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Thread: How to estimate the mileage left on a set of tires

  1. #1
    Slowpoke & Proud of It! BRADFORDBENN's Avatar
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    How to estimate the mileage left on a set of tires

    Howdy All-

    Well I have a set of Z6's on my 02RT. They have about 10K on them, but I do not see any wear bars, I think.

    So I am having a few questions

    1) Where should I expect to find the wear bars?
    2) I have a tread depth gauge, how many mm should I expect there to be and how much is acceptable?
    3) Is there a way to guestimate the mileage left based on the depth of the tread or whether or not the wear bars are showing

    Thanks for the help. I am trying to determine if I should take the RT or the VFR on a 750 mile trip this weekend. I also want to not replace the tires and waste money if there is lots of miles left on them.
    -=Brad

    It isn't what you ride, it is if you ride

  2. #2
    Go Leafs Go CANADIANSTEVE's Avatar
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    I know that on my metzeler laser there are the initials WBI embossed at 3 points on the sidewall. These points indicate the location of the wear bars on that particular tire. I have no experience with measuring tread depth, I just change tires when the bars show up. If you feel that the tires are not up to par then change them, your ride depends on that little contact patch.
    Steve
    steve now in CT
    moved from Toronto
    92 R100RS

  3. #3
    Harrington
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    I'm hopefully changing to Pilot Roads tomorrow. I'll pitch my tent at the local shop and beg for a time slot. They are packed and down a mechanic.

    This is my second set of Z6s and I'm getting tired of them. This set has 5k on the rear and it's scalloping and falling into the turns. I'm trying to get up to highway 36 on Friday and I would like some new shoes.

    The Z6s have wear bars. IIRC they are adjacent to an arrow near the sidewall. The bad part about the Z6s is that the center tread is solid. I've heard more stories of Z6 riders exposing cord before the wear bars get close.

  4. #4
    Danger: Keep Back 500 Ft FredRydr's Avatar
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    From the Metzeler website, with misspellings and all:

    Legally the tire has to be changed as soon as the remaining tread depth is below 1,6mm. This can easily be checked by controlling the tread wear indicator height. These indicators can be found into the tread pattern grooves, correspondingly to the ÔÇ£TWIÔÇØ sign on the tire's sidewall. METZELER recommends changing tires when the remaining tread depth is below 2 mm.

    Fred

  5. #5
    larrydk
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    leagally?

    What do you mean by leagally?

  6. #6
    Motorcycleton
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    I think that the tread depth limit in Ohio is 2mm, but I would start planning on replacement if the tire tread is below 3mm. I've seen some folks riding on tires with little or no tread.

    The issue isn't having tread for a dry, clean road surface, but rather for non-ideal wet conditions. Some years back I was returning home and got caught in a rainstorm. I was coming up a slight hill with an easy right hand curve. The rear tire slid out while I was going around the curve. I didn't crash, but when I got home I first changed my drawers, then changed the rear tire - it had just about 3mm of tread remaining.

    I just got back from a nice little weekend ride where I went about 1000 miles. The front tire on my R11RS seemed just fine at the outset, but afterwards I noticed one side of the tire was cupped and the wear bars were evident. The tire had just a shade over 6k miles. I changed the tire.

    I don't think that I've ever gotten over 7k miles front or rear on my oilhead RS.

  7. #7
    Danger: Keep Back 500 Ft FredRydr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by larrydk View Post
    What do you mean by leagally?
    Larry, that was quoted from the Metzeler website; they aren't my words. You'd have address your question to Metzeler, so check their website for contact phone numbers, etc., and let us know their reply.

    In any event, it appears to be a poor English translation of the original German, intended for EU consumption. Those tread depth specifications are what I've used regardless of Pennsylvania inspection requirements.

    Fred

  8. #8
    Registered User Rod Sheridan's Avatar
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    I use an inexpensive tire depth gauge to measure my bike's tires, although a steel ruler would work as well, it simply wouldn't be as easy.

    I've found that my tire wear is fairly linear, what's your tire wear like?

    Regards, Rod.

