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Do not go past Mitas E07 130/80x17 Rear, 120/70×21 Front. Long lasting, handle tar/pavement and dirt, have a good load rating. I've used them on both my KLR's, my XC Triumph 800 and my MotoGuzzi 750. Wind, Rain, Snow or the baking Australian sun does not fade them ... good luck with whatever you decide!
120-70-21 ? Any photos?

What width is your front wheel ?

According to this chart , 90-90-21 is good from 1.80 to 2.50

the 120-70-21 is fine on a 3.0 ➕ wheel
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Hi all,

I have the stock tires on my 2022 KLR650.

I am looking for recommendations on a better set of tires for dirt but also still handle well on the highways/city streets. Maybe something more aggressive than stock but not completely dirt specific.

So far I have heard of:
Dunlop 606
Tusk?
My stock rear tire was toast when I went to get Rocinante's 2021 Vermont inspection sticker. Even though the front was still good I decided to get something that was both better in the dirt and quieter on the road than the OEM tires. After researching every dual sport tire on the market I decided on the Dunlop Mission Trailmax. It's a fairly new design aimed at bigger adventure bikes like ours and even the big BMWs and Africa twins, etc. It's one of the new style modified big block tires. At first I was going to go economy with the Shinko 700s or 705s which a bunch of folks seem to love, but after reading all the reviews I decided to splurge. The Mission Trailmax is twice the price of the Shinkos but riders are reporting that they last twice as long and do much better in the gravel and dirt while still being great on the road. I bought them from our local shop for $260 for the pair. I'm sure you can get them cheaper on-line but I like to support our local businesses. I really like them on our local dirt roads and fire roads in the nearby National Forest. They are really good in loose thick dirt and gravel. The front has no trouble climbing out of ruts left by 4wheelers, probably due to the Mission Trailmax's impressive side lugs. The rear happily chews through anything in it's path. They are very good on the pavement in the corners and are remarkably smoother than the OEM tires. They are quiet on the road with much less vibration in the handlebars. I attached a few pictures of them on Rocinante so you can see what they look like. I also attached a test review by a guy who is a much better rider than I and he gives a fair evaluation with them mounted on an even heavier bike than our KLRs.

Cheers
KC

(Click on thumbnails for larger pictures)


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I found out a few times that the OEM stock dunlops are less than desireable in loose gravel or wet trails. The top heavy bike and its general mass will become apparent when encountering a tire rut and your tire begins to ride on the side of the rut. tire will slip to the bottom of the rut and make you wonder why you are riding that trail. Riding in weedy trails where you can not see the real shape of ruts makes it even more tricky. I soon found a Pirelli MT21 for the front. it was like night and day. Since then Kenda dual sport (dont remember the model) have been a good performing frugal choice. line6
 

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Hi all,

I have the stock tires on my 2022 KLR650.

I am looking for recommendations on a better set of tires for dirt but also still handle well on the highways/city streets. Maybe something more aggressive than stock but not completely dirt specific.

So far I have heard of:
Dunlop 606
Tusk?
I put Shinko 705s on my 2017 KLR, I ride street, gravel, and dirt roads and have been happy with them so far. I had the same style tire on my 2012 Yamaha Tenere, they worked well on that bike.
 

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I got a second set of wheels. That way I can swap between more street-oriented, and more dirt-oriented tires easily. Set up a Craigslist search. You’re likely to find a pair of wheels for $200 or less sometime over the winter. They might even have good tires on them.
I've been looking for a second set of wheels too for the same reason. Also the rear tire change was a PITA, but maybe that's just because I need more practice. I've found recently that Facebook marketplace has a lot more options than craigslist. But that's probably dependent on the region where you live.
 

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I've been looking for a second set of wheels too for the same reason. Also the rear tire change was a PITA, but maybe that's just because I need more practice. I've found recently that Facebook marketplace has a lot more options than craigslist. But that's probably dependent on the region where you live.
From what I’ve been able to ascertain, the Gen 3 has a different wheel setup than the Gen 2. This could pose a problem to gettin a cheaper wheel set.
 

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Tire threads are always fun. It just reinforces the point for me that tires are a VERY personal choice, as everyone rides in their own unique way.

Whether riding on dirt or asphalt, each rider behaves uniquely on those surfaces. I have been on gravel with other riders with the same bike…and the same tires. Each rider felt differently about the tires. In short, finding the right tire for you may inevitably be a time (and cost) consuming process.

That said, I’ll give my “two-cents”. After a multi-year process of trial and error (and a broken collar bone), I learned the following (and these are IMHO points):

1. All-around tires are just that…capable at everything…good at nothing.

2. Always have the right tire for the job. Don’t say, “Oh, these tires aren’t meant for this terrain, but they should be OK.” Saying that is what broke my collarbone.

3. Be honest with yourself and how you ride and what you need for piece of mind. That’s a big part of riding mixed surfaces for me.

