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My friend's '89 GL1500 has been stood in storage, unridden, for the best part of 2 years. He asked me a few weeks back to take the bike out and to use it as my commuter bike for a while. My normal commuter is my '88 SuperMagna.
I had no problem with this suggestion, but with being off the road for so long, it needed to be checked over for anything that may have stopped working while being unused.

First thing was dodgy front indicators. This turned out to be corrosion on a block connector. dismantle, clean and re-assemble and all is well again.
The front fog/marker lights were out too. This was caused by a faulty relay. Replaced the relay and that issue was fixed.
Next was the inoperative brake lights. Again this was corrosion on the rear brake pedal switch. Cleaned and dry lubricated the switch, a bit of hand operation and it was good to go.
Oil was grand, although it should be changed. Brake fluid appears OK too, but a change should be done soon. Cooling system is tight and leakfree (as far as I could assertain).

My main concern however, is the tyres. The rear is date stamped 4805 while the front is date stamped 1306.
I have mentioned the age of the tyres to him, but he says ''There's plenty of tread left on them yet, they'll be grand''.
Personally, I wouldn't ride on tyres over 5 years old.
A cool day, a bit of wet on the road, a tight bend, a bit too much speed, the notorious spilt diesel on the road, a mixture of any of the above and you're asking for trouble.

What do you guys say?
Change them? Keep them on ('cos there's plenty of tread left)?
How old would be too old for motorcycle tyres?
 

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My friend's '89 GL1500 has been stood in storage, unridden, for the best part of 2 years. He asked me a few weeks back to take the bike out and to use it as my commuter bike for a while. My normal commuter is my '88 SuperMagna.
I had no problem with this suggestion, but with being off the road for so long, it needed to be checked over for anything that may have stopped working while being unused.

First thing was dodgy front indicators. This turned out to be corrosion on a block connector. dismantle, clean and re-assemble and all is well again.
The front fog/marker lights were out too. This was caused by a faulty relay. Replaced the relay and that issue was fixed.
Next was the inoperative brake lights. Again this was corrosion on the rear brake pedal switch. Cleaned and dry lubricated the switch, a bit of hand operation and it was good to go.
Oil was grand, although it should be changed. Brake fluid appears OK too, but a change should be done soon. Cooling system is tight and leakfree (as far as I could assertain).

My main concern however, is the tyres. The rear is date stamped 1307 while the front is date stamped 4808.
I have mentioned the age of the tyres to him, but he says ''There's plenty of tread left on them yet, they'll be grand''.
Personally, I wouldn't ride on tyres over 5 years old.
A cool day, a bit of wet on the road, a tight bend, a bit too much speed, the notorious spilt diesel on the road, a mixture of any of the above and you're asking for trouble.

What do you guys say?
Change them? Keep them on ('cos there's plenty of tread left)?
How old would be too old for motorcycle tyres?

Check for any stress fractures or fatiguing of the sidewalls. I wouldn't have any problem using 5 year old tires provided they performed correctly. A safe road test will make up your mind on new tires. I am sure there are many of us that have ridden on tires that need replacing that were less than 5 years old:lash:
 

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If all is dandy with checks and it is under 10 years old they are probably fine. If over 5 and showing any signs like mentioned, cracking, etc, it is a good adea to play it safe with new shoes.
Rich
 

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I have ridden on tires well over 10 years old with no problems, as long as they are not cracked. I wouldn't do it on a sportbike, because rubber hardens over time. But I no longer ride sportbikes. I put over 500 miles on the ORIGINAL spare on my '72 Pinto wagon, and had no problems. It was a 40 year old tire, but had been kept out of the sun all that time. I know many classic car owners who buy tires they do not expect to need for a long time, for fear they may not be available by then. They can be stored in complete darkness in black plastic bags at room temperature. They will stay like new forever.

The problem I have with your tires, is was the bike sitting on them the whole time? I ruined a set of tires (fortunately cheap ones) on an old project car that sat for 2 years on them. Even though I kept them inflated, they flat spotted due to sitting in the same place for to long. Lesson learned. Move the tires a little once in a while.
 

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If you know the history of the tires from day-1, that is one thing. Storage, use, etc can be a huge factor. Do not store them near electric stuff (like a freezer) because they emit ozone which breaks rubber down.
But an unknown history? Sorry. NO pneumatic tire will last forever in your garage.
I know MANY people who have never had an issue running old tires on stuff. But, the science is that the rubber does degrade over time at a level not visible to the naked eye. Period. That is why Goodyear has a company policy- they are NOT supposed to mount a tire, even if brand new, if it's over 10 years old. Other manufacturers and installers have similar policies for good reason.

Two notes:

1- My father-in-law bought a class-c rv, a little guy on a Dodge van chassis. The tires were inspected by a local very reputable shop, had nitrogen installed, but they did not check the date codes. Probably because the tires looked like new. They were 13 years old. They drove it on several trips just fine. Then they took my two daughters camping. They blew two of the tires (at different times about 10miles apart) on the return trip (60 miles) and a third then started separating. All due to age and deterioration that can not be seen. He said he was going to replace the 3 tires. I gave him a 'my daughters will not be going camping any more with you look' and told him he NEEDED to buy all 6 tires. They were all bought at once before and look what has happened to 1/2 of them already. You want to keep the 'good' 3? Don't even go there.

2- One of my 'side jobs' if you will is that of a driving instructor. This is now part of the curriculum because it is far cheaper to replace a tire every ten years, worn out or not, than to roll that particular die.

Oh- and one of my supervisors had the same thing happen to a 5th wheel he bought. About the same age as my dad-in-laws, but when the 2nd tire blew it took the leveling jack off the bottom of the trailer. They were on I-5.

This is one of those areas where wisdom dictates discretion.
Rich
 

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If all is dandy with checks and it is under 10 years old they are probably fine. If over 5 and showing any signs like mentioned, cracking, etc, it is a good adea to play it safe with new shoes.
+1

If there's a concern, at LEAST replace the front tire.
 

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I will respectfully, from a safety standpoint, disagree with that.
If a 20 year old tire was crack free the rubber is still way not what it used to be, so where would you draw the line?
Rich
 

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Nice video! More people need to take this issue seriously.

I went to a local tire shop and asked for a new tire to take pictures of to incorporate in to the class I teach (ppt presentation). The tire they loaned me was already two years old, but being sold as 'brand-new'.

The only problem with the video- that 'even experienced drivers had control issues.' In a car (truck, what ever 4-wheeled vehicle) a blowout should be a non-event. We spent a day on the local track with Michelin technitions blowing up tires at speed and learning what to do. We did it at speeds from 30 to 80 MPH. My run was at 65. If you are mid corner it is a little more interesting with one less point of contact/control, but anything close to a straight line- No problem at all. Front or rear.

How old is too old? No concrete numbers in the industry yet, but the general consensus of the pros is 5-10 years. And this is not a money making driven issue by the tire companies. On a bike, one blowout is half your tire number. If you choose to ride them too old and one fails, you will not know until you wake up from the coma and learn what happened.

Nope- I will play it safe with this issue.
 

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generally the daily normally used bike tires get damage in 20,000 to 30,000km but it also depend on your bike tiers condition how much you used it. you can check the manufacturing date on tires on it's sidewall.
 

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Thnx for sharing this. I had a look at the date code on my sidecar tire - it had plenty of wear left on it, but was 17 years old! I replaced it!
 

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Thnx for sharing this. I had a look at the date code on my sidecar tire - it had plenty of wear left on it, but was 17 years old! I replaced it!
That, my friend, is a good call!
:claps:
 
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