I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire


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I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by WingAdmin » Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:53 pm



Well, I've gone and done it. After so much talk from so many people, I had to try it for myself. My GL1500 now sports an Austone Taxi Tire on the back:

Austone Taxi Tire installed
Austone Taxi Tire installed

I know there are pros and cons to running this tire, and I've been on the fence for quite a while as a result. I'll run this for a while, and if I end up hating it, I'll pull it off and put an Avon tire back on, as I have been running for a long time.

Part of the decision was due to the fact that Avon has stopped making the Avon Venom, a tire that I have used on my Goldwings for many, many years. The only Goldwing-compatible tire they still make is the Avon Cobra, and that is what I just installed on my front tire.

I went to pull the inner fender flap forward to give the tire adequate clearance, and when I did - the whole thing came off in my hand! The small 1/8" rivets holding both the flap to the bracket, and the bracket to the inner fender had both given out. I drilled out the rivet remnants and reinstalled it with new rivets.

The one thing that really caught me by surprise is the fact that when on the center stand, the rear tire no longer clears the ground - both tires contact the ground when on the center stand:

Tire on ground with centerstand down
Tire on ground with centerstand down

This is going to take some getting used to - I'm used to being able to rotate my rear tire when on the center stand to inspect it, and to easily access the schrader valve to adjust tire pressure. I may end up leaving a small piece of wood in my garage to put the center stand feet onto.

A side note: when I called up my friend to let him know that I had some new tires, and to ask when would be a convenient time to stop by to use his tire machine to demount/mount the tires, he told me, "oh, sorry, I sold it last month."

:o

So instead of 15 minutes with a tire machine yesterday, I spent hours with a set of tire levers, sweating it out. I haven't done that with motorcycle tires in many years, and WOW, the GL1500 rear tire goes on there tight! I'm definitely feeling the exertion today...



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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by SG_Jay » Mon Jun 25, 2018 2:45 pm

Well I for one am super interested to hear your feedback after you make your first initial test runs on this. I've been intrigued by the whole car tire on a bike for a while now. It seems that anyone I talk to who runs one would never change back. Keep us updated with your experience.

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by Stew » Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:19 pm

I'm interested too. I've been considering this tire but was not sure about the increase in seat height. Also curious if you can tell a difference in acceleration because of the taller tire.

It will be a while now before I come to the point of making the decision on this again since I JUST replaced my rear with another MC tire due to time constraints.
Winging it every chance I get 8-)

19,119 miles when I got it from dad Oct 15, 2017 --- 24,532 miles and counting as of Oct 17, 2018!

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by glassbebo » Mon Jun 25, 2018 8:59 pm

I run that same tire and have for 20k plus and still have miles left to go. Play with the pressure till you feel comfortable. Settled on 48 psi for mine. Lowers the rpm a bit maybe 250 to 300rpms. Acceleration is no different that I noticed. Have been very pleased with the tire and won't hesitate to run it again.

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by SG_Jay » Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:02 pm

I can understand the longevity advantage, but I wonder about the handling. It must have a different feel, right? It seems that even subtle differences in motorcycle tires present a distinct change in handling. So I'm looking for an honest, unbiased opinion to the immediate difference noticed. Is it just strange at first, but easy to get used to? Or, am I overthinking it and it's hardly noticeable, or even better?

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by Rednaxs60 » Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:23 pm

Look forward to your review. You're quite right in that if you don't like it you can always go back. Nice looking tire profile as well.
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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by WingAdmin » Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:33 pm

I took it out tonight and ran around for 20-30 miles, both on straight roads and twisties, at various speeds. I have the tire at 48 psi. My initial thoughts:

It felt a bit squirrely at first. Not unstable, just...strange. Like not solidly planted. I wonder if the taller tread is just moving a bit, laterally? For this reason, doing divergent tests (pushing handlebar one way for a quick swerve) gives a strange feel. Not bad, just not what I'm used to.

It is resistant to turning in. You have to push it and push it to get it to turn - and then, all of a sudden, it's turning, and it wants to go even further, and you have to keep it from doing that. So it goes from positive dynamic stability to negative dynamic stability, in the turn. Not strongly, not what I would call dangerous, just not what I'm used to. It will take a bit of practice to get used to it so that my turns are automatic, smooth, and without thought.

I did not notice a real difference in height, when riding/stopping - but I have long legs. I did not notice a difference in acceleration or RPM (I know there is, just not enough to be noticeable).

Pressure went from 48 psi to 54 psi, ambient temperature was 74 degrees, tire temperature was up around 90 degrees.

I am scraping my inner fender when hitting large bumps, even with the suspension pumped up. I'm going to have to look and see exactly where it is still hitting, and make some fender modifications to fix that.

