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Thread: What are "chicken strips" and can I get new keys for my saddlebags?

  1. #1
    SweetT
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    What are "chicken strips" and can I get new keys for my saddlebags?

    I've got two questions for everyone:

    First, I've been reading the posts about tires, as I am in the market, and I keep hearing people refering to "Chicken Strips." What are these? Also, how can I tell if my tires are worn down to the wear indicator bars? Are the bars a different color than the tire?

    Second, I just found out this weekend that the saddle bags that I'd been using on my K75 for the past year or so actually have locks. BMW did a great job of hiding them! Can I still get keys for these bags? I didn't buy them new, but I'd guess they're about 10 yrs old.

    Thanks,
    Tarren Shaw

  2. #2
    El Dookey loves to ride. 99007's Avatar
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    Chicken strips

    would be the portion of "unused" tire on the edges thereby indicating how much of a chicken one was in regard to leaning their motorcycle in and around the curvy parts of the road. The wider the chicken strips the less the lean.
    I have not yet seen contrasting wear bars (excellent idea...are you listening Metzler et al?)
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  3. #3
    Registered User burnszilla's Avatar
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    The keys for the black small key latches can be bought at the bmw dealer. There is a number on the latch that corresponds to the key. Like 066 or 058.

    The other type is the newer silver round cylinder ignition key latches. There is a tech article on the ibmwr.org site that tells you how to rekey them.. quite easy.
    Stephen Burns - 2007 R1200GS
    BMW MOA Lifetime Member
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  4. #4
    sMiling Voni's Avatar
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    Tarren asks:

    >First, I've been reading the posts about tires, as I am in the market, and I keep hearing people refering to "Chicken Strips." What are these?

    I like to call them "Margins for Error" ; )

    Voni
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  5. #5
    Minnesota Nice! braddog's Avatar
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    Chicken strips....

    I like mine with a good barbeque sauce!

    Seriously, this is a term used largely by the sportbike crowd when you see the major wear of the rear tire right down the middle. The width of the non-wear areas on the edges is supposed to signify how "chicken" one is to lean the bike over. It's BS, in my opinion. Plus you won't see many Beemers with chicken strips, especially the skinny little tires on my old RS.

    No wear bars on 'cycle tires that I know of. Check out the tread depth, look for cupping, weather checking, etc. to determine if you need new tires or not.
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    Brad D. - Member #105766
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  6. #6
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Radials have wear bars. On Michelins, they line up with the little Bibendum (Michelin Man) on the edge of the tires. On Metzelers, they line up with the little elephants.
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  7. #7
    SweetT
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    TWI

    I have metzler marathons on my bike. On the sidewall of the tire are a couple of tiny arrows pointing towards the tread with the letters TWI under them. I was under the impression that "TWI" stood for "Tread Wear Indicator" and that the arrow would be pointing to where I should look for the "wear bar" on the tread of the tire.
    Has anyone else heard of this?

    Tarren Shaw

  8. #8
    Loose Cannon flash412's Avatar
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    Re: TWI


    I have metzler marathons on my bike. On the sidewall of the tire are a couple of tiny arrows pointing towards the tread with the letters TWI under them. I was under the impression that "TWI" stood for "Tread Wear Indicator" and that the arrow would be pointing to where I should look for the "wear bar" on the tread of the tire. Has anyone else heard of this?
    ALL tires have wear indicators, even racing slicks. (Slicks have holes in the tread that disappear when the rubber is gone.) The TWI marks are spaced at 120 degree intervals around the tire. (Metzeler makes them easy to find by putting "TWI" and a triangle on the sidewalls.) There will be a "bar" across the tread that makes the tread depth a few millimeters shallower than the rest of the tire. When the bar is smooth (bald) all the way across the tread, replacement is OVERDUE.

    Stick the edge of a penny into the tread at the TWI bar. Point Lincoln's head at the axle. If you can see the top of his hair... you are below the legal tread depth limit. This is the shallowest place on the tire. This works with every street tire, car or bike. (As mentioned earlier, slicks are a different story. Then again, they're not street legal.)

  9. #9
    Scandinavian Guest Galne Dansken's Avatar
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    Since there was many explanations of Chicken Strips - do I post a picture of a tire without Chicken Strips.

    This Dunlop 208 is from my K1200RS, after being used on a track - which is the only place where it??s possible to get rid of the Chicken Strips.


  10. #10
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Outstanding, absolutely outstanding!
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  11. #11
    davel
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    Thumbs up

    This is what I do, whenever I purchase a new rear tire, I take some white paint (any color but black) and make a line across the tire from each edge and then try to erase all of the paint before the tire needs replacement. I usually have about a 1/4 of an inch or less remaining (just a little game I play).

  12. #12
    dlearl476
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    Originally posted by Voni

    I like to call them "Margins for Error" ; )

    Voni
    sMiling
    Yes, I would agree, "chicken strips" are indeed a margin for error, but not quite in the way you intended. Remember, those strips are BRAND NEW TIRE and if the first time they see pavement is a compromised traction situation, look out. You may be about to have a big "error".
    Thats why my "scrubbing in" regimen includes some mild twisties that I can gradually increase lean angle and speed. (I have a lovely 14 mile, one-way scenic loop that works wonderfully) For me, a tire is not scrubbed until the strips are gone, or very nearly so.

    And I wholeheartedly agree with Flash, if you tire is down to the TWI, it's WAY past safe.

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