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Discussion Starter #1
The stock rear tire size for the Chieftan is the same as the GoldWing (180/60R16). I traded my GoldWing for the Chieftan and have a brand new Avon Cobra but it is a 180/70R16. I ran this size as it corrected the speedo which was about 3-5% off. Registered faster than actual speed. Has anyone tried a 70 series rear tire? If so did it fit OK?

Thanks
GM
 

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The stock rear tire size for the Chieftan is the same as the GoldWing (180/60R16). I traded my GoldWing for the Chieftan and have a brand new Avon Cobra but it is a 180/70R16. I ran this size as it corrected the speedo which was about 3-5% off. Registered faster than actual speed. Has anyone tried a 70 series rear tire? If so did it fit OK?

Thanks
GM
I know you can run a 180/65R16 but not sure about a 70. I would call the dealer. I doubt they will tell you yes...but it can't hurt to call.
Sell it on Ebay or Craigslist. It is a standard size so it should not last long.

Semper Fi,
DrZ
 

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I switched my 2008 Gold Wing rear tire to the dark side (Kumho run flat) and I liked it better...I wonder if anyone will be doing that with their Indian?
 

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I traded in my nomad for a Chieftan. The nomad was running a car tire and I loved it. By the time I need a new rear, I hope there is some data in the darkside database on Indians.
 

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One thing I did notice reading the Specs on the Chieftain is that it said 180/60R/16 Rear and 130/90B/16 Front .. While I am no expert on Tires, I always thought R was for Radial Ply and B was for my Bias Ply .. Found these Specs in more than one place so don't think it was a misprint ..
 

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Howdy Folks,
I replaced my Chieftain's OEM Dunlop 180/60R16 at 13,500 miles. It was noticeably worn, though not entirely bald or with cord showing, and replacing it seemed prudent. The front tire still has excellent tread and no sign of cupping at 15,500 miles; this is very good life for tires on a heavy, high-speed touring bike.

I could never get more than 8,000 miles or so on the bias-ply Dunlops that were OEM on my '09 Street Glide and a set of Metzler touring tires I tried lasted no better. The rear would wear bald and the front would show severe cupping, which I attributed to to the heavy wheel/brake assembly and under-sprung forks on the FLHX. I finally mounted Michelin Commander IIs on the bike and was abble to get 10,000 miles on them before replacement.

I had the rear tire on the Chieftain replaced at Black Gold Indian in Odessa, TX, while traveling. I didn't notice until the next day, but they replaced the original Dunlap 180/60R16 radial with a Michelin Commander II 180/60B16 bias-ply. I suppose they didn't have the OEM Dunlop in stock. I wish they'd told me they were making a substitution, although under the circumstances, if the Commander was all they had that would fit, I'd have taken it. It seems to ride the same and I'll be watching closely to see if it lasts as long as the Dunlop radial. My understanding is that Indian went with the radial because of the higher load-rating of the Chieftain verses the other Chief models. I think I will try to have an OEM radial on hand for the next replacement. You'd think dealerships would keep normal replacement items like tires, drive belts, control levers, and mirrors in stock for the machines they sell but that has not been my experience, they have to order everything; H-D was the same way.
--- Randall
 

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Are you sure the Michelin Commander II they replaced is not a 180/65B/16?? While it should fit, If Michelin had a 180/60/16 would have had it on my Cross Country .. If it does must be new ..
 

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The 180/65B-16 Michelin Commander II on the back of my Cross Country has a 9mm taller sidewall than the 180/60R-15 Dunlop Elite 3 radial it replaced. I'm not sure how much speedometer error I already had, but most speedometer error is on the optimistic side so it might be mine is more accurate now. The ride is so much better on the Michelins and there is no tendency to follow grooves and tar snakes. The handling and traction are as good or better than the stock Dunlop E-3s. I know I'm talking about my Victory and not an Indian and it's not exactly "apples to apples" but probably pretty close in the frame design and geometry.
Well being that I own a 2012 Vic XC which am keeping now and going with a Scout, think will try the Michelins Com II next change .. Sorry to stray off Topic but been looking for one who tried this switch ..
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks everyone for the input. The next thing I am trying to understand is why they use bias ply on the front and radial on the rear. As an old tire guy it was hammered into us not to mix radial and bias ply on cars. Don't know about motorcycles as this is the first time I have seen this set up. I don't like the way the front tire likes to follow grooves and tar snakes. Has anyone swapped the front tire on a Chieftan to a radial?
 

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Are you sure the Michelin Commander II they replaced is not a 180/65B/16?? While it should fit, If Michelin had a 180/60/16 would have had it on my Cross Country .. If it does must be new ..
Yes, you're right, it is a 180/65B-16.
--- Randall
 

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I belong to a Honda Magna forum also, and a lot of the guys swear by the Michelin Commander II tires. I haven't had a chance to replace any since that thread was revived, but it is considered much more reliable.


