New tires, fancified wheels and less rolling resistance - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 07:08 PM Thread Starter
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New tires, fancified wheels and less rolling resistance

FANCIFIED...did I just type that!!??

Skoots been down since last Friday for new tires and something I always wanted to do, get rid of the bulky look of the tires/wheels.
Got me some paint stripper and proceded to strip off the paint from the rim bead all the way to the center section of the wheel.

Beginning stage...



One side done...



And the final outcome...





I put 12,515 mls on the Dunlop Elites and just installed Commander 2's.
The Dunlops still had some miles left on them, but the handling of the front
tire really deteriorated when it had about 8000 miles, too much shimmy, and the rear tire had flat spotted so bad this thing was handling so bad I couldn't stand it anymore, time to try sumthin else.

The rear Dunlop was the 180/60, this Michelin is a 180/65, and it goes to show me that numbers between different brands are not necessarily comparable. This new Commander is not as tall of a tire as the Elite was, even with it's higher aspect ratio. I shall see how the handling changes over the miles, and how many miles i can get.

The other thing I did was a trick we've been doing for years to reduce rolling resistance. When the wheel bearings are themselves of the "sealed" type, there is not so much of a need for the outer seals which are in the wheel hub. The friction between that aouter seal and the wheel spacers is quite a bit, so I removed the outer seals. The important thing is to pop off the bearing seal, grease the bearing and re-install the seal. I then paint that area black as the rubber seal is orange, kind fugly!!



Every time i change tires i'll pop off the seal, grease the bearing if needed.

The wheels spin so much freer now, just by hand. Anyways, it's nice to have new tires, it feels like a new skoot again!!And I got rid of that bulky look I never was really fond of.


RACNRAY


p.s...going for a ride, you betcha!!

"TRUE HAPPINESS IS IN THE HEART,NOT IN THE OUTSIDE FIXES!!"
WITH OVER 42 YEARS AS A MOTORCYCLE TECHNICIAN/HI-PO SHOP OWNER I AM A PURVEYOR OF FACT NOT FICTION!
"WE LIVE OUR LIVES IN CHAINS NEVER KNOWING WE HAD THE KEY"
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 08:14 PM
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I have to admit that I like the finished product. Nice job Ray!
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 09:40 PM
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I've been waiting to see the end result.. I knew it would be nice, but that really sets it off. Very nice Ray.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-10-2012, 08:39 AM Thread Starter
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THANX GUYS...i went on a short ride last nite, and just as I tell my customers to get reaquainted with the handling when we put new tires on their skoots, i was reminded how quick to turn and how so little effort is needed to hustle this thing around...i was almost doing u-turns instead of 90 degree turns with new tires!!

RACNRAY

"TRUE HAPPINESS IS IN THE HEART,NOT IN THE OUTSIDE FIXES!!"
WITH OVER 42 YEARS AS A MOTORCYCLE TECHNICIAN/HI-PO SHOP OWNER I AM A PURVEYOR OF FACT NOT FICTION!
"WE LIVE OUR LIVES IN CHAINS NEVER KNOWING WE HAD THE KEY"
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-18-2012, 11:13 AM Thread Starter
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Couple of pics of the chrome angled valve stem on the front wheel, so easy to check the air pressure now!!





I'm still gettin used to the new-found handling with the new tires, nice to have a new bike again!!

RACNRAY

"TRUE HAPPINESS IS IN THE HEART,NOT IN THE OUTSIDE FIXES!!"
WITH OVER 42 YEARS AS A MOTORCYCLE TECHNICIAN/HI-PO SHOP OWNER I AM A PURVEYOR OF FACT NOT FICTION!
"WE LIVE OUR LIVES IN CHAINS NEVER KNOWING WE HAD THE KEY"
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-19-2012, 11:58 AM
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That's the way I felt when I put the new tires on.....like a totally different bike! It's amazing how one forgets just how fresh rubber COMPLETELY changes the dynamics of the skoot!

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-19-2012, 10:59 PM
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I wonder if the same thing could be done to the motor and side covers on the Vaquero? (Or not?)

I've always loved the Vaq but have never been a fan of blacked-out anything. I like Chrome!

"8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-07-2013, 12:16 PM Thread Starter
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I am gettin ready to go on vacation, far far away from wonderful S. Fla. The rear tire had long developed a huge flat spot and that uneven profile was causing some stability problems in the high speed sweepers. Plus the reduction in circumference changed the overall gear ratio quite a bit. The change had the engine revving way too high at hiway speeds compromising gas mileage. For sure it was torquier in acceleration, but that also tightened up my shift points so I was shifting much earlier.

So even tho the rear tire looked to have about 1500-2000 miles left I opted to change the tire to restore all I had lost. The Commander 2's have 12,708 mls on them. The front tire looks to have bout 3000 mls left ,with just the normal front tire cupping.

At the same time the outside pad in the rear caliper was kinda low, not ready yet but since we were there we installed a new set of EBC HH pads.

Now just waiting for the rain to stop so I can take it for a ride. I was getting fed up with the poor handling and the excessive revs and in town shifting, so looking forward to having the riding characteristics that I prefer back.

BTW...In my humble experience I favor these tires over the Elite 3's I had on before. The frnt Elite had awful front end side to side shake the original B/stones and the Commanders never had, and the rear Dunlop was toast with 12,500 miles on it with no mileage left.

I'll let u'all know.

RACNRAY

"TRUE HAPPINESS IS IN THE HEART,NOT IN THE OUTSIDE FIXES!!"
WITH OVER 42 YEARS AS A MOTORCYCLE TECHNICIAN/HI-PO SHOP OWNER I AM A PURVEYOR OF FACT NOT FICTION!
"WE LIVE OUR LIVES IN CHAINS NEVER KNOWING WE HAD THE KEY"

Last edited by RACNRAY; 06-07-2013 at 12:20 PM.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-07-2013, 07:25 PM
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Looks great. I actually am not a big fan of the rim on the stock Vaq at all. Been really wanting to look into some chrome rims... but the wife would probably kill me

Chris
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-09-2013, 11:48 AM
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I'd Trade My Classic Chrome For Vaq Black

Too bad you are in Missouri . . I'd be very interested in exchanging my Chrome bits for your blacked out bits. In an effort to NOT have a straight out of the can Classic, I'd go for that in a heartbeat. My Classic has only 900 miles on it and all parts are mint. I thought of having them powder-coated this winter actually.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Romans5.8 View Post
I wonder if the same thing could be done to the motor and side covers on the Vaquero? (Or not?)

I've always loved the Vaq but have never been a fan of blacked-out anything. I like Chrome!

KARATEMOTO!
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