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Old 10-23-2013, 03:35 AM   #1
Patrick
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Lightbulb Check Your Tire Pressure!

Everyday I see bikes that have low tire pressure.
When I ask the rider when's the last time they checked it most cannot remember.

Because motorcycle tires hold a much smaller volume of air than car tires, bike tires are more sensitive to volume loss and temperature changes.

Especially right now with the temps moving 20-30 degrees a day, pressures can vary 4-5 psi. or more.

Check your tires at least every 2 weeks, and set them cold.
For most street sportbike riders 36 front and 34 rear or 36 front and rear are good pressures.

If in doubt, consult your owners manual.

Proper tire pressures mean longer tire life and better handling.
Get yourself a good quality pencil gauge. Not the .99 cent one from Walmart, but a $5-6 one from an auto parts store or bike shop.
Make sure it has an accuracy range within 1-2%.

One last thing to consider is because both your tires and the road is colder you will have less available traction.
Ride safe.
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Old 10-23-2013, 05:11 AM   #2
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If you don't have or can't afford an air compressor, a bicycle floor pump works fine, but the air gauge is usually inaccurate, so use a quality gauge too.

bicycle pump 11164246
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Old 10-23-2013, 08:02 AM   #3
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However, don't even try to use the pumponator to inflate your tires. Trust me, IT DOESN'T WORK!


pumponator step 1

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Old 10-23-2013, 08:05 AM   #4
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Air up at gas stations only as a last resort. Those trashy compressors are usually so maintenance neglected I've seen them spit water straight out of the nozzle.

Cold dry days are great for airing up your tires. Less moisture in the air means less pressure variations caused by temp swing.
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Old 10-23-2013, 08:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
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If you don't have or can't afford an air compressor, a bicycle floor pump works fine, but the air gauge is usually inaccurate, so use a quality gauge too.

bicycle pump 11164246
+1, I actually use a bicycle pump over my air compressor. It's easier to make small changes in the air pressure and check with a separate pressure gauge.
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:01 AM   #6
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Speaking of cold pavement and cold tires, I had to learn that lesson the hard way when my front tire locked up on my old 750 and tossed me high side into the middle of an intersection. I also learned my lesson about wearing helmets that day too!
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:13 AM   #7
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Quote:
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Air up at gas stations only as a last resort. Those trashy compressors are usually so maintenance neglected I've seen them spit water straight out of the nozzle.

Cold dry days are great for airing up your tires. Less moisture in the air means less pressure variations caused by temp swing.
Sad that a lot of people do not know that. Especially not good when your running on a hot day => increased pressure = > poor traction/handling.
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:45 AM   #8
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I've lost as much as 10lbs over night at the Sisters once because the drop of the temperature over night.
Very good thread Patrick.
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Old 12-30-2013, 06:18 PM   #9
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Patrick, can you explain why you recommend a good pencil gauge vs a digital gauge? It seems like everything I can find on the internet is saying pencil gauges are and that digital ones are more accurate.
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Old 12-30-2013, 07:47 PM   #10
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my air compressor spits out a lil water its older than me though
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Old 12-30-2013, 08:01 PM   #11
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I lost 10 pounds in both the front in rear last week when it got cold. Going to check them every ride now.
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Old 12-30-2013, 10:55 PM   #12
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Patrick is a great moto friend. Definitely making him my first shop for all moto stuff
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Old 12-31-2013, 06:17 AM   #13
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Quote:
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Patrick, can you explain why you recommend a good pencil gauge vs a digital gauge? It seems like everything I can find on the internet is saying pencil gauges are and that digital ones are more accurate.
His experience with digital gauges is that they are not accurate. A good pencil gauge is accurate
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Old 12-31-2013, 06:25 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cuong-nutz View Post
Sad that a lot of people do not know that. Especially not good when your running on a hot day => increased pressure = > poor traction/handling.
On a hot day, low pressure cold = excessively high tire temperature = a loss in traction and tire life.

As tire temperature increases the pressure is going to increase. That's physics. It's also the reason that every tire manufacturer recommends measuring pressure when the tire is "cold" (before you ride or drive).
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:42 AM   #15
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Quote:
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His experience with digital gauges is that they are not accurate. A good pencil gauge is accurate
Pencil gauges don't need batteries, so they are always ready to work.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:04 AM   #16
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So no one is running Nitrogen in their tires?? I have always had free access to Nitrogen and have ran it in a few previous bikes, quads and once in my truck.

Also I hear people of running puncture preventative in their tires which I never did.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:06 AM   #17
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A good quality pencil gauge, one that's accurate to 1%, obviously NOT the kind you buy for .99 at Walmart/Auto Zone etc., is consistently more reliable than any of the digital gauges most people typically buy.
They're also much less susceptible to losing their calibration from dropping/rough handling.
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:23 AM   #18
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http://aggracing.com/store/index.php...&product_id=54

Ive used this one for the best success so far and its durable. On accuracy I trust this one a lot. Or if you got even more money the motion pro's are really nice

I bought this one but its a little fragile, I had it in my tool bag and the clear plastic window broke. This one should be okay for street riders

http://www.cyclegear.com/CycleGear/T.../p/36751_46349

Then ive bought like 4-5 different "slime" brand ones and those all sucked, digital or not.
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:38 AM   #19
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Quote:
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So no one is running Nitrogen in their tires?? I have always had free access to Nitrogen and have ran it in a few previous bikes, quads and once in my truck.
I run Nitrogen in my hotrod and bike. Helps keep the tire pressure more consistent. In my car when I do the burn out and build heat in the tire the pressure will not climb like it does with compressed air. Pretty easy to keep a large nitrogen tank with a regulator in the garage.

I deflate and inflate the tire a couple of times. let the tire sit for a few minutes between (not sure how long it take for the gases to separate), keep the valve stem at the bottom, nitrogen is lighter than air, so the oxygen will be at the bottom of the tire. I still check my tire pressure all the time.
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:02 PM   #20
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Nitrogen is less susceptible to weather changes, but with a couple of caveats.
The air we breathe is 78% nitrogen. The key is to make sure that the nitrogen you're using is dry/has no moisture in it, preferably being passed through a dryer enroute to your tires.
Also keep in mind that tires are porous, and that over time moisture will enter the tire, nitrogen filled or not.
Regardless of what method you use, checking your tires frequently, especially on a single track vehicle like a motorcycle, is highly advisable.
Be safe out there!
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