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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been thinking about new tires for my 81 CM400C, the IRC Durotours on there now have handled great wet or dry but are aging and I may be ready to replace them this season.

My needs are: handling, cost, tubeless.

I'll be using the original "tubeless applicable" comstars, not sure if they're referred to as reverse type or not. They're the ones with the sheetmetal edge pointing outward. I have the opposite type (edges pointing inward) on there now, they're not marked tubeless and I'm using tubes.
If memory serves the sizes on there are 130rear, 100front.

Will keeping closer to stock sizes improve handling?
Rear 4.6 x 16 is 116.8mm wide so a 120 width will do, but 130 will fit and is easier to find.
Front 3.5 x 18 is 88.9mm wide so a 90 width will do,
but 100 will fit and is easier to find.

I used to use the Motorcycle-Superstore website to browse tires, it had a fairly customizable search, but JP-Cycles bought them and the site is different now.

Searching by fit and price I'm tempted by Shinko 712s
-Does anyone have experience with these, should I stay away? This bike is for general utility riding and flogging, 98% on pavement, some full day rides over 400 miles, and I ride in the rain. Oh and I rarely reach speeds over 80mph, mainly backroads topping out at 65.

They have a 130x16rear and a 100x18 front for under $120/pair.

I noticed that Shinko has a 120x16 FRONT and a 90x18 REAR, and I got to thinking... I know its not uncommon to run a front tire on the back or a rear tire on the front, just mount the tire with reverse rotation and that's that. Some sources say yes go with it, others worry and say no. Plenty of Internet search results are by heavy touring bike riders, some Harley riders too.

Load capacity per tire seems to be the big factor, there may be other factors, please chime in if you know any.

Here are some notes I took on my phone the other day:
3.5 (90) x 18 front

4.6 (120) x 16 rear

Bikebandit
Shinko712 set tubeless
100/90-18 front $49.32
Model 7-4140
Load range 56 max load 494lbs
130/90-16 rear $65.59*** $116.84 total
Model 87-4152
Load range 67 max 677lbs
1171 lbs total
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They have a 3.5x18 rear $59.09
Model 87-4158
Load range 60 max 551lbs
And a 120/80-16 front** $55.61
Model 87-4143
Load range 60 max 551lbs
1102 lbs total

So about 70lbs less in load capacity for the 'rear used as front/front used as rear' concept. The bike is about 425 and I'm 250, I never ride 2-up but sometimes will throw saddle bags on with about 35lbs of stuff for a long ride, usually just a tank bag though.

Am I crazy, should I forget it and go with 100x18front and 130x16rear? Any other tire recommendations?
 

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i have the shinkos on my nighthawk 450 and i commute to work every weekday, rain or shine, and have never had an issue...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Doode, how's the handling with those? How many commute miles did you put on before you noticed them squaring off?
 

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you know, i havent paid much attention to wear... handling is fine, i suppose.
its been almost 4 years, 50 miles/day... mostly highway, and is in the circulation about 65% of the time. im in los angeles, so theres not a lot of rain, though last year there was a lot of rain(for us) and when it does rain then we get all these oil slicks n the road since it accumulates and doesnt get washed off. anyway, the front is fine but the back definitly has a flat spot and should be replaced at some point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That sounds like a long wearing tire then, with prices generally hovering around $65 and being tubeless its really hard to go wrong.

Thanks Doode!
 

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I just retired the Shinko 712 on my bike. No odometer so I can't say for sure but I estimate I got a little over 6K before the tread was down to 1MM. Dry grip was fine, no complaints, in the wet the rear would get loose over some painted lines and man hole covers, but that's motorcycles for you. I can't really compare them to other tires for handling as my bike has changed too much. I will say that the Bridgestone BT45 I have now feels better, but it also set me back $170 including a new valve stem.

When I bought the Shinko a little over two years ago I was hella broke and decided to try and mount it myself with the zip-tie method. While I got the tire on the rim, I couldn't get the bead to seat and it ending up costing me $40 at the dealer getting it seated and balanced. This experience is why I just buy my tires from the dealer now, they run 5-10 more than ordering online but include a free mount and balance.

YMMV
 

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Proper sizes are 100/90/18 front and 120/90/16 rear. The 130 can fit if you relocate the front mount of the brake stay, move it to the outside of the bracket with a spacer between the 2 bracket ears.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I can get the IRC Durotours as a set in the correct sizes for about $50 more per pair, its a better tire and I'm running an old set now with tubes.
IRC RS-310 Durotour Rear Tire - Chaparral Motorsports

I'm sure I'd notice the difference in handling if I bumped up to a 130 being a half inch wider and all it should steer slower.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

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Getting ready to pull the trigger on Kenda Challenger K657 (100/90/18 front and 120/90/16 rear) for my '81 CM400T. Guy at the shop was wishy washy about the fit; on me to insure correct size. Best I can tell these should fit without any problem or modification. Please chime in, I'm hoping to order them tomorrow afternoon.

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

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Those tires should be fine. As Allan stated, they are the correct sizes for that model.
 
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Thanks for the input. Ordered today, delivering and mounting Wednesday
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Hi Brian, fitting tubeless tires without tubes to your rims depends on a few things. If you have spoked rims, likely the answer is no, but there are kits out there that people have had success with to alter old spoke rims to use tubeless tires. No one I know has tried this and it'd be controversial to try it in this group I'm sure.

The other possibility is that you have, or could get your hands on a set of Comstar rims that are "Tubeless Tire Applicable" not all comstars are and I've never really wrapped my head around the variety of different types of comstar wheels.

I separate them into 2 types, tubeless and not tubeless regardless of stylistic differences. You can tell them apart by simply looking the wheel over for this message from Mr. Honda:



There were also some fairly good looking, full Cast Aluminum wheels that were used on CM450 and CB450SC these are comparable to modern cast wheels and all use tubeless tires.



Some of the wheels I've talked about will adapt easily to other bikes in the CB/CM 400/450 series by simply using the spacers that were original to the bike, but I'm sure there are variations I have not accounted for.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I'd really like to find somewhere to read about which tubes people use and their experiences with them. Tubes can't all be the same can they?

Perhaps in another thread.
 
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