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Kings vs Wings (KT-966 vs oem Trailwings)

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Finally, with 7000 miles on the original Trailwings, I decided to try the Kings KT-966 tires. I bought them online from Motorcycle Superstore. Front size ordered was the 3.00-21 and the rear size was the 5.10-17.

Mounted up, the KT-966 is the same diameter as the oem tire, yeilding the same 10% speedometer error measured by GPS. However, the KT-966 is narrower by at least a 1/4".

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The rear KT-966 mounted up to be almost the same exact width as the oem Trailwings. However, the KT-966 has a significantly large circumferance that changed the final drive ratio, just like adding taller gearing. Fuel mileage also went down some, around 8mpg lower on my usual commute.

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In a little over a week I have put 350 miles on then. They show no significant wear. On dry pavement they have good manners, not quite as good as the Trailwings, but still smooth and quiet. I am still slowly but surely testing their lean angle. I almost have the "chicken strips" off. On wet pavement, they don't instill much confidence. They feel like they are walking sideways in the wet corners, where the Trailwings still felt absolutely planted. I haven't yet had a chance to head off road with them yet, but in the "horse pasture" test, the Kings are way better than the Wings. Still no MX tire though.

For my use of mostly commuting, with a few off road trips here and there, the Kings should prove to be a good all-arounder. Kind of like the DR-650 itself!

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7k on the deathwings :thumbsup:

I only got half of that.

Using D606's now. Got about 1500 on them. Still better than the DW's ever were off road. And now they are really good street tires.

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I'm about to make the same change with a set of Kings sitting in the garage. What I don't get is why the big drop in mpg. A friend changed his rear to Kenda and said the same thing happened to him.

Did you use the same tubes?

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I'm also blown away by your TW miles. Thanks for the link, good price and a tire that fits my riding.

-Dennis

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I'm about to make the same change with a set of Kings sitting in the garage. What I don't get is why the big drop in mpg. A friend changed his rear to Kenda and said the same thing happened to him.

Did you use the same tubes?

I bought new heavy duty tubes so I could keep the oem's for spares. But the oem tubes seemed to be the same weight as the Fly Racing tubes I bought.

I fueled up this morning and calculations show 51.5mpg. I was getting 55~56mpg.

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I fueled up this morning and calculations show 51.5mpg. I was getting 55~56mpg.

Your new tires probably have a larger diameter (and hence rolling circumference) than the old tires so they go farther per tire revolution. The speedometer and odometer don't know the difference in tires. You're probably getting exactly the same fuel mileage because of the variation in tire size and how your distance traveled per gallon is determined. That or you are riding a lot faster and harder playing with the new tires. Take your pick.

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I also put the Kings 966 tires on my DR when it came time for new tires. I also noticed the front tire being slightly more narrow. I have about 3000 miles on the back tire so far and looks to still be in good shape.....about 1500 miles on the front and still look almost new. Riding on dirt and gravel, the Kings do feel a little more secure. As you noted, the rear tire just feels like it could slide out on you if you pushed too hard on the pavement in the turns, not too bad but just enough to keep you from treating it like a supermoto. I must admit, I have not noticed any change in the fuel mileage; your drop in mileage has me puzzled.

Don

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Another Kings guy here,, With HD tubes.....

Heres the Rotation debate,,,,,,

I went through this when I got the tires there is no rotation mark on them...

When the stearship mounted them, it seemed backwards to me.....

I went with Miklos and that direction as to push the dirt out to the edge of the tire and not scoop it in the center of the tire...

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Or the other way;

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I am almost 100% sure that the speedo is 5mph off...no GPS

I found one of them carts that show you your speed,,,,, so I went by it 2 times !

1st zipping aling showing 55 and cart said 50,,,,,

2nd was slow at 35 showing,,, cart said 30,,,,,,

I wanted to blast by it say about 80mph:p

But i figgured the was the fuzz watching me turn around again & again...

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Nice I am sold on the Kings.??? what size on the rear 4.60-17

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Another Kings guy here,, With HD tubes.....

Heres the Rotation debate,,,,,,

I went through this when I got the tires there is no rotation mark on them...

When the stearship mounted them, it seemed backwards to me.....

I went with Miklos and that direction as to push the dirt out to the edge of the tire and not scoop it in the center of the tire...

I know what you mean..... if you look at the Kings tire picture of the pair they are sitting like Miklos tires are mounted in the shot. I asked the mechanic that installed and balanced my tires and he told me that he has "mounted tons of these and everyone likes them mounted this way" Maybe he was just BS'n me once I pointed out how they were sitting in the picture after he mounted them the other way around. Probably. Still, they work well and haven't flown to pieces in the 4,000 miles I've put on them. They corner well enough for my 51 year old self preservation alarm to go off in my head just about daily in my canyon run and I haven't been spit off the high side...... yet. :thumbsup: I have to agree the rear is a bit sketchy in the hard braking department but that does not seem to flow through in acceleration. I can crank it on quite early while laid over with no sudden lost of traction. They are sticky enough for me to be able to stick right with most of the crotch rockets in the tighter stuff without issue. The front feels very planted to me. In the dirt they are way better than the TW's altough I haven't moto'd the thing. They have given me no reason not to buy another Kings rear tire when this one goes away considering the type of riding I do.

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Long term report:

Just removed the Kings KT966's at 7000 miles. They could have made it to 8K, but with the rainy season here, I wanted more wet traction. Yep, wet traction, the major drawback to these tires for me here in the Pacific NorthWET. Dry, these tries have real good traction and can be really pushed in the corners on asphalt. But as soon as its a little wet, watch out. If I lived in a dry area, I probably would replace with new 966's. I'm not "hard core" off road, but do play around the logging roads and clearcuts and they did fine there for a 50/50 tire.

New tires are TKC80's.

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Well I loved the Kings,,, hated the Wings...

Had a trip this summer and went with all street tire this summer....Avon speed rated I think it was....

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Man what a change on the road.. Knife like turns and super smooth on the super slab... Must admit the panic stoppage was no fish tales like before....

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Road the ever lovin' Dog Piss outta that 650... Thank God I put on the 16CS !

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Will go Kings again in a snap.......

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Will go Kings again in a snap.......

Kings is out of the DOT approved tire business - off road only now.

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