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Dunlop 208 tires

Old 06-28-2005, 10:52 AM
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Dunlop 208 tires

Hello, My name is James, I just signed up to the forums; great site. I'm 47, been riding since the age of 13. I live in Pittsburgh, Pa. . Bought my Hawk new in '97; I'll never sell it. Question for you guys: A freind and fellow Hawk owner recently installed d208's on his bike. Imo, they require much more steering effort ( he did have a 207 on the rear when I rode it, since been replaced with a 208 ). Anyone else have experience with these tires? I'll be due for new rubber in short order and am wonder what to do, I've always bought Dunlop's But wasn't impressed with these. BTW, mods: TBR slip-ons, dyno jet stage 1, K&N filter, Corbin seat....the usual mods. I also ran a lead off the battery for a gerbing jacket liner....very nice. Regards and Thanks.
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Old 06-28-2005, 11:21 AM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

Hey James, Welcome to the site. Plenty of members in your area and I'm sure they will chime in. I too got one in 97 but sold it and now have another 98. Great bike.

All right, a tire war thead!!!!

I was a "dunlop man" for many years until the 207 cupping issues and the pathetic 204's the 'hawk came with so I started trying others. So far, everything I've used has been great. Currently running a mix of pirelli diablo, corsa, supercorsa lines; awesome tires but wear quickly as they are all about traction.

YMMV (hah)
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Old 06-28-2005, 12:13 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

Can't comment on personal experience with the Dunlops on a SH. But, I can tell you, the Michelin Pilot Powers are AWESOME!
And wear a long time too.
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Old 06-28-2005, 01:06 PM
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I'm happy with the 208s. I think they do have a less pointy profile than the 207s. The annual tire tests should start showing up in the magazines any time now. The 208s have been midpack in years past but the hot tire changes every year.

Mostly, the internet is not a great source for tire or oil information. Everybody thinks whatever they have is best. Partly, that's because a new set of tires is almost always worlds better than your old set; partly it's friendly smoke-blowing.
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Old 06-28-2005, 01:30 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

So let's start the war: Dunlop are crap for the VTR

Doug say it right the 204's are pathetic ( and the word is gentle ), the 207 is cupping and the 208 is... is another Dunlop, so forget them

Pirelli choice seem to be very good, but I don't know for the US but here in Canada, they are very expensive, no dealer or distributors are pushing them so the price are high. I have tried some diablo on a friend GSX-R750 and they was very impressive.

For my self, I've just finish to use a set of Michelin Pilot Road, I was very unhappy with the front tire ( too many cupping and too quick on the tire life!! ) on the other hand, the rear tire have gived me almost 20 000Km, this is very impressive especially that they were very sticky... once warmed up or course! I never had problem on rain and even on cold asphalt of the autumn. But I won't come back with them again: test done 4/10 front and 7/10 rear.

I was tempting by the Pilot Sport or the new Pilot Power, but I find them too expensive, almost 50$ more than the "common" Battlax.

So, while I'm talking of them, now in front I've a BT014 which is, at the saying of my garage and also of some friend feedback,not cupping as the previous BT010! And for the rear ( change plan for this weekend ), I think I will goes with a BT020 ( many people don't recommend them as they are too "hard" but I don't like to do what "other" people said I prefer to verify it by myself!! )

I think your tire choice will depend mostly on how you ride your bike, I'm a 25 000Km rider a year, so this is out of question for me to use a 5000Km life tire, ( this is why the Pilot road choice and now the rear BT020 ) but I'm also a agressive rider, so I've to make some compromise... I put more "hard" tire and I let them warm up more long before to "attack".

So, look at the use you will make of your tire and also at your type of riding, it will give you the best guideline for your new tire choice.

Cheers and welcome on the forum
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Old 06-28-2005, 01:59 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

I have had multiple brands of tires on my superhawk and here is my two cents.
Never been impressed with dunlops on the superhawk, (stock 204s, and 220s, 207s).
The Continental Conti-force tires cheap, lasted maybe 2500 mi. Conti Road attacks did really well on street and track looked like they would last longer but developed a crack in the sidewall (still haven't contacted them yet hope to get something back from them since I only had about 500 street miles and two track days) front tire is still good.

Avon av 56 I belive had real bad wobble in front end and rear tire lasted 2900 mi.