I'll have a look at the fender tomorrow if I get some time.

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by MikeB » Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:44 pm

WingAdmin wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:53 pm
The one thing that really caught me by surprise is the fact that when on the center stand, the rear tire no longer clears the ground - both tires contact the ground when on the center stand.
In all the info I have read regarding running a car tire on the GL1500, I have not seen that the tire would remain on the ground while on the center stand. However I had read that the tire would hit the inner fender when hitting a good sized bump or pothole. That is interesting. While It would make it easier to put it on and take it off the center stand, it would also be a matter of concern to me.

I would be hesitant to leave the bike on the center stand. Like having a ride-off center stand, it would be too easy for an unsuspecting individual to bump into or push the rear of the bike by accident and cause the bike to come off the stand and topple over. I could even see myself doing it in a crowded garage or parking area. That is one of the reasons I do not have a ride-off stand.
MikeB
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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by Rednaxs60 » Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:08 pm

WingAdmin wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:33 pm
I took it out tonight and ran around for 20-30 miles, both on straight roads and twisties, at various speeds. I have the tire at 48 psi. My initial thoughts:

It felt a bit squirrely at first. Not unstable, just...strange. Like not solidly planted. I wonder if the taller tread is just moving a bit, laterally? For this reason, doing divergent tests (pushing handlebar one way for a quick swerve) gives a strange feel. Not bad, just not what I'm used to.

It is resistant to turning in. You have to push it and push it to get it to turn - and then, all of a sudden, it's turning, and it wants to go even further, and you have to keep it from doing that. So it goes from positive dynamic stability to negative dynamic stability, in the turn. Not strongly, not what I would call dangerous, just not what I'm used to. It will take a bit of practice to get used to it so that my turns are automatic, smooth, and without thought.

I did not notice a real difference in height, when riding/stopping - but I have long legs. I did not notice a difference in acceleration or RPM (I know there is, just not enough to be noticeable).

Pressure went from 48 psi to 54 psi, ambient temperature was 74 degrees, tire temperature was up around 90 degrees.

I am scraping my inner fender when hitting large bumps, even with the suspension pumped up. I'm going to have to look and see exactly where it is still hitting, and make some fender modifications to fix that.

I'll have a look at the fender tomorrow if I get some time.
Good first go. Felt the same when I first put a CT on my 1800. After a run across from Ontario to Victoria, BC felt quite normal. It's getting past the larger flat footprint that is the issue, you will get use to it. Have commented on some of the HD tires that are quite wide. I've heard/read where these types of tires don't want to turn either.

I changed from a CT back to an MT for a riding course and noticed the difference right away. Turned in faster and smoother, although I would practice slow speed drills with the CT and it was possible to do the same slow speed drills with the CT installed.

Look forward to the next review.

Cheers
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Ernest

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by AZgl1800 » Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:45 am

the first 100 or so miles will make the flatter tread very noticeable.

I now have about 10,000 miles on my Michelin rear tire on the 1800.

I still notice the low speed resistance to turning easily. it wants to crawl out of the turn, and go to the high side of broken pavement.

but, once past about 15 mph, it feels no different than the E3 that was on it.

Car tires will never feel like the rounded profile of a m/c tire, but the advantages far outweigh the slight differences in handling.

One place they have a very distinct advantage.
if you get off of solid pavement, that flatter tread will keep you moving thru mud or wet grass.
that has helped me many times.
~John

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by Aussie81Interstate » Tue Jun 26, 2018 4:09 am

I've run my Valkyrie with a car tyre for the last 1800 kms, and I am happy with how my bike handles.

As WingAdmin says it feels different.

I will be interested in his observations a bit further down the road..:)

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by minimac » Tue Jun 26, 2018 6:50 am

I'm starting the process of looking for a replacement for my Austone on my 1500. It's currently @ 30K miles and still has a ways to go before it gets to the wear bars. I'm on the fence for a replacement, if I can't get another Austone. When mine is on the centerstand- which I usually always use- the tire clears the ground by at least 1/8 of an inch(yes, I measured!).It sure makes getting on and off the stand a lot easier, too. You''ll soon get used to the additional steering input and the gyroscopic effect of the tire, and won't even notice it.
Welcome to the darkside-stick around and you'll learn to like it!

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by dingdong » Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:14 am

Admin, I also tried the Austone ct. After almost 600 miles I removed it and went back to an Avon. There were numerous reasons that I didn't like it. (later) The deciding negative factor was, above 85 mph the bike felt unstable as though the tire was expanding as the rpm increased. I could actually feel the bike rise up and get squirrely. Scary to say the least. I hope you will test this, just curious. Tried air pressures from 30 to 60 lbs. No significant change although 58 seemed a little better. I even arranged to send the tire back to ??? the place I purchased the tire for them to inspect for defects. They found no problems and refunded my money.

