Gonna change out the OEM Dunlops

Discussion in 'Wheels' started by TQuentin1, Jan 19, 2015.

  1. TQuentin1

    TQuentin1 Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

    I bought an '11 FLSTC about a year ago that had the original tires on the bike. The bike only had about 1,100 miles on it when I got it, so it wasn't even broken in. Only has about 2,500 on it now, so still not really checked out.

    But this weekend when I was checking the tire pressure, I found a small self-tapping or sheet metal screw in the front tire. The screw was just right of center in-bedded in one of the "lugs" or thick part of the tread. It measured under 1/2" probably somewhere around 5/16" long.

    When I pulled the screw out, it put a soap bubble over the hole to see if and how badly the air was leaking out. This was inconclusive. If there is a leak, it is VERY slow. While watching it, the bubble did not inflate, but eventually did "pop". I wasn't sure if this was just normal release of the soap bubble surface tension, or because there is a slow leak. Repeated this a few times but could not tell why the bubble was popping. Seemed to take several minutes.

    But I am nervous about running a front tire with a suspected problem that could lead to a catastrophic failure. If is had been the rear tire, I might have chanced it. But with the front, no.

    So I ordered some new Pirelli Night Dragons from the Motorcycle Superstore in the sizes for front and rear. When they get here, I will take the wheels up to Cycle Gear for mounting and balance. I had these on my Ultra, and was evaluating their ride and durability. Will report back on how they do on the Heritage Classic.



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  2. Jeff Klarich

    Jeff Klarich Well-Known Member Contributor

    Good plan, why take the chance. A high speed front tire failure could be very unforgiving.
  3. stray dog

    stray dog Junior Member

    TQ, good on you for not chancing it!

    A few years back I picked up a nail on the rear Avon tire with only about 1,000mi. on it. I ordered a new tire but in the mean time decided to chance it with the nail still in, carefully monitoring it & pressure for about 500mi.
    When my new tire arrived and while removing the old one, I grabbed the nail and it just pulled out easily by finger tips!! I'm not a overly religious person but took a moment to give thanks and realize how stupid that was! NEVER AGAIN :small3d002: :small3d002:
  4. dbmg

    dbmg Experienced Member

    Are you aware that Cycle Gear price matches tires then mounts them for free....:s
  5. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    It is always best to be safe with tyres if any doubt replace them
    Pirelli have for many years made some very good motorcycle tyres always good grip and also good wet performance however there may be a down side in shorter life
    Personally I like good grip in the wet and I will happily change tyres more often to get the good grip
    Pirelli Phantom tyres on my guzzi le mans would last at best 3.5 k miles but grip the road very well in all weather conditions
    Please keep us up to date on how well the tyres perform

  6. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Guest

    Good on you, there are good tyre choices and prices out there
    HD wants 190.00 apiece for rear tires for my trike, they are T rated passenger car radials Crazy price eh:p
  7. TQuentin1

    TQuentin1 Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

    Ahhh!! I forgot that!!!

    Got my Pirellis for that Ultra that way, but did not remember.

    Oh well. The mind is a terrible thing to waste ... away!!!

    Got the tire in from MS, but am not happy with them. Both are already over a year old:

    Date Tire
    4813 Pirelli Night Dragon Front Tire Color
    4313 Pirelli Night Dragon Front Tire Color

    So that makes the front tire one year, 7 weeks old and the rear tire one year, 12 weeks old.

    I am going to send them back. I don't want tires that are over a year old BEFORE they are even mounted on the bike. I contacted the MS, and they told me they could not ensure me that any replacements they might send would be any newer, and they MIGHT BE OLDER!!

    Went by CycleGear on 45 here in Houston to see about getting the Pirelli Night Dragons from them and sending the ones I got from Motorcycle Superstore back. They could not locate the HD sizes on their system or in their book. They figured that Pirelli had discontinued those for 2015.

    So today I ordered some Michelin Commander IIs from MCS. When I get them I will compare the dates with the Pirellis and keep the younger set. Fingers crossed!!



    I got my Michelin Commander IIs in today. I had gone back to Motorcycle Superstore for these because the CycleGear store near me on 45N did not have anything for my bike except for Dunlops. Did not want them.

    So first thing I did was check the mfg. date of the Commander IIs. Rear is 3114 and front is 4314. Perfect!

    Mount 'em up and let 'er rip!!!

    As an offer to my fellow HDTalking folks, I will send the original tires (Dunlop D402F - front, D401 rear) off the Heritage Softail Classic to whomever wants them. These are the originals that came with the bike. Have around 2,550 miles on them. I think the front will be OK with a tube in it for safety. It has not lost any air pressure since I pulled the screw out of the thick part of the tread. But your call. If you want them, you pay the shipping and they are yours.


    Last edited: Feb 4, 2015
  8. Hobbit

    Hobbit Active Member

    running Avon Storm 2's on my Dyna in Radials and the difference is incredible
  9. TQuentin1

    TQuentin1 Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

    I ran Avon Venoms on my '03 Ultra. They were great, but with the very hot road temperature here in the Spring, Summer and Fall, they did not last very long.

    I also run these on my '91 Dyna.


  10. Harttoo

    Harttoo Senior Member

    You will love the Michelin's.You can feel how they grab compared to the Dunlops.I had Them on My 2012 Limited and traded for 2014.I am still "kicking "Myself for not swapping them to the new bike!