  9. #9
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    Brad,

    How about this as a method to estimate remaining mileage:

    1. Determine starting thread depth for a new set of Z6.
    2. Measure your tires' current thread depth with your gauge.
    3. Determine the difference between 1 and 2.
    3. Prorate the 10k miles over the difference between 1 and 2 to get miles/mm or 32s of an inch.
    4. Determine the minimum legal thread depth for your state (e.g., in Virginia I believe it is the equivilant of 2 mm)
    5. Determine the difference between 2 and 4.
    6. Apply the figure from step 3 to the figure in step 5.
    7. Assess whether whatever miles you come up with this process leaves you a safety margin. Or, are you so close you would feel better just changing your tires.

    Steve



    Quote Originally Posted by BradfordBenn View Post
    Howdy All-

    Well I have a set of Z6's on my 02RT. They have about 10K on them, but I do not see any wear bars, I think.

    So I am having a few questions

    1) Where should I expect to find the wear bars?
    2) I have a tread depth gauge, how many mm should I expect there to be and how much is acceptable?
    3) Is there a way to guestimate the mileage left based on the depth of the tread or whether or not the wear bars are showing

    Thanks for the help. I am trying to determine if I should take the RT or the VFR on a 750 mile trip this weekend. I also want to not replace the tires and waste money if there is lots of miles left on them.
    IBA # 31809
    2007 K1200GT

  10. #10
    SNC1923
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    Metzler Z6s are an excellent performance tire, but they do wear quickly. Steve has already pointed out the WBIs embossed on the tire. They're hard to find, but once located, they lead to three bars, each closer to the center of the tire than the last.

    I just traded in my RT, but I routinely got about 8.000 on my rear and 10- or 11,000 on the front. Lots of scalloping on the front, but none on the rear. My last rear was way over 10,000, leading me to suspect that they may have altered the formula for the compound. Pure conjecture on my part.

    I know that I ran 40 and 42 psi, one-up and unladen, much higher than the factory recommends.

    A lot of riders in my area like the Mich Pilot Road tires. In addition to being long wearing, the have treads all across the tire making it easier to visually inspect remaining tread. In spite of that, I stuck with the Z6s. They are nice tires.

  11. #11
    Alps Adventurer GlobalRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr View Post
    Legally the tire has to be changed as soon as the remaining tread depth is below 1,6mm. This can easily be checked by controlling the tread wear indicator height. These indicators can be found into the tread pattern grooves, correspondingly to the ÔÇ£TWIÔÇØ sign on the tire's sidewall. METZELER recommends changing tires when the remaining tread depth is below 2 mm.

    Fred
    You'd think the "TWI" (Tread Wear Indicator) sign would be on the sidewall where it normally is located. Other markings sometimes found on the sidewall right where the tread starts are a small arrow or triangle.

    I'm just installing a new Metzeler Tourance front tire. The "TWI" is right on the tread itself ; not on the sidewall. No big deal if you know what you're looking for, but I guess Metzeler doesn't think riders wear their tire tread edge to edge.

  12. #12
    I Used to Be Someone sheridesabeemer's Avatar
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    Dry rot may be more of a problem than wear ....
    Gail Hatch
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  13. #13
    ABC,AMA(LIFE),MOA,RA,IBMW MANICMECHANIC's Avatar
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    I don't think Brad has ever let that happen.
    F.O.G.Rider, Rounder #6,
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  14. #14
    25-MPH NEXT 1OO MILES PacWestGS's Avatar
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    I know absolutly nothing about your tires Brad, but if you are asking the question then you need new ones. No matter what the answer is

    Or, just ride the darn thing and let us know how the trip went?

    I almost always replace tires before they are worn out - I'm not cheap that way (even if one of my crashes was the result of new tires my fault )
    Russ
    "If you took the time to really get to know me...you'd be wasting your time, because I'm exactly who you think I am"

    (Life comes at you pretty fast "Pay it Forward" - Have no regrets when the end happens)

  15. #15
    Alps Adventurer GlobalRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SheRidesABeemer View Post
    Dry rot may be more of a problem than wear ....
    I probably had another 2K miles on my front, but I'd sooner start the season on a fresh tire that is so near its end. Furthermore, upon inspection, I saw quite a few cracks in the rubber. I've never seen that before in my tires.

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