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Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen rim

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Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen rim

PostAuthor: Jake » Mon Jun 03, 2019 6:19 pm

There have been many times someone will ask “ What’s the biggest rear tire I can use ?”

Although there will be some argument over what you can run, there is a maximum size that is recommended and that is a 150/90.

Let’s disregard whether the tire will rub the drive shaft housing and look at the rim size and what size tire it can safely accommodate.

A VIrago rim is three inches wide, the following chart shows the recommended tire sizes for a three inch rim.

rim size.jpg


You can see from the chart, that the largest recommended size is a 150/90.

Why does it matter ?

Bykermom aptly explains the reason.

The rim is a fixed width, and motorcycle rims have a different bead seal shape than cars. So if you put too wide a tire on your rim, even if it clears the swing arm/chain/frame, you may simply create a situation where you loose the seal at the bead in a turn, and the bike will go down. Sudden rapid deflation from a too wide tire has killed a few bikers. It has injured MANY bikers.


If you want to visualize the difference between tire sizes and the speed differences, you can check one or all of the tire calculators I’ve linked below.

https://tiresize.com/calculator/

https://tiresize.com/comparison/ (side by side visualization)

http://www.csgnetwork.com/tireinfo4calc.html

https://www.tire-size-calculator.info/

https://www.tacomaworld.com/tirecalc?ti ... -150-90r15 (side by side visualization)

Largest recommended size for a 3 inch rim, speed may vary with different brands :

150-90-15 vs 140-90-15 mph.jpg
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Last edited by Jake on Sat Jun 15, 2019 11:06 am, edited 6 times in total.
Reason: updated links added screenshot, title amended
_______________________________________________________________________
“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you in trouble.
It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

~Mark Twain


There is an old Chinese proverb - "Man with one watch knows the time. Man with two, not sure."
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Re: Maximum tire size for the 2nd Gen

PostAuthor: Jake » Tue Jun 04, 2019 7:33 am

I added an addition link and a tire comparison screenshot.
_______________________________________________________________________
“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you in trouble.
It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

~Mark Twain


There is an old Chinese proverb - "Man with one watch knows the time. Man with two, not sure."
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Re: Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen

PostAuthor: Arjay » Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:56 pm

does 150/90 rub driveshaft case?

As to the bead unseating from being too wide, is this the 90 part?

What are the meanings 150/90-15 ?

found good link explaining tire dimensions.
https://www.revzilla.com/common-tread/m ... -101-guide

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Re: Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen

PostAuthor: Jake » Tue Jun 04, 2019 5:44 pm

Arjay wrote:does 150/90 rub driveshaft case?


Bstig60 says it doesn’t

Arjay wrote:As to the bead unseating from being too wide, is this the 90 part?


No, that would be anything above 150 for your bike.

Arjay wrote:What are the meanings 150/90-15 ?


150 means 150mm, the width of the tire.

90 means the sidewall height of the tire is equal to 90% of of the width of the tire. 90% of 150 is 135, so the sidewall is 135mm.

15 is your rim size 15 inches.
_______________________________________________________________________
“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you in trouble.
It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

~Mark Twain


There is an old Chinese proverb - "Man with one watch knows the time. Man with two, not sure."
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Re: Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen

PostAuthor: Flyingdog » Wed Jun 05, 2019 2:32 am

Jake wrote:
Arjay wrote:does 150/90 rub driveshaft case?


Bstig60 says it doesn’t

:yup:

I'll second that, been running a 150/90 since the eighties. But....I do remember coming across a couple (150/90) that were 1/8" too wide, cuz of the tire's shoulder. IIRC they weren't touring tires.
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Re: Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen

PostAuthor: 2700xx » Sat Jun 15, 2019 9:15 am

it is possible to install a 18 inch wheel on a second generation virago, i used a rim from an early 80's 4 cylinder 550-650 , i don't remember exactly which but a yamaha shaft drive is a yamaha shaft drive, it bolts in, had to shim it a little to the right but it works great, dropped rpm's a lot and pulls good, it's like finding a 6th gear, no kidding. 50 mph at 3k rpm. i used the tallest 18 inch tire that was available and it fit, not any room left over to speak of but nothing rubs. being taller it goes on the center stand easier. thought maybe somebody would like to know.

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Re: Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen

PostAuthor: Jake » Sat Jun 15, 2019 10:09 am

2700xx wrote:it is possible to install a 18 inch wheel on a second generation virago, i used a rim from an early 80's 4 cylinder 550-650 , i don't remember exactly which but a yamaha shaft drive is a yamaha shaft drive, it bolts in, had to shim it a little to the right but it works great, dropped rpm's a lot and pulls good, it's like finding a 6th gear, no kidding. 50 mph at 3k rpm. i used the tallest 18 inch tire that was available and it fit, not any room left over to speak of but nothing rubs. being taller it goes on the center stand easier. thought maybe somebody would like to know.


Begging your pardon, but this thread is about what the maximum size tire can put on a stock rim. I should have made that clear from the beginning.

If you have information about an 18 inch wheel that will fit, start a new thread with details.



EDIT: The title has been amended from “ Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen “ to “ Maximum tire size facts for the 2nd Gen rim “.
_______________________________________________________________________
“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you in trouble.
It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

~Mark Twain


There is an old Chinese proverb - "Man with one watch knows the time. Man with two, not sure."
User avatar
Jake
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Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2007 3:18 pm
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