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I just bought an '08 VN900 Classic a week ago with very low miles and am loving it. But I've noticed something with the steering/handling - on slightly rough or uneven pavement, the front end feels almost as if on loose gravel and not as connected to the road as I'm used to with previous bikes on the same roads. I'm not talking pot-holes here, just older asphalt or where there are pavement seams. Not a ride killer, just wondering if others have noticed this as well?
 

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I have a cheap tire on front with 14,000 miles & my bike sticks to the road. I have greased steering head bearings & wheel bearings so this might help.
 

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It's standard. The stock dunny tires are pretty bad with it. Find a steel grated bridge, in the rain, if you want some "skid" marks.....

Pierelli tires are much better as regards this.
 

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My 900 only has 1800 miles on it and I thought the tire was flat. The both tires feel exceptionly sensitive to road grooves. I just learned to ignore it.
 

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check your tire presures, on the side of the tire it has the recommended air preasures, they are different than the manual ... higher. The tire company preasures are for best performance and wear, kawasaki's recommended preasures are for a smooth ride and the tires become part of the suspension set up. I would rather have a good handling bike than a cadillac ride.

BTW ..."tar snakes" are a fact of life and in this hot weather become real slick ... just try to avoid em. They unsettle the bike, but theres not much you can do about them.
 

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BTW ..."tar snakes" are a fact of life and in this hot weather become real slick ... just try to avoid em. They unsettle the bike, but theres not much you can do about them.
I hate tar snakes!:mad:
 

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I just bought an '08 VN900 Classic a week ago with very low miles and am loving it. But I've noticed something with the steering/handling - on slightly rough or uneven pavement, the front end feels almost as if on loose gravel and not as connected to the road as I'm used to with previous bikes on the same roads. I'm not talking pot-holes here, just older asphalt or where there are pavement seams. Not a ride killer, just wondering if others have noticed this as well?
It's not the bike, it's not you, it's the crappy stock tires. I felt that too, until I replaced the stock dunlops with Metzeler ME880's. Those stock tires are terrible! With the ME880's, I have no problem in turns leaning far enough to scrape the floorboards. The bike actually feels like it could lean further if the floorboards weren't there.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It's not the bike, it's not you, it's the crappy stock tires. I felt that too, until I replaced the stock dunlops with Metzeler ME880's. Those stock tires are terrible! With the ME880's, I have no problem in turns leaning far enough to scrape the floorboards. The bike actually feels like it could lean further if the floorboards weren't there.
I'm going to try whiting57's suggestion above on higher air pressure to see if it helps. If things don't improve noticeably I will probably go with either the ME880's or the Pirelli MT66's. They both seem to get high marks from what I've read.
 

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I'm going to try whiting57's suggestion above on higher air pressure to see if it helps. If things don't improve noticeably I will probably go with either the ME880's or the Pirelli MT66's. They both seem to get high marks from what I've read.
use a decent tire preasure guage ... gas station gauges suck.:)
 

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I'm going to try whiting57's suggestion above on higher air pressure to see if it helps. If things don't improve noticeably I will probably go with either the ME880's or the Pirelli MT66's. They both seem to get high marks from what I've read.
I went with the Night Dragons and am very pleased. If you go with the Metzeler's, check where they were made before buying them. It's been reported that those made in one of the South American countries tend to chunk and separate. Those made in Germany are OK.
 

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I went with the Night Dragons and am very pleased. If you go with the Metzeler's, check where they were made before buying them. It's been reported that those made in one of the South American countries tend to chunk and separate. Those made in Germany are OK.
Those sound like they stick like glue, but one reviewer said "they were treadless in under 4000 miles". I don't know that I'd want to pop for a new set of tires each riding season if that's an average lifespan for the Night Dragons. Have you had them on long enough to get a feel for the tread life?
 

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Those sound like they stick like glue, but one reviewer said "they were treadless in under 4000 miles". I don't know that I'd want to pop for a new set of tires each riding season if that's an average lifespan for the Night Dragons. Have you had them on long enough to get a feel for the tread life?
Everyone has their own style of riding and conditions are never the same from place to place. For me, living in the north of Thailand, there are no straight roads. Try Google Earth and type in Chiang Mai and you'll see what I mean. I like to push my bikes but I'm not reckless. My Night Dragons have been on since December and I've put just a little less than 3000 km on them. That should equate to about 1800 miles. No significant wear showing yet however I see a little wear on the trailing edges of the grooves on the narrow front. Certainly not enough to concern me.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Everyone has their own style of riding and conditions are never the same from place to place. For me, living in the north of Thailand, there are no straight roads. Try Google Earth and type in Chiang Mai and you'll see what I mean. I like to push my bikes but I'm not reckless. My Night Dragons have been on since December and I've put just a little less than 3000 km on them. That should equate to about 1800 miles. No significant wear showing yet however I see a little wear on the trailing edges of the grooves on the narrow front. Certainly not enough to concern me.
I actually did a Google Image search of Chiang Mai - it looks like an enchanting place. Wouldn't mind seeing it someday, bike or not.

I went ahead and placed an order for the Pirelli MT66's; they get pretty good reviews for performance and durability at a good price.
 

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I actually did a Google Image search of Chiang Mai - it looks like an enchanting place. Wouldn't mind seeing it someday, bike or not.

I went ahead and placed an order for the Pirelli MT66's; they get pretty good reviews for performance and durability at a good price.
I think you made a good choice. If you ever come here you can always rent a bike and enjoy the countryside. Just be prepared to ride on the "wrong side of the road".
 

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3,500 + miles on Pirelli MT 66. Very Happy.
 
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