Maybe 600 miles wasn't a good enough break in period but it just wasn't worth it to me to ride on it any longer than that. Don't misinterpret this and think I am anti ct, I am not. If I could find one that was the same size as the motorcycle tire I would try again. Umm? Maybe not. I am getting 20k miles out of my mc tires and by then it's then time to service the rear drive lines.

Other negatives:
1. Unstable on grooved pavement.
2. Very unstable in hard gusty winds. I'm in Oklahoma, cant' be happening.
3. Tire rubbed on inner fender when hitting hard bumps. (Modified inner fender) Smelled plastic burning all the time. Still a melted hole there.
4. Tire touched the ground when on centerstand.
5. Not a fast enough response in the curves.
Tom

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by Alan_Hepburn » Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:44 pm

I just put an Austone on my 1500 as well, but haven't had a chance to test it out yet. In my case, with a sidecar, there's no leaning so handling should not be an issue - I'm mostly looking at longevity because sidecars are REALLY rough on the pusher tire...
Alan Hepburn - San Jose, Ca
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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by Mh434 » Tue Jun 26, 2018 2:53 pm

A friend of mine had an Austone on his Valkyrie, and it was disturbing watching his bike corner. It did precisely what WingAdmin describes. The bike would track, insistently straight ahead, even when he tried to turn in. Then, it would suddenly tip off the flat tread onto the edge of the carcass shoulder, and turn in very sharply. It was also very squirrely on wet roads - this was particularly obvious, as we usually traveled in a large group of bikes, and his was the only one that looked like it was on ice in the turns.

It handled that way for the years he had it, until he finally moved to a trike.

My concern is that the contact patch on the edge of the carcass tread is extremely narrow, so there is precious little road contact while cornering. That's why true motorcycle tires have a round section - they turn in smoothly, and there's never a transition from main contact patch (very large on a motorcycle tire) to, essentially, driving on the edge of the sidewall.

I know many people swear by them, but I'm not convinced. As a decades-long crash investigator, specialist in motorcycle crash dynamics, and a court-recognized expert in vehicle-crash tire analysis, I see enormous shortcomings in trying to use flat-tread car tires on a vehicle specifically engineered to NOT use such tires. To date, I have never seen any evidence, beyond the anecdotal, that would indicate that this is a remotely safe practice.

Another issue to consider is that of insurance. Bearing in mind that your insurance company's primary goal is to find a way to DENY any claim you make, use of non-approved tire(s) may void your insurance. I would recommend that anyone considering the practice consult their insurance company for guidance & assurance of coverage before doing so.

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by SG_Jay » Tue Jun 26, 2018 4:24 pm

Think I'll put my interest in the dark side to rest, for good. Unless I get a side car that is. Which is highly unlikely.... :shock:

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by WingAdmin » Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:47 pm

minimac wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 6:50 am
I'm starting the process of looking for a replacement for my Austone on my 1500. It's currently @ 30K miles and still has a ways to go before it gets to the wear bars. I'm on the fence for a replacement, if I can't get another Austone. When mine is on the centerstand- which I usually always use- the tire clears the ground by at least 1/8 of an inch(yes, I measured!).It sure makes getting on and off the stand a lot easier, too. You''ll soon get used to the additional steering input and the gyroscopic effect of the tire, and won't even notice it.
Welcome to the darkside-stick around and you'll learn to like it!
Yes, that's something I did mean to mention - the increased gyroscopic effect during quick swerves is VERY noticeable. It startled me at first, but once I figured out what it was, I realized it was not a big issue.

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by AZgl1800 » Wed Jun 27, 2018 1:17 am

Mh434 wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 2:53 pm



Another issue to consider is that of insurance. Bearing in mind that your insurance company's primary goal is to find a way to DENY any claim you make, use of non-approved tire(s) may void your insurance. I would recommend that anyone considering the practice consult their insurance company for guidance & assurance of coverage before doing so.
FWIW,
every insurance agent I have talked to, just replies "it has a tire on it, right?"
none of them, said it would void their insurance.

I will stay with my RF ZP tire thank you, i don't need anyone's permission to do so.
I am FAR SAFER with it, than with the damned E3 that would go sideways in a heartbeat on wet surfaces.

The Michelin RF ZP never goes sideways on wet surfaces.
~John

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by offcenter » Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:27 pm

I have had a car tire on the rear of my 1500 for the last year or more.
It now has about 10,000 miles on it and shows no visible sign of wear.
Mine is a Nokian 195/55 light truck tire. I picked this particular tire
because it was the same diameter, 26 inches, as the bike tire that
preceded it. So, it doesn't rub anywhere.