So on that note, here are the tires I use. I have the Dunlop Trailmax Mission tires for everyday use (commuting to work or an afternoon mixed surface ride on routes I know). If a trip I’m taking is more dirt oriented on routes I am not familiar with, I go with the Michelin Anakee Wilds. They do well enough on asphalt and seem to grip the dirt very well for my riding style (which is not very aggressive…otherwise I would have a different bike).

I don’t buy tires based on how long the tread life is. I consider tires based on their intended use and their effectiveness in that. Yes, that makes my investment in tires over time a bit high. But they don’t make coffins with pockets, I guess. :p
 

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KLR 2014 Gen 2
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Tire threads are always fun. It just reinforces the point for me that tires are a VERY personal choice, as everyone rides in their own unique way.

Whether riding on dirt or asphalt, each rider behaves uniquely on those surfaces. I have been on gravel with other riders with the same bike…and the same tires. Each rider felt differently about the tires. In short, finding the right tire for you may inevitably be a time (and cost) consuming process.

That said, I’ll give my “two-cents”. After a multi-year process of trial and error (and a broken collar bone), I learned the following (and these are IMHO points):

1. All-around tires are just that…capable at everything…good at nothing.

2. Always have the right tire for the job. Don’t say, “Oh, these tires aren’t meant for this terrain, but they should be OK.” Saying that is what broke my collarbone.

3. Be honest with yourself and how you ride and what you need for piece of mind. That’s a big part of riding mixed surfaces for me.

So on that note, here are the tires I use. I have the Dunlop Trailmax Mission tires for everyday use (commuting to work or an afternoon mixed surface ride on routes I know). If a trip I’m taking is more dirt oriented on routes I am not familiar with, I go with the Michelin Anakee Wilds. They do well enough on asphalt and seem to grip the dirt very well for my riding style (which is not very aggressive…otherwise I would have a different bike).

I don’t buy tires based on how long the tread life is. I consider tires based on their intended use and their effectiveness in that. Yes, that makes my investment in tires over time a bit high. But they don’t make coffins with pockets, I guess. :p
Photos of your tires of choice would be nice
I do not know if I am one of a kind person in this forum but talking about things without ever posting pics or photos of the subject defeats the purpose or at least it dilutes the message

At another forum I follow for my Suzuki Samurai there is a frase well known in use ... "photos or it never happened"

No pun intended
 

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Photos of your tires of choice would be nice
I do not know if I am one of a kind person in this forum but talking about things without ever posting pics or photos of the subject defeats the purpose or at least it dilutes the message

At another forum I follow for my Suzuki Samurai there is a frase well known in use ... "photos or it never happened"

No pun intended
Well then, in order to validate that these tires do actually exist, and I’m not claiming I saw Bigfoot, here is a pic of each tire. :)

Anakee Wilds
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Dunlop Trailmax Missions
Tire Wheel Automotive tire Synthetic rubber Product
 

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I found out a few times that the OEM stock dunlops are less than desireable in loose gravel or wet trails. The top heavy bike and its general mass will become apparent when encountering a tire rut and your tire begins to ride on the side of the rut. tire will slip to the bottom of the rut and make you wonder why you are riding that trail. Riding in weedy trails where you can not see the real shape of ruts makes it even more tricky. I soon found a Pirelli MT21 for the front. it was like night and day. Since then Kenda dual sport (dont remember the model) have been a good performing frugal choice. line6
I swear this is exactly my first impression. I felt like the tires just side slipped way too easy. They were / brand new, and this is my first street bike. I was expecting traction and handling that was comparable to a dirtbike. Rather I felt like I had crotch rocket tires on.
Gravel was white knuckle, and over 50 kph seemed like suicide. My first 5 km trail had every scenario your post mentions. My ‘lesson A,B,C’ thread will prove it.
Again I’m seriously green, but I’m growing confidence since I’ve stuck on the asphalt. I started wondering if a KLR was the right choice, and I’m very hopeful both my skills, and setup help me get my legs off road. I have no intentions of riding single track or serious tracks.
This thread is awesome with such a wealth of info. It’s going to take me a year or so to probably comprehend it all fully. If vibration wasn’t a concern for me and my nerve damaged body, I’d likely go as aggressive as possible. I love the “never got stuck in pavement” comment. Flip side of that is the majority of my riding is going to be pavement while I learn. I really want to feel comfortable on gravel, and could care less about mud, but of course I’ll find myself knee deep in it unintentionally, lol.

As odd as it may sound, the appearance of the tire tread will certainly effect my comfort and confidence. I have a serious paranoia about encountering loose gravel on pavement while in a turn. I have scars that are deeper than my skin, and well into my memory.

I hadn’t even considered the tire aspect, in terms of replacing for performance. And bike tire tech is basically Greek to me.

