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KTM 144/150sx What Tires Should I Run? Please Help!

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I have a ktm 144sx updated to a 150sx with TONS of mods and engine work. I would like to know what tires to run. I ride hard packed tracks and sandy tracks. I mostly ride very dark dirt tracks but also ride allot of light sandy tracks. all the tracks get tilled up pretty good for a race day. I would like to know if I should run an mx51 rear and mx31 front or mx51FA front or what combo and what size tires. Please help... (I would like to run dunlops)

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You're seeking exactly what a lot of people have been seeking, a good tire which works in the soft stuff, but also can deal with hard pack without chunking.

Per my Pirelli MX32 and Michelin MS3 test, the MX32 is an excellent combo for that sort of riding.

The Dunlop MX51 rear is a good mid-range tire and it doesn't fall apart that easily. I'd put it right up against the Pirelli MX32 in terms of grip when new and on good groomed tracks. However, once you add sand to the mix, the MX51 rear falls off a cliff really quickly compared to the MX32. Its to do with knob stiffness and carcass stiffness. The Pirelli's have a super soft carcass and hard knobs, which allows the tire to compress when exiting a corner and create a wider contact patch at the same time as digging into the soil beneath the sand. The Dunlop MX51 has a stiffer carcass and likewise, when exiting a corner in the sand, it generally stays in its position with a slightly changed contact patch. Again, all due to sidewall thickness.

Don't get me wrong, the Dunlop MX51 is a great rear tire, its one of my favorites. However, there isn't a matching front which works that's in the "MX" series of tires. The 71 is too much of a hardpack speciality tire, doesn't work at all in mud/wet conditions and barely works in loam. The MX31 is the best bet, but even that tire doesn't perform anything like the Pirelli MX32's front in the sand. The MX31 front works great in loamy conditions but take it much further away from that and it will be struggling to give you decent grip. I had a lot of front washes when I did my MX31 testing on my 144 at the beginning of 2012 before moving to the Pirelli's.

So... my suggestion... Pirelli MX32 front and rear. Try the standard 80/100-21 front and new FIM spec 110/85-19 rear first.

There isn't anything wrong with trying the Dunlop MX51 110/90-19 rear and MX31 80/100-21 front as well. I just think they're a distant second best to the Pirelli's. :shrug:

Remember, "our" bikes come with the Pirelli MX32's stock and that tire was developed in conjunction with KTM.

Edited by tye1138

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A lot of guys run the bridgestones 403/404 mid terrain tire. I personally like it better then the mx51 and mx31, ive never tried the pirelli mx32.

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FWIW I have some very sandy sections on my track, and some harder pack in the low areas. I'm not a tire guru by any means, but I have MX 51's that came on my 13 150, and I have a set of MX 31's on my YZ 144. The MX 31's do better in changing conditions imo. I set the 144 up with a 110/80/19 rear and the grip in sand/mud is incredible, and it seems to do nearly as well in the harder pack sections of my track. I've not tested any other tires to speak of.

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