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Discussion Starter #1
I've owned my klr for 5 days so far, but I've noticed the stock tires biggest weakness..... pine straw, damp grass, mud, slick dirt roads after a 5 min shower. I know there are many reviews for tires out there, but mostly for people saying they ride 90% on road, and recommend the shinko 705.

I do ride on road, but its a 4 mile dirt road rocks, loose gravel, and slick area's to my house on top of a mountain. stock tires on that road is completely fine, but on the way to my house up this road are 2,000+ acres of land, trials, service roads, ext that I know I don't have the confidence in my stock tires to attempt.

I can tell by looking at the shinko they are not going to be good on wet grass much less slick trails.. anything else out there that I can get some decent mileage out of like 5,000 miles seems ok I guess, and not have to worry about getting stuck in a spot a moped could go through?

I'm not knocking the bike because of tires, because from what I can tell that's the only real weakness keeping me from my adventures lol. I went from riding a gsxr1000 in 2009 to a 2016 klr. needless to say when I first went from on road to dirt road that scared feeling thinking i'm about to wreck to daaaaannng and hit the gas because instant confidence of knowing this bike really likes dirt, and arriving home after driving it from the dealer and its already covered in mud.
 

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never experience a good tire for damp grass. is like water on glass, pine straw is a bit slick too. been thru 3 sets of mefo explorer and ride a lot of gravel/trails and alaskan roads and is my go to tire. For mud someone else will chime in as the knobby work best.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I was reading up on the mefo, and leaning towards that. the stock tires aren't to bad for dry, but not worth a dime in any kind of mud around here.
 

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Motoz Tractionator Desert H/T 130/80-17

Motoz now has the Tractionator Desert H/T available for the KLR650. It is a 130/80-17, full knobby, and DOT. Check out motoz.com.au or motoztires.com for more info.
 

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Trakmaster IIs; can't guarantee mileage, but . . . full knobby; DOT.

No exceptionally sharp turns on hard surfaces recommended; front may wash out.

Dry, relatively straight highway speeds--surprisingly versatile, no problem.
 

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Kenda K270 on the rear and pirelli Scorpion Rally on the front. The Scorpion Rally is a full knobby DOT approved and will go 10000miles of mixed riding. Good grip on all surfaces and very stable on high speed gravel. Much easier to ride a knobbie on pavement than a Shinko 705 in the dirt!

The venerable Kenda K270 is a true 50/50 tire with good grip in sand, gravel, dirt and mud. If you are a corner carver on pavement it gets predictably squirmy when you get up on the edge knobs.I will get 5000miles out of the one on the back of my KTM690, more on my KLR.
Good wear characteristics on both tires on long highway runs.

I put Mefo Explorers on my '11KLR and hated the front for anything more challenging than gravel. Just NO grip. The first rear cracked around the base of the lugs badly and was replaced on warrentee. The replacement also cracked. I gave up on them.

The Desert Tractionator wore very quickly on the back of my 690 as it is quite soft. It is a great off road tire but is vibey on pavement.

JJ
 

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Well, YOU brought up the 690 justjeff! :)

I have Vee 401s front and rear on my 690; can't tell about mileage so far (2000 miles, still plenty tall), but do well on pavement and gravel--no serious off-road exposure yet.

Rode with a KLR650 rider who had 'em (Vee 401s); I had K270s on my KLR650; the Vees seemed to do well on rocky terrain and dirt roads and trails, matching the K270s.
 

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Hmmm.....Have to admit I have never heard of Vee tires before though my tire supplier seems to have a full selection of them. Every style from street to atv are available.
Keep us updated as to how they work. Just because they are on an orange bike doesn't mean they won't work on a KLR!
JJ
 

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i have shinko 705. i like them.
but on loose ground, its better if the lower the pressure, to like 18 front, 20 back.
all other, i go 20 front, 28 back.
 

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Don't get me wrong, I think the Shonko 705s are a fine tire and a lot of people like them. I just think there are better tires for the OP's stated use which is similar to mine. If I rode primarily pavement with the very occasional gravel I could see buying the 705s.
JJ
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the recommendations. Leaning more towards a knobby tire because my mountain dirt road I figured out has very slick spots and the stock tire is making it very nerve racking driving down... It doesn't have to be a full knobby so to speak because I do commute to work some days on it and average about 65 to 75mph. I don't think the shinko is gonna make me happy the tread looks more street oriented than offroad. Really thinking at least a 60 offroad to 40 onroad just because slick areas on slopes are keeping me from exploring the land right out my back door which is annoying.
 

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In your case in particular the Michelin T-63 sounds like a perfect match.
It's a full on knobby with the blocks arranged in rows. Great for pulling thru
deep stuff and hillclimbing. Mine excelled at both, but wore quickly when
ridden hard on the paved roads.

Cheap
 

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Another to consider, Shinko Big Blocks. I've been running Conti TKC80 Twinduros on my KLR; great soft surface tire, not good wear life. Being unhappy with the wear life of the twinduros (and high cost), I'm experimenting with some Shinko E804/E805 Big Blocks (rated 40/60) on my recently acquired DR650. They are reported to have much better wear life in reviews I read. I was a little leary of the tread pattern to be able to channel goop and push through mudholes, but I've run them through about as soft and soupy as they're going to see (see link below for an example) and they've exceeded my expectations so far. Another thing I was leary of was overly stiff carcasses on so-called "touring" tires that counteract airdown. However, the Shinkos aired down nicely to 16-18 psi to respond to those surfaces in the linked photos. At the moment I'm leaning toward at least the E805 for the KLR when the current Twinduro goes.

http://www.klrforum.com/southeast-riders/52530-random-photos-weekend-ride.html

Shinko 804 / 805 Big Block Adventure Touring Tires - RevZilla
 
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