Biggest back tire for XR650r

Hi! New here, Seem to have problems keeping air in my 650 stock tires, hopefully someone has discovered biggest/best back tire for the xr650, Currently in my shed on flat, going to order new front/rear here shortly. Tried multiple pressures, still popping tires, lots of sharp rocks here on Kodiak Island.

It sounds like you have 2 issues. The first is what tire to try next. The second is what is a good tire pressure to run in rocky terrain.

The answer is there isn't any one specific tire for sure for you. It depends on what you want to ride. The guys in California riding in the desert are running differnt tires with a different pressure then I am out here on the east coast. With that said I'm going to try out MT-21's soon. My friend says he will run the MT-21's next on his bike xr650r. He has been running them on his xr500 for years now. They are more of an Enduro type tire with a good tread.

Good luck with what ever type of tire you go with.

I have some experience with the MT21's and they are a great dual sport tire. They are good off road, (when new), and impressive on pavement, (worn down some).

Currently I have two sets of rims for my 650R, MT21's on one set and S12's on the other. When I pack up the BRP and head off for a couple of days riding in the UP it is the MT21's. When we are tearing up the woods here in the NLP the S12's are the best I've used.

Great to get some quick responses! What size rear tire are you guys running? Stock is a 110-100-18. I'm running the stock sprocket combo, I believe it's a 14/48-but a little lower aspect ratio wouldn't hurt, so maybe a 120/90-18?

The X-11 article made me remember the days when almost every motorcycle came stock with a trials tread. I went amazing places with those tires! Don't think they come in anything bigger/wider than a 4.50-18 though. I've always been a sucker for the meanest looking back tire I can fit.

Will order something here shortly, and do an update.

hey man,

this is what i run in the desert. no rear flats knock on wood:

1. dunlop D739 A/T Desert (make sure it's the A/T Desert and not the regular d739)

2. Bridgestone Heavy Duty InnerTubes. Pay a little more and buy Bridgestone or Moose, don't try to save money and buy Cheng Shin, they suck. You have to run Heavy Duty Inner Tubes.

3. Take your old inner tube and cut a slit right down the middle. Cut out the valve stem. Put this "shell" over the heavy duty tube and install.

4. Use liberal amounts of baby powder on the tube and inside the rim. The baby poweder helps the tube slide a bit and avoids snake bite flats.

5. Drill out another hole for a second rim lock. directly across from the 1st. Purchase second rim lock and install. this will help hold your tire in place if you get a flat so you can ride it out.

6. Run 18-19 lbs of pressure in the rear.

Great advise secretatlas! :)

Dude! You could kick Sadam's a** with that tire set up! :)

So far the best tire I used for rocks has been the 140-80x18 Michelin Baja. Its a DOT tire too. Most of the time I run S-12's 140-80x18. The biggest difference between the two is the spacing of the knobs and side wall thickness. S-12 works better in sand but is a bitch to run flat. The Baja is real stiff and hooks up great on everything except deep sand but works OK when it's new. I run 18 PSI and never get rear flats unless it's a nail.

Thanks for info! Just ordered Metzeler MCE Karoo 140/80-18, and Moose heavy duty tube from M.A.W. Shipping is a nightmare here, but have had good luck with this company. Secret Atlas has good install procedures! Lots of the mentioned tires come in a 18" max of 110-100 and I wanted a little more, my swingarm width appears to be about 6" at a quick glance, and tire looks a little offset to the right. I'll admit that in the past I have ordered too wide of a tire and ended up trimming knobs(no store here to run down to)I think that was on my son's old Suzuki 80. Slowly getting the XR to run better, the latest edition was a Staintune exhaust. :) I like it. One other XR650 here on the island, opened up, on the beach at top end mine will walk by it at a brisk pace, and I outweigh the other rider by about 80lbs. Will update this tire's arrival & installation.

I just picked a Karoo for a dual sport ride I have comming up. We raced the 1000 with that tire and seemed to work OK. It sucks in the sand thou.

Just a note, d739, 120/100-18 will just slightly hit-- O.K. after first ride! (Chain length is a factor)

No go on the Terraflex. It did not fit well in the swingarm and I was not about to start cutting knobs. It's also not the same config as the ones I used to run in early 90's on my CR500. The old ones were lower profile and had harder knobs. The new ones are higher and have HUGE knobs that are softer. It was very squirly on the BRP and I hated it. I had to put 30lbs of pressure into it to keep it stable. Took it off right away. I ran a Kenda Trackmaster for most of last season. It hooks up great and lasted pretty long even with some highway miles. I swithed to a MT-21 but did not get to ride it before selling it to a bud. I will get to try it this summer though. Once the stock 402 gets trashed on my KTM (probably about 50 miles) I'm going with the Michelin Baja in 140-80.

moredesert, do you run the Karoo or Baja on the front, or something else?

I ain't skeered no more! The Metzeler Karoo arrived last night & is now installed, 140/80-18 fits like a charm! :) I'm happy! Followed Secret atlas's install instructions, Ready to ride, Work dictates that I've got to wait to the weekend----Will give a performance review when we ride. The tire size is not that big of a deal to figure out when there are other riders or a dealer around,(or if you have a measuring tape, and can convert the new tire sizes) but here on the island I'm S.O.L. so thanks every one for the input!

I'm running a Mich Baja with a Dunlop crescent mousse insert in the rear. Works great and haven't had a flat yet. Went on pretty easy with tire mounting lube. I'll probably put a crescent mousse in the front as well.

My 650R had Dunlop 752's when I got it. They are aweful in all conditions. Grass, mud, hardpack, you name it.

I put MT21's on for a DS ride in Terlingua. Mucho rocks and general desert action. The tires were good.

Since then, I replaced the rear with a Terraflex.

The MT21 front is amazing. Works great in almost all conditions. The Terraflex provides much more traction than the 752 or MT21. I've done one hare scramble (about 25 miles) and the Flex doesn't look used.

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