Latest tires and the most satisfied (so far) Bridgestone BT 014s good for street and track days if you want super stickey BT 012ss If you want more miles BT 020.

As I said I've had a lot of tires on this bike and for my money Bridgestones are nice. I have heard good things about the pilot series and the pirelli super corsa tires but haven't had any and they are a tad more expensive.

Hope this helps you out
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Old 06-28-2005, 02:11 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

Thanks for all the input, I'll check out the Bridgestones. I would classify my riding style as " spirited " , I ride agressively but not out of control; sticky is good, but I don't need a race tire. Btw, in looking at the SH review section, at the bottom of the Sport Rider review was a link to variations on a theme. I loved the green SH, I thinking about a similar paint job in candy apple red.
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Old 06-28-2005, 04:17 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

I am on my second set of tires for my shawk, just turned 10K this last weekend.

The stock dunlops - sucked- after 3K miles mine were done. I currently have continentals conti force (sport touring tire) and they have some feel. They dont give me a comfy feeling in the corners. They dont feel realy planted.

With that said my next tires wil be pilot powers. A friend of mine has a 600F4I and they gave good grip and feeling.

My 2 cents
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Old 06-28-2005, 06:27 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

I have 208's on mine and have only one issue with them. They are junk below 65 degrees, turn in is just fine with me, and the grip is more than the hawk has to offer anyway's. I also like that there cheap for the performance. I have'nt tried anything else on my hawk. My 2cents, I would'nt use pirelli's even for a burnout competition. I had 2 bad sets for my zx9 and will never buy them again. I also had 207's on my zx9 and did'nt have any cupping issues. I have pilot powers on my r1 and won't buy anything else, they are spectacular, I know some people care about wear, but I don't wan't to fall due to traction issues.
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Old 06-28-2005, 07:04 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

The only cupping problems I've had with Dunlop's were with the OEM'S, aftermarket 207's were fine, althought they did feel different. Again, I bought my Hawk in 97, at that time there was an " issue " with tire selection; the wrong tire could supposedly cause a mishap. My question concerning the 208's has more to do with tire geometry, the 208's, even eye balling them, seem rounder, and I felt required more steering effort. I went to Bridgestone's site after reading ( pretty nice, good tire profile pics ) , a fellow poster's remarks, I think these tires, with there more angular profile, would be more suitable. James.
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Old 06-29-2005, 06:56 AM
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Never had a problem with the 208s and I went thru Deals Gap a lot of times. It never gave grip away and I was very comfy on them and I have a 190 on the rear. They are a good overall street tire. I put 4000 miles on them and they look like they can last another 1000 miles. It depends on each rider. I have a friend on an rc51 that goes down to deals gap every 2 months and that's all he uses. He tried the diablos and they are a little better than the 208s that's if you want to go on the track but they lasted him 2000 miles. He went back to dunlop and he goes thru a set every 4000 miles.
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Old 06-29-2005, 08:26 AM
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I just got some 208s & they seem fine. I think the 207s had a rep. for falling into turns quickly due to triangular profile.
I personally like a progressive, consistent feel in transitions & the 208s give me that. (I don't think I'd have liked the 207s on the 'Hawk, becuz of this. VTRs already have a natural tendency to fall into the inside of the turn (oversteer) anyway, in my experience.)

Wonder what air pressure your friend was running?

Rgds,
Steve
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Old 06-29-2005, 08:57 AM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

Howdy Steve,
Scot runs his tires a little on the hard side, and as I said earlier, at the time I rode his bike he still had an old 207 on the rear. Could be that was part of the problem. Btw, I grew up in Richmond, Chesterfeild County, still have family living there. I've made the ride from Pit to Ric a dozen times. Used to go to bikes at the bottom with my ex. James.
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Old 06-29-2005, 09:19 AM
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Hey james,
Funny thing. Bought my 'Hawk on ebay from a guy in Pittsburgh (Monroeville) back in Oct. Went up & picked it up. Absolutely beautiful country up there. Wish I'd been able to spend some time there bec. it seems like, with all those mountains, the roads would be awesome.
I live in Bon Air, off Forest Hill Ave. Been to Bikes in the Bottom a couple times. Did you have some riding mates down here?
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Old 06-29-2005, 09:42 AM
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Just a couple points re: tires:

1. Moto GP, AMA Supersport and Superbike machines are specifically designed to slightly understeer, and require great effort to push over into a corner. A bike that "falls" into a turn is not desired at all, at the top levels, or on the street. That's why Dunlop revised the profile on their 207s when they introduced the 208s. Every REAL racer I'm associated with (quite a few) opines that 207s are too twitchy and slightly unpredictable. I agree.

