Well I decided to take a chance on new tires and ordered up some Shinko 005 Advance’s in 120/70-17 and 170/60-17. I went with the 170 rear instead of the normal 160 for the Versys as I’ve read some reviews that they ran a little skinny and a little flat in profile. Squeezing them in a little helped with both issues. Being cheap as hell if found the best price at Motosport on line.
As well as being cheap I’m stubborn and figured out that I could change a tire myself and save a few bucks doing it. Below is my step by step process (front tire, rear was the same) only using home built tools and a few tire irons. (picked those up for $7.95 a pair at a local bicycle shop.)
First order of business was to order up the tires. Place the order on a Sunday on line with Motosport and they were here the following Tuesday. Total Canadian was $286.76 shipping, taxes and duty all in.
I then made a bead breaker using a hunk of laminated plywood left over from one of my guitar building projects and a steel pipe I had lying around. 3 screws in the leg of my work bench made sure I had a good purchase on the bead and variable heights for differing tires.
For support of the tire while breaking the bead I had the mould from the same guitar making project. It worked perfect. Held the tire well and never came close to the rotors.
To hold the tire to work on it once the bead was loose I decided to go with a 14” tire from the wrecker, a whole lot of Alabama chrome (duct tape) and a long threaded bolt with maple blocks to protect the rim while tightening.
Once secured, the grunt work began. Three tire irons did the trick. For protection of the rims I had to cut up one of the left over snow sleds from the kid’s winter fun, but it will be replaced with a bigger faster and stronger model once the snow flies. Sorry I don’t have any pictures of the tire irons working but it was hard to take a picture using three hands.
Getting the tire back on was just a matter of reversing the process. First bead easy, second bead required a helping hand from the wife. To balance I improvised a bearing set up that kept the friction low and found the low spot. Making sure the white tire mark lined up with the valve stem during installation was a huge pay off. The tire was balanced close enough for my use. I know some might say that any imbalance is no good but I’m not doing 150 mph on the Versys.
Tire on and clean. I’ll post up a review of the tires once they’re scrubbed in and I’ve taken it over Sumas Mountain. I know a few here have talked about Shinko, some bad some good, but I’ve never seen anyone actually using them.
Hope this gives more the idea to try out new things in the home shop. Cheers.