Motoz Tractionator GPS

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Flappy613

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      After searching for some time (12000 miles) for tires for my Tiger 800 XCx I had so far gone through two sets each of Karoo 3 by Michelin and Heidenau K60 Scouts, which are both well regarded tires for the Tiger. If money was no object, hands down the Karoos. They have a softer compound and a far more aggressive tread pattern without the huge center stripe of the Heidenaus. The Heidenaus however are made of ex-east bloc rubber and are hard as Iron which is great in the frequently sharp edged and broken rock we find here in the Pacific Northwest US.

     Since I’d pretty much ironed out my riding habits by now I contacted Eric via PM for his advice on tires as the KTM ongoing project bike is not all that different in respect to size/weight. He recommended the Motoz Tractionator GPS based upon my self identified needs and I purchased them to be fitted at my Tiger’s 12k service.

    This was the end of September last year so any impressions I write of these will be strictly cold or inclement weather as I have not had time to get to anywhere warm yet. Most riding was done under wet conditions with temperatures ranging from 50 to 34 degrees farenheit. In other words: wretched.

     After re mounting the balanced tires I took the bike for a ride and immediately it stepped out a bit in the rear on a hard left on recently wet pavement which served as a nice reminder of why we take it easy with NEW TIRES!   After this happy refresher initial impressions were favorable on tar at any rate, no serious vibes even up to a hundred although a lot more “vague feeling” then the Heidenaus up front. Very difficult to describe this other than when on pavement at speed they seem to hunt more than the Scouts did to find their line making it feel a bit more vague. Might have a bit to do with how much weight it took to balance the front (over 50 grams!) .  
When on gravel or hard packed clay mud however, they start to shine. Every bit as good as the Scouts especially in lateral traction through gravel. Very confidence inspiring to know that some sharp edged rock or trail obstruction won’t wreck these tires which in turn makes for relaxed riding. As testament to that I’ll submit that even although we’ve had record bad weather here in the Portland area this Winter I’ve managed to put on over 6000 miles since September 27th when I got them.  I wouldn’t ride them in the snow but through water, mud, gravel or wet pavement snakes they are no scarier than the other tires I’ve ridden, something I was a bit concerned about given Oregon’s reputation for rain and inclement weather.

     My riding generally takes me from sea level to about 3000-4000 feet on Forestry Service and County roads with semi-maintained gravel or mixed gravel mud being the norm with broken and abused pavement thrown in for good measure (Pothole tests). I would and will purchase these tires again, 6000 miles with less than 5mm of wear is unheard of in an ADV tire of this type!

Attached are a couple of pics from when the tires were new and after the over six thousand I’ve put on them.IMG_0073.jpg

 

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, I hope these pictures give everyone a Great American Novels' worth. 
That is over 6000 miles there, Ladies and Gentlemen and that equals a return sale from yours truly.  They maybe aren't the best gripping tires or the most aggressive but they aren't worn out either and for me that equals value.

     In summation: a compromise tire for a compromise motorcycle. Neither one will excel at anything but both are outstanding value within their limits. I would imagine big Beemers would benefit from these as well but I know that Tigers and Katooms with big loads and 70/30 or 80/20 bias would. As it looks like these will last I will of course follow up with dry weather and Desert use reports this Summer. I do not expect to change my opinions of them very much and expect that they will work as well as they have in other loose surfaces, but we'll see. Expect updates as necessary over this Spring/Summer as I wear them out.

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