2. So many people go on about how they need all the traction they can get, so they buy the stickiest street tires they can afford. But nobody mentions anything about wet capabilities. Rubber compound takes a back seat to tread design when it starts raining. Sooner or later, EVERYBODY gets caught in the rain, and that's when you want to be most assured of the best tires you can get. Dunlop's D220s have one of the best tread designs on the market for evacuating water. They also stick quite well in the dry, and last a long time. It would seem to me that riders would consider the "worst case" scenario when buying tires, because inferior wet-weather tires, on the street, can have disastrous results. D208s suck donkey ***** in the rain...you might as well be riding on slicks. Michelin Pilot Road and Pilot Powers are also fantastic on wet surfaces, but they're expensive.

#\usr\My_Two_Cents completed
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Old 06-29-2005, 10:55 AM
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Welcome to the site from another PA rider! As you have seen tire selection is very personal.

I run the BT020/BT010 combination right now and just used up the 020 while the front 010 still has tread, but has started to cup.

I would describe my riding as "spirited" when I'm in the lovely mountains that are close to me. I run very hard, but treat the lines as out of bounds markers like "The Pace"

One thing not mentioned is cold weather grip. I ride 10 months of the year taking most of Dec and Jan off. The rear very rarely has skated when commuting on the bike at those time, but I also use common sense and don't puch as hard.
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Old 06-29-2005, 11:16 AM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

Steve, that is a coincidence, you buying up here. There are nice roads up here but Pa. does a terrible job maintaining them. I usually head to WVA, RTE 33 and surroundings, some of the best roads in the country, and little traffic. I road a few times with a man named Bill, he was one of the movers and shakers behind bikes in the bottom, he was also a freind of my exwife ( she had her own bike ). I have since lost touch with those people. James
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Old 06-29-2005, 11:32 AM
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Superhawks and Pittsburghers go together like Iron City and O-Fries. I grew up in the 'burgh and those roads are crap but good fun. I use the Diablos - they wear well, work fine in the rain, and stick well. You should be able to find a pair for $200. Also look at the Diablo Strada which is just out recently - they're made for Sport-Touring with an emphasis on Sport. Whatever you choose, remember to watch out for tar strips when breaking them in.
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Old 08-16-2005, 01:27 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

Dear guys just a quick update about the tires.

I'm no more running the BT020 in rear, I've changed it after "only" 2000km with it! Its overall performances have highly disappointed me! It was very not sticky as my previous Pilot Road. And the difference was also very noticeable under the rain! ( this is IMO and for my type of riding) but one thing is true: garage peoples who are saying that these two tire are equal in quality and performance have very wrong!! The Pilot Road definitelly worth the 30$ more ( IMO again ).


Now, I'm back to a Pilot road in rear, I hope it will also give me around 24 000Km as my previous one. And I will still be able to compare the Pilot Road with the BT020 lasting life because I've make this last one mount on my girlfriend F4. And don't even think that I'm not loving her because I'm offering her my "old" tire!! you should look her drive to know that she doesn't need more sticky tire!! I must almost stop my bike after each turn to wait her!! but it's very more fun doing bike with each one a bike than both on the same, so I'm please to wait her a bit

My BT014 in front have now 12 000Km and no cupping is apparent on it, it have also plenty of thread left ( more than middle life ).

Even, if many garage peoples are saying me to not mismatch tire brand, this combo seem to be the most effective I've tried since many years ( this is also again IMO and for my type of riding! ).

I'm now OK to finish the summer with this set of tires so, others news will be next year!!

Cia
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Old 08-26-2005, 07:42 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

A srteet tire is a street tire is a street tire. When you are through experimenting with traction on the street ( Our father, who art in Heaven...) Do ye a track with some Dunlop 208 GP- A DOT race tires and see the light.
They actually last OK on the street for a while after your track day too. Hope I don't sound too preachy Probably other tire company's race tires are OK too, I'm only familiar with the Dunzies. Try www.sporttireservices.com Hope this helps
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Old 08-26-2005, 08:22 PM
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Re: Dunlop 208 tires

correct link is: http://www.sporttire.com/
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