For the first thousand miles or so, it felt squirrely at highway speeds.
But once the carcass got broken in, that feeling went away.
It corners great and holds like glue in the rain.
It definitely corners a bit differently, as others have noted.
And I ride a LOT of tight twisty back roads.
But I've gotten so used to it that I don't even notice it anymore.
The only negative would be the way it tries to climb the edge
of broken or rutted pavement. That's annoying....but not
annoying enough to take it off the bike!!
I'm happy with it.

Regarding the Austone, after reading what everyone
said about the Austone, I decided to try one for my
next rear tire. I now have an Austone taxi tire
waiting on my spare wheel for the day that the Nokian
wears out. But based on what I've seen so far, that
could be quite a while yet.
We'll see.....
George in Jersey.
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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by RockportDave » Fri Jun 29, 2018 8:16 pm

I’m looking forward to your opinion of the CT. I have a new G3 on back now, so it will be a while before I ponder the dark side. Have a buddy with one on his 2000 for three years and loves it.
I feel getting used to it would come with miles.
My biggest concern is the bead/seating differences. How well do you feel it is seated?
Seems the more miles on the tire would help to round out the edges and the handling would get better.
Dave
1999 GL1500SE 5th Goldwing through the years

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by WingAdmin » Sat Jun 30, 2018 12:09 am

RockportDave wrote:
Fri Jun 29, 2018 8:16 pm
I’m looking forward to your opinion of the CT. I have a new G3 on back now, so it will be a while before I ponder the dark side. Have a buddy with one on his 2000 for three years and loves it.
I feel getting used to it would come with miles.
My biggest concern is the bead/seating differences. How well do you feel it is seated?
Seems the more miles on the tire would help to round out the edges and the handling would get better.
Dave
I mounted the tire on the rim myself, and it is on there tighter than the Avon Venom motorcycle tire that I took off of it. It was a LOT of work to get it on. I have no worries at all about the bead seating against the rim and staying there.

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by AZgl1800 » Sat Jun 30, 2018 12:24 am

offcenter wrote:
Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:27 pm
I have had a car tire on the rear of my 1500 for the last year or more.
It now has about 10,000 miles on it and shows no visible sign of wear.
Mine is a Nokian 195/55 light truck tire. I picked this particular tire
because it was the same diameter, 26 inches, as the bike tire that
preceded it. So, it doesn't rub anywhere.
I tried to find that tire on the Nokian website and they only list it in 15, 16, and 20 inch rim sizes.
I think you had a typo, it needs a 16" tire.

https://www.nokiantires.com/tires/suv-4 ... mer-tires/

can you link to the one you have, I need it for my Bookmarks, please.
~John

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by GlimWas » Sat Jun 30, 2018 2:46 am

I tried to find that tire on the Nokian website and they only list it in 15, 16, and 20 inch rim sizes.
I think you had a typo, it needs a 16" tire.

https://www.nokiantires.com/tires/suv-4 ... mer-tires/

can you link to the one you have, I need it for my Bookmarks, please.


I think he ment the outer diameter, not the rim size ;)
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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by hugger-4641 » Sat Jun 30, 2018 3:46 pm

I've got about 10k on mine now and I do notice a little wobble or oscilation showing up about 85mph. I can't blame this 100% on the tire yet as I suspect my steering head is starting to get some play. I don't do much riding at 90mph anyway, but I do get up there once in a while. If I push past 90mph, it does smooth out, but between 85 and 90mph there is a definite sway going on that didn't used to be there and is a little unnerving if you stay in it. I ride 60 miles one way to work and I've got a pretty good comparison since I drive the same roads every day. I can say that the car tire does react to ruts or a steep crown in the road more than it used to. Not really that the bike tries to turn so much as the tire wants to square up with the surface and makes the bike lean a little. As long as I resist the urge to react on the bars, the bike will keep tracking straight. Cracks or seams in the pavement also are more noticeable as the rear tire wants to follow them more than the front, so I feel like I am chasing the rear end at times when I drive along a deep crack. I've pretty well become accustomed to all this now and so far the pro's outweigh the con's for me, so I don't think I'll be going back to MC tire anytime soon.

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Re: I'm feeling dark... new Austone Taxi Tire

Post by RockportDave » Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:25 pm

Admin,
I looked at the photos again and it does look to be seated deep. I remember my buddy saying his was somewhat of a battle to put on, but worth it.
NIce to see all the honest opinions and different type CTs everyone is using. Will help if/when I decide to go to the dark side.
All the years I have seen CTs on bikes, I have never seen nor heard of any malfunctions of beads or gripping the road.
Dave


1999 GL1500SE 5th Goldwing through the years

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