New Darksider! Woohoo!

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New Darksider! Woohoo!

Post  TheMike on Thu May 10, 2012 10:11 pm

I dun did it! I'm impressed so far.

03 1800C. I wanted to go the route that most of you have. The Hydroedge was my first choice but there is no more of the 205 65/16's out there that I could find. Plus, since they stopped making them in that size, I figured why start with that. I wanted to go the 65 series too so that the speedo would be corrected but I ended up installing the 12oclocklabs gizmo that corrected it electronically. Now, I can go the 60 series with more choices out there.

I was going to try the GYTT. At almost $150 at Discount tire, I thought further about other options.

This brings me to the one I chose. I chose the Bridgestone Potenza G109. Less than a hundred at my local costco and I really like the tread. I little more aggressive/sporty than the GYTT too (in my opinion). I sized one up against a GYTT too and they appeared to be identical.

On the way home from work I picked one up from Costco. They thought is was a really cool thing to do, to put it on a bike. They hadn''t seen one before.

On the way home from Costco, I found a local shop that had the 3oz of dynabeads needed.

Then I got home. 10 minutes after grabbing the jack, the rear tire and rim was off the X. I was very pleasantly surprised.

I wanted to see just how tight the new tire was going to fit so I "dry" fitted the tire in the rear fender. I should say, "I TRIED". I couldn't get it in there until I removed the grey plastic dust cover on the final drive. I really didn't think this was right and I started to get nervous.

I compared the new tire to the Venom tire on my rear rim. Exactly the same height but 1" wider. 1 inch wider! Holy crap, this aint gonna fit. I heard it was snug but this was ridiculous.

As I contemplated the situation, I drove to my local Discount Tire to talk and see if they'd mount the tire. While there I compared the Potenza with a GYTT. Both 206 60/16. As I said above, they appeared to be exactly the same size. Since I know so many are using this size and tire on their 1800c's, I thought I would continue with the mount and hope for the best on the install.

DT was honest and said they probably couldn't mount the tire without damaging my rim so they recommended a local bike shop.

The local Kawasaki dealership are quite good folks, even though strongly opinionated. I took the old tire/rim combo and the new tire to them. EVERYONE there thought this was the stupidest and most dangerous thing I could ever do. One of their folks was just about to blow his top. I couldn't believe how emotional he got over this.

They started out saying they wouldn't mount it. I said I would sign whatever they wanted and they said that nothing would hold up in court. He then went back to talk to their tech. I few minutes later, he came back and said since it was off the bike they would do it (if it was still on the bike, no way in HELL would they - their words).

I had them install the tire, with the circle on the tire at the valve stem, along with the dynabeads and a Kurvy Gurl 85 degree stem. (I brought everything to them). $30 in the end but wow!! It looked great!

The same guy that was getting down right pissed over the CT idea, ended up calming down and even carried the rim/tire to my car. He said that he'd love to see the bike with the tire and would like to hear how it goes. "every bit of information is good to have", he said.


I got home, let the air out of the tire and got ready to install. I couldn't believe it! It slid right in (even after replacing the grey dust cover onto the final drive first). 15 minutes later it was off the jack and ready to roll. Molly paste and torqued to spec too!

It is centered even though my camera wasn't.

Drove about 35 miles with it. I was ready for the slow speed characteristics so it was just as anticipated. A little bit of swerving and braking just to "warm" it up and to get the sticker goop off. Then off I went. Around town......a little faster speeds, some curves, then up to 85 I went. ABSOLUTELY PERFECT!!!

I am at 37 lbs of air right now. Not sure what to try or why. Not sure what I need to look for or what would change by changing the pressure. It seemed great. I though once that I heard a rub on a bump but it was only once and never heard it again (even though I tried to make the noise again). I'll put some miles on it and look closely for any signs of rubbing.

I know there is plenty of room next to the swing arm. I though it was going to be a lot closer but no issues there. Room to spare I'd say.

Anywho....I'm pleased. $145 total cost for the job and I think I have a great setup now. Now for the summer traveling with the family and the Trailer in tow!!


Number of posts : 4
Location : Longmont CO
Registration date : 2011-08-27

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