Thanks to everyone for sharing all this. The members here and the KLR community had a lot to do with why I own one now.
 

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You should not spend any time fretting over the OEM tires. The only good thing about them is that they wear out quickly. These tires are only available on new KLRs. You couldn't buy a pair of them if you wanted to, not that anyone has ever wanted to. You should not even feel bad about taking them off right now and throwing them away. They are as useless as boobs on a boar and only serve to help the dealership's staff roll the things from the assembly area to the showroom floor. They are not meant to be taken seriously as a tire and I rather doubt that Dunlop would admit to making them should someone inquire. They would probably claim they were counterfeits made in an Estonian sweatshop from recycled golf balls.

Put them behind you, get a D606 and an MT21 (or whatever it is the KLR Kool Krowd is wearing) and get on with life. I run Kenda K761s on the street and Kenda K270s in the dirt and do just fine, but I am extremely old and fragile while still being quite good-looking and so I'm not too aggressive in the dirt.
 

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You should not spend any time fretting over the OEM tires. The only good thing about them is that they wear out quickly. These tires are only available on new KLRs. You couldn't buy a pair of them if you wanted to, not that anyone has ever wanted to. You should not even feel bad about taking them off right now and throwing them away. They are as useless as boobs on a boar and only serve to help the dealership's staff roll the things from the assembly area to the showroom floor. They are not meant to be taken seriously as a tire and I rather doubt that Dunlop would admit to making them should someone inquire. They would probably claim they were counterfeits made in an Estonian sweatshop from recycled golf balls.

Put them behind you, get a D606 and an MT21 (or whatever it is the KLR Kool Krowd is wearing) and get on with life. I run Kenda K761s on the street and Kenda K270s in the dirt and do just fine, but I am extremely old and fragile while still being quite good-looking and so I'm not too aggressive in the dirt.
I’m more boggled by what tires or combo to “try” first. Should I invest in spare rims and dedicated tires? Should I take this persons opinion over that guys? You can find polar opposing opinions on every tire.
Like I said I understand this will take awhile to wrap my head around completely. On a side note, I’m wondering how ones situational and psychological factors influence a tire review. Like if I went from stock to tire X, it’s likely my opinion of tire X will be more positive. If I like aggressive looking tires and want to ride off road more than I do, I might be more forgiving of an aggressive tires road performance.

The scenarios are near infinite of course, and not unique to bike tires by any means.Yet IMO it’s the tires that the are most ‘dual sport’ part of the bike.
 

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I think that you'll have enough time to try a bunch of different tires since they don't last that long.

I put on perelli scorpion MT32 in the front and a Trackmaster 2 in the back and it has been very enjoyable on gravel off road stuff. That's where I like to ride. Maybe this summer I'll put on slicks who knows
 

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I’m more boggled by what tires or combo to “try” first. Should I invest in spare rims and dedicated tires? Should I take this persons opinion over that guys? You can find polar opposing opinions on every tire.
Like I said I understand this will take awhile to wrap my head around completely. On a side note, I’m wondering how ones situational and psychological factors influence a tire review. Like if I went from stock to tire X, it’s likely my opinion of tire X will be more positive. If I like aggressive looking tires and want to ride off road more than I do, I might be more forgiving of an aggressive tires road performance.

The scenarios are near infinite of course, and not unique to bike tires by any means.Yet IMO it’s the tires that the are most ‘dual sport’ part of the bike.

Yep, people will rabidly defend their choices but (like all things dual sport) it's all about wants, needs, expectations, usage and budget. I use my MT21/D606 combo because I care mostly about offroad performance. Price and longevity are secondary to me and while ultimate pavement performance isn't a priority either, I've managed some pretty spirited pavement riding with these tires. .......as I often say: "I seldom get stuck on pavement" which is my way of saying that I think you should pick tires for the WORST conditions you expect to encounter. Now, if I was riding mostly pavement, high speed highway or cared about longevity, I'd probably pick something else.

Dave
 

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Yep, people will rabidly defend their choices but (like all things dual sport) it's all about wants, needs, expectations, usage and budget. I use my MT21/D606 combo because I care mostly about offroad performance. Price and longevity are secondary to me and while ultimate pavement performance isn't a priority either, I've managed some pretty spirited pavement riding with these tires. .......as I often say: "I seldom get stuck on pavement" which is my way of saying that I think you should pick tires for the WORST conditions you expect to encounter. Now, if I was riding mostly pavement, high speed highway or cared about longevity, I'd probably pick something else.

Dave
Dave what tire pressure do you run?
 

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Dave, what pressure do you run?? Sorry, that one made me laugh .. . . . . Dave, how fat are you? Dave do you haul a heavy bag or have luggage? Dave, do you haul your gal on back? (dont need her weight but maybe pics, . . .
I have heard some will air down tire pressure a bit for riding off road. but still, the question seemed as relevant as "how done do you like your steak"? No offense intended.
 
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