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Thanks everyone for the input. The next thing I am trying to understand is why they use bias ply on the front and radial on the rear. As an old tire guy it was hammered into us not to mix radial and bias ply on cars. Don't know about motorcycles as this is the first time I have seen this set up. I don't like the way the front tire likes to follow grooves and tar snakes. Has anyone swapped the front tire on a Chieftan to a radial?
It's not that uncommon for motorcycles to have bias ply in front (Yamaha Raider comes to mind). You can run all bias, or all radials, bias front and radial rear, but never ever a radial front and bias rear. Both types of construction have different handling characteristics, and bias ply tend to load better for their size (width) which is good for heavy cruisers.

The load rating on the front of the Chieftain is pretty good, 805 lbs. My guess is it would be hard to find a radial that has that rating, and fits on the 3.5" x 16" rim. I don't think there's inherently wrong changing the front to a radial, you just have to find one that fits and has similar load rates.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Again, thanks everyone for the input. I think my first option will be to change to the Michelin's as soon as I wear out the E3's. I ran Avon Cobra's on my GoldWing and loved the way they handled, but that's an entirely different animal than my Chieftan. I really love this bike and look forward to many miles and smiles.

GM
 

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So digging over Dunlop E3 info and NOWHERE will they state the expected milage for them. What are you guys experiencing? I've rode D404 and K555 and never get what I consider good mileage. I have been happy with Shinko and poor mileage out of Metelzers. I contacted Dunlop and hope to hear back they are working on WWW for the fatty chieftain. Anyway look forward to any response. Regards
 

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I know radial tires make a huge difference in tread life for automobiles, but I haven't seen this born-out when it comes to motorcycle tires (at least from my own experience). My Michelin Commander IIs are a reinforced bias ply tire and they do not follow tar strips or rain grooves the way my previous Dunlop Elite 3 radials did. Differences in tread design, tire plies or that reinforcing must have made the difference somehow.
I can't comment on the Indian tires yet but I will tell you on my Vulcan 2000 they called out for a radial tire up front. Even running at max rated pressure after about 8 to 9,000 miles the front tire was cupped so bad you could really feel it in the handlebars. I switched to a Metzler bias front tire and can run it til it goes completely bald and no cupping what so ever. Personally I don't think I will ever put a radial tire up front on a bike. For me they just don't last. Dean E
 

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Howdy Folks,
I replaced my Chieftain's OEM Dunlop 180/60R16 at 13,500 miles. It was noticeably worn, though not entirely bald or with cord showing, and replacing it seemed prudent. The front tire still has excellent tread and no sign of cupping at 15,500 miles; this is very good life for tires on a heavy, high-speed touring bike.

I could never get more than 8,000 miles or so on the bias-ply Dunlops that were OEM on my '09 Street Glide and a set of Metzler touring tires I tried lasted no better. The rear would wear bald and the front would show severe cupping, which I attributed to to the heavy wheel/brake assembly and under-sprung forks on the FLHX. I finally mounted Michelin Commander IIs on the bike and was abble to get 10,000 miles on them before replacement.

I had the rear tire on the Chieftain replaced at Black Gold Indian in Odessa, TX, while traveling. I didn't notice until the next day, but they replaced the original Dunlap 180/60R16 radial with a Michelin Commander II 180/60B16 bias-ply. I suppose they didn't have the OEM Dunlop in stock. I wish they'd told me they were making a substitution, although under the circumstances, if the Commander was all they had that would fit, I'd have taken it. It seems to ride the same and I'll be watching closely to see if it lasts as long as the Dunlop radial. My understanding is that Indian went with the radial because of the higher load-rating of the Chieftain verses the other Chief models. I think I will try to have an OEM radial on hand for the next replacement. You'd think dealerships would keep normal replacement items like tires, drive belts, control levers, and mirrors in stock for the machines they sell but that has not been my experience, they have to order everything; H-D was the same way.
--- Randall
Randall
I think you going to like the commander II. I had them on my Road king when I traded it and had over 18k on the rear with a lot of tread left. When I wear out these stock tires on my chieftain, it will be Michelin commander II replacing them.
Tom
 

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Randall
I think you going to like the commander II. I had them on my Road king when I traded it and had over 18k on the rear with a lot of tread left. When I wear out these stock tires on my chieftain, it will be Michelin commander II replacing them.
Tom
I really didn't have a problem with the Commander II, they gave me the best tire life of anything I mounted on my '09 FLHX. I was a little disturbed that the Indian dealer in Odessa mounted something other than the factory stock tire without telling me about it, I mean, why pay dealership prices if you're not going to get OEM parts? The Michelins are very good tires.
--- Randall
 

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You should ask them why they did it. You might find that they were trying to do you a favor. Personally I would have loved it as I also ran the Commander II's on my flhtc and found them to be superior than anything else.
 

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Any of you ultra geez glide guys know of WWW for the fatty harleys? I've one seen thin white walls on them. I love the old art deco stuff but think it'd be smashing to have wide whites on the Chieftain and RM. No luck looking about or messaging dunlop to date.
 
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