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Discussion Starter #1
Morning all,

One of the only things about my new '99 Fireblade is its 16inch front wheel.
Now, I've already found a few threads about retro fitting a 17inch front wheel (one thread deteriorated into an argument of VFR vs 600F3 vs whole new front end, but thats another story).
Any ways, has anyone simply dropped to a 120 or even a 110 front tyre?
Did it have any decent effect?

The reason I ask is that everything about the bike I love, except I find the steering a bit heavy and unresponsive.
 

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The reason I ask is that everything about the bike I love, except I find the steering a bit heavy and unresponsive.

Gulp! This guy must have the reaction times of Mr. V Rossi! Try hitting a cats eye at speed, then you will know why everyone with any sense of self preservation fits a 17'' front wheel.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Its more the speed/effort thru a flip-flop (ie, say a 65k left, and then straight into a 65k right).
Just thought a 120 might speed this up, as a cheaper/easier option to a new front wheel.
I'll do the front wheel conversion if I have to - just curious of the 120 idea.
 

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Morning all,

One of the only things about my new '99 Fireblade is its 16inch front wheel.
Now, I've already found a few threads about retro fitting a 17inch front wheel (one thread deteriorated into an argument of VFR vs 600F3 vs whole new front end, but thats another story).
Any ways, has anyone simply dropped to a 120 or even a 110 front tyre?
Did it have any decent effect?

The reason I ask is that everything about the bike I love, except I find the steering a bit heavy and unresponsive.

I would try to find out why it feels so heavy.
What other bikes are you comparing it to?
Does it have a steering damper fitted?
What tyre sizes and types are you running?
How worn are the tyres?
And sign of abnormal wear on either tyre?
What tyre pressures are you running?
What are your suspension settings?
Has either end of the bike been raised or lowered?
Any indication of fork seals leaking?
Steering head bearings not too tight?
How much drag are you getting from your front brakes when you spin the wheel?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I would try to find out why it feels so heavy.
What other bikes are you comparing it to? My '83 GPz750, My '06 M109r, My '98 600 Fazer
Does it have a steering damper fitted? Nope
What tyre sizes and types are you running? Corsa III's. 180/17 rear, 130/16 front.
How worn are the tyres? Brand new(-ish)
And sign of abnormal wear on either tyre? Nope
What tyre pressures are you running? 36 front, 42 rear
What are your suspension settings? Off the top of my head not sure, but I'm about to take it to my local suspension specialist (yes, I'd thought of that too :) )
Has either end of the bike been raised or lowered? Nope
Any indication of fork seals leaking? Nope
Steering head bearings not too tight? Not that I know of, but good point.
How much drag are you getting from your front brakes when you spin the wheel? None, tho dont have a front paddock stand to really test.

Hope that helps :)
 

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I would try to find out why it feels so heavy.
What other bikes are you comparing it to? My '83 GPz750, My '06 M109r, My '98 600 Fazer
Does it have a steering damper fitted? Nope
What tyre sizes and types are you running? Corsa III's. 180/17 rear, 130/16 front.
How worn are the tyres? Brand new(-ish)
And sign of abnormal wear on either tyre? Nope
What tyre pressures are you running? 36 front, 42 rear
What are your suspension settings? Off the top of my head not sure, but I'm about to take it to my local suspension specialist (yes, I'd thought of that too :) )
Has either end of the bike been raised or lowered? Nope
Any indication of fork seals leaking? Nope
Steering head bearings not too tight? Not that I know of, but good point.
How much drag are you getting from your front brakes when you spin the wheel? None, tho dont have a front paddock stand to really test.

Hope that helps :)

I don't know what an M109R is and I haven't ridden the FZ600 but the GPZ750 steers like a cargo ship :)
The 900RR certainly steers more nimbly than the GPZ and probably the FZ as well.
The profile of the tyre is the important bit. I assume you mean 180/55 rear but what profile is the front?
Otherwise, it all seems as it should.
Have you put a cable-tie on a fork leg to confirm you are using the full stroke?
Any chance you can ride another '98/'99 and see if it feels the same as yours?
 

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Well, I am one of those that has no issues with the 16" front wheel. It would be nice to have a standard size wheel to allow me to have nice matching tyres, but apart from that I have had no issues with it. I've done about 30,000 miles on it.

If it were a simple swap, I would have done it for the tyre choice, but for no other reason.

Are there any tyres that would fit with a 120 or 110 profile?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Are there any tyres that would fit with a 120 or 110 profile?
After just spending an hour searching, this quote right here just shot to sh*t my theory.
No, there doesnt seem to be any 120/16 tyres of any decent quality, let alone ones with a matching 180 rear.

Thanks for your time anyway guys.
 

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After just spending an hour searching, this quote right here just shot to sh*t my theory.
No, there doesnt seem to be any 120/16 tyres of any decent quality, let alone ones with a matching 180 rear.

Thanks for your time anyway guys.
:rotfl::rotfl::rotfl: sorry to piss on your cornflakes!

I gave up on matching tyres a long time ago - I do mainly road riding, so I would like to use road tyres. However I have to use a sports tyre on the front and a road rear (by road, I mean 'Sport-Touring').

There are decent enough tyres for the 16" front - I'm currently on a Metzeler M3 and have an Avon VP2 Sport ready to repace it. I currently have an Avon Storm Ultra 2 on the back.

Unless you have access to everything required to swap to a 17" front, I would do a good few miles on the standard one to see how you find it. That's what matters.
 

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After just spending an hour searching, this quote right here just shot to sh*t my theory.
No, there doesnt seem to be any 120/16 tyres of any decent quality, let alone ones with a matching 180 rear.

Thanks for your time anyway guys.

You don't need a matching rear, any rear will do.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Personal preference to have matching tyres.
Ive had very poor experiences in the past with mis-matched tyres
 

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Well, I am one of those that has no issues with the 16" front wheel. It would be nice to have a standard size wheel to allow me to have nice matching tyres, but apart from that I have had no issues with it. I've done about 30,000 miles on it.

If it were a simple swap, I would have done it for the tyre choice, but for no other reason.

Are there any tyres that would fit with a 120 or 110 profile?

I agree, I have no issues with the 16" wheel either.

I assume you're currently running the 130/70 on the front?

Pirelli Sport Demon is available in 100/90, 110/70, 110/90, 120/70 and 120/80 so could be a good choice if you want to see how different profiles affect the bike.
SPORT DEMON , Motorcycle Tyres - PIRELLI
 

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Personal preference to have matching tyres.
Ive had very poor experiences in the past with mis-matched tyres

I've mixed tyre types and brands for 25 years and never had any dramas at all on the road or track. Including slicks, race, road and touring tyres from Bridgestone, Shinko, Dunlop, Pirelli and Michelin. I also reverse both tyres on the track to get maximum life out of them.
Never mix radials with cross-ply though.
 

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Personal preference to have matching tyres.
Ive had very poor experiences in the past with mis-matched tyres
The only matched tyres I've had on the Blade were on there when I got it - and they were the worst ones I've had!

There are some decent tyres available if you want matched ones.
 

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The only matched tyres I've had on the Blade were on there when I got it - and they were the worst ones I've had!

There are some decent tyres available if you want matched ones.
Agreed i've used mixed tyres for the last 3 years.... probably because i found a balance that suited me pirelli on the front dunlop on the rear.....
 

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My RR had heavy steering issues when the front tire was low on air pressure, Just a thought. Bladeracer has covered the other possable issues
 
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