Living up north I decided to acquire a sidecar to extend the riding season. I got a nice velorex sidecar now attach to my 2002 centennial bonneville t100, and i’m looking for tire suggestions for the motorcycle.
I know some put block tire on them for better durability, but since I will still use the motorcycle for solo ride quite often this is not a possibility for me. So I’m looking for the most durable tire possible wich mean a dual compound with Harder center part. Someone suggested to buy the cheapest russian or chineese tire, since sidecar wear the tire pretty fast and the compound is harder, and should last longer, but i’m not sure i want to go this way. Any idea?
Thanks for your help!
I used to have a Motorvation Engineering Spyder sidecar that I did the same as you want to... ride in both two and three wheeled modes...
One tip I'll give you... the stresses put on the front tire with the hack on, are totally different than when in the two wheel mode.
If you are going back and forth between two and three wheel modes, you need find a tire "tough enough" to handle the three wheel mode and still be compliant and supple enough to have the feel that you want in two wheel mode.
My preferred combo was a Michelin Pilot Activ rear and their Commander II tire on the front. If Michelin made the Com II in a size that worked on the rear, I would have gone that route. But they don't... and any way, The Pilot Activ is a great tire on its' own. The Com II is a touring tire that is built with higher loads in mind and has a tougher carcass. LOVED it whether riding two or three wheeled. No handling or grip "penalty" in two wheel mode when compared to other sport touring class tires. Great tire and I regularly got 22k to 25k miles out of it. 7k to 9k miles out of a Pilot Activ rear was my normal...
Metzeler ME888's are also a good option. I used to run the then ME880's on my Bonnie, in both modes, and they worked fine... Why did I switch? Metzeler went a bit crazy with their pricing... I tried the Michelin's... and liked them better...got more mileage out of them and saved money to boot!
One combo that I tried that didn't work out was the Continental or Conti Go! line... good tire in two wheeled mode... but a 600 mile three wheeled weekend just ruined the front tire's handling... never felt the same...
I hope that the info helps... and have fun!! Sidecars are a hoot... and if you've never ridden a rig... you're in for an "interesting" experience... As a fellow that was in the sidecar business once told me... "how do you ruin a perfectly good motorcycle?? Put a sidecar on it!" That's a bit cheeky... but there is a lot of truth to it... Totally different ride.. totally different inputs needed... totally different feedback/responses from the rig... If you don't have someone to coach you... find a LARGE open area and practice.
I will give you one other tip... if you ever find yourself in a tank slapper with the hack on... Don't... I repeat... DO NOT hit the brakes!! Go counter intuitive and hit the gas... UNLOAD the front tire/wheel by accelerating, even if just for a second... regain control, recover and then do whatever your next move is... ask me how I know... =;-)