Category Archives: Our Articles

Motorcycle Tire Facts – Rubber Around The Rim

Tires. Wow.

Over the last several weeks, I’ve read hundreds of pages researching tire technology and more specifically, the Laws of Physics that explain the What and the Why tires work – or don’t. This research will help prepare me for the bike shows and events that I’ll be attending this year. I enjoy talking with customers about my products and being able to give the science behind the solutions, so the research is both necessary and fun. The images were done using Paint on my laptop.

Why this Tire Stuff? It’s important. I started RRR because I wanted to make a difference – to build, sell, and market what is the best Roadside/Trailside tool roll kit available. An abbreviation for Repair, Roll (roll your tools), and Ride, RRR Tool Solutions still makes and distributes it’s core product – the 46 Piece Adventure Tool Roll Kit, but we’ve got a lot more. Read on and let’s get into what I know about Tire Maintenance and TPMS. When you’re done reading, have a look at our other pages, products, articles, facts, stories, and send your comments.
Car and Motorcycle Tire DifferencesWhile motorcycle tires have the same job as those on your car or truck, they do it very differently. Our motorcycles lean to turn thereby moving the center of gravity inward so the weight and inertia are transferred to the road at an angle, or “Camber Force”. Your car/truck tire supports the weight downward and the inertia to the side with “Lateral Force“. The job and method are as different as the shape of the two tires.
Motorcycle Tires Have a Larger Center Than the Sides

Rounded Shape of the Motorcycle TireThe rounded shape of the motorcycle tire serves two important functions –
First it is designed for the lean – keeping it’s contact patch and shape constant throughout changing lean angles.
Second is the movement right and left that a tire leaned over is going to give. I used one of my 170/60/17 tires to demonstrate. Measured at the very center of the tire, the measurement around this tire was 78.6″. So in one revolution, the bike would move 78.6″. Now, measured at the sides, the same tire has a measurement of 66″ -a full 12.6″ difference. Looking at the ice cream cone, we know that when rolled on a table or countertop, the cone will move sharply left or right depending on which way we roll it. Let’s get on the bike now and get it leaned sharply into a right-handed turn – the center of the tire is 78.6″ and the edge of the tire is 66″, so our entire bike is going to move right with every turn. The round shape of the motorcycle tire is what makes this side movement front and rear possible and unlike our car/truck tire that has to point and roll in the direction of the turn.

How do we insure that our tires keep their shape?

Correct Tire Pressure. How do we monitor and assure ourselves that our tires can do their job? TPMS

This roundness is great, right? Well for turning, Yes. For mileage and longevity, No. Because our motorcycle tire is rounded, the amount of tire in contact with the road is relatively small when going straight as compared to a car/truck tire of the same total width.
Ok, so we learned why the shapes are different and now realize that the smaller running surface of the motorcycle tire is why our mileage is less. It doesn’t stop here though. The rubber compounds used in motorcycle tires are often much softer/stickier than those of cars/trucks. Softer/stickier tires raise the coefficient of drag by increasing the amount of surface contact. They do this by deforming to the road surface irregularities easier, faster, and with less force required than harder rubber. The downside is that softer rubber tears and shreds itself away as it moves across those road surfaces. The more friction, the more tearing and shredding of the rubber.

Heat and Soft Rubber also have a direct relationship. Cold rubber will be harder, less sticky, and less willing to conform to the road surface irregularities thus less grip. Hot rubber is too soft and looses it’s ability to hold onto road surfaces as it should and must do. Tire Flex is the major source of heat in a tire used in normal conditions. The flexing will generate heat through the carcass movements. Tire manufacturing companies have spent years developing and testing different tire compounds and construction methods. These tires are made and designed to work at very precise pressures.

What can we do to check and maintain our tires?

TPMS. How do we monitor our pressure and tire temperatures? TPMS

Rubber is an organic substance so a tire starts decomposing the day it’s made. Time, Sunlight, and Heat all take their toll on our tires. Whether they’re on the motorcycle or in storage, the moisture naturally present in the rubber when new out-gases and the tire turns drier, harder, and closer to compost every day. As they dry and age, tires become brittle and less able to handle the stresses of flexing and use. Be aware of this and look at the dates carefully before you jump on that great close-out pricing. Fresh Rubber, proper sizing, and proper inflation are key to safely enjoying our sport.

