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How should you ride a motorcycle when new tyres have just been fitted? How should you ride a motorcycle when new tyres have just been fitted?

  • Possible answers:

     
  • A. Carefully, until the shiny surface is worn off

  • B. By braking hard especially into bends

  • C. Normally, but with higher tyre pressures

  • D. By riding at faster than normal speeds

 
 

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Scrubbing in new motorcycle tyres

New tyres have a shiny finish which needs to wear off before the tyre will give the best grip. Take extra care if the road surface is wet or slippery.

New tyres are glossy because they look good in a showroom (it sells more tyres), manufacturers use chemicals to help release the rubber from the mold (although, most molds are now lined with Teflon), and in the curing process chemicals are used to help the rubber flow better to reduce defects.

Some tyre fitters use abrasives such as a sander, or chemicals such as acetone, to get rid of the shiny surface, but manufacturers don't recommend this as it can cause invisible damage to the integrity of the tyre.

The best way to wear in new tyres is a long distance ride that heats the tyre up evenly. You don't need to weave all over the road - just take it easy and as the tyre heats up it'll gradually shed its shiny surface. A ride of a hundred miles should be enough to do this, depending on the type of bike, the ambient temperature and the road surface.

Don't use any hard acceleration or braking until the tyre is properly warm. You can always stop and check the tyre temperature with your hand. If it's hot, you can try more acceleration and braking.