Weird front tire wear - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-05-2019, 01:30 AM Thread Starter
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Weird front tire wear

Pulled up in the wife's car and noticed a weird cupping pattern on my front tire today. It's nothing I feel when riding, and not pronounced enough to capture with a camera to show.

It is undoubtedly cupping, based on my many years of experience as an automobile mechanic.

Tire balance doesn't seem to be an issue (no vibrations when riding, other than the engine at 6k) and the tire pressure was right on 36psi when I checked it today. Not to mention, there's no second tire on the axle to interact with.

What gives? Cupping on a bike? What have I missed?

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-05-2019, 09:49 AM
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Maybe it's the dreaded Fresno Effect?

OEM front or another type of tire? ABS equipped or not? A little more info on the tire & bike would help, otherwise I'm going with the Fresno Effect.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-05-2019, 10:14 AM
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I'v noticed it starting on my Pirelli Scorpion Trail 2 front tire. There's about 6000 miles on the tire. I have also read some tire reviews, but can't remember the specific tires, where cupping was noted.

My riding is pretty calm compared to some, so it isn't due to aggressive cornering. So I am guessing it is due to dual compound tread that is harder along the centerline for better wear.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-05-2019, 10:52 AM
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I have seen cupping on my tires on a variety of bikes as the tire gets to about the half worn out stage.

Since I am anal when it comes to proper tire balance and inflation. Also correct wheel alignment and suspension set up I have to attribute it to "just the nature of the beast."

So I stopped worrying about it and just ride and smile.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-05-2019, 02:46 PM Thread Starter
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After some research outside of this site (don't be jealous, those other sites mean nothing to me), I have been led to the conclusion that cupping is a direct result of using the lever just fore of the grip, on the throttle side of the handlebars.

Additionally, it tends to happen more with certain brands and/or tread patterns than others, and those results vary from rider to rider.

For those who didn't tune back in to see me trying to be cute... This is on my 2016 Versys 1000 LT, with original tires and standard ABS. Also, just over 6800 miles as of my very wet arrival home about 15 minutes ago.

I guess I'll be picking up that matching Road 5 for the front in a couple weeks.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-05-2019, 05:08 PM
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Tire pressure is also a big factor. Often raising the front pressure slightly will eliminate the cupping.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-05-2019, 06:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 52Degrees View Post
...What gives? Cupping on a bike? What have I missed?
I have noticed slight cupping on various tires on my V650, the MOST was on the 130/80 x 17 (rear) Metzler Tourance I ran on the front of my '08 for 28,799 MILES before I replaced it w/ a [same size] Shinko E705, mostly just because I was tired of looking at it. NO vibes, etc...!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 52Degrees View Post
After some research outside of this site (don't be jealous, those other sites mean nothing to me), I have been led to the conclusion that cupping is a direct result of using the lever just fore of the grip, on the throttle side of the handlebars....
I would tend to agree - I use a LOT of front brake TOO.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-05-2019, 07:00 PM
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Ditto on the front brake here. I try to use mostly front brake when I can so as to reduce squaring off of the rear tire. The price may be cupping the front tire.
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