Our Motorcycle TPMS is Better Than Automotive

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Motorcycle TPMS Tire Pressure Monitor System – What and Why

Ready To Ride

It’s Simple. We love riding motorcycles.;
While we don’t talk about or say the word Safety very often, our constant efforts towards maintenance, carefully selection of gear, and focused attention to riding conditions are done so that we can and do have a safe ride. Tire pressure and tire temperature are just as important to tire condition as thread. We all need a reliable TPMS / Tire Pressure Monitoring System.
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Diagnosing and Re-Engineering The 1965-1974 Honda 450 Electric Starter

CL450 K1 1969 Honda

Many of us hold Honda’s 444cc DOHC Twins built between 1965~1974 sacred and believe them to be among the true engineering marvels of their time. There is however one dark, dirty little secret that you don’t hear much about. The Electric Starter Systems were under-built and would often fail in just a few thousand miles.
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Kawasaki MACH IV H2C 750

Kawasaki 750 H2 MACH IV

Kawasaki introduced the 3 Cylinder, 2-Stroke, 750cc MACH IV motorcycle in 1972 as a big brother to the 500cc MACH III they introduced in 1969.

Why not make a 750? – After all, that 500 MACH III was the fastest and quickest “production vehicle” you could buy in 1969 and 1970. No car or other motorcycle available for sale then could beat the 500 MACH III in the quarter mile. As other companies were trying to catch-up, Kawasaki released the 750 MACH IV in 1972 to make sure that the Kawasaki name stayed on top of the food chain through the quarter mile.
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Suzuki 1974 GT750 Grand Tourismo

Instruments On the 1974 GT750 Suzuki

Water Temperature and Gear Position

The Suzuki GT750 Triple is probably one of history’s most confusing models of motorcycles ever sold to consumers. Some don’t know that it even existed, others do remember it and are still confused, but many of us know and Love these bikes as the Wonderful and Reliable bikes they were. The Suzuki GT750’s were built from 1972 to 1978. They were all large-displacement, 3-cyclinder, 2-Strokes built for Highway Touring, hence the name Grand Tourismo (GT750). They were not performance machines – Kawasaki‘s S1, S2, and the notorious H1’s/H2’s had that covered.
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Motorcycle Camping and Travel Preparation

Touring On Motorcycles

The Rules of Motorcycle Travel defy the old saying “You Can’t Take It With You”. At RRR, we specialize in the design, manufacture, and packaging of Motorcycle Tools and Motorcycle Tool Kits specifically for those dreaded roadside and trailside breakdowns. Our Axle Nut Socket Set, Motorcycle Axle Drivers, and Motorcycle Tool Roll Kits are essential for repairs, adjustments, and recovery steps to get you back on your route.
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Kawasaki 1985 GPZ750E Turbo

Kawasaki GPZ750E Turbo 1985

The 1985 Kawasaki GPZ750E Turbo

The 1985 Kawasaki GPZ750E Turbo was what many consider to have been top of the food chain in 1984/1985. Only 2,200 of these 1985 models were built and were among the very last of all the factory turbos to be offered by Kawasaki, Suzuki, Honda, or Yamaha. Kawasaki was late to the Turbo party when they introduced the first model in 1984, but like Thor – they arrived with the biggest and meanest hammer when they did.
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Honda 1974 CB750 Four CB750K4

The Honda CB750 Four fully restored

Honda CB750 Motorcycles

The Honda CB750 Four – A Historical Achievement for 1969

I don’t remember the production release of 1969 when the Honda CB750 started hitting the showrooms and was only 11 at the time. Here now 46 years later though, and thousands of us still live with these bikes. Honda introduced the CB750 Four Motorcycle to the world and in doing so, re-wrote what would become the New Normal. It was the first production traverse in-line Four. Four cylinders, four carburetors, four pipes, and a Front Disc Brake. All this was amazing stuff for 1969. It would take years for the rest to catch up. More than ½ Million CB750 Fours were made in just 10 years! (553,400) The last SOHC 750 Four was made almost 40 years ago, ending that amazing run in 1978.
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Adjustable Handlebar Riser System

Handlebar Adjustable Riser System

The RRR Adjustable Handlebar Riser System Is Here!

We’re bringing you an innovative solution to handlebar adjustments that allow you to change your bike’s riding attitude in just seconds. Down for Highway, Up for Off-Roading. Riding any motorcycle for several hours a day is challenging, but doing it on a Dual Sport while sliding in the mud, soft sand, and rutted fire roads takes that challenge to new levels. Do it for more than one day and each day’s discomfort is compounded by the previous day’s residual aches and pains.
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