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Breaking in new motorcycle tyres

Breaking in new motorcycle tyres

Your motorcycle or scooter tyres have reached a point where they need to be replaced. Once you've fitted your brand new tyres, all you have to do is get on the road. But not just any old way! Your new tyres need a break-in period without which the risk of a fall is possible. How to break in new motorcycle tyres? Read our tips to get you through this phase without any problems. 

Why do new tyres need to be broken in? 

The manufacture of tyres involves the use of moulds that give them the exact shape defined at the time of their design. When it comes to demoulding, it is necessary to use products that allow the tyre to be removed. As these products tend to leave a thin film of a shiny appearance on the tyre, it is important to take some precautions when riding until this film has completely gone. 

What can happen if this break-in phase is not taken into account? 

Some people have had this happen to them: after getting on their motorcycles with brand new tyres from the dealer, they quickly picked up speed, turned at too wide an angle and ended up in a horizontal position on the road... 

Regardless of the brand of tyres you buy, care should be taken when they are new so that you can use them to their full potential once the break-in period is over. 

What you should not do?

We will explain in a moment how to proceed to a smooth break-in. But let's start with an important recommendation: do not use abrasive products to rub the surface of the tyre in the hope of removing the film more quickly. Doing so could cause irreversible damage to your tyre. There is only one way to successfully break in a tyre and that's what we explain below. 

Breaking in new motorcycle tyres.

How to break in new motorcycle tyres?

Breaking in new motorcycle tyres simply requires riding, but with the following precautions: 

For road usage 

Start slowly and use gentle acceleration and braking, as well as low lean angles. Gradually increase the demands on the tyres until you get used to their performance. We recommend at least 100 km for this process. This applies to all our motorcycle and scooter tyres. 

The ideal conditions would be to make a trip that covers at least this distance and to ride on all types of roads. Why? Because in daily use, for example for commuting, one tends to put more angle on one side than the other, especially on roundabouts which imply a direction of rotation that is always the same. 

The break-in is still possible in this context, although it may take a little longer, until it is sufficiently applied to both angles. 

For off-road usage 

For some activities, the break-in time may be faster than on the road due to the more frictional surfaces involved (e.g. dirt for Cross Country). However, keep the target of 100km before you put any more strain on the performance of your new tyres to ensure that the break-in is complete. 

The break-in time may be faster in frictional surfaces such as dirt.

For track usage (NHS et road legal) 

- With tyre warmers: maintain the temperature with sufficient demand from the start. 

- Without tyre warmers: start slowly and use gentle acceleration and braking, as well as low lean angles. Gradually increase the demands on the tyres until you get used to their performance. 

For rain tires (NHS) 

Avoid strong acceleration, braking and cornering. Then gradually increase the pace of the race to get used to the performance of your tyres. 

Temperature influences the break-in time 

Depending on the ambient temperature, the break-in period can be shorter or longer. Driving in warm weather allows the tyres to reach their optimum grip level sooner. Break-in can also be done in cold weather, but just be aware that it will take longer for the tyres to be sufficiently broken in. 

Temperature influences the break-in time.

Keep the right pressure 

Keeping your tyres at the correct pressure (as recommended by your tyre manufacturer) is important throughout their life. In the break-in phase, when the tyres are still new, incorrect pressure could not only have a bad impact on short-term handling, but also on their long-term performance.  

How do you break-in when you only change one tyre? 

It may happen that you do not need to change both tyres at the same time. For example, if you have a flat tyre that cannot be repaired and the other tyre has a low level of wear, your dealer will probably advise you to change only one tyre. 

The break-in should be carried out with a new tyre in the same way as if you had changed both tyres. As long as the thin film is present on your new tyre, the break-in process is not complete and the same precautions should be taken as explained above. 

And after the 100 km? 

You should be able to push your vehicle a little more once you have driven 100 km, but be careful not to change driving modes abruptly. Be progressive until you gain full confidence in the performance of your tyres. 

"He who wishes to travel far, spares his mount", said the French playwright Jean Racine. And this proverb remains true for your motorcycle. 

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