Car Tires on Motorcycles

By Tom Austin from the 2015 Fall/Winter issue of Iron Butt Magazine


https://forum.ironbutt.org/index.php?threads/examining-the-%E2%80%9Cdark-side%E2%80%9D.9/

A list of motorcycle model/passenger car tire combinations that have been “successfully” used can be found here:

http://darkside.nwff.info/?p=tires

You will need to use a VPN set